• Gant Rugger

    Store Profiles  

    Even though I catch my reflection out of the corner of my eye, I’m almost mistaken for what decade it is. The Seth Thomas clock isn’t much help. Newspaper articles and photographs from Gant's manufacturing facilities in New Haven from the 1950s—1970s plaster the walls. I’m in the dressing room, modeled after the foreman’s office of Bernard Gant, of the new Gant Rugger shop on Bleecker St. A navy/red striped polo, madras sport shirt and heritage-rich blue oxford pullover haphazardly drape over the office chair. Gary’s silhouette knocks on the door to see how I’m doing. He's astute yet nonchalant. He runs off to grab a different size for me.

    The 700 square foot store in New York’s West Village showcases a more industrial factory look, partly inspired by the company’s New Haven, CT manufacturing heritage. The narrow space reveals exposed brick, open ceilings, vintage furniture and factory-floor fixtures. A custom adjustable wood shelving system is reminiscent of an earlier time. Fabric rolls, a mid-century sewing machine and archival shirt-making patterns dot the quirky factory blueprint. It’s the kind of space you, as a guy, walk in and wish was your closet—you want the entire collection. I walk out with the oxford pullover to start.

    “Gant was a small family business in the beginning and they poured their heart and soul into it. So we tried to create a space that inspires a mix of creativity and functional design, with a nod to the passion that went into our grass-roots shirtmaking origins from all those years ago. It’s a very personal space.”

    Christian Bastin, head designer of Gant Rugger

    Photographed in New York, NY

    Jun 7, 2010 | Permalink (10) View/Leave Comments

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    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 9/15/2010 at 1:49 PM:

    @Jason Feldmann—I shoot the Canon 5D.

    Jason Feldmann left a comment on 6/14/2010 at 12:45 AM:

    what kind of camera do you shoot with? the pictures of the store are brilliant.

    Steve left a comment on 6/9/2010 at 9:11 AM:

    I have to disagree with the comment about Los Angeles.  We have amazing stores—from Craft to APC to Milkmade to Confederacy…even a RRL.  That being said, we could always use a Gant Rugger shop!  :D

    Petter left a comment on 6/9/2010 at 7:52 AM:

    I like these pics!


    M.D. Cooley left a comment on 6/7/2010 at 7:26 PM:

    Oh how I wish I lived near New York,they get all the good stuff! All we get in L.A. is Empirio Armani, and other similar horrors.

    Gary Davis left a comment on 6/7/2010 at 3:43 PM:

    This looks great! Thanks so much….

    bunny left a comment on 6/7/2010 at 3:13 PM:

    it’s all so handsome

    The Boss left a comment on 6/7/2010 at 2:56 PM:

    I’ll pop in the next time I’m in NYC—looks promising.

    Andy left a comment on 6/7/2010 at 2:17 PM:

    Great pics…  I want pretty much everything I see in that showroom.


  • Save Khaki

    Top Drawer | Store Profiles | Prep Essentials  

    David Mullen is waiting on me. I slide into the anonymous storefront adjacent to A Salt & Battery on Greenwich Avenue. He’s oxidizing some sheet metal detailing above the doorway by hand. This is how he does things. He loves details...loves working with his hands. In between a soft spoken discourse on the philosophy of fit and the misappropriated media coverage of the injustices unfolding in Darfur, I realize he’s from another generation—a generation that can literally talk shop and life until the sun sets if you hang around long enough. But David is a product guy (“This is what I’m supposed to be doing,” he riffs unpretentiously), so we get back to the pants.

    Pull on a pair of his signature khakis and it’s apparent; Save is a product-driven outfit. I could go on about details like the Hollywood waist band and the interior micro-sanding, but all you need to know is it’s the best chino I’ve ever worn. It fits and moves so well; not skinny but slim. His product is a direct reflection of himself—wrinkled, well worn, detail oriented. It’s an exceptional rendition of the beloved prep essential.

    David Mullen outside of his Greenwich Avenue store

    Photographed in New York, NY

    Save Khaki began three years ago on the notion of creating great fitting khakis (and surrounding it with all the product that compliments it) in a world where everyone’s wearing denim. Since Save Khaki’s nomination as “Best New Menswear Designer in America” earlier this year by the CFDA, they’ve opened up three stores on Broome Street, Greenwich Avenue, and Lafayette Street. On the horizon is a collaboration with Pointer brand and the launch of Save Khaki United, a sub-brand by Save Khaki offering only goods made domestically. “Everything is still within our vision of updated classics that are naive to trend; chambray shirts, wool coats, knit sweaters, some selvedge chinos and even a line of denim (no prejudice here).”

    *A week before Thanksgiving my apartment building caught fire and I lost a good bit of personal belongings. David sent over a care package of khakis, a couple sport shirts, tees, and a tote bag that arrived at a time when I had hardly any clothes to wear. This is the kind of man David is. This is the man behind the khakis.

    Dec 22, 2009 | Permalink (13) View/Leave Comments

    mel left a comment on 9/19/2013 at 8:41 PM:

    Where can I find that hanging map?

    jeff left a comment on 7/22/2010 at 8:04 PM:

    where do i apply?

    marcus left a comment on 5/20/2010 at 12:16 PM:

    Great stuff!

