Ole Mason Jar
Charlotte, North Carolina
College roommates Bradley Rhyne and Filipe Ho, founders of the Charlotte-based menswear line Ole Mason Jar, grew up with firsthand knowledge of the economic void left across their home of North Carolina when the bulk of the textile business fled overseas. That acute awareness is the reason the majority of Ole Mason Jar’s button-downs, suits, jackets, and ties are made in-state by second- and third-generation sewers. “Being able to walk through the places where our products are being sewn means that every season our line gets better and better,” Ho says. They’ve hit on a sweet spot with their modern sport coat. Tailored somewhere between a trendy trim fit and a traditional full cut, the lightweight unstructured jacket (no shoulder pads here) flatters most body types, and the multi-blue plaid is made of a sumptuously soft Italian wool. “We wanted versatility and comfort,” Rhyne says, “and an extra attention to the subtle details—something you won’t find at J.Crew.” Slip on this new classic with jeans, chinos, or slacks and keep it in the year-round rotation.
“My mother is very Martha Stewart–esque,” says Yearly Co. jeweler and owner Ann Williams. “I always enjoyed working with my hands but never quite found my thing.” Turns out, the answer was looped around her wrist. The women in her family receive a handmade gold bangle on their wedding day and then every anniversary after, a tradition her paternal grandparents started. While pregnant with her second child, Williams signed up for a metalworking class at Vanderbilt (her alma mater) and was hooked. Today her thin circlets come in fourteen-karat yellow, rose, and white gold, which she acquires from Stuller, Inc., in Louisiana. Before the hammering, soldering, and polishing begin, Williams ships brass sizers to her customers. Each piece can be customized—increase the width, or add a monogram or a twist to mark major anniversaries.
Raised on a West Texas cattle ranch, sisters Lizzie Means Duplantis and Sarah Means estimate they own more than sixty pairs of cowboy boots between them. “Other girls got jewelry; we got boots,” says Means Duplantis of their collection, which has grown by leaps since the sisters founded Miron Crosby, a line of stylish cowboy boots for men, women, and children, in 2016. To bring to life their designs, which are inspired by West Texas (saguaro cacti), high fashion (metallic leathers), and travel (Navajo engravings), they work closely with a professionally trained designer. Then the artisans at Rios of Mercedes, the 160-year-old Texas boot factory owned by their cousins, hand last each heirloom-quality pair. And while whimsical embroidery is a Miron Crosby hallmark, the timeless look of these midnight-black Trainor boots with Nile crocodile belly elevates Western style.
Clayton & Crume
All seven team members at Louisville’s Clayton & Crume own a different version of the signature men’s messenger bag or briefcase. “Everything we make is iterated dozens of times,” says Clay Simpson, who together with his college buddy Tyler Jury founded the company. They specialize in a range of leather goods, from handmade belts to time-tested totes you’ll be proud to hand down one day. “We wanted a messenger that was as simple as possible—something hard-core utilitarian but also beautiful. It took us ten to fifteen attempts to get the design perfect.” Accented with U.S.-sourced brass hardware, each piece comprises just four pieces of buttery, cigar-hued hide from the renowned Chicago leather tannery Horween. “I try to make our bags in as few pieces of leather as possible,” Simpson says. “Ultimately, seams rip. Leather does not—good leather will serve you for a lifetime.”