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A Beginner’s Guide to Fly-FishingThere’s something special about a brand that knows what it’s all about, nearly from the very start, and then sticks to that vision while embracing challenges along the way. Such is the story of Howler Brothers, the rugged yet fun-loving, Texas-based brand with storied roots in music and a taste for adventure. Better still, the brand recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, launching both a richly crafted coffee table book and now, a new collection of spring style essentials.
Founded in 2011 by Virginia college buddies Andy Stepanian and Chase Heard, the brand began on a bit of a whim, as the two friends blended their love of music with a love for fly fishing and eye-catching style. The duo’s time in the bluegrass band Wrinkle Neck Mules naturally informed what they wore on stage (Western shirts, now a staple of the Howler Brothers brand and adorned with vivid stitching and colors). And then, there’s that love of adventure: You can wear Howler Brothers’ mix of technical puffer jackets, quilted flannel shirts, soft yet vibrant graphic tees and hybrid shorts just about anywhere, especially fly fishing or to grab an ice cold beer afterward.
That trio of pursuits — music, outdoor adventure and a love of great clothing — sits at the core of the brand today, as The Manual learned when they caught up with the two founders via video call in January.
“Fashionable fly fishermen” might be an odd proposition for a brand, but it speaks to the variety of fun to be had in Austin, as well as the utility (and style) behind the brand itself. Rest assured, guys all over Texas and well beyond now count the brand’s wardrobe staples as their own favorites. The company now has dozens of employees but maintains a lean operation overall — still, it’s a far cry from screen-printing t-shirts in the brand’s early days. Now, Stepanian and Heard play in a different band (Leon III), but the Howler ethos of adventure, fun, and style remains the same.
That ethos goes for plenty of the company’s staple pieces, with even jackets only setting you back $99. Dive into the world of Howler Brothers for yourself with our favorite new spring style picks, fresh out of Texas.
The Gaucho Snapshirt, a revamped take on the printed Western shirts the brand’s co-founders once wore, remains a hot seller for Howler Brothers, year after year. A blend of cotton, polyester, and spandex gives it stretch, while the flower detailing at the chest adds distinctive style points.
The Howler team certainly knows how to have a good time — not to mention how to design versatile gear to be worn from sunrise to sunset. The cotton-poly blend is quick-drying (useful when out under the sun manning the grill or hanging on a boat), while the two front-button chest pockets give you a bit of everyday carry versatility (use either or both to store a bottle opener or an extra fishing fly).
Even the morning sometimes dawns cool in Howler Brothers’ home state, hence the introduction of a packable windbreaker in a fresh, new spring color. Nylon construction helps repel wind and light rain, and oversized zipper pockets act as useful storage space on the road or when cruising to a favorite surfing spot.
Corduroy shorts are a throwback style staple that calls to mind long days in the spring and summer sun, cold beer in hand — the kind your dad might have worn in an old Polaroid, for instance. Howler Brothers has channeled that same energy with a pair of drawstring cord shorts in a subtle but stylish print.
The terry polo is a style move that screams laidback yet polished relaxation. The kind that signifies you’re not worried about much, but you still want to look put together. You can do that quite easily with this cotton and polyester terrycloth polo, with an eye-catching Howler Brothers chest pocket graphic for good measure.
The idea behind the Howler Brothers brand is, of course, that no fun was ever had without the right gear. Take these versatile, lightweight nylon shorts. Stuff ’em in your overnight bag for a quick jaunt out of town, throw ’em on for a hike, and wear them just about anywhere else — the 7-inch inseam is just right on most guys, and the integrated belt and elastic waist make for easy-on, easy-off comfort and a no-slip fit.
Breezy, functional style is the name of the game when hitting the water or exploring, say, one of Austin’s famed parks. We think this hoodie, fashioned partly from recycled polyester and boasting built-in sun protection, is the ideal lightweight layer when you want protection from overhead rays without overheating.
What makes a great ballcap? Is it the throwback-oriented design details, like braided roping on the brim? Is it a striking graphic that makes you look twice? Is it the color, like a pair with a specific shade of olive? In the case of this snapback hat, it’s all of the above — and then some. Keep the sun off your mug and your vision clear as you search for your next catch.
Never underestimate the value of a good pocket t-shirt, which is more than just your standard white t-shirt or undershirt. In fact, when designed by Howler Brothers, it becomes a conversation piece all its own, with a bold, retro-style graphic and the Howler Brothers creed to “heed the call.” Go forth in style.
For as much fun as you can have on land (and on a boat) wearing gear from Howler Brothers, you can have just as much fun in the water with the right pair of boardshorts. To us, that means a pair with quick-drying nylon-blend fabric is just the ticket for quick dives and lazy days, complete with welded front zipper pockets for daily must-haves.
The Essential Guide for MenThe Manual is simple — we show men how to live a life that is more engaged. As our name implies, we offer a suite of expert guides on a wide range of topics, including fashion, food, drink, travel, and grooming. We don’t boss you around; we’re simply here to bring authenticity and understanding to all that enriches our lives as men on a daily basis.