It all started with Red Wing boots. At the time, J.Crew's Frank Muytjens, now the head of men's design, was simply one of the design team who were all sporting the Minnesota-made work boots. They decided that instead of making their own version, they'd work with the century-old shoe maker and bring their boots into J.Crew's stores. It was an instant success and in the years following, Muytjens and his team have partnered or collaborated with dozens of up-and-coming or hard-to-find cult brands—the kind once only known by industry insiders. And while there are plenty of American brands on their roster, some of the most interesting pieces were found outside the US. You want quality, archival workwear from Japan or the perfect Canadian henley? You no longer need a plane ticket.