Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Abercrombie's Camp 1928 catalog.

David T. Abercrombie organized Abercrombie's Camp in 1908, after leaving Abercrombie and Fitch. Catalog found in the late '90's when Barnett Canvas Goods were moving out. More posts to follow.
"By breakfast time we had made good progress and were able to look out on the neighbouring hills"

"After breakfast we began to tackle or job in real earnest."

Climbing Borrowdale Fells, Cumbria (1926)
An extract from Claude Friese-Greene's 'The Open Road'

view it here. more extracts here.

For those of you interested in climbing and the history of gear, I would recommend Invisible on Everest: Innovation and the Gear Makers. Written by Mary B. Rose in conjunction with Mike Parsons, who ran the British company Karrimor for a number of years, Invisible on Everest is a highly readable romp through the history of climbing / outdoor gear. From the early days of Edward Whymper, Blacks in the 1930's, to Yvon Chouinard, the authors trace the growth of climbing and the various innovations in gear that resulted as a collaboration between climbers and producers. Much of the focus is on British and European companies so don't expect a detailed history of Gerry, North Face, or Holubar. Dispelling the notion that climbers on early expeditions on Everest were dressed for 'a Connemara picnic, surprised by a snowstorm', the book reveals that much of the gear in the past was sophisticated, well thought out, and, ultimately, effective.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A few choice labels. Most have been with me for years. The Brooksgate jacket was purchased ca. 1985 as part of a suit. The pants have long since been discarded, but the jacket still fits and is in good condition. The North Face jacket was purchased in 1980 in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. It too is in good condition. Others are hand me downs or thrift store finds. I wonder how many things I buy today will last as long?

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Sewing the front pocket

Pocket completed

Handsewn button holes. Need to work on this.

Hand warmers.

This is what I've been up to for the last few days. More or less finished. I need to get some toggles and cord and I'll be done. The hardest part was the neckline and parts of the hood. I had to do the neck three times before I was satisified. I have enough fabric left over for a second version and I'd like to encorporate some modifications: zippers on the sides, a zippered front for the hood, some velcro on the cuffs, and possibly a different front pocket. I have a copy of "Sew & Repair Your Outdoor Gear" by Louise Lindgren Sumner waiting for me at the library and I hope it has some good tips. Brother Tom has put an order in, but he'll have to wait until I get this thing down. Will report shortly on how well it keeps out the elements.

p.s. Check out Archival Clothing for some detail shots on the Hilltrek jacket I purchased a few months back. Nice jacket - made in Aboyne, Scotland down the road from my namesake, Alford.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Seriously coveting this, but at $240, a serious investment. Nice looking, though. Maybe I can knit something in a similar vein.

This Sunday is the Ronde van Vlaaderen ( Tour of Flanders) and next Sunday, Paris-Roubaix. Two of the great Spring Classics. You can watch some of 1976's "A Sunday in Hell", a 1977 documentary directed by Jørgen Leth, here and here. Anyone have a copy?

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Courtesy the Mark H. Dunkelman Collection

“Whose Father Was He?” — an investigation into a photograph of three children found on the dead body of Amos Humiston, a fallen Union soldier, at Gettysburg in 1863.

An intriguing series of articles by Errol Morris. For anyone who has ever wanted to dig deeper for the story behind a photograph.

Start reading here.