unintended but accepted

As I have said many times (likely too many times by now) I am headed to China for the summer. What I’ve learned from travel is that international travel will destroy a pair shoes, regardless of if they are old beaters or brand new. So I’ve decided to just go ahead and get a new pair of shoes. The question that remains then is what- mocassins, Vans, or some bluchers. The gamut I’ve set on is Vans Classics, LL Bean or Eastland bluchers, or Arrow mocassins. In my book, all fit the need for something comfortable to walk in and that will look good after being put through the ringer of travel and tourism. I have no dress code to keep up beyond my personal preference for slightly WASP-y attire (Vans aside), so this is mostly about comfort and lasting through 10 weeks of daily wear.

More importantly though is a notion that I sort of developed in Japan. Although in Athens I tend to keep a fair collection of shoes, including sneakers, loafers, wingtips, etc, my time in Japan encourage a wear-it-till-its-dead mentality. Of course, that isn’t to say that Japanese people own a single pair of shoes at a time, but rather they get all they can out of a product. We see this reflected in the quality of Japanese goods. I think that to embark on an extended travel is a great opportunity for many to really decide on a few garments and shoes and wear the hell out of them. If they survive, great; if not, well you got a few years worth of wear when you factor out the rotation they would get back home.

Input is appreciated of course:

Arrow Mocassin Lace-up Boot

LL Bean Blucher Moc

Eastland Falmouth blucher

Sperry distressed leather boat shoe

Vans Era

-N. T. Edwards

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paddling up the Yangzhe

I want a new bag for China and my last year at UGA. As much as my North Face has served its duty well, its kinda college-y and I would like something that’s the same but not technical. Enter the canoe pack. It is basically a backpack meets envelope designed for canoes at some point in time. Im sure most people who canoe or kayak probably have turned to something like the North Face I’ve been using. Anyways, I adore the bright blue colorways of the two bags below. One is from Inventory (the first), and is a collaboration with Duluth Trading Company. The others is from Seil Marschall; though technically this pack is referred to as a Climbers Pack. But given the similarities and the more common name of canoe pack, I’m including it. Either one would be a great choice I think, and would add something to the typically mundane but necessary condition of trekking around with a bag. Enjoy!

-N. T. Edwards

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going East to go more trad

First, let me point out that there is significant overlap between prep, wasp, trad and ivy styles… So, my time in China will furnish an opportunity to clad myself in bespoke, well-made, and particular clothing. If I can successfully navigate the plethora of cheap and therefore cheaply made clothing, then I ought to be able to return home at the end of summer with a tuxedo, a suit or two, and some trousers and odd coat (or two). I would be lying if I did not admit that I am excited for such a chance. Bespoke and MTM clothing in the US or Europe are expensive, to say the least. But, I have found European tailors based in Beijing- perhaps a perfect example of serendipity! The suiting house they operate is called The Bauer Co. From what I’ve read, the quality and service is worth my time and money [hopefully so!]. You are welcome to peruse some of their photos from a recent show they put on in Beijing; but below are some of the ideas I am mulling around in my head so that I have a good hold on what I want when I get there. Comments and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

-N. T. Edwards

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I do love a Southern summer, but…

Well, after a year back in Athens I am headed to East Asia again. This time however it is just for the summer. About middle of May I am flying to Beijing for 10 weeks as a Summer China Fellow in the Center for International Trade and Security at UGA. I am excited, of couse, to see another third of East Asia; hopefully I can finagle a trip through Seoul as well to round out my tour of the region!

Although I’ve made comment before regarding a carry-on/weekender for travel, I never did pull the trigger. This time I am thinking I ought to… The newest addition to the lineup from which I am considering my choice comes from Ernest Alexander. The bag uses sail cloth with leather trimming, including the bottom, and comes in both navy and olive. I prefer the olive I think, though the navy is much more noticeable- perhaps better to keep track of. I like the duffle shape sans slouchiness, the frequent put-off of duffle bags. Of course I will take a suitcase, but after travelling internationally several times now it seems prudent to take the smallest suitcase I can with a generous carry-on. Pictures are from the Ernest Alexander online store. Enjoy!

-N. T. Edwards

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the things we eat

Excuse me missing a week’s post for the weekly menu. This week however is fairly interesting, given that I can almost assure that some 90% of my fellow students here on campus, if not the entire US collegiate environment do not eat as well. What is also worth noting, is that per person (myself and my roomate), this week’s dinners cost only about $32. To put that in perspective, that is 3 pizzas from any major pizza restaurant, or about 6 meals from any generic fast food restaurant. The difference here is quality, health, and diversity of dinners. Enjoy!

  • Monday: roasted potato and leek soup with crispy shallots

Roasted Potato Leek Soup with Crispy Shallots

  • Wednesday:  chicken with creamy dijon sauce, with brussels sprouts and pancetta
  • Thursday: butternut squash gnocchi with sage brown butter and sausage
  • Friday: pepper chicken curry
  • Saturday: roast pork loin with mushrooms and baked carrots

I promise to post pictures this week, although I do not promise quality… I am no photographer, sadly.

-N. T. Edwards

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gettin’ about

As stated before, for classes and extracurriculars [and going home] I get about a bit. So, I have been looking for a bag to carry the dopp and clothes. I have finally settled on a pair. Both are tartan and I am caught between the two- Rob Roy and Black Watch. Neither are MacDonald (my clan), but one is a family tartan, because of which I am shying away. The two bags are from Pendleton USA, a heritage brand making great wool products. The bags are roomy enough as weekender bags, trimmed in leather. So, opinions on which tartan? Alternatively, if anyone could replicate this bag with a MacDonald tartan I would snatch it up in a heartbeat… Enjoy!

-N. T. Edwards

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mandatory viewing

I was doing my typical nightly browsing and came across on the more recent posts on This is NOT new. The article has a handful of shots from J. Crew’s S/S ’10 collection. At the moment, J. Crew more than any other brand- designer or not -is fitting my aesthetic. It has a wide age range, simple and tasteful patterns, good materials, reasonable price points, great quality and so on… I could outfit myself entirely in J. Crew. There are few designers or brands that I would say that about. J. Crew seems to be also continuing with their collaborations, bringing the Hill-side for some ties- a great collaboration! Here are my two favorite pictures, both of which are looks I’ve actually been doing this fall (pics to come if I can get my roommate to take it). Please, check the rest out over at The is NOT new. On that note, I absolutely adore the blog, with a great array of brands and looks, without the conceit and pompousness of several other blogs I visit daily for reasons I’m not quite sure why for! Enjoy!




-N. T. Edwards

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