Mar
24
2009
By
Cory Ohlendorf
of Valet.
 
Tightening the Belt
Question
I've been seeing a lot of nautical styling for spring and I want to find one of those hook belts. But I can't spend too much on it. It's a recession after all.
- Brian, Philadelphia, PA
 
Answer

Indeed. Of course, what's expensive to me may not be to you. But you're in luck because there's some great American craftsmen (and craftswomen) churning out bench-made leather products with time-honored techniques and using the new school technology of the web to sell them. One such shop is Solesu, a small leather goods company which has been operating in Belleville, Illinois near my hometown of Mascoutah since the early 1970s. Their hoof pick belt, really an ode to equestrian style, has a jaunty sailor vibe. Another is by Florida's Edgar Leather, whose pelican hook is cast from solid bronze and the leather is English bridle quality. Meaning if things get really tough, it'll taste better than your shoes should you need to boil it to make soup.

$1,788

The amount the average household spent on men's clothing in Austin, Texas in 2008—the most of any US city.

Pelican hook belt (above), $88 at Edgar Leather

Hoof pick belt, $62 at Solesu

 

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