Monday, December 31

10E2093: That First Footing | Hogmanay | New Year's Eve Look

"First footing" is a tradition on New Year's eve (or Hogmanay as they call it) still practiced in Scotland. To bring a year of good luck the first person to cross the threshold after midnight should be a tall, dark, handsome man. If you fit the bill you are expected to visit many houses during the evening. Bring a dram with you to spread good cheer, as well as coal for the fireplace to symbolize warmth.

Tartan "trews" (trousers). These traditionally have a high waist and fishtail back for attaching suspenders - still part of military formalwear.
Pebble Leather Kiltie Wingtip - from Black Fleece
McCarthy's Single Malt distilled in Oregon using peat-malted barley from Scotland. $50 for a young whisk(e)y but yum.
Barbour Longstone Jacket as you nip in and out of each house.
Deadstock Arrow shirts; use etsy.
Carbon black woven silk bow tie; Beau Ties.
Incase of fog or sleet or snow, announce your arrival with a boatswain's pipe from the inventors, Acme Whistles. Also handy to shrill-ly call children to attention...

Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 27

10E2092: Pebble Leather Kiltie Wingtip - Black Fleece

Pebble leather, double-leather storm welt sole, leather lining. Hunter Green color. Perfect with New Year's eve tartan trews? 450 clams from BB/BlackFleece. #watchlist

Wednesday, December 26

10E2091: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Recent animation by Woof Wan-Bau's for Penguin Books
“Published as a ‘shilling shocker’, Robert Louis Stevenson’s dark psychological fantasy gave birth to the idea of the split personality. The story of respectable Dr Jekyll’s strange association with ‘damnable young man’ Edward Hyde; the hunt through fog-bound London for a killer; and the final revelation of Hyde’s true identity is a chilling exploration of humanity’s basest capacity for evil.”
Have mentioned this classic before and at under 100 pages it is a killer read… (see what I did there?). If you have a kindle or the app on your phone you can download a copy of J&H for $0 from amazon - here. Must read.

10E2090: Carhartt Snap-On Hood/Liner

Never saw such a thing - hardhat liner / hood combo from Carhartt (Centennial edition). Ticks a lot of boxes...

Thursday, December 20

10E2089: Sun Mountain Sessions Snowboard Camp @ Bromley

If you are wintering near Bromley in southern Vermont next week there is a neat and inexpensive option for a youth snowboard coaching camp. One of the instructors Andrew Maness is a 10engines friend and wanted to get the word out. Happy to oblige. Cost of instruction is $75 for the 3 days (or $30 per), lift ticket required. 12/26-12/28. Frees up mom and dad to get some runs... 
"The camp is about having fun with the natural terrain & keeping the VT style alive. We get all the kids to plan some tricks they wanna learn by the end of camp & talk with them about our experiences in the snowboard community. It's not just about improving skills on the mountain but also gaining a better understanding of the snowboard world as a business & as a family. The Sun Mountain Sessions are amazing...
Kids of all ages can do it. Usually ages range from 10-18. We've had a few kids doing it since the start so we've got to watch them grow up which is pretty cool. It's for all abilities really. We break it up by coach and skill level.
In past years we've had local guys Nate Farrell, Greg Bokencamp, Chris Waker & Evan Williams on the staff, who all grew up riding Bromley. This year myself, Tim Benasich, Jimmy Goodwin, Tyler Emond will be the main coaches. There's also a huge product giveaway & pizza party on the last day and a few special Frends are scheduled to stop by." 
Details: Dec 26th through Dec 28th - 3 days of shredtacular coaching and instruction. All proceeds go to the Ross Powers Foundation, a charitable organization committed to supporting the growth of world-class performers by offering assistance to promising athletes with financial need. To register for the Sun Sessions please contact the Bromley Ski & Snowboard School at 802 824 5522.

2012 Sun Session.

Tuesday, December 18

10E2088: JK Adams - American Cutting Board

Based in Dorset, VT, J.K. Adams has created wooden cutting boards and kitchen utensils since 1944. These simple cutting boards are a new line for them; produced from sustainably grown and harvested Vermont Ash - teak oil finish. V reasonably priced, the 20'x10' board (almost the size of 4 sheets of paper) is $45. 20% off if you shop via Yankee Magazine....

Friday, December 14

10E2087: Eagle Claw Tie Clasp

Easy gift call; $2. Tie clasp (or hat pin) by Eagle Claw. Like all their hooks, made in the USA. Can buy them all over the place (e.g. Sears) - or buy a box of 100 on ebay. #fridaysaretiedays  HT to Teresa at Camp Wandawega for this one. 

