Jan 30, 2011

Roebucks Union Made Carpenter Jeans, Red Wing Iron Ranger Boots & RRL Work Cap

1970's era Roebucks UNION MADE 7 pocket carpenter dungaree.
Started off a few years ago as dark blue
deadstock that I used sporadically while painting. These are used for work and do get quite dirty, thus requiring regular washing. The lighter blue denim fade is the result.  Currently seen after wearing them for 3 weeks straight without washing while on my current remodel project
 Details include United Garment Workers of America UNION MADE label, Sears Wear Tuff pocketing, Made in USA 
Red Wing Iron Ranger work boots. About 6-8 months after their last appearance before the camera here

 Just about broken in
 RRL "Fit Well Built Well" work cap that has taken the place of my RRL Truck Label duck canvas cap.
Cap started with a bit of damage process but has picked up some serious sweat & grime, or as some would say... fun
 Earlier today, stripping off some nasty latex paint from a front entry door. Wearing the dungarees, boots & cap pictured above. Gotta love Southern California and the fact that I'm outside in a tee in the middle of winter
 Pulling 12 to 14 hour days for 5 days straight in order to finish up this job and get to preparing for both Inspiration & The Rose Bowl.  

Jan 24, 2011


Deadstock 1970's era Hickory Stripe UNION MADE Engineer and Workman Cap.
Hickory Stripe Engineer and Workman Cap from The San Fernando Valley Mercantile Co. collection and archive
 Details include FRISCO LINES embroidered patch,  
side ventilation grommets and Amalgamated Clothing Union label
Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America UNION MADE WORK CLOTHES label
1950's-1960's era Burlington Saddle Pal Denim Railroad / Work Jacket
Burlington pocket label, FRISCO LINES embroidered patch, Lemon Yellow Cotton thread & Saddle Pal Stud Type Buttons
Back waist adjuster cinch strap with Burlington Overall snap.
United Garment Workers of America UNION MADE label

Jan 23, 2011

1950's era Lee Union Made Engineer & Workman's Cap Made in U.S.A.

Vintage deadstock Lee Union Made Sanforized Fade Proof Grey Cotton Twill Engineers & Workman's Cap, Made in U.S.A. Part of The San Fernando Valley Mercantile Co. collection and archive.
1950's era Lee UNION MADE Engineer & Workman's Cap. Details include machine loomed label and side ventilation holes with metal grommets 

United Hatters Cap & Millinery Workers Union UNION MADE label. 
Seen on the right side is the Allied Printing Trades Council Union logo
Genuine Lee Washable Cap Non-Shrinking Visor size label.
Special thanks to RL for this contribution to the archive 

Jan 20, 2011

Vintage RRL Work Caps circa Mid 1990's, Made in the USA

Picked these RRL Work caps up at ROSS (Dress for Less) across the street from The Original Farmers Market in the Fairfax district  of Los Angeles back around 1995. I remember it well, went there for dirt cheap Airwalks & Quicksilver snowboarding gear and stumbled onto a trove of RRL at prices that were as they say, UNBELIEVABLE!
RRL Truck Label Duck Canvas, possibly my favorite work cap of all time
Loomed RRL Truck Label
Aged leather strap with patina & verdigris. I've worn this cap almost daily for years
 Never worn deadstock RRL work cap from 1995 give or take
Embroidered Truck logo
Compare this strap to the one pictured above
I seriously went home with more than a few dozen pieces including button fly & zipper jeans, dark denim carpenter jeans, blue duck button fly work pants, Carhartt style distressed canvas work pants, cotton button fly work pants, fine stripe button fly work pants,  lined & unlined buckle back denim jackets, buckle back duck jacket, various caps, a bunch of Truck Logo tees & a bunch more. Most all of it was Made in the USA back then.  I used to head over the hill to LaBrea & The Stussy Store back when they were killing it, then hit ROSS to see if they had anything. On one trip I picked up 6 pair of Air Jordan 2 reissues for like $25 a pair that I hung onto for about 10 years....sold them a few years ago. Got lots of pictures to share at some point.  I have always been quick to give big props to Shawn Stussy, starting with those crazy print surf shirts of the 80's and leading into Stussy Service & Workwear. Like a lot of clothing I get attached to, I saved almost every piece of Stussy & RRL purchased over the years, most of it during the late 80's thru mid 90's.
Anyone who attended Inspiration 2010 most likely noticed Shawn Stussy, hard to miss him sporting such classic style, he pulls off a pair of Vans better than just about anyone out there. Stussy, RRL.... Shawn Stussy at the RRL afterparty...  two Icons who truly inspire! All is right in the universe.  I'll be posting lots of this stuff from the vault as time allows.   
I'm sure that the 2 embroidered caps pictured were picked up with the lot above. I swear I took half of what they had that day and came back for more a day later. I even returned a white Lee Westerner style RRL trucker jacket because I had way too much stuff... like there even is such a thing, right?
Dark olive green RRL Truck label work cap
Embroidered logo
Leather strap showing its age
Found this little guy while cleaning up the yard here in the Valley a few years back, check out the cap
That's how we roll

