Favourite Fives: Susan Mocarski

For our sixtieth (yes sixtieth) Favourite Five we have finally convinced a real live woman to contribute. Being the progressive, pro-feminist people that we are here at Proper it’s irked us somehwat that it’s taken so long to finally get in touch with our feminine side. So here we have a five from Susan Mocarski who is both founder and in charge of design and production at cape makers extraodinaire Cleverhood from Providence, Rhode Island in the good old USA. As the name suggests they really are very clever hoods, being made from proper high tech super geeky performance type materials as well as having the ability to make you look incredibly intelligent in a modern day street-Sherlock kind of way.



It’s been a long, hard winter here in New England, which is fine with us. But it makes you appreciate good outerwear. Almost anything from 66 degrees north of Iceland exceeds expectations when it comes to fit, look plus performance. Their motto “Keeping Iceland warm since 1926” says it all. But they also claim: “There is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothing.” That’s exactly our sentiments, especially when it comes to rain.

66 degrees north


We live and work in Providence, which is nicknamed the Creative Capital. It’s home to the Rhode Island School of Design, good culinary schools, Brown University and other interesting institutions. It’s a nice, small city that gets lots of cross-pollination. Latetly, I’ve been obsessed with the works of contemporary artist Julie Mehretu. Her work is vibrant, architectural and feels urban. Her use of color and structure blows me away. Look her up, you’ll be glad you did.  



Bicycle Diaries by David Byrne. Tales from the road by one of my favorite, most creative, rock stars. It turns out that Byrne relies on a trusty bike to really get to know the places he visits. He was riding before it was cool. It allowed him to get up close with his surroundings and to cover a lot of ground. Byrne first turned us on to the slow bike movement and the way bikes were becoming an important part of urban transportation networks. It’s remarkable how this 19th century invention has become one of the most sophisticated solutions to 21c problems. And the beauty of the urban bike solution…it’s fun. 



Newly invigorated by my old favorite Deer Tick. Their new hit TheROCK is mind- blowingly great.  They’re a local band with worldwide fame (tell me you’ve heard of them). Their album Divine Providence, nice homage to our Creative Capital, was compared to the likes of The Kinks, The Rolling Stones and The Replacements. And frontman John McCauly’s mom was an art teacher downtown. We got the ok to use one of their songs in our first video. It makes the video special. By the way, they’ll be in the UK in August at the “End of the Road Festival,” which sounds cool.

Deer Tick

Something else

If you travel, work, have a family and two dogs or something like that you need a satchel for your stuff. Life demands a great bag that’s trustworthy, strong and reliable. I’m still in love with my Filson bag and our relationship is going on a few years now. Old school but very modern for laptops and modern things. One hundred years ago Mr Filson wrote in his catalog: Our materials are the very best obtainable, for we know that the best is none too good and that quality is of vital importance. YOU CAN DEPEND ABSOLUTELY UPON OUR GOODS BOTH AS TO MATERIAL AND WORKMANSHIP.” That’s old school. We think it’s an important way to run a business.


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