Harris Tweed x Nike Vach Pack

The folks at SneakerFiles today posted a look at some purple tweed kicks courtesy of an upcoming collaboration between Harris Tweed and Nike. The shoes will debut under what’s being called the “Vach Pack” and will be available at retailers with a Nike Quickstrike account.

A Word from Sir E. Channing

Welcome to the new home of Dandies & Quaintrelles. You may have arrived here due to your involvement or interest in our retro styled bike rides. You may have been referred to our site from a friend with a curious taste for the style of a bygone era. Your stop here might have been purely accidental and unplanned? Whatever your reasons, we hope you enjoy your time spent with us.

Dandies & Quaintrelles (D&Q) is a social club based out of Washington D.C. Founded in 2009 in a city as serious as the nation’s capital, we delight in staging not so serious activities designed to delight. D&Q is a club without a membership list, dues,  rules or meetings. Our members are simply interested in a subscription to a better life. We understand the benefits of investing the most we can afford in things and activities that bring about joy and fulfillment. A life lived well is beautiful and that beauty can be evident in the celebration of exceptional personal style, leisurely experiences, acts of kindness. We seek to encourage a pronounced and unmistakable state of happiness.

We are fortunate to have, at our fingertips, access to a wealth of memorable experiences of those who have lived before us. We hope it results in a life of style which reflects our desire to curate a personal existence that involves a conscious selection of influences relative to our means. It is our goal to realize the ultimate value of our lives through our curiosity and the act of research and discovery leading to an enlightened curatorial process of purposeful engagement.

The new Dandies & Quaintrelles website is presented as an anti-treatise on this process of living. As life involves accident, chance as well as purpose, the site is dedicated to the beauty of organic discovery, the wonder of coincidental influence and the pursuit of style. We invite all who identify with this pursuit to share and contribute your discoveries, anecdotes and passionate views on the path of redemption through style!

The Bicycle: The Liberator and the Key to Leisure

Dandies prefer the bicycle. It’s an elegant machine with obvious merits yet is under appreciated for its importance in the shaping of key elements in modern society. A quick study on the history of the bicycle will yield knowledge of its initial impact on American culture. There are many reasons to celebrate its beauty and significance and it’s only fitting that the bicycle was the central element of the first event hosted by Dandies & Quaintrelles.

The bicycle, as we know it today, was born in the 1890s, a difficult time for the average person. The Industrial Revolution forced men to work long hours; corsets limited women’s movement. The mass production of bicycles helped to influence important changes that helped paved the way to a better quality of life for it was the bicycle and other forms of cheap transportation that pressured employers in England to provide more time off for workers. Women’s liberation sprouted from the increasing popularity of the bicycle, helping free women from the restrictions of a hundred-year-old trend.

It was the bicycle and other forms of cheap transportation that pressured employers in England to provide more time off of work for the average worker.

“It was the arrival of mass forms of cheap transport that gave a boost to the demand for shorter working hours and longer holidays: the railways and to a lesser extent the bicycle… Cheap excursions on the railways could carry thousands to the seaside or to the races. Owning a bike meant you could get out into the countryside. And of course providing refreshment and accommodation for these early holiday-makers was a new industry in itself. The tourist industry was born and the pressure to create more leisure and more money-making opportunities was on.” – Cottontown.org

“The bicycle was what made the Gay Ninties gay. It was a practical investment for the working man as transportation, and gave him a much greater flexibility for leisure.” – pedalinghistory.com

How on earth did the bicycle have a major impact on women’s fashion or the notion of women’s independence?  While women weren’t seen wearing knickers until decades later, the popularity of the bicycle helped free women from the restrictions of a hundred year old fashion trend. According to  pedalinghistory.com, “The bicycle craze killed the bustle and the corset, instituted “common-sense dressing” for women and increased their mobility considerably.”

And what of womens liberation? “Simply put, the bicycle allowed for movement into new spaces, literally and figuratively. The woman of the 19th century who had been given little opportunity to cultivate or express her autonomy now had a vessel with which one could not only develop autonomous power, but do so while leaving behind the old reliance upon men for travel. It’s easy to see then, why Susan B. Anthony, women’s rights advocate and future star of an ill-fated dollar, was to say that the bicycle had “done more to emancipate women then anything else in the world.” (Willard, 90)” - The Possibility of Mobility: The Rise and Fall of the Bicycle in 19th Century America.

When you consider joining us for the next Tweed Ride or Seersucker Social, think of the role the bicycle has played to foment change. While current times are thankfully very different for us than they were for those during the 1890’s, the bicycle has the ability to liberate us in new ways and allow us to reconsider our approach to leisure time that we take for granted.

Mister Crew Tackles London’s Tweed Run

The folks at Valet. found a great set of photos from blogger Mister Crew covering London’s annual Tweed Run. There, Savile Row’s Huntsman dressed its window to fit the mood of the occasion.  They also dug up a great flickr set from bicycleimages. You may find the perfect inspiration for your outfit — or discover a bike accessory you previously didn’t know about, but now absolutely need.