Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Behind The Scenes At The S&B Photo Shoot

Earlier this summer the Smathers & Branson® team spent the weekend in Spring Island, South Carolina for a photo shoot. We were lucky to work with three great models and a talented photographer (and long time friend) Dennis Kwan. It was an exciting time for us as we covered scenes of golfing, boating, drinking, hunting, and more. The venue was perfect and we want to thank everyone at Spring Island who made this shoot possible!

We wanted to give the followers of our blog a sneak peak at some behind the scenes shots of the photo shoot. While you will see the finished product in emails and catalogues to come, this is the first place to get a sneak peek of all the work that went into the shoot. We will be using even more photos on a brand new Smathers & Branson® website set to launch very soon! Keep checking in with us this fall for some very exciting changes!

Check out our facebook page for even more photos from the S&B Photo Shoot

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Dog Days of Summer

When we first started Smathers & Branson® in the spring of 2004 we spent a lot of time trying to pinpoint exactly who our customer would be. Now, seven years later, we are still impressed by the geography and different interests of our customers. With themes that resonate with sailors, sportsmen and drinkers we hope to appeal to all things a man loves. Not surprisingly, our needlepoint products that include man’s best friend have been some of the most popular!

The first domesticated dogs were gray wolves as long as 15,000 years ago. Beloved for working, hunting and companionship, these loyal animals quickly become fixtures in everyday life. Domesticated by all members of the socioeconomic ladder, a dog’s duty ranged from exertion on the farm to being pampered by royalty. No matter the breed, a dogs’ unwavering loyalty has earned the pet the title “Man’s Best Friend.”

At Smathers & Branson®, we are fortunate to have a dog in our office everyday! Moose (pictured above) is a Golden Doodle that belongs to co-founder Austin Branson and has been “working” at Smathers & Branson® since June 2009. A friendly and playful dog, Moose has helped inspire new designs and is always a welcome distraction during a stressful moment in the office. Although we do not have a golden doodle key fob (yet), we are happy to offer key fobs for over a dozen different breeds! Don’t see your breed? Post a comment and let us know what dogs we should be including moving forward!


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Spring Golf In The Northeast

Golf is one of the only sports that allows an athlete to express his own sense of style while competing. Unlike baseball, football, or basketball where the athletes all wear identical uniforms, golf, especially in recent years, encourages an athlete to merge his personality and playing style with what he wears on the course. The influx of young talent on the PGA Tour coupled with the cross over appeal of golf for companies like Puma, J.Lindberg, Burberry, Peter Millar, Nike, and Adidas has made the business of Golf Style a big deal. For more on the sartorial standards on the PGA Tour, visit our friends at The Khaki Crusader (www.khakicrusader.com); but for our blog we will focus on where the weekend warriors and vacationers will be playing this summer.

One of the most exciting parts of spring in the northeast is dusting off the clubs and hitting the course for the first time of the season. Even if your swing feels like you are opening collapsible lawn furniture, the first swings of the year are often the most highly anticipated. Unlike courses in the south and out west that stay open year round, courses in the northeast shut down from early November to late March, making the open season that much sweeter. To many, summertime golf in the northeast is enough to justify living through the brutally cold winter months.

This summer, should you be lucky enough to play a few rounds in popular northeastern golf destinations like the Hamptons, Nantucket, or Martha’s Vineyard, take a second to look inside the pro-shop. While debating whether or not you should buy the new “White Driver” check out our needlepoint belts and accessories which now don the logo of clubs from Shinnecock and Winged Foot to Sankaty Head and Baltusrol. A Smathers and Branson belt is a great way to standout in any foursome and a logoed flask may be just the thing to get you off the bogey train!

Pictured above are two proud recipients of needlepoint belts after a tournament at The Quarry at La Quinta this past April. If you have any inquiries about your home course making needlepoint belts and accessories please email us at info@smathersandbranson.com.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Ivy Standard: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Dartmouth, Columbia, Cornell, Penn & Brown

Few collegiate conferences have had the sartorial influence that the Ivy League has. Well before the formal establishment of the Ivy League as an athletic conference in 1954, these 8 northeastern schools have been beacons of both higher education and a style all their own. Intellectual ability, ambition, and acumen of the highest standards fosters an environment of well-dressed and polished students.

The Ivy League aesthetic, as documented by Ivy Style, is a traditional look with nods to the past and to the future. The ubiquitous tartan, herringbone, and houndstooth patterns on Ivy campuses have been passed on for generations. Using traditionally subdued colors (charcoal, tan, and olive), the Ivy look projects an understated confidence all its own. Recently, these classic looks have been accessorized with bolder colored ties, belts and pocket squares.

The store most responsible for creating and maintaining this look is J.Press in New Haven, CT. Just minutes from Yale’s campus, J. Press has become synonymous with Ivy style. Opened in 1902, J. Press has become a staple for classic New England patterns and fabrics, demonstrating that style is not something created in an instant, but rather cultivated over generations.