Thursday, December 13

10E2086: Carhartt - Let's Review Camo

Most of these are grabbed from the 'bay or older posts - these examples of the hunting line from Carhartt. Discontinued around 1990. Some serious stuff in epic green and brown camo. Pocket flaps on the pants are the dogs'. There are other examples of Treebark(tm) in use by them from that era, and tons of blaze - for another time. You ever seen someone skiing in the coveralls? No one cuts that guy in line... 

Update 12/14/12: Last photo sent in by reader Christian. #bellsandwhistles #arctic #NOSunionmade

Further reading; Carhartt - lets review 1, Carhartt - lets review 2

10E2085: Audubon Turkey Print at the Pine Tree Inn

Rewatched White Christmas l/n for the umpteenth time and noticed the General's good taste in classic prints; Plate #1 from Audubon's "The Birds of America". That tome continues to fascinate in its depth and lasting power, from its sheer size 3'3" x 2'2" (double elephant in paper terms) and value (world's most expensive book), to the protracted story of its creation and printing.
"Most bird books are arranged by type—shore birds in one chapter, song birds in another, birds of prey somewhere else. But Audubon broke with that tradition, instead sequencing his bird pictures for dramatic effect. In selecting the turkey cock as Plate No. 1 in his series, he seemed to celebrate the turkey as the alpha bird of the American landscape." - via WSJ
 There is a recent book out called Audubon's Aviary that explores the original watercolors and "tells the story behind this monumental classic with new discoveries about this American icon, as well as fresh insights and engaging quotes from Audubon's own compelling writings." #pagingsanta

Wednesday, December 12

10E2084: Harry J. Epstein Co.

Thanks to the anonymous reader who tipped me off to this; Harry J. Esptein Co., wholesale tool store in downtown Kansas City. Beyond having an insane selection of mainly made in the USA tools and bric-a-brac (want yards of dyed suede? hell yes. closeouts on Estwing acorn-leatherworks sheaths - yup) - there is also a thoughtful and cheeky blog going. Further reading.  Thx anon!

Monday, December 10

10E2083: Lifebuoy

Ralphie as an adult: Over the years I got to be quite a connoisseur of soap. My personal preference was for Lux, but I found Palmolive had a nice, piquant after-dinner flavor - heady, but with just a touch of mellow smoothness. Life Buoy, on the other hand... [From A Christmas Story, 1983].
To buy the carbolic scented (as opposed to global version) direct from the sole UK distributor look here.

10E2082: Carhartt IFD - for the completist

A new iteration of Carhartt's exclusively made in the USA line is this Imported From Detroit collection of blacked out takes on the classic shapes; Detroit jacket, Double-Front pants, Chore Coat, Active Jac, etc. For men and women. Prices a slight notch up on the other Made In USA collection, but there are only 200 pieces of these murdered out IFD specials. The jackets features a quilted lining (rather than blanket( printed with a Detroit map, and all hardware colorwared in black. 

Friday, December 7

10E2081: Starboard Clothing Co. x The Old Try - Bow Tie

The Old Try are almost neighbors - but their hearts are definitely in the south creating prints and other goods that reflect their own histories.
"Fellas in great Southern port cities, like Charleston and N'awlins, decided to go toe-to-toe with Frenchmen who showed up wearing cravats that were a bit, well, pretentious. Not only did we buy their goods and build the best nation history has ever seen, but we also stole their fashion and made it downright Southern."
They created this blue ticking bow tie w/ Starboard Clothing Co. (who make damn reasonably prices ties btw) and I'm really liking the use of the humble fabric. Get yours here for $45.  Fridays are ties days...

Thursday, December 6

10E2080: Kodachrome - and Talk @SPL

Great short documentary above about Dwayne's Photo in Kansas. They were the last option to develop Kodachrome, ending that service earlier this year. The (14-step!) development process and the facility are lovingly detailed. Def worth a look.

Beyond just being "cool" and blogworthy (like all those USN photos or guys on fishing vacations, though they admittedly are cool - check the collection at A Continuous Lean) Kodachrome was one of the first color film stocks - many of the iconic 20thC images we know and love share that intense color thus further deepening it's mystique. 

Just as cool, happening in 2 weeks is a lecture at the Somerville Public Library; A celebration of Kodachrome; discussion about why it went away and subsequent digital replacements. One small part of this, and rarely touched on in other mentions of the subject, is the story of why filmmakers (e.g. Woody Allen) tended to use B&W film well into the late 20th century... come along and hear more. The lecturers are area residents and MassArt professors - Steve and Amber Tourlentes - and both photographers in their own right. #powercouple. 
Saturday, December 22, 3pm. Plus cider and donuts... Event link here.

Wednesday, December 5

10E2097: Opinel No 8 Outdoor Knife

New in 2012 from Opinel - an outdoorsy edition No. 8.
  • Sandvik 8.5 cm stainless steel blade, with serrated area of 3.5 cm and shackle key. 
  • Classic Virobloc twistlock system to lock blade. 
  • Handle in plastic resistant to extreme temps (-40°C to +80°C). 
  • Pealess whistle built into handle (110 decibels). 
  • Available in green, blue and grey too.
Sub $40 from Opinel-USA.

