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Posts from the “Travels” Category

Field Trip: Blueprint Coffee

Posted on December 9, 2013


I worked in the specialty coffee industry for quite a long time and to finally have an article about a shop, especially one to which I have several connections, is pretty cool for me. I was visiting family in St. Louis over the Thanksgiving holiday and got the chance to visit Blueprint Coffee which was started by my friend and former bandmate Mike Marquard along with several other folks we knew from Kaldi’s Coffee and elsewhere. There’s been an influx of new coffee companies in St. Louis over the past few years; when I was getting my start, I worked for Kaldi’s and at the time they were the only show in town. Most of the new shops are fantastic and do a great job of curating a diverse coffee offering along with creating a pleasing atmosphere in which to enjoy said coffee. Blueprint, in my opinion, does this the best of all of the new shops and they roast their own coffee which gives them a massive leg up in the branding department. Some of the best coffee shops in the world sell other roasters beans but there’s something special about the shop/roaster combo that buries its way into people’s hearts. Blueprint’s clean aesthetic reminds me of some of the great shops around the country (Four Barrel, Stumptown, Intelligentsia, etc.) while pulling a color palette and geometric accents that are uniquely their own. Click here to view all images and read the interview.


Weekend Adventures: The Art of Getting the Fuck Out Vol. 1

Posted on April 11, 2013

GTFO_masthead_wSometimes what you really need to do is get the fuck out. Pack your shit and leave for a day, a night, a weekend. Whatever. Just get away for a quick couple of (or couple dozen) hours and clear your head, find yourself, and maybe remember why you’re doing what you’re doing to begin with. These moments are as crucial to keeping you sharp on the job and in your personal affairs as they are to keeping you a sane and happy human being. Here we will document some of our weekend adventures for your viewing and reading pleasure.

The Art of Getting the Fuck Out

Vol. 01: March 15th

It’s been a rough couple of weeks here in Los Angeles. It seems like the number of cars on the road has tripled yet again, thereby increasing the number of moron drivers and hence, accidents. Getting anywhere takes forever and I find myself frequently nearly in tears, shaking the steering wheel violently as I sob my commuting woes to Ira Glass on the This American Life podcast (he’s a terrible listener). Sometimes when things get this bad, when they’re really to the point where by the time you get to the office you’re already spent, you need to get the hell out of dodge. Which is what I did this weekend. Click here to read the full article.

Pop Up Flea

Posted on December 1, 2012


Yesterday we got to swing by Pop Up Flea for a little while in the evening, see some old friends, and take a couple of photos. If you’re in New York, you should definitely swing by today or tomorrow. There’s so much great stuff to see: Andrew Chen from 3sixteen is on hand to hem your new purchases for you, and the wonderful folks from grown & sown have a stellar selection of pants if you’re overloaded with selvedge everything. Gerber Knives is ramping up for their 75th Anniversary with a lot of great heritage knives, and if you’re lucky, Tony and Pete from Tellason will offer you some rare chocolate ants (or so they will claim). Upstairs, be sure to talk to Ted over at Terrapin Stationers for some notecards that will make your mother blush. Longsstory short, bring your credit card and buy yourself something nice for Christmas. After all, nobody knows what you truly want more than you do.


Pop Up Flea V
Friday, Nov 30th 3pm – 9pm
Saturday, Dec. 1st 11am – 7pm
Sunday, Dec. 2nd 11am – 6pm

Drive-In Studios
443 W. 18th Street (nr. 10th Ave.)

The Great Western Expansion Photo Recap

Posted on September 8, 2012

For the third time in three years, I recently traveled westward to Los Angeles traversing the entire width of the country beginning in Philadelphia. This particular trip was a bit different in that there was no planned return to the East Coast so my approach to living in LA has been considerably different. That being said, the trip itself is always incredible and as I am becoming a seasoned veteran of the great American road trip, I’m beginning to learn which parts have the most interesting stops along the way. I’ve stopped at the same Whole Foods in Oklahoma City three years in a row. I’ve stopped at the same Cracker Barrel near Flagstaff for two years as I have with the same gas station somewhere in rural New Mexico. It’s funny how things become habit over time, though when you drive the same route in the same car you’re bound to need gas at the same point along the same stretch of highway.