Jan 18, 2011

Inspiration 2011 Long Beach.....Buried Treasure From The Vault

Posting as frequently as I had hoped hasn't been so easy this past week. Still recovering from a serious cold that seems to have hit just about everyone around these parts, coupled with All Valley Handyman Service... ie me, pulling 9 hour days while doing a major make over of my bro-in laws house here in the Valley with a deadline of the 28th approaching. 
This has me looking for a few simple items to share with hope that they will fall upon appreciative eyes. 
While looking thru some of the MANY bins that have taken over my living room while preparing for a big day at The World Famous Rose Bowl Flea Market Sunday February 13th, following Inspiration 2011 at The Queen Mary in Long Beach on Friday & Saturday. I just ran across a couple of prized pieces from the collection including my Penske Racing Sunoco DX Mark Donohue crew shirt, and Firestone Racing Checkered Flag shirt.
1972 Penske Sunoco DX Mark Donohue Pit Crew Team Shirt
Donohue won the 1972 Indy 500. A few of his many legendary accomplishments include racing the monster Penske Sunoco 10 cylinder 1500 bhp+ Porsche 917 Can Am, the Penske F1 McLaren & PC1 and also the Penske Trans Am AMC Javelin & Sunoco Camaro. Even Penske's first NASCAR win came at the hands of Donohue.  
  Red, white & blue colors and a checkered flag motif together in a shield... an iconic logo fitting of the commitment to excellence that was part of the late great Mark Donohue, 
and to this day is still found in Roger Penske .
The chain stitched SUNOCO DX logo isn't half bad either
Great machine loomed label
Similar Penske Sunoco Crew shirts can be seen in left center of photo.
I realize some may think I'm side tracked with this racing thing, but these are work shirts and with Inspiration 2011 and the Long Beach Grand Prix both just around the corner, I'm getting a little excited. 
Lion Uniform Firestone Checkered Flag crew shirt
Old School loomed patch & nice bar tacking on the pocket. Let's not forget, this is a work shirt
Nice Firestone printed label. Any label including checkered flags is ok in my book
When I first picked up my copy of My Freedamn 3 quite a few years ago, I felt that Rin Tanaka was a sort of brother in arms for lack of a better word. I had never come across someone with a passion for the diverse yet similar items that I loved to wear, collect, and enjoy. His books and appreciation for all things cool helped push me into consider a different path. Inspiration 2010 was a turning point for myself, vintageworkwear.com and The San Fernando Valley Mercantile Co. 
I've said it before and I'll say it again, Rin Tanaka, his vision and his event, a gathering of the who's who of the vintage clothing world, not to mention surfing, skating (Mike Folmer), motocross (Alpine Stars)  along with all the other great artists and vendors... truly inspiring! 

