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Where Rugged Vintage Style Meets Modern Design. Proudly Made in America.

30 Jun '15

Onto the Second Half of the Year

Hard to believe the year is half way over already.  Yes, time does fly.  Somewhat recharged after a week at the beach (having your 2 year old nephew with = less relaxation but a much higher cuteness factor.)

It's been a great half year and things are looking good for Metal Shop for the rest of 2015.  The biggest news is the addition of pencils.com as a retail partner.  In late May, pencils.com started selling the Twist Bullet Pencil and needless to say things got a little crazy.  We quickly sold out of the black and clear anodized (which I am going to start calling silver) pencil tubes.  In fact we are now down to the last 50 units in blue, red and green.  So the first run of 850 (including our Kickstarter backers) is almost gone.  A new batch of 1,500 tubes is in production as I write this.  The exciting part for me is that we will now offer new colors, orange seems to be a favorite of our customers.  Our "raw" versions were also a success.  Brass and aluminum straight off the CNC router and into packing.  The rugged look, machine markings and all were a hit.  

There are also some new products on the horizon.  Version 2 of the Metal Shop Slide Belt is nearing completion.  The new buckles will have rounder corners and will be fully machined. The "version 2" buckles will be offered in new materials like brass, anodized aluminum and maybe even cooper.  The belt itself is the work in work in progress part.  I'm testing a full leather version to see how the leather holds up to the friction fit agains the metal, so far so good, especially if you prefer a more worn in rugged look.  Working on some new cloth belt options and a possible leather/cloth hybrid.  This new buckle and belt design is truly something unique in the fashion space (well at least I tell myself that.)

In addition to the new belt buckle, a new pencil product is in the works and keeping with the vintage meets modern theme we even have a re-imagined pocket watch in the works for those of you who still prefer to tell time the analog way.

To all the Metal Shop customers and future ones, thank you for your continued support.

As always, feel free to reach out with questions, comments, concerns or even cool ideas at fontane.jon@gmail.com

 

Jon

17 Apr '15

A Few of my Favorite Things

Over the past two years of building Metal Shop I’ve been lucky enough to meet some some outstanding entrepreneurs. Through social media channels and through great events like the American Field Market, small craft makers can come together, learn from each other and develop strong partnerships. This is a highlight of four brands, each distinct in their own right, that embody the vintage meets modern, rugged yet refined image that I strive for with Metal Shop. Each produce cool and unique gifts for men (and women too) and most importantly, each make their product in the USA!

Duke Cannon Supply Co.

The makers of the Big Ass Brick of Soap AKA America’s Most American Brand (or as I like to call it, the coolest gift you can get your brother-in-law). These guy’s not only put a unique tongue in cheek spin on marketing their products but also re-define what a bar of soap is (as you can see below). With each Facebook or Instagram post the fellas at Duke Cannon continue to impress me with their marketing savvy targeting the “manly man” demographic. The product is top notch (I prefer the “Smells like Productivity” bar with its hint of menthol), packaging is A+ and these guy’s put their money where their mouth is donating to a number of veteran and troop charities including Honor Flight. Just remember, Duke Cannon doesn’t dine with Vegans and is no fan of Banana Republic (see what I mean about the marketing)

www.dukecannon.com

Jack Donnelly

A fellow American Field vendor and Kickstarter Alum, Greg Donnelly is the driving force behind Khaki maker Jack Donnelly (named for his grandfather). “Kahkis” became popular with civilians after World War II and now are a staple in casual mens apparel. According to Greg, he felt he could do it better. Since most people have little to no idea what they are wearing he felt it was time to create a khaki that you didn’t need to turn and see the label to know what you were wearing. Making the khaki a quintessential piece of the refined man’s wardrobe. Just don’t call them “chinos.”

www.jackdonnelly.com

Compass Rose Apparel

Veteran owned, the guy’s over at Compass Rose Apparel have put together an amazing flannel shirt completely made in America (even down to the buttons). Flannel has been around since the 1500’s and I guess the plaid flannel shirt can be called a vintage item (if the 90’s Nirvana & Pearl Jam look is considered vintage?) Either way, the fellas at Compass Rose Apparel are doing the flannel shirt serious justice and really hit that rugged yet refined sweet spot. They set out to make a shirt tough enough to takes the abuse of a long day on a tug boat but wouldn’t look like a work shirt at dinner that evening. For Compass Rose the idea is simple, its about being yourself and finding yourself....or as they say, Find your true north.

www.compassroseapparel.com

Stonehill Design

My buddy Jason scours the flea markets for vintage items that he breathes new “light” into. From vintage desk fans, typewriters and telephones Jason works his magic and creates amazing industrial style lighting for the home. Jason is a true craftsman and has a vision for creating truly unique products. His work is rugged, his work is also refined enough for any home. Stonehill Design strives to create unique, hight quality lighting and timeless designs.

www.stonehill-design.com

This is just four brands of many. Four brands which hit on all cylinders, Made in the USA, timeless, rugged, refined product. Vintage flair yet with modern takes. All truly unique gifts for men.