Tuesday, December 4

10E2096: Wood Burning Rhyme

Several versions of this around - pick yer favorite verses and create your own...

-Wood Burning Rhyme-

Logs to Burn, Logs to burn, Logs to burn,
Logs to save the coal a turn,
Here's a word to make you wise,
When you hear the woodman's cries.

Never heed his usual tale,
That he has good logs for sale,
But read these lines and really learn,
The proper kind of logs to burn.

Oak logs will warm you well,
If they're old and dry.
Larch logs of pine will smell,
But the sparks will fly.

Beech logs for Christmas time,
Yew logs heat well.
"Scotch" logs it is a crime,
For anyone to sell.

Birch logs will burn too fast,
Chestnut scarce at all.
Hawthorn logs are good to last,
If you cut them in the fall.

Holly logs will burn like wax,
You should burn them green,
Elm logs like smouldering flax,
No flame to be seen.

Pear logs and apple logs,
They will scent your room,
Cherry logs across the dogs*,
Smell like flowers in bloom.

But ash logs, all smooth and grey,
Burn them green or old;
Buy up all that come your way,
They're worth their weight in gold.

*log dogs are name for the metal risers in the fireplace to allow air underneath. 


Here is a quicker memory aid from the Scouts (UK)

These hardwoods burn well and slowly,
Ash, beech, hawthorn oak and holly.

Softwoods flare up quick and fine,
Birch, fir, hazel, larch and pine.

Elm and willow you'll regret,
Chestnut green and sycamore wet.

Friday, November 30

10E2095: Gin & It

Gin & It is a new drinks magazine coming out in the UK from the folk behind Fire & Knives (a food magazine). The name gives away the intent but great sounding lineup as below;
"In issue One, Matthew Fort deals with stonking hangovers, Fiona Beckett sips Benedictine with the working men of Burnley, Richard Ehrlich tears into the cult of the celebrity barman and Thomas Blythe pays tribute to the Twiglet. Also contributing, established legends Trevor Gulliver, Alex Renton, Dick Bradsell, Tom Jaine, Martin Lam and Nick Strangeway as well as impressive new wordsmiths on the writing block."
 Essential reading for the "over-refreshed" as they say. This is another production related to the British food writer Tim Haward. Pretty amusing twitterfeed currently about them proofing the first issue.

10E2094: H&M Socks - For Kids

#parenting $12.95. H&M.

Wednesday, November 28

10E2093: Forging Competition - This Is What A Farrier Does

Video from a farriers competition/clinic in Ira, Vermont. Cool to see these guys get the bullet-time treatment. There are many types of farrier; from the horse-whispers to the old-time-twist-their-nose guys; I don't support the latter. An ancient guy that shod our old draft-horse (and had handled him for perhaps 20 years before that when he was the post office horse in town), they used to battle, and he'd have to tie a back foot up. Both participants are now dead, Pete in a backhoe ditch where he dropped... Hell that old man was tough though. "God dammit Pete!" he'd yell as sweat dripped off his 90 pound frame. 

Tuesday, November 27

10E2092: Cuppow - Saturday @ Somerville Public Library

This coming Saturday, a couple/three/half-dozen of the artists and techs from Fringe in Union square have agreed to speak at the Somerville library to describe the business of CUPPOW, the mason jar drinking system. Designer-makers Aaron and Josh the inventors, plus others, came together to create the original art, packaging, website, video etc - all done in-house. Hear about the trials and victories, plus thrills and skinned-knees. Social hour after courtesy of neighbors Q's Nuts and Culinary Cruisers/Kombucha (ice tea).

I have been a huge fan of this product and the business practices of this group since day one, and psyched to finally host them at the library under the banner of The Friends of the Library: Talk Design. Thanks guys. Event page here. Bring a glass fruit jar and lid... we'll take yer picture.

3pm, @ the main branch; 79 Highland Ave., Somerville, MA. Bus #88 or #90.

If you want to go H2T show up in the just released cuppow/geekhouse cyclocross kit. #beyond Then head to Pretty Things birthday bash at 6pm after the talk. Full on local vibe...

Thursday, November 22

10E2091: Convenience Is The Enemy

Hope you create a happy family day everyone. Spare a thought for those reeling from the weather or worse... 

This post is now tradition, and have to say thanks to all the readers [both of you! oh! -ed] and best wishes to the extended 10engines family. Cheers.

Wednesday, November 21

10E2090: Barn Score - EMS Flap Cap

Found at a top-secret Vermont thrift store... older EMS (winter cycling ?) cap.