I promise to get back to 1930s thru 1970s blue collar work clothing, denim & canvas. I'll leave the rest of this vintage racing stuff for another blog project 5 years in the works.  I will be sharing some of 300+ vintage racing jackets & promotional items from the 25+ year collection via vintageracingjacket.com, that is if I can squeeze any more time out of a 24 hour day. 

If Rin (and myself) are into this kind of stuff, I think there should be a few others out there who "get it".

Jan 16, 2011

Patrick Depailler On-Board Lap 1978 Formula One United States Grand Prix Long Beach

Fantastic on board footage of the late F1 ace Patrick Depailler of France taken during practice for the 1978 Formula One United States Grand Prix at Long Beach. Elf Team Tyrell driver Depailler would go on to win the very next race, the Monaco Grand Prix and finish 5th in the seasons final standings. American Mario Andretti driving for John Player Team Lotus would start from pole in 8 of the seasons 16 races and go on to post 6 wins en route to the 1978 F1 World Championship. Oh yeah, that's Mario's voice you hear at the beginning of the clip, also this side note... you know you've pissed the cop off when he addresses you with the old "Where you going in such a hurry Mario?" as he approaches the drivers window. True story , me in my 1970 911T after being caught with a heavy right foot thru the Sepulveda pass circa 1989

The Queen Mary can be see to his left as Depailler blasts down Shoreline drive at around 190mph give or take. That was fast back then and it's fast now. Not sure how many people out there know this, but the very same racing course seen in this amazing clip is still run today on the public streets around and adjacent to the Long Beach Convention Center and home of the Queen Mary and Inspiration 2011. The track has changed some over the years but still features at least one stretch that remains virtually unchanged and that stretch is Shoreline Drive, the fastest point on the course. Shoreline Drive, the very same street many will be traversing while traveling to and from Inspiration 2011 Vol 2 "We Insist".
Do yourself's a favor and take a moment if and when in Long Beach to blast down Shoreline Drive and taste a big old slice of pure joy!  Watch the speed & signals and don't break any laws, but do not miss a chance of a lifetime. Some of the cement barriers, grandstands and chain link fencing should be out to add flavor with this years Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Indy Car race coming up in April.
This race has been my yearly right of spring for most all of my adult life, more years than I care to remember but let's give it a try....first Long Beach GP attended was the final appearance for F1 back in say 1983 and won by John Watson for McLaren, I havn't missed a race since. That means this year marks the 28th year straight. Oh jeez. 
I've seen Formula One, CART / Indy Car, American LeMans Series, SCCA Trans Am (Paul Newman taking out half the field including his own 600+hp Nissan 300ZX Twin Turbo at the start back in the mid 80's) & IMSA GTO (Audi Quattro GTO All Wheel Drive Madness which provided some of the baddest ass and most fun to watch racing machines ever built) and a whole more.

Patrick Depailler in the 6 wheel Tyrell, Monaco GP pratice 1977, from the fantastic dvd 50 Years of Formula One On-Board.  The camera was mounted looking down from above and behind the drivers head, making for some bizarre looking overhead on-board shots. The bottom of the camera rig can be seen at screen bottom.

These clips, this racing, this is the stuff that truly inspires, the stuff that gives goose bumps and the stuff that makes grown men cry. Auto racing will always be a dangerous sport, but it was flat out deadly back in the day with too many great drivers being lost to the sport. While the Prost v Senna v Mansel duels of the 80's & 90's were great, the 1970's were truly magical. IMO this was the golden era of Formula 5000 and Formula One. 

