Clearly shaken by the image of Toby Keith's father spending all his time searching for a tag that says "USA", the dude behind Oak Street Bootmakers is tossing his obviously American-made hat in the ring at Independence. The store serves not only as the flagship location for his handmade kicks, but also as a temple to Yankee craftsmanship in general, where a deep stock of heritage brands is illuminated by reclaimed factory lights, and overseen by a 19th-century Old Glory with 46 stars. The goods:
Kicks: Oak's full battery of boots, boat shoes & loafers -- all of which're made from local Horween Chromexcel leather -- will literally go toe-to-toe with in-store exclusives including Trail Oxfords sporting red brick soles and peanut suede, which looks smooth even if you're chunky.
Pants: Chi-exclusive brands include Imogene + Willie, who only recently started slinging their handmade selvedge outside the confines of their Nashville service station HQ, and Left Field, whose denim/chinos sport pockets that
hold squirrels for Squirrel Master are made from red & blue bandanas.
Torso: Pick up some Gitman Vintage b-downs, and look for Engineered Garments' throwback, triple-stitched chambray work shirt w/ its collapsible cigarette pocket, 'cause that always looks Kool.
Accessories: Warm up with 100% virgin wool military blankets from MN's Faribault, sheathe your wallet or iPad with a case from Makr, or toss around one of Leatherhead's hand-stitched footballs, transporting you back to a time when there were 46 stars on the flag, or least more 46 defenses on the field.