Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A real american hero

I just wanted to share that my very good friend Barney Krein's book is now out. There is a soft cover, hard cover and soon to be a e-book. Its a great read, written by a man who wore many hats in his life. I designed the cover and wrote the introduction as well as the afterwards. Thank you in advance for taking a look.

here is the link
I will keep everyone posted when the ebook is out.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Cigars and hats

I had a great time attending this cigar event this past week. I had a great time with everyone. Enjoy the read.

Smokin' Ladies Night at The Mark : Expanding the Cigar Community even further

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Brenton Agena, Portland Cigar Examiner
December 1, 2011 - Like this? Subscribe to get instant updates.
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Opening the frosted glass door to The Mark’s cigar and sports bar, I was taken by surprise. This establishment – soon to be reviewed in full – which normally provided a much needed service of a estside cigar sanctuary for cigar aficionados was transformed! The door had opened into an alternate dimension where men and women smoked cigars and drank scotch together. It was a realm of pure cohesion between men and the fairer sex encapsulated by scents of tobacco and cedar. Previously the only women to be seen in the room filled with billowing smoke and sports-based conversation were serving drinks and delivering food orders. Tonight was different. Tonight was buzzing. At the risk of concluding in the opening paragraph, Lady’s Night was a good night at The Mark.

Lady’s Night at The Mark is a brainchild of a very prominent member of the Portland cigar community. Cigar Lady PDX or Ruth as most refer to as, is the founder of the Smokin’ Ladies club and the event’s MC. Fluttering from group to group, this social butterfly carried herself with poise while seeming to be constantly be in motion, only taking time to enjoy small moments of cigar appreciation. Ruth had packed The Mark’s cigar room with enough points of interest to keep everyone in the room engaged throughout the evening. The sweet sounds of Mario Depriest’s voice carried through the room like a warm blanket as he sang classic holiday tunes as well as some jazz and blues standards to keep the mood just so.

What truly stood out about the event was the representation of some local companies. Ruth is a large supporter of local business growth and invited several companies to set up tables at the event both for advertising and educational purposes. There was a fantastic scotch sampling table offering several options of single malt and blended scotches as well all with a friendly education of each bottle being offered. Befittingly, next to the scotch sampling was Broadway Cigar’s table, well stocked and offering boxes of cigars at event prices as well as high quality accessories including Cuban Crafter cigar cutters. One of the best examples of local talent in the room was the presence of John Penman of Penman Hats. This outrageously talented hatter is based in Hillsboro and produces what may be the finest handmade rabbit and beaver hats you can find. The quality of these wet-blocked and hand-stitched hats rival that of the finest cappellerias in Italy. John is also the creator of one-off women’s hats that can set off any ensemble with a sense of propriety and flair.

As this event is designed to appeal to female cigar enthusiasts, the offerings were not limited to scotch, smokes and fine hats. Spread throughout the event were tables filled with beautiful jewelry and lingerie by oh Baby Lingerie, as well as a fantastic chair massage offered by Jermaine Peake. For any shoe and handbag craving present, Gregory from Inspire Your Attire was on hand to quench that thirst. The feminine touch was complete with representation by the beautiful Elizabeth and Jennifer from VIPMedispa based in Clackamas. The two aestheticians were on hand enjoying the offerings of the evening and socializing openly aside an army of over a dozen female cigar enthusiasts.

The evening carried on strongly past its scheduled end time. As if the patrons of the event didn’t want to see it come to a close. The concept of men and women all getting together to enjoy a smoke and conversation is well-conceived but rarely executed. This was the perfect realization of that notion. When asked what about the event appealed to women and what they thought about the cigar hobby in general  VIPMedispa Elizabeth responded with the notion that , “... appreciating [cigars] requires maturity and appreciation for finer things. It involves a bit of class and refined tastes…” I couldn’t agree more.

For information on the next Lady’s Night and other events being thrown by Ruth, check out her blog at


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Howard Hughes replica

Hey everyone. Just wanted to share a big trill for me. yesterday I delivered a hat I made for the Evergreen Museum for the Howard Hughes H1 or as better known as "the Spruce Goose" exhibit. It was a honor to make this hat and a big trill to say the least. I spent months working to get this hat as accurate as possible and had access to parts of the plane that no one has been in over 9 years. I have to give a big thank you to brian aka squidkidd for coming along to take some amazing photo's. Im sure he was trilled because he took shots that you just can't take. A big sound out to stewart and Wayne from the museum. Easy guys to like and work with. I had a blast and now on to the pics.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

update 9/24/11

just finishing off of September orders. just one or two will run over to October. October orders look like they should be running on time.


Saturday, September 10, 2011


I'm just going to re-post this. I miss them greatly.

I would ask everyone check out the links on this post.