While the Ivy League is deeply rooted in tradition, it has also embraced new brands that fit the aesthetic. When we first launched our collegiate line of needlepoint belts and accessories, the Ivies were some of the first schools in the collection. Luckily, the partnership has been a success and today you can find all 8 Ivies represented at J. Press or online at www.smathersandbranson.com.

Photo from Life Magazine

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Spring Break with Smathers & Branson

The first few days of spring are packed with anticipation and excitement. Warmer weather and longer days seem to brighten everyone’s mood as afternoon golf rounds and early mornings fishing become a possibility. Here in Washington, DC we are still weeks away from the Cherry Blossom Festival, but it seems like some people have already gotten spring fever. Those lucky few are of course the college kids on Spring Break.

From New Orleans to the Florida Keys, be sure to stop into one of our many retailers in Spring Break destinations. Below are three can’t miss men’s stores in some of our favorite Spring Break spots. If you don’t see your favorite store below, let us know!

New Orleans
: Host to one of the most infamous parties in the world, New Orleans is teeming with party seekers, students, and musicians during Mardi Gras. Famous for wild costumes and equally wild behavior, NOLA has earned a reputation as one of the best Spring Break locations. For over 70 years, Perlis has been clothing locals and tourists alike. With a full selection of Smathers and Branson® needlepoint belts and accessories, Perlis is the place to visit if you forgot to pack your favorite outfit or if somehow your shirt was misplaced after a late night on Bourbon Street.

Key West:
Anyone who has made the long drive to Key West, FL knows that visiting the southern most point in the US rarely disappoints. With a personality and attitude all its own, Key West is a haven for beach bums and fishermen. Between drinks at the Hog’s Breath Saloon and afternoons exploring the coral reef, take a second to visit our friends at Assortment Inc. A Key West institution, Assortment Inc. has several custom Smathers & Branson® designs geared directly towards the Keys lifestyle.

Sea Island, GA
: When spring break comes around all students must make an important decision: you can pack six people into one hotel room with your friends or join your family on their vacation. If you are lucky enough to visit Sea Island, GA, we would highly recommend skipping the trip to Cancun this year. With world class golf courses, tennis, and a five mile continuous beach, Sea Island has earned a reputation as one of the best resorts in the country. Whether you are in the Beach Shop at the Cloisters or the Golf Shop at the Lodge, stop in and take a look at the custom Smathers & Branson® Sea Island products.

Even as we write this, we are jealous of the students on Spring Break! Where are you going this Spring Break?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Going Green

Green. It means different things to different people. To some it is a sign of environmental activism. To others it is a mark of naiveté. And to the rest it represents the chase of the mighty dollar. Wherever you are in the world, there is only one day that green is ubiquitous.

That day, of course, is St. Patrick’s Day. A religious turned secular holiday, St. Patrick’s Day has become a rallying point of revelry for Irish and non-Irish alike. Unlike any other holiday, St. Patrick’s Day encourages whiskey shots immediately after church. This March 17th, whether you are dyeing the Chicago River green or meeting a group of friends for a parade in Savannah, Ga., avoid getting pinched by sporting a Smathers and Branson clover product.

Before heading out to celebrate, take a second to view our collection of four-leaf clover products. From start to finish, Smathers and Branson has you covered throughout the day: use our coasters to rest your drink; use our flask to sneak a drink; and use our wallet to buy a drink. The one rule to always follow on St. Patrick’s Day is to make sure to hand over your clover key fob to a designated driver!

Our entire line of needlepoint belts and accessories can be viewed at www.smathersandbranson.com, so take a look and maybe you will get lucky!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Coaster Sets from Smathers and Branson

It happens to us all. You have been invited on a trip with a friend or a significant other and you are looking to make a good impression. These getaways, typically to a family beach or mountain house, can be an important step in a relationship. Being the classy person that you are, instincts tell you to bring a gift, but the question is what?? You know that it is the thought that counts, but you would feel a little bit sheepish showing up with the eight dollar bottle of wine that has been in your kitchen for years. Do not worry, Smathers and Branson has got you covered.

Over the past five years, we have made several additions to our line beyond our beloved needlepoint belts. This winter we launched what many have called “the perfect house warming gift”-- needlepoint Coaster Sets. With designs that are meant to represent the places and activities that our customers love the most, these hand stitched coasters will be a great addition to any coffee table. Our coasters’ bold colors and handsome wooden packaging will be a conversation piece for years and hopefully you will get all the credit.

Selling in sets of four at $75, these needlepoint coasters are a great gift without breaking the bank. If you are feeling really ambitious you can have them monogrammed, but be sure to give us 4-6 weeks to have them stitched!

You can see our entire line of needlepoint coaster sets online at www.smathersandbranson.com! Not seeing a design that you would like? Post a comment and let us know what patterns we should add this spring!