Final Thoughts and Favorite Things

Truth be told, I’ve never had a longterm plan for Well Spent; no specific goal for the site, much less any kind of eventual exit strategy. I just really hated the job I was working back in 2011, and really liked looking at clothes on the internet, and hoped I could somehow make a living doing that, instead. And, shockingly, I have – something for which I still feel incredibly fortunate and grateful. Well Spent has also been instrumental in the formation and success of my other company, BDBC. And I feel incredibly fortunate and grateful for that, too. 

But while the site has been great to me in many ways, I haven’t always been great to it – especially as of late. Between running BDBC, being the father of a very energetic 18 month old, and the myriad other responsibilities that come with getting dangerously close to 40, I’ve had to neglect Well Spent more and more over the last two years. Hence the increased irregularity of our posting schedule, lack of in-depth features, and dearth of social media content. Simply put: I just don’t have time anymore to make this a place worth visiting every day.

So, rather than drag out the inevitable for another two years, I’ve decided to shut down Well Spent. Or, at least, the Well Spent website. It wasn’t an easy decision to make, but I know it’s the right one. 

I want to thank anyone who’s ever read, commented on, and / or shared something from this site. I want to thank the many advertisers who helped keep us afloat. I want to thank all of our wonderful contributors. And, of course, I want to thank Nick and Reed for their years of humor, eloquence, and dedication. I couldn’t ask for two better guys to run this thing with. Please don’t hate me for making it go away. 

Speaking of Nick and Reed, keep on eye on the Well Spent Instagram, where they’ll be posting all kinds of good stuff starting in the new year. 

For our final act on the site, Nick, Reed, and I will be highlighting our personal, all-time favorite things (something we get asked about a lot). The clothes and accessories that, after almost a decade of obsessing over, writing about, being gifted, and buying and returning (or selling), we consider to be the best of the best. 

Thanks again, 

Brad



My Favorite T-Shirt: Velva Sheen





T-shirts are probably the thing I’ve bought and returned (or sold, or gave away) the most over the last decade. And of the dozens and dozens (not an exaggeration) I’ve tried, nothing has ever topped my Velva Sheens. The weight, the fit, the construction – to me, they’re the perfect tee. Done and done. Get ’em here.


My Favorite Button-Up: orSlow





If I had to choose a single favorite brand, it would be orSlow. From the incredible fabrics, to the meticulous construction, to the perfect fit (once you figure out their admittedly tricky sizing system) – it just doesn’t get any better to me. Their button-downs are my all-time favorites. I just wish they came in more fabrics. And while they can be very expensive if you buy them from Western stockists, you can get them for less than a Gitman from Rakuten.


My Favorite Sweatshirt: Our Legacy / John Elliott / Battenwear





My favorite crew neck sweat is a toss-up between Our Legacy’s Great Sweat and John Elliott’s Raglan Crew. I’ve tried Ricksons, I’ve tried McCoys, and they’re very nice, but to me, the OL and JE just fit and feel better. I also like that both brands come out with new seasonal colorways to go along with the core heather gray and black. And, they’re fairly easy to find on sale, too. Just a heads-up, the OL runs big (I wear a 46 – the smallest size), and the JE runs small (I wear a large). OLs look to be sold out for the season, but you can get the JE here.




Funnily, I don’t like the OL or JE hoodies (JE’s doesn’t fit as well as the crew, and it doesn’t have drawstrings, which is a must for me, and the OL hoodies are, like, $300, which fuck that). For me, there’s no better hoodie than the Battenwear Reach-Up Hoodie. Everything about it – fabric, cut, weight – is perfect. Get it here.


My Favorite Jeans: Momotaro





What can I say, I’m still a sucker for sick fadez. Yes, they’re spendy as hell, and there are probably lots of more affordable and (almost) as good options, but I still just love my Momos. Selvedge denim was my gateway into menswear – it was the thing that got me super into clothing over a decade ago. Momotaro was my grail brand then, and it still is now. Plus the 0306 “Tight Tapered Fit” fits me perfectly. Buy a new pair every three or so years, wear them to hell, repeat. Get ’em here.
 

My Favorite Pants: Stan Ray / Barena





The two or three days a month I’m not wearing a pair of Momos, I’m in either Stan Ray or Barena. Stan Rays are tough as hell, great fitting, and super well priced. And the Barenas have my favorite loose-on-top / tapered-on-bottom fit – particularly the Arenga style. They’re pricey, but worth it (and not that hard to find on sale). Get the Stan Rays here and the Barenas here, here, or here.