Please visit Rescue 1's web site to see some of the others and the great history that they where a part of." onclick=";return false;

Please visit our own squidkidd's dad site and see what a wonderful project he took upon himself to under take. I will never be able to thank Henry Kidd enough for all he has done." onclick=";return false;

I can't believe another years has gone by. I'm sure most of everyone knows by now that I was originally from the "Big Apple." I lived there for the first 33 years of my life and always wanted to be a New York City firemen since I was 5. I had the honor to know a few of the guys from Rescue 1 and was very supportive when I was taking all the test to just make the list. They where there for me from the moment I put in my application to when I got the letter to start the academy. It took a total of 8 years from the point of the application until they starting calling people. The FDNY had the biggest list prior to 9/11. My list was 42,631 deep. The guys from rescue one kept my spirits up and would offer to pay any of the fees that was needed to take the test. I don't think I could have done it without their support. It went a long way.

I worked as personal trainer in a near by gym and would see them almost every day. They would ask me to go with them on ride-a-longs and if they ever saw me walking home they would give me a lift home ( at the time I lived right down the block from them). I got dragged to a few fires because of it but that was ok. Thats where I wanted to be anyway.

When I did finally got the letter to start in the FDNY I had moved out west 4 months before for my wife's job. I had to turn down the FDNY 2 days before my start date. It was the hardest thing I had to do. Now being out west and had to start the whole thing from scratch I used their strength of character to get though all the training. I had to start a little older than most guys but got though everything and enjoyed every moment.

I wanted to share this with everyone here so they know a little something about these guys that meant so much to me. They gave so much so I think we should remember them this day of September 11
Firefighter Patrick O'Keefe Rescue1

Battalion Chief John Moran Battalion 49

Lieutenant Dennis Mojica Rescue 1

Captain Terrance Hattan Resue 1

Captain Patrick Brown Ladder 3

Firefighter Joseph Angelini sr. Rescue 1

The biggest regret I have is not going fishing with my friend Patrick. I will miss him and all the guys that I now call fallen brothers.

Please don't forget what they did on that day.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011


 I had the pleasure recently to make a hat for the hit TNT show Leverage worn by Christian kane. here are a few shot from season 4 called "Boiler Room."

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Portland Hat Parade

Portland had there 2nd annual hat parade this past weekend. I'm very sorry that I couldn't make it this year but Alyce from that hat museum was there in all her glory.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

June orders are going well. Everyone should be on time. Looking ahead to July orders and they should be running on time as well.

Monday, May 23, 2011

update 5/23/2011

rapping up May orders and starting on Orders due in June. Things are looking good time wise.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

update 5/18/2011

just wanted to keep everyone posted. Running on time with all orders as of date. should be running on time with all order over the summer months but will keep everyone posted.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A year ago today

A year ago today we lost Tony Nowak. One of the most giving person I have ever had the pleasure to know. After fifteen minutes of meeting him, he makes you feel like he has known you for years. I miss the the late night/early morning phone calls. RIP BIG TONY

Pacific Palisades Post:

Tony Nowak, owner of a garment manufacturing company specializing in original one-of-a-kind leather jackets for the film industry, died April 6, 2010 at the age of 60. 

  Originally from Poznan, Poland, Nowak was a longtime resident of Pacific Palisades with his wife of 18 years, Maria Barrie, and their sons Enzo Nowak and Riley Barrie. 

  Described as larger than life by all who met him, Nowak had limitless passion for his family, his friends and his adopted America. His sense of humor and sense of fun were boundless. He lived this motto: Be Healthy, Be Happy, Be Honest, Be Humble, Be Respectful, Be Yourself and Enjoy Life. 

 Nowak's intense faith was evidenced in his daily life, and he was an active member of St. Monica's Parish in Santa Monica. Physical fitness also played a large part in his life and some of his longtime friendships began in local gyms. 

  In 1967, Nowak emigrated with his mother and sister from Poland to Austria, where he was an honor student and completed studies at Vienna Business School. He moved to California in the early 1970s. 

  Opening his company in El Segundo, Nowak created works of art in leather. The bodybuilding community and film industry quickly noticed the exceptional quality of his workmanship. His legacy lives on in hundreds of films featuring his creations. 

  In addition to his immediate family, Nowak is survived by his sister, Maggie Cherwick, her husband Johnny and their two children, Jessica and Tony; his brother Chris Nowak and his two sons, Martin and Sebastian; and many extended family members in Poland and England.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Satin Finish

Heres a new hat offering. Its a satin finish or long hair.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Orders update

I'm moving right along and right on time on all orders due in Jan. It went smoothly and on time. Hats due in Feb. Should all go out on time. I'm hoping to get a jump on hats due in March because it looks like I got slammed again. Will need to work weekends to stay on track.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Special hat

This a hat I made as a gift for Alyce from

Its made from a vintage Borsalino Felt raw body.

I hope she likes it

Thursday, January 20, 2011


I'm now taking re-blocks again. Please go to my site for prices.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


The first week of the year started off very well. Sent off a few hats and other products. Should continue to make good progress this next week coming up.