366 Bow Ties: Day 7

20120107-183222.jpg20120107-192543.jpg Bow ties on Saturdays are going to be tricky. It was incredibly warm for January, perfect for my boy Owen's backyard birthday party. So I picked something that was kind of summery, but not seersucker or linen. 20120107-192553.jpg
This used to be called the Patrick when it was a reversible bow tie with another fabric on the reverse. Get this for St Patrick's Day. Madras and bold, but not "loud". 20120107-192603.jpg I write from the Chick Fil A playground, which stinks worse than a high school locker room. But the boys can run off their sugar high. 20120107-192623.jpg
Run over to the store and grab today's tie. More interesting prose promised tomorrow.


366 Bow Ties: Day 6

. Buy it or it's gone.
Found both a corduroy shirt and a knit wool zip-up sweater in the back of my closet--in the "I'm Too Fat For This, But Someday" thrifted pile. Navy and gray gave me another shot at yesterday's Solidarity Palate. The red velvet doesn't really hint at brighter days, though. Instead, it embraces the bleak midwinter and meets its frosty throwdown with a cheap shot of luxury and warm elegance. What is the deal, however, with these ridiculously long sweater sleeves? Tuesday's sweater's sleeves were also much too long, but this is just nuts. I cuffed them 3/4 of the way to my elbow. It's a "detail"--right? Put that on Tumblr...let's start the next big thing.
Ellie tailored these trousers for me this morning. Wow. What a woman. More on this in another post, I hope.

20120106-165023.jpg Loving these Made in USA longwings--can't tell who by. But they were affordable!

Happy first Friday of 2012. Go put on a bow tie and head out for some pizza and beer.


366 Bow Ties: Day 4


Isn't a bow tie enough? Why add a kelley green cardigan? is it St. Patrick's Day? Or did you have a Guinness in the shower instead of coffee this morning?

To answer your question, a bow tie is definitely enough. I wouldn't normally be so peacocky. But the problem is, I have a green cardigan, which I like a lot, and I'm doing this thing where I have to wear a bow tie every day. I'm already foregoing neckties for 366 days. I'm not going to add kelley green cardigans to the abstention list.

Hence, outfit.

The bow tie is the Malcolm, rendered in Club Diamond (a punchy bow tie cut, of course. Consistency!). It's silk tweed. Which makes it, and you--if you buy it--automatically awesome.


The Malcolm is available regularly on our store for the affordable price of $29. But this one, and this one alone is available for the throwback Cordial Churchman price of just $23.


With all that punchiness up top, it's brown from the waist down. Except for the socks, of course, which goes without saying.

366 Bow Ties: Day 3


Today's bow tie is also one-of-a-kind.  It's a leftover from a batch we made a little over a year ago from scruffy blue chambray, most of which were diamond pointed and ended up going to Times Square and the Meatpacking District where Levi's promptly sold out of them.  I stumbled upon a butterfly version and decided it called for an old cable-knit navy sweater I also just rediscovered in the back of my closet.


I had the privilege of a BBQ lunch meeting with a cordial churchman and friend. This gent has a doctorate, and has just recently finished reading the entirety of an even more cordial churchman, mutual teacher, and friend's 7 volume history of preaching.  Needless to say, I was all ears when he offered some constructive criticism on Sunday's sermon.


Bill Spoon's Barbecue was delicious, and delightfully low-brow, as all such joints should be.


I moved on to a more high-brow Charlotte establishment, the one and only Fairclough & Co. Clothiers.  I managed to avoid the Alden shoes and got off pretty cheap, relatively speaking (see below).


I am always more and more impressed with Charlotte.  I know it's not supposed to have any character, history, and soul.   So maybe I'm shallow.  But Charlotte is great.


I was on a no-jeans-because-jeans-are-for-manual-laborers kick for a while, and actually went an entire year without ever wearing blue jeans.  It started by accident, and then became a stupid personal challenge.  What was I thinking?  I'm compensating now by wearing the Gold Standard almost every day.