My Favorite Outerwear: Jungmaven / Patagonia





There are a dizzying number of chore-coat style jackets out there (and I’ve written about most of them), but my personal favorite is Jungmaven’s Olympic Jacket. Three reasons: 1) the fabric is this super thick hemp twill that drapes beautifully and really forms to your body when you’re wearing it. 2) it’s got a shorter, boxier fit than most other brands (Vetra, A Day’s March, Corridor, Alex Crane, EG Workaday, et al.) And 3) it has a hidden placket, and I love me a hidden placket. Get it here.




They’re ubiquitous, and kinda basic (like, in the bitch way), but fuck if a Patagonia Down Sweater doesn’t make life just a little bit better. It’s the closest I’ve come in adulthood to feeling like I’m wrapped in my childhood blankie. You can wear them all year long, from chilly summer nights to brutally cold winter days. And, you know, Patagonia – traceable down, recycled content, and all that other good stuff. Get it here.


My Favorite Accessories: American Trench / R.T.CO





It might sound silly, but once you’ve tried a really good beanie, you suddenly realize that not all beanies are created equal. American Trench’s are in a class of their own. They have the perfect ratio of weight and length, so you can wear them in lots of different ways (Cousteau-style, Ghostface-style, etc). Plus, the fabrics are super luxe, and the prices are fair, too. Can’t recommend these enough. Get ’em here.I discovered the German eyewear brand, R.T.CO, while I was in Paris with my wife, several years ago. All of their stuff is designed in Berlin and handmade in Italy, and just fucking great. I picked up a pair of the Iora sunglasses and have worn them almost every single day since. Get ’em here.

My Favorite Stores: End Clothing / Rakuten




To me, End Clothing is the be-all end-all of men’s stores (pun intended). From the brand assortment, to the specific items they pick from those brands, to the product and model photography, to the streamlined checkout process, all of it makes shopping an absolute joy. If there’s a thing that’s in the world that’s good and wearable you’ll almost always find it at END.



Unless it’s a super obscure Japanese thing, in which case END. might not have it, but Rakuten probably will – and you can get it tax free! I’ve purchased more things from Rakuten in the last five years than all other stores combined – and saved hundreds and hundreds of dollars in the process. Yes, the website is ugly and hard to navigate. And yes, the checkout process can be confusing and a little anxiety-inducing. But once you figure all that stuff out (starting an account instead of checking out as a guest really helps), a world of crazy affordable Japanese treasures awaits. Go forth.

  • I can say, without a doubt, that Well Spent was instrumental in helping me become better dressed and learning how to look for quality stuff online. I’ve shut a few passion projects down in my time – it’s never easy – but I appreciate what you and the rest of the team have provided and will follow along on IG. Have fun with that 18 month old! Mine is 11 years now and I miss those baby snuggles something fierce.

  • DB

    From back in the “green fashion” day, y’all held it down. Good luck on future endeavors and all the best!

  • admirer

    hot damn this is going to hurt

  • BrotherVoodoo

    Bummer. One of the top 10 websites I visit on a regular basis.

    • michael

      Where should we go to fill this giant void?!?!
      By the by, great work over the years! A job well done!!!

      • John

        I would seriously like to know?! any body? suggestions??

        • I’m a big fan of Heddels and Die, Workwear!

  • Sonny

    A few years ago after being inundated with content, I cut back my subscription to every fashion-related blog except for this one so
    I’m genuinely bummed to hear you guys are closing shop. Always appreciated the ethos and the writing mix of the site. Best of luck on your guys’ ventures and thanks for maintaining such a great site all these years! Oh, and the custom New Balances I won in on of your giveaways years ago are still in heavy rotation, so thanks again!

  • Icy Harpy

    I want to be graceful like the other posters appreciating you and simply wishing you well, but it wouldn’t be authentic when I’m heartbroken and wailing inside. Well Spent posts were perfect… but not so perfect that I wouldn’t want you as company for dinner. Interesting, insightful, and witty–I felt I learned something new when I read. I’m going to miss this. You guys were the dad and brothers I didn’t have growing up to tell me that my husband wouldn’t want that t-shirt from Macy’s. Man, I’m really going to miss this. Too shy to comment in prior posts, I wanted to squeak a thank you before getting flustered and scurrying off. I wish you guys the best.

