Outlier Tailored Performance (The Houndstooth Chronicles)
I’m not sure where I came across Outlier, but I thought it was cool that couple guys in Brooklyn, were creating clothes for the tween space between on bike and off. It’s hard to make things work in both environments, it takes serious effort. I also dug that they were having the clothes made in NYC. I have some family connection to the “Shmata” trade, and I’m all for local sourcing and direct trade.
Occasionally they experiment with stuff publicly and make a few of an item. I think the first piece I grabbed was the Workwear Hoodie. The durable Workwear fabric ( Schoeller Dry Skin Extreme + Nanosphere) has worn extremely well. I haven’t taken any spills in it (thankfully) but it puts up with everything my rambuctious 4 year old can throw at it… Cookie and cracker crumbs, water, chocolate, miscellaneous dirt from goodness knows where have all rolled off. The fabric exterior is a canvas like nylon, and the inside a softish fleece that is warm and comfortable against the skin. It dries fast too, although it takes a lot to get it wet. The cut is clean and a bit smaller than is generally found in American brands. If you want to wear it with sweaters underneath order up. I find myself wearing this piece a lot as a spring/autumn jacket, and a layer through the winter. The helmet sized hood makes it a great piece to pair with a hoodless jacket. The Patagonia Nano Puff I recently started to wear leaps to mind. Awesome stuff.
The next couple of pieces I ordered together. The Nailhead Cap and the Empire Merino Tee. I’ll go ahead and quote directly: “Nailhead is one of our favorite worsted wools around. Its subtle pinprick pattern gives it an incredible depth of texture, and as a fine suiting fabric it tends to be made from the softest and longest wool fibers available. That makes it one of the best performance fabrics in the world, but you’d never know since it tends to be used in expensive men’s suits and nothing but.” I can tell you that the cap is comfy, looks good whether I’m dressed down (as I usually am) in jeans and a sweater, or dressed up in a long wool coat. I’ve worn it every day since I got it. As with almost all hats, I could use a version where the crown to ear depth is shorter… but it’s close, close.
I added the Empire T because Merino is darn comfortable. I love all the clothes I have that use this wonderful stuff, and the execution here is spot on. Yeah, in the end it’s an expensive T-Shirt, but it is one that you can wear as a base layer, or not. It’ll keep you cool and warm. It’ll do all that even if it gets wet… and it *doesn’t* become as odiferous as new fangled technical materials seem to. Wool is the original, and as far as I’m concerned most super, fabric. Properly chosen and tailored it’s perfect whether in a favorite houndstooth lightweight pant, a Filson Mackinaw jacket, or this excellent shirt. I only wish I could afford a passle of them.
I’d love to try some of the pants they’ve made, but I really need to try on pants since I have short legs, and prefer a short rise, especially on the bike. Maybe if I beg, Abe & Tyler will send me some…
Anyway, go check out there stuff. Designed and manufactured here in New York City with amazing fabric and materials. While they put out a “hipster” vibe, it’s not required. The designs are flexible enough to apply to us plain ole’ workin’ dads and our bikes.