The real test of any bow tie is:  when you un-do it at 6:00pm as you're greeting your wife at the door, does she think you're hot stuff?  Causation is pretty hard to prove around here, being as Ellie makes the things herself--she could just be admiring her own work.  But once you take the baby off her hands and disappear, you instantly become hot stuff---but especially with a bow tie.  Make sense?  I'm rambling.  The point is: buy this only-one-of-it's-kind-left blue chambray bow tie today, or it's gone forever (unless we happen upon more of this fabric).


Right: so, about how I escaped from Fairclough:  With this.  Genuine man.  Perhaps even Old Man (all the better).  There were some sissy scents available that Ellie might have liked better.  But at the end of the day, you've got to go with Bay Rhum.  Can you believe the packaging on this thing?  A wax seal?  That paper!?  That crown?  Glad I finally got me some.  I'm inhaling right now.  It smells legit.


Cheers until tomorrow.


PS--Sorry about the whole Andy-standing-with-Ray-Bans-in-front-of-buildings flavor of this post.

PSS---Sorry also for the hyphenate-the-crap-out-of-everything flavor of this post.

366 Bow Ties: Day 2


Used to be a beautiful scarf from The Hill-Side. Now, its a beautiful bow tie. Until The Hill-Side starts making bow ties, I'm sure they won't object to your buying their scarves and having The Cordial Churchman convert them.


Went out to my buddy's family farm in McConnels, SC today with another good friend. Had bacon and peanut butter paninis and talked about the beauty of polycultures.


There was something enjoyable about walking around avoiding animal dung in my Weejuns.  I narrowly avoided having January 2nd's bow tie ingested by the lovely beast in the foreground.  (They both also made a pass at my Kent Wang pocket square, which Ellie gave me for Christmas last year.)  Today's bow is  available in our store, but is utterly gone--poof--forever, once it's sold. But you won't be nearly so sad as I will be to see this once-worn linenesque cotton beauty go.


Plans to give away all the proceeds are coming together nicely. We are excited to tell you more once everything's in place.


Happy bow tying.

EDIT: How could I have forgotten to post the photo of the peanut butter & bacon panini?  Thanks, Erin from A Low Country Wedding for reminding me of the glory that was that sandwich!

366 Bow Ties: Day 1

Happy New Year!

Today is Day 1 of 366 consecutive days in which I will be wearing one of The Cordial Churchman's own handcrafted bow ties. Every day of 2012, I'll wear a new, different bow tie handmade by us here in Carolina.

This means that we'll be pulling old ill-fitting shirts out of the back of the closet, raiding my necktie vault, and grabbing every piece of interesting fabric we can get our hands on to make 366 different bow ties.

And of course, sometimes--like this morning, for instance--I'll simply raid The Cordial Churchman studio and grab a bow tie that's available in our store.


But either way, you'll have a chance to purchase the Bow Tie of the Day for yourself, whether it be a unique one-of-a-kind piece, or whether it be one of our best selling ties. It will come to you, authenticated with the date it appeared in this project. You'll be the envy of all your bow tie aficionado friends.

What a frivolous, perhaps even narcissistic, New Years Resolution, you might be thinking. Well, besides the fact that I don't believe one should ever feel obligated to apologize for rocking a bow tie, there's another angle on this. We're still ironing out the details, but The Cordial Churchman will be donating the proceeds from the sale of each Bow Tie of the Day to an exciting, reputable charity that changes the lives of impoverished young people in the developing world. It's our hope to give away $10,000 this year. More details to come.

In the mean time, spread the word. Keep your eyes peeled for daily posts. Interact with other shameless bow tie enthusiasts on our Facebook page. Follow the insanity on my Tumblr. Grab hold of The Cordial Churchman's Twitter feed. Keep up with the project on Instagram (@arstager).

This is going to be a difficult project. It's going to be hard not to wear neckties for a whole year. It's going to be tough to only wear some of my favorite bow ties once this year. (Like the Theodore diamond-point herringbone wool with mohair I wore today. A friend asked me if I had a white dog. I gave him a textile education.) But this is going to be loads of fun.



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