Posts related to product review

Product Review: Full Grain Creations Lexington Wallet

Wallets are often an accessory that we pay the least attention to. An afterthought, if you will. But they shouldn’t be. They’re the gatekeepers to very important information; our identification, and our financial means. That means we should care about the wallet that it’s placed in.

Morgan Timmann, the owner and craftsman behind Full Grain Creations sent me the Lexington card wallet to review. I stumbled upon Morgan’s work through his Instagram account, and because extremely interested in the the details that he adds to his pieces. After reaching out to him, he graciously agreed to let me review a wallet.

First Impressions

With clothing, cars, people, or food, first impressions are everything. Wallets are no different, especially if you care about quality. My first impression of the Lexington ranks amongst the highest with any other clothing item I’ve ever bought. This wallet is gorgeous. It’s very supple to the touch, and the exact type of unique details I look for in an accessory.

The beautiful details of the Lexington.

Functionality

I’m of the mindset that normal bi-fold wallets are overkill on a day-to-day basis. You shouldn’t need to carry that much stuff in your pocket. I carry 5 cards including my drivers license. This is why card cases are so attractive, and this Lexington is no different.

The Lexington with my cards inserted.

Most card cases that you see have slots on both sides, with a center slot for cash. This Lexington only has slots on one side with a center slot. At first, before having this in hand, I wasn’t sure how I’d like this. But after adding in my cards to try it out, I realized that based on this particular design, it saves me fractions of seconds of having to make the decision of; which side is the card I’m trying to use on. Small detail, but that’s good design.

Backside of the Lexington

The Lexington is also slimmer than my current No. 3 wallet from Ezra Arthur. This means it’ll sit more flat in my pocket, which is a huge win. The less I feel the wallet in my pocket, the better.

Side-by-side of my Ezra Arthur and the Lexington

The Details

The star of the show with the Lexington is the stitching. There’s a multi-colored hand-stitching around the wallet that is absolutely perfect. I’ve never before seen this type of stitching, and was very impressed.

You won’t find this tri-color stitching anywhere else.

“Each wallet is meticulously hand sewn using red, white and blue French linen thread. The French thread, from Sajou, is not only of supreme quality, but allows me to pay homage to the county that helped contribute to the success of the American Revolution, from which the wallet derives it’s name.” – Morgan Timmann

As mentioned from my first impression, the leather is super soft to the touch. And one of the cool things about using this sort of high quality leather, is that over time it will develop a great looking patina, which mean it’ll age gracefully and look better down the road. You can’t say that about many clothing items you buy.

Also highly visible is Full Grain Creatives stamped logo. If there’s one gripe I have with this product, it’s the size of the logo. But my personal preference for any clothing item/accessory is either no logo, or very small logo. But this is by no means a deal killer for me, and helps that it’s a good looking logo overall!

Final Thoughts

As you can see, I love this Lexington wallet. And if aesthetics and craftsmanship matter to you, you would also love this highly. In case it wasn’t obvious, I highly recommend it. The pricing of the Lexington isn’t cheap, at $125. Yet when you compare it to the pricing of a luxury brand, it would be considered cheap with much much more care and attention placed on it. I’d choose the Lexington ever time. Full Grain Creations does offer a lesser priced alternative, which is the Saratoga wallet, at $60. While it will have the same high quality leather, you miss out on the unique tri-colored stitching.

I can say with confidence that I will be ordering a wallet from Full Grain Creations very soon. Head over to the website and check out the different leather goods offered, and order one yourself! If not only to have a great item, but to support great craftsmanship. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Review: Mahabis Classic Slipper

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Update (January 4th, 2017)

We can no longer recommend this product. After less than a year of normal usage, the sole has started to detach. I’ve reached out to Mahabis customer support team, and while they didn’t offer up a replacement pair, they did offer gift card towards another pair. But these aren’t cheap, and  if these slippers won’t last me a year, then it’s not worth investing anymore money into.

 

I have a thing for slippers. I’ve tried many different kinds, and none have really stood out as being one that I’d recommend. This ranges from $30 slippers from DSW to $100+ pairs from Ugg. None of them left a lasting impression. Then I found Mahabis by complete accident, and I was hooked.

I wear slippers every single day, no matter the time of year or weather outside. It’s one of those things that’s a part of my daily routine; putting them on when I wake up in the morning, and when I first get home from work.

Backstory

I always step on the heel of my slippers. My wife tells me to buy a slipper without the heel, but sometimes want the heel. Later on I was chatting with a friend (in-person) about wanting a “convertible” heel slipper, which I’d never seen. Days later, I see a Facebook ad for Mahabis. It’s like they were in my head listening.

Shortly after discovering the brand, I had to try them out. I opted for the Mahabis Classic dark grey pair (because grey matches everything) and a couple of their detachable soles (more on those later).

First Impressions

When I first took them out of the box, they’re noticeably far lighter than any other slipper I’ve owned. Which is a good thing. The visual design of the slipper is very simple and sleek. They don’t look like your typical old man slipper, which pretty much what all of my past ones have looked like. The slim silhouette of the slipper resembles more of a shoe than a traditional slipper.

