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Thursday, July 13, 2017


RAINS L/SVolcom: Orange County-based Volcom is a one-stop shop for skater/surfer/snowboarder fashion, from t-shirts to board shorts to two-piece suits.  Because they target skaters – who shred clothes quickly, no matter how high quality – I did not expect Volcom to put much effort into the second-thing-to-go elements of clothing construction.  After all, why double-stitch a garment that’s going to be rags within weeks regardless?  But I was pleasantly surprised.  A few years back, I bought a Volcom button-up. It was a good purchase.  The shirt had a clean silhouette, but with slightly skewed seams that bent people’s eyes just enough to prevent them from looking past me.  And – because I do not lead a tear-through-fabric lifestyle – it lasted for years.

Patagonia: With Ventura-based Patagonia, you get what you pay for.  What you pay is a lot.  What you get is exactly what you want.  Patagonia’s gear and clothing looks great, it works perfectly, and it is manufactured as ethically and sustainably as reasonably possible.  I do not yet own a Patagonia long-sleeved button-up shirt.  But I do own a broad cross-section Patagonia clothing and gear, all of which may very well last me forever.  

7 For All Mankind: Los Angeles-based 7 For All Mankind makes the streetwear that Hollywood stars are wearing in paparazzi photographs.  I own a wine-colored pair of 7FAMK’s Luxe Performance Sateen pants. They fit well, the fabric is comfortable against my skin, and they make me slouching loll like Johnny Thunders.  7FAM also sells slim-cut long-sleeved button-ups.

Chrome: When I lived in the real Bay Area (i.e., the Bay Area in which you can see the Golden Gate and/or Bay Bridge with minimal effort), Chrome was the most ubiquitous brand of messenger bags and backpacks.  Now, they've expanded their line to include everything a bike-messenger-type urbanite needs for day-to-day living, including woven shirts, which are made in a San Francisco factory.
Mountain Hardwear: Richmond-based Mountain Hardware has been my go-to supplier for camping-and-backpacking clothing and gear for more than a decade.  They also make long-sleeve button ups, which probably are of high quality, and which look nice, in an a-backpacking-company-made-this sort of way.

North Face: Alameda-based North Face makes pretty much everything an outdoors-enthusiast could want, including button-up shirts for outdoor wear.  Judging by everything I’ve bought from them so far, their probably make their shirts really well.

Chubbies: San Francisco-based Chubbies makes pool/beach clothes with anti-fashion prints for the Weekend At Bernie’s crowd, including some long-sleeved button ups.  Personally, I’ve never seen a Chubbies shirt that I can imagine myself wearing.  But their Weekend Love exuberance keeps me returning to their site.

DSTLD: Los Angeles-based DSTLD is an online-only, direct-to-consumer clothing designer and seller.  Their wares include denim button-ups.

AG Jeans: Los Angeles-based AG made its name designing flattering and socially conscious jeans, which my wife has worn happily for years.  They also make casual, street-wear button ups.

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