Just as the Original Swedish Snus is something we make our own, so, too, is the gear we hold on to—full of memories and connected to our identity. The way we care for and love our gear—favorite clothing, shoes, tools, cooking implements, etc.—says a lot about our personalities and our journeys. Below are some archetypes that cover different ways we can love our gear. Maybe one of them looks familiar.
Is your philosophy “find what works and wear it until it disintegrates”? Can you plot time based on how many shades of color your favorite hat has gone through? Then you might be The Hard-Wearer. The Hard-Wearer finds gear they love and then proceeds to use it until it falls apart in their hands. Black hats or shirts fade to a medium brown from sun and wear. Wooden handles of hammers or axes wear into perfect matches for your hands. Boots become like a second skin on the inside no matter how many times you replace the soles.
Original Philosophy: A Hard-Wearers' gear isn’t well-worn, it’s well-loved.
The Maintenance Man
The Maintenance Man takes a different approach to lifelong use. The Maintenance Man knows what they love, and does all they can to keep it around forever. They build time into their schedule for regular oil and polishing session for their favorite leather pieces. Small tears in sweaters and jackets are quickly repaired. The heirloom butchers block or work bench are coated in bees wax and buffed for maximum protection. Their favorite jeans never spend a second in a dryer.
Original Philosophy: Making sure your grandfather’s boots or hunting knife last until you’re a grandfather.
Do you like making small tweaks—like a tailor’s adjustment or shortening a handle for the perfect hand feel—to make something work perfectly and distinctly for you? Welcome to the world of The Customizer. The Customizer loves tools and clothing that last, but that also perfectly fits their particular lives. If that means changing small parts to achieve that, then so be it. Their choice gear is about their choice life, and it’s written in each stitch and ivory inlay.
Original Philosophy: It’s not truly mine until it’s customized.
Sometimes only one brand will do. Sometimes only one type of fabric will do. Sometimes only one artisan working in one shop will do. This is the domain of Mr. Particular. He finds the right style, cut, construction, or materials, and rocks it for life. He believes that if you buy better clothes and gear, they will wear better. Want a warm wool sweater that lasts a decade of winters? Buy from the best. How about boots that keep your feet warm and won’t kill your joints? Look for quality first so you’re not suffering later. Mr. Particular’s closet and toolbox are filled with pieces that have stood the test of time because they’re built to do so. He’s the type to be a Brand Man forever because nothing else will do.
Original Philosophy: There’s nothing better than the best, so why settle for less?
Were you able to see yourself in these types of gear lovers? Did it make you want to change how you love your gear? Perhaps it’s time to pull out your old boots and give them a shine, or put a new coat of stain on your dad’s humidor. They all hold a story just waiting to be told.