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The outer shell is made of lightweight felt, with a neoprene collapsible heel…a feature I haven’t seen on another slipper before. The inside is made of sheeps wool, which I found was just the right amount to not cause overheating.

Daily Usage

I’ve been wearing these slippers daily for about two months now, and long past the honeymoon phase, these slippers have been well worth the cost. I wear them both with, and without socks and never have I felt that my feet overheat in them with the breathable fabrics.

I generally tend to not wear them outside, just to ensure that I don’t decrease the lifespan of them. And after wearing them a while, you really appreciate the lightweight nature of the slipper, since I don’t really want it to feel like I’m wearing shoes around the house.

“reinventing the slipper // for everyday adventures”

The Detachable Soles

Mahabis is very unique in two ways, one of which being they have detachable soles. The purpose of these is if you’re looking to do light outdoor activities with them around the house. And they snap onto the slipper via a button on the bottom heel, which keeps them attached to the sole. While they do come with pair, you can opt for additional ones for an extra $22 each. They come in a variety of colors. So choose whatever fits your personality.

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The gray and back detachable soles

While I think the detachable soles are a great feature, I don’t find myself using them often. By the time I think of something to do outside, and then take time to change out the sole, it’s just easier to swap the slippers for a pair of shoes.

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The Collapsible Heel

This is the reason I bought these slippers. They’re functional in a way that all of my past slippers weren’t, by design. The neoprene material makes it super easy to choose which way you want to wear the heel. One concern I had about the collapsed heel was how it would feel under my foot when walking on it. In other words, would it feel like there’s a huge chunk of cloth under my foot to make for uncomfortable walking.

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But this has not been the case. In fact you hardly even feel it. The heel is thin enough to be very comfortable and unnoticeable when collapsed, and thick enough to not feel flimsy when raised and covering your heel.

Quick tip/downside: I would recommend against wearing loafer/no-show socks with the heel up. When walking, it will pull the sock down off of your foot, and it’s very annoying.

Final Verdict

All in all, this is a great product that exceeded my expectations. They’re super comfortable and look really good. The price point isn’t the greatest, as most people don’t feel the need to spend $86 on a pair of slippers. I’m willing to pay a premium on something that fits my exact needs and has a lot of usage for me, so this fell in to that category.

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As mentioned earlier, I’m just not into the detachable soles, so I don’t see myself buying more of those. If you do decide on buying a pair, they fit big from what I’ve experienced and read online. So think about sizing down a size.

Check them out if you’re in the market. We recommend them.

Review: VARIO NATO Watch Strap

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The Vario Ocean Chevron strap

A few years ago we saw a huge trend in men socks take flight. They were bolder, brighter, with strong patterns. It became the center of attention in a lot of outfits. While this hasn’t gone away quite yet, you’re seeing this shift to other parts of a man’s wardrobe – mainly accessories like pocket squares, ties, and now watch straps.

I’ll admit, when I first saw the Vario NATO strap I was skeptical. I almost immediately wrote it off as something I thought to be gimmicky. Then my review strap arrived in the mail, and upon seeing it in person I started to change my tune a little. I received the ocean chevron strap, and added it to my Timex Easy Reader watch, pictured below.

Vario NATO Strap

Ocean chevron with Timex Easy Reader

This strap has a lot of personality. Pictures don’t do it justice. If worn correctly it adds a nice little touch to an outfit. As the weather starts to warm up in the coming months this is going to be a great way to add some strong color to your wrist.

Vario is offering a decent selection of patterned NATO straps, whether you’re looking for something bold or a bit more subtle. “Wear your Personality” is their tagline, and looking at their lineup of watches, I easily found the exact band I’d choose for myself.

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Vario’s strap selection

 

How To Wear It

With a watch band this bold, it’s important to make sure that the patterns won’t clash with the other pieces in your outfit. I recommend keeping your shirt a clean solid color. No stripes or patterns, or else the patterns on the watch band might get lost. But keeping a solid complimentary shirt lets the watch stand out on it’s own with no competition.

VARIO strap

Complimentary solid colors work best

This is very much a situational band as well. By that I mean you’ll want to wear a band like this outdoors; somewhere like the beach, pool, or a summer party. This isn’t the type of band you’re going to dress up in any fashion. Keep it very casual and fun.

Who Should Buy This?

If you’re someone looking to add some flair to your spring/summer wardrobe, this is a great way to do so. It might not be this exact band that I have, but their other options might fit your tastes instead. Also, if you’re someone that’s looking to branch out with accessories, this is for you. Since the watch is one of the best accessories you can have, having a fun band like this mixes it up from the everyday leather, or solid color band.

Final Verdict

As mentioned earlier, at first glance this band feels gimmicky. But after giving it a go, I approve of it as a fun addition to add to a warm weather wardrobe. They have an Indiegogo Campaign that just started and it’s off to a great start. So go support and get yourself a funky band to add to your collection.