Wednesday, 14 December 2011

A Woolly Christmas!

Out about town on Monday getting some Christmas essentials, I popped into a local charity which has occasionally come up trumps in the [distant] past.

I'm glad I did too, for there waiting for me on one of the racks was this pure wool jacket!  It was one of those things that just stood out amid a sea of nylon shell suits and worn out coats.  So I pounced on it straightaway and with mixed feelings noted it was a 42S, a size above what I usually take.  But it was of such good quality and condition that I thought I'd try it on anyway.  I was delighted to see that it lived up to its Short fitting at least, being just right in sleeve and body length.  Cursed with a short body and long legs - a genetic predisposition inherited from my great-grandfather - it has to be Short or nothing as anything else ends up finishing around my knees!  OK, so there was a little bit of room across the shoulders and around the middle, but not enough to break the deal I felt.  Certainly not for a measly £5, at any rate!  Besides, isn't that what sleeveless pullovers are for?  So home with me it came. 

On closer inspection and investigation it just gets better and better.  I'm not sure how well it shows up in these photos, but it is a lovely chocolate brown colour with a hint of red woven in and a blue check pattern.  Flap pockets etc., all present and correct.  I noticed the makers label on the inside pocket when I bought it, but the name conveyed nothing to me at the time.  Having just done some online digging I couldn't be more bucked.  It was made by Magee, an Irish firm that specialises in tweed but also dabbles in wool and linen.  They've been in business since 1866 and going by the contents of their website this jacket may well qualify as bargain of the year!

Pocket square also courtesy of American Auntie.  Quite popular too!

Now, staying with the woollen theme, you may recall in my post about Fair Isle jumpers a few months ago I mentioned that I'd had a sleeveless pullover knitted for me in the Fair Isle style using a special kind of "pre-treated" wool that creates the pattern as you knit and so avoids the fiddliness inherent in normal Fair Isle construction.  It's by no means up there with the best Scotland has to offer, but it's quite passable nonetheless.  And here it is - not bad, eh?

Finally, it is getting to that time of the year where it becomes necessary to roll out the big sartorial guns as winter really begins to bite.  Scotland has already been hit hard with snow, heavy winds and rain and by all forecasts that weather is due to head south any time soon.  I've got my heavy navy blue overcoats in readiness, but this is a good opportunity to show off the vintage brown wool overcoat that my lovely American aunt with the (shameless plug alert, shameless plug alert!!) eBay shop was kind enough to give me last year.  I thought my CandA International overcoat was heavy, but this is something else again!  This is a real beauty - prepare to be awestruck (I know I was!).

This baby was made some time between 1939 and 1949 (Union Made label on the inside pocket confirms this) by Kuppenheimer, a Chicago-based menswear manufacturer in business from 1876 to 1997.  It looks to have been made specially for Kaufmann's main Pittsburgh store.  Kaufmann's, for any non-US readers, was a major department store founded in 1871 and comparable to Gimbels (1887-1987) and Macy's (with whom they eventually merged in 2006).  This single picture doesn't do it justice, so I might do a whole post around it one day soon.

Well, that's it for this fashion post.  I hope you enjoyed it, and don't forget to wrap up warm - there's a storm coming by all accounts!


  1. Great jacket, and what a fab bargain!Well spotted that man! X

  2. Lovely jacket, I love window pane checks that match.

  3. WOW! A great bargain. Lucky it fitted too!

    A friend of mine knows a tailor (drycleaning and mending mostly- but he's gooood) who adjusts suits for a few quid. Said friend now boldly grabs vintage and designer charity shop bargains and adjusts them to fit- it never costs him more than £30 total, but his suits look made-to-measure.

    Charity shopping is definitely rewarding.

  4. What a bargain find! I think Charity Shops can be brilliant for mens suits if you're willing to have a hunt, Mr Chick has 2 or 3 full suits and a jacket or 2 that have all be such bargains!

    You look very dapper, and nice and warm!


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