Jan 15, 2011

Stevenson Overall Co. Bench Bilt Horsehide Leather Sports Jacket...It's All In The Details

Stevenson Overall Company's beautiful vintage remake of the classic 1940's era Leather Sports Jacket using the finest Japanese horsehide leather and lined with equally fine quality Japanese slub plaid cotton. Patterns and shapes have been thoughtfully reworked and redrawn for a less "boxy" silhouette in order to better fit the modern man and lifestyle. Pleated "action back" allows mobility even with the modern tighter fit.
Half-belt back construction with adjustable side buckles for great fit & style along with classic multiple panel back design. Cuff cinch with buckle, deadstock talon pocket zippers and front zipper with matching leather pull, underarm vent grommets and gold plated name tag are just a few of the many nice details on these great jackets.  As they say, no stone was left unturned. 
With a list price of 158,000 yen or $1,913... these beauty's are outta my budget, but a man can dream right? That said... those lucky few getting their hands on these will be members of one very exclusive club. Those wishing to become club members inquire here.  The rest of the Stevenson Overall line can be found at these fine retail locations.
Lane Crawford IFC Mall - Podium 3, ifc mall, 8 Finance Street, Central, Hong Kong ph (852)-2118-3388
Mr Mudd and Mr Gold - Åsögatan 174,Stockholm, Sweden ph (46)-8-6429240
Fred Segal Santa Monica - 420 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA  USA ph 310-395-9792
Denim Doctors & Hollywood Trading Company - 7383 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA USA ph 323-964-0080

Stevenson Overall Co. Horsehide Sports Jacket in Black
Stevenson Overall Co. Horsehide Sports Jacket in Brown
For myself, the name horsehide became synomonous with the quality and the many details mentioned above and discovered while searching for my first vintage leather jacket a few years back. Its great to see companies putting out the effort to both pay homage and refine these classic garments from yesteryear.

1938 Sears, Roebuck and Co. Fall & Winter Catalog
These super limited jackets just recently hit select stores in Japan, one thing contributing to their limited availability is the labor intensive nature of production performed at a small Japanese factory known for high quality leather goods, which I understand results in only one possibly two finished jackets per day.
This jacket can be seen along with other Stevenson Overall Co. "Real Clothes for Real People" in MONO WORKWEAR #4  and check em out on Facebook for more info.

I am always impressed with the quality and attention to detail that go hand in hand with this fine brand & company.  A tip of the cap to Zip, Atsu, Nao & all the folks at Stevenson Overall Co. home of the appropriate slogan "Aero Brand, The Height of Perfection"... I couldn't have said it any better.

This is the first of this months posts featuring friends, peers, and things to admire and inspire as we lead up to Inspiration 2011 Vol 2, "WE INSIST" at the world famous Queen Mary in Long Beach on Friday Feb 11th & Saturday the 12th. Stevenson Overall Co. will be one of the many great brands featured. We will be there having a great time and showing support to all our friends along with a big day Sunday the 13th at the Rose Bowl for The San Fernando Valley Mercantile Co. It's gonna be a HUGE weekend, we have some special things in the works that we can't wait to unveil and hope to see you all there!

Jan 14, 2011


1970's era United Garment Workers of America BUY AMERICAN AFL-CIO promotional pinback.
Unseen on backside edge is the Allied Printing Trades Council Union Label
1960's-1970's era United Garment Workers of America BUY AMERICAN UNION LABEL GOODS AND SERVICES promotional rulers. Note the difference in the union stamp to lower right of the different UGWA label logos. Allied Printing Trades Council Union Label appears in lower right corner of both rulers.
Upper ruler is the older of the two
Backside of United Garment Workers of America promotional rulers.
Note top ruler measures in inches and does not include the
metric system measurements of the later ruler below

Jan 13, 2011

1950's Era Penney's BIG MAC Dungarees

 1950's era BIG MAC 6 pocket dungarees with metal riveted, sail cloth lined front pockets 
 Riveted rear pockets & side tool pocket
Details include Gripper Zipper & suspender buttons added back in the day,
each one is unique
Grainy indigo denim, metal pocket rivets, "granny patch" repair & jerky tag remnants
Remaining bits of original leather jerky waist tag. Stitching has faded to sun bleached pink 

Jan 11, 2011

1950's Era Penney's PAY-DAY Union Made Dark Indigo Denim Chore Jacket

 Early 1950's PAY-DAY raglan sleeve chore jacket in dark indigo showing few washings
Remnants of the original stitched paper flasher, or what I refer to as a "ghost flasher"
United Garment Workers of America UNION MADE label