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Sartoria Columbia, our weekly newsletter on a life well-lived and well-dressed.

Advanced Water Purification: Clear-ly Intoxicated, Disposable Water Bottles & You

Advanced Water Purification (with Christopher Trepky):Beyond some holdover juvenile instinct, I am at a loss to explain the bubbling sense of joy I experience when drinking liquor in full view of police officers.Most places in the United States have laws about drinking in public, and, unfortunately, most locales fall firmly into the “don’t you do it” camp. Now I’m no attorney (a lead-in that bodes about as well as “hold my beer…”), but in my experience there is a large gap in letter vs. spirit of the law here, which is nigh universally enforced as “don’t make it obvious, and we won’t have a problem.”There is nothing wrong with filling an opaque plastic or metal water bottle with whatever concoction...
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Sartoria Columbia: Seersucker Summer

Happy Memorial Day — summer is here. It’s been a mild spring, for the most part, but we will soon be forced to embrace the heat. Seasonal suits — lighter wools and linen blends — perform great through the warmer months, but the old-school American choice for warm weather fabric is seersucker. Cotton, while light, is not the most versatile fabric. It doesn’t flex much and, when it gets wet, it stays wet — not great for sweat relief. But seersucker is different. The fabric is woven with puckers that are designed to promote air flow, and if you have ever stood in front of a fan, you know that air flow is cooler than no flow.The puckers in a seersucker...
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Advanced Water Purification: Mobile Mixing

Last week we talked about how to use a flask as a mobile cocktail unto itself, so this week, let’s examine another use for the flask: a mobile building block.While a pre-mixed flask is great for situations where one will be out for a while, sitting through a long wedding ceremony or graduation, taking in a play, anything in an environment where buying or making a proper drink would be challenging if not impossible, there are also many scenarios where one simply needs to bring some liquor along in order to mix it on-location.Scenario 1: A Cup Of IcePretty much any place that serves anything can provide you with a cup of ice for the bargain rate of $0 -...
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Sartoria Columbia: On Liners

 Many guys love the idea of fun jacket linings. Motifs that have some personal connection are the best— like guitars, cars, or college colors — but going wild for wild’s sake is a mistake. It is a misnomer that a crazy liner is an indication of a custom suit; all it means is that you picked the liner. Sure, when you are wearing the jacket buttoned, no one will see the liner. But how often is that the case? Men wear their jackets open most of the time, if they are wearing them at all, and the lining is more visible than you would think. So if you are considering a lining that would be embarrassing in certain company (looking at...
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Advanced Water Purificaton: A Flask-Back

May is a busy month for me — a wedding, a bachelor weekend, a graduation, not to mention simply being out and about in the spring weather. A lot of flask-toting happens in the warmer months, so I would like to kick off a multi-week series addressing these scenarios by re-printing a flask-ing listicle from last Summer in the first installment of what we’ll call:Potent PortablesEpisode 1: Flask In The GloryToday, as Summer Wedding Season is fast upon us, we shall discuss The Flask. A useful tool with a specific niche, the flask is great for discreetly carrying and consuming alcohol, but its instantly recognizable form (and metallic gleam) means it cannot hide in plain sight. Pulling it out at...
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Sartoria Columbia: On Alden Tassels

When a shoe style is created out of necessity, it’s eventual design is often inevitable — it serves the intended purpose with the fewest number of moving parts. Now an iconic emblem of American style, the Alden Tassel loafer comes from a completely different, and much more rakish place. The unique silhouette is often copied but never replicated, and the story behind its development is an example of wonderful serendipity. Mr. Paul Lukas, for those who may not remember, was a Hollywood actor in the 1930s through the early 1970s. Originally a smooth and debonair ladykiller, he transitioned to the role of mastermind villain later in his career. Off the silver screen, he was a stylish, old-school Hollywood type, and...
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Advanced Water Purification: Mint Julep

Illustration by RW Icon, Ralph Steadman ______ This column appears, lightly edited, as it did last year, in honor of Derby Day. Be sure to join us in the shop for a Julep tomorrow, courtesy of Element Shrub. The mint julep is decadent and depraved. Here is a drink almost wholly associated with one event and, while not a BAD drink, it is nonetheless fairly ridiculous in its conception and its execution. First and foremost, the modern Mint Julep is the beverage of choice for countless thousands who, for one Saturday each May, turn out in their silliest finery and pretend for one debaucherous day to give a damn about horse racing, as though the whole country were suddenly become...
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Sartoria Columbia: On Branding

So our logo discussion got a little heated a few weeks ago — strong takes can be polarizing. We ended our piece with a broad-strokes takedown of brand logos (looking at you, gigantic polo horse) worn purely for effect, a stance I still stand by. But even in the hottest of takes, nuance still exists. Many brands spend time creating a world where their products exist, and that world, when conceptualized correctly, resonates with customers. The strongest brands create enthusiastic and loyal adherents to its principles, perspective, and mission. Like a great novel, it allows people to affirm their own lens and build a ‘like-minded’ community. The strongest of brands (or at least the ones with the strongest sales performance)...
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Sartoria Columbia: On Alden Shoe Co.

Despite being relatively out of direct sightline, people notice shoes. Just like an ill-fitting suit or shirt can ruin an otherwise fine looking outfit, bad shoes can have an equally adverse effect. Wearing a nice suit with poorly made shoes give the impression of all flash and no substance.  If you are reading this, you probably already know that we are big proponents of well-made things. We make all of our suits and sport coats using a full canvas construction, the pinnacle of tailored clothing, so our jackets wear better and last longer. Similar to a full canvas in jackets, the best construction method for shoes is called a goodyear welt. It is a time consuming process but the extra...
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Advanced Water Purification: A Coffee Conundrum

Granita. ___________ With all the sunshine, it seems like a good brunching weekend, so let’s add a card to the brunch-drinking stack. Several weeks ago, just as the weather turned warm, I finally found a solution to a conundrum that has long bothered me: how to serve coffee and cocktails next to each other? Of the brunch drinks I have mentioned so far in this column — and indeed any drinks I ever really serve during brunch at our house — none go very well next to a hot cup of coffee. Where the drinks are vibrant and cheerful, the coffee is earthy and dark, not to mention, you know… hot. They just sort of ruin each other. Well, we...
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