There’s something haunting about Route 66. Once you pass Oklahoma City everything gets just a bit stranger and if you do it right and pull into Amarillo, TX. just after sunset, you’re in for a treat of ghost towns and abandoned communities the next day dotting the highway. Once bustling pitstops are now shells of the decaying American road trip, once a past time and now a penance. It takes days; the whole trip, if done how I typically do it, takes 5 days with a major break in the middle to visit some family in St. Louis. It takes patience and time but once you get through Oklahoma (arguably the least interesting part of the trip, no offense Oklahomans) the landscape shifts and you’re suddenly somewhere in the gorgeous, golden, lonesome wild west. Here’s a few images from the trip covering all ten states we traversed along our way. Click here or below to see the entire photo set.

In Support Of Portable’s “Curator’s Conference”

Posted on August 16, 2012

Portable (one of the most important online curator’s of video pertaining to the arts, culture, fashion, and more) has announced their “Curator’s Conference” in New York City on September 5th, 2012 and we couldn’t be more excited to be in attendance. I’m no conventioneer, I’ve never been to a conference before, but something tells me this is going to be a little different than your typical workweek “vacation”. It’s a one day event held in the Walter Reade Theatre at the Lincoln Center featuring nine thought leaders from within the creative industry ranging from filmmakers to thought provokers all with one thing in common: presenting highly curated content. Here’s Portable’s official release about the event:

The Curators Conference is a day long event featuring the leading international curators and creators of culture across fashion, film, design, music and technology. Debuting at New York Fashion Week, the Curators Conference features the presentations, ideas and conversations of thought leaders who are at the forefront of their respective industries.

The event is catered to creative professionals, with the format exploring the many worlds where curation and creativity intersect with modern culture. We offer a diverse range of speakers—from digital strategists to music video directors—and focus on generating ideas, conversations and emerging trends. Portable hopes these exciting events will inspire audiences, foster industry innovation and promote risk taking within creative disciplines.

The Curators Conference takes place on September 5th, 2012 at the Walter Reade Theatre, Lincoln Center and is the first in a series of conferences presented by Portable in New York City. 

The list of presenters includes the following:

Susie Bubble – Editor and owner of Style Bubble, an online commentary and presentation of women’s fashion.

Warren Fu – One of the most important music video directors working currently in addition to a creator and designer for several huge films including the newer Star Wars series and Indiana Jones.

Philippe von Borries – Founder of Refinery29, a company intersecting content creation and commerce, based around the fashion industry.

Soraya Darabi – Media maven with work including projects with The New York Times, founding Foodspotting, and sitting on the board of General Electric.

Chris Corrado – Show director for Capsule, an incredibly important fashion industry event spanning a few cities over several dates, and director of sales for BPMW Agency.

Gia Coppola – A fashion photographer and filmmaker working with the likes of Vogue Japan and Jason Schwartzman for an Opening Ceremony short.

Josh Rubin – Editor in Chief of Cool Hunting, an incredible online publication regarding literally all things cool.

Rodrigo Calvo – Head of the New York Office for Mr. & Mrs. Smith, a boutique hotel booking service.

Carrie Scott – Director of the SHOWstudio Shop, the quirky retail portion of a fashion industry film giant.

We’re very much looking forward to attending this incredible conference as well as meeting all of you there, too. Make sure to buy your tickets soon! They won’t last forever.

If you buy your tickets within the next twelve hours from the publication of this article [12pm. Central time 8/16] you can receive 50% off the face price of your admission with the code “CONFERENCE12”. This ends at midnight 8/16

We’re Expanding!

Posted on August 9, 2012

It’s official. Many of you are already aware but on Saturday morning I will be packing up the vehicle and permanently relocating from Philadelphia to Los Angeles. It’s a decision I made years ago and the timing has finally proved right for my girlfriend and I to make it our new home. The move will take a little over a week (we’re taking our time: it’s a long drive) but we’ll be up and fully operational by the end of the month. We couldn’t be more excited to explore another side of the country and bring you even more diverse programming. Steve, the ever-talented creative director of The American Classic, will still be here in Philadelphia maintaing our East Coast perspectives, so not to worry: there will still be plenty of content generated from here. This also gives us access to a whole host of cities, brands, shops, creators, innovators, and events that we were sad to be uninvolved with before.

If you’d like to follow along on the move and the cross-country road trip, you can follow me on Instagram (@alexfrankel). There will likely be a photo recap of my time traveling but more will come from Instagram that won’t make it on the website. As always, thanks for your loyal readership. See you on the West Coast!