  • bone voyage

    What the frick

  • Katie

    I’m definitely in mourning since reading your post…I’ve gotten so much insight, and inspiration from your posts. It’s hard to sum up many years worth of thank you’s. From “This or That” (I believe that’s what you called it) to “Cool Dads” to “Fifty Under Fifty” it’s been a real pleasure. …And although I’m not really into IG, I’ll pop in to see what Nick and Reed are up to, for sure. Thank you for everything!!

  • Zubair Ali

    Unequivocally, the starting place for the long and life changing path I’ve taken into fashion and clothing. The first site that gave me the taste and character I have now, not just in terms of fashion. And above everything the first resource that taught me that ethicality in clothing should be the first and foremost factor one considers. And for that y’all will be, in my opinion, the GOAT. May God grant y’all happiness and the best in all y’all’s endeavors. Take care.

    • Jack

      i agree. this place helped me feel comfortable in making my own fashion decisions by curating my taste. also learned two important lessons: buy ethically and wear confidently

  • Mberlin

    I am a buyer and I always spent time here, Brad. Amazing job!!
    really loved all of your selections and taste level. All articles you had shared inspired us all.
    Thank you so much for everything.

  • So honored to be on the list. Sad to see it end. WS was one of the first blogs I pitched when we launched our trench back in 2013. Brad was open to our crazy idea of making a high quality piece of outerwear in the USA. I sent him a trench and he did a photoshoot with it (in Chicago i think). I’ve been reading regularly for almost a decade. Learned about many a cool brand from the blog. Will miss seeing the WS icon on my Google shortcut bar.
    -Jacob, cofounder American Trench

  • Oh, damn. Sad news, but I appreciate your keeping this going long after so many other blogs went quiet. A good run (I remember the Commerce with a Conscience days). Thank you for all your help over the years.

  • NMC

    Thank you guys so much for everything!

  • Anonny

    Good. Now my wallet will hopefully be less empty from not being influenced in buying some of ya’ll cool selection of clothes you found. Though I will miss reading about your funny and interesting lives that you somehow tie into each of your menswear post.

  • probs

    I still keep visiting every day and being crushed anew. Thanks for the great site.

  • Zack

    I’ve been a reader for many years and even now I keep visiting hoping you changed your minds. You guys are fantastic and I’ve bought a lot of amazing items because of this site, ads included. Well Spent will be sorely missed. I don’t even know where to begin on an alternative. Best of luck to you, Nick, and Reed.

  • Peter

    I’ve followed Well Spent since before it was called Well Spent – definitely since menswear 1.0. This site’s kept in touch with how fashion has changed, but stayed true to it’s original intent. It’s on my daily visit list. Very much going to miss it. Thank you!

  • Nathaniel Shuman

    This site has encouraged me to look for quality clothes and search deep and wide to find the best of the best. This site has always been a starting point for me ever since I came upon it back in 2013. I cannot tell you the number of clothing sites I have bookmarked from here in hopes of some day putting aside a little extra money to get some of these well sought after items. It has been great to see the development of this site and to see where it has come from to where it is now.
    Now, I think I will have a hard time finding good, quality clothes. None the less, thank you Brad for all you have done for this site and producing quality content for the past several years. God Bless in you new endeavors!

  • You guys are great. Thanks for all the kind words – even if they are making this harder than it already was!

  • So sad to see it end, Brad, but thanks for the past 8 years of thoughtful writing and great recommendations. You made us all better!

  • Dara

    Brad
    It was always a pleasure to visit this site over the years, I’d like to think that you sharpened my eye on my stylish clothing choices. Nick’s hell raising journalism will be missed.
    As a father myself I fully understand your priorities change over time. Beat of luck for the future and well done in creating something to be proud of.
    Dara

  • Jeremy

    Well written, well curated, and well said. Filled with clever copy and great products that I didn’t yet know I needed. Thanks for introducing me to lots of amazing brands, and compiling the best black friday lists for quality goods.

  • Be

    PLEASE keep the site alive (without future updates) so that people can at least browse older posts. It would be a shame to shut down the site. It would be equivalent to having Wikipedia shut down. No it’s not an exaggeration. There is NO OTHER site like this one… I’ve discovered so many fantastic brands THANKS to you guys… Please.

  • Dan Dao

    Really going to miss this site. This site helped me find and purchase some great items from places I would have never looked. Your recommendations were pretty damn bullet proof.