Northampton’s Traditional Shoemaking Revival (Wall Street Journal)
“”Go around to any department store in Tokyo and you will see a plethora of shoes made in Northampton,” says William Church of Joseph Cheaney and Sons. Tokyo is the company’s biggest foreign market. Overall exports have gone from 15 percent in sales to 35 percent in four years; staffing levels have increased 30 percent in the same time frame. Meanwhile, John Lobb’s most recent store openings were in Tokyo and Shanghai. Dr. Martens, another brand with a long history in Northamptonshire, has brought back its apprentice program and speaks of a “reawakening of interest” in English-made products.”

Untrueisms V (A Suitable Wardrobe)
“In truth, bespoke is simply another word for custom.  That is, there’s no fixed or legal definition of bespoke, as the true bespoke tailors of Savile Row found out recently when they lost a legal battle to prevent a new shop on the Row from calling its stock special clothing bespoke.  (A stock special is essentially a garment made to order using ready to wear patterns, such as, say, having a shirtmaker put a 15.5” collar on the body it usually uses for a size 16 shirt.)  Makers with integrity and informed customers usually use bespoke to mean an item of clothing made specially to the measurements and specifications of the customer, using a pattern individually created specifically for that customer and his or her dimensions.  Ergo, bespoke should not mean existing clothing that is altered to fit the customer, or clothing made from a block size pattern that is tweaked to reflect a few details of the customer’s fit.  Because of the difficulty of doing this right, many companies selling clothing want to appropriate the term “bespoke” to describe what they do.  There’s no law against it, but it’s misleading to anyone who thinks of bespoke in the terms that clothing enthusiasts do.”

American-inspired fashion (How To Spend It)
“After all the hyperbole about London being the epicentre of the menswear universe, it might seem ironic that the inspiration for much of this spring’s casualwear hails from across the Atlantic. Previously used to describe such things as the beards, banjos and bluegrass of the alternative country-music scene, Americana – the catch-all term that has come to include everything culturally evocative of the Americas – influences a raft of menswear labels, from Bottega Veneta to Louis Vuitton.”

Behind Closed Doors: Pepper’s Guide to Makati’s Speakeasy Scene (Pepper.ph)
“Manila’s speakeasies still adhere to the same rule, applying the same guideline to its patrons’ behavior, but for different reasons. The city’s speakeasies are a haven away from the loud, obnoxious club music that many have grown tired of. They try to keep the background noise low,  allowing for free flowing conversation between guests over quality cocktails.

Today, we’ll tell you all about 6 different speakeasies that Makati has to offer. We hope this’ll make it easier for you to decide which are the best spots for a Friday nightcap, a barkada reunion, or a hot date over drinks.”

Whiskey Stone Reviews and Comparisons (Cool Material)
“While better than some rocks from the yard, most whiskey stones do little to nothing. Buy them if you want your drink to look cool but not necessarily be cool. If you are looking for a way to keep your scotch a bit colder without watering it down, we found Balls of Steel and Steel Ice to be the best of the bunch. Not only did they drop the temperature of the bourbon a significant amount (over 20 degrees each), but they kept it from coming back to room temperature for over an hour. To get the quickest chill, nothing tops an ice cube or two in your glass, but for a dilution solution, steel beats rock, and Steel Ice or Balls of Steel are the way to go.”