    KyleBarnes left a comment on 1/7/2010 at 10:24 AM:

    stellar post. perfectly depicted and gorgeous photos definitely makes me want to stop by the next time I’m in the city. Until then, thanks for the preview.

    Kate Noelle left a comment on 12/28/2009 at 12:50 PM:

    This blog post was probably the best yet… your words were so eloquently put and perfectly accented the awesome antiquity of the shop. I loved it. Way to go. And I’m happy to hear you’re experiencing the wonders of God’s unmatched provision…. may you continue to see miracles. :)

    CLD left a comment on 12/23/2009 at 2:47 PM:

    Absolutely beautiful.  The piece is great!

    The Boss left a comment on 12/23/2009 at 11:22 AM:

    I really like David’s whole ensemble in this photo. And, that is rather unfortunate regarding your predicament.  I’m sure David’s hospitality put a smile on your face, though.

    Theo Martins left a comment on 12/23/2009 at 11:18 AM:

    Brought me out of the wood works, great stuff.

    theandydunn left a comment on 12/23/2009 at 3:47 AM:

    Hey Fred.  Great post, I’m wondering where I might get a pair of these in the UK?  Will have to e-mail david.

    H. left a comment on 12/22/2009 at 8:40 PM:

    that place looks amazing.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 12/22/2009 at 6:38 PM:

    @Pittboss12—I shoot Canon cameras (5D) and lenses (L series).

    pitboss12 left a comment on 12/22/2009 at 6:19 PM:

    I don’t always agree with the content of your posts but this one was nice.  One thing I can’t deny is that you have an eye for great images. What kind of photo equipment do you use?

    Kym left a comment on 12/22/2009 at 5:41 PM:

    Gorgeous. All. Bravo.


  • The J.Crew Men’s Store

    Store Profiles  

    It’s refreshing...shocking, even, when a big design house creates a uniquely brilliant shopping experience. Even more so when they do it for the men. J.Crew’s Tribeca Men’s shop, located at 235 West Broadway is just that. A one-of-a-kind Ivy League/modern trad shopping experience designed exclusively by Andy Spade.

    Aside from showcasing essentials from J.Crew’s men’s line, my recent visit to the Liquor Store bar in New York City revealed it also showcases Thomas Mason shirting, Selima glasses, Globe Trotter luggage, Red Wing boots, Aesop body products, Borsalino hats, Alden shoes, Hollywood Trading Company belts, as well as various vintage items (i.e. the watches featured below). Truly a men’s shop fresher than a breath of Nantucket air.

    Images via J.Crew

    Dec 7, 2009 | Permalink (4) View/Leave Comments

    Kyle left a comment on 3/11/2010 at 12:10 PM:

    what watch faces are pictured here? I am looking for one that will fit bands that can be switched out for the summer. Thanks!

    sunday ibok left a comment on 12/7/2009 at 5:42 PM:

    fing amazing. when marc jacobs said ’ a photo is a million words ’ he wasn’t kidding. oh wait was that someone else?

    SMII left a comment on 12/7/2009 at 3:27 PM:

    Excellent report as I’m unfamiliar with this treasure of a store. Do my eyes deceive me, or did I notice a Constellation w/ Pan dial?

    Greg left a comment on 12/7/2009 at 2:13 PM:

    Great store, I picked up my Chromexcel Indy Boots there this summer. I could easily dress myself entirely out of the contents of that store.



  • Parke & Ronen

    Store Profiles  

    Their suits are popping up everywhere these days. GQ sought out Ronen’s advice on suit fit in their July issue earlier this year. He’s the reason I chopped my chinos off at a 4" inseam. Ever since Parke & Ronen introduced their line of men's swimwear four years ago, they've staunchly stood by the fit and cut of their suits.

    Ronen Jehezkel of Parke & Ronen

    Photographed in Los Angeles, CA

    “Trying to launch a complete collection off the ground was one of my big mistakes. It’s very expensive.”

    —Ronen Jehezkel

    Their success in focusing on men’s swimwear—and doing it very well, paved the way for recent forays into menswear. With Wall Street yuppies serving as their muse, the “dirty preppy” is a collection inspired by the financial shakedown fallout of unemployed investment bankers performing manuel labor in order to maintain their standards of living. Since they’re broke, they’re working in their preppy office clothes. The inspiration produces a more fitted silhouette in preppy fabrics like gingham, seersucker and broadcloth by employing cotton with a touch of spandex (97/3) and an enzyme wash. The result is some smart updates to southern classics. And they’re in short supply too since their collections are limited runs.

    This fall, they’re off to the races as they mature their “dirty preppy” line in borrowing from the first jewel in the Triple Crown of Thoroughbred horse racing—the Kentucky Derby.

    Oct 16, 2009 | Permalink (6) View/Leave Comments

    My Affair with Michael Bastian left a comment on 5/7/2011 at 8:50 PM:

    I love the way his shorts fit! (MB’s fit very well too). http://affairwithmb.wordpress.com/

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 10/20/2009 at 12:42 AM:

    Michael—Look at wool duffle/toggle coats by Gloverall. Find it on eBay (used) or at Sierra Trading Company online (new). Gloverall is the best in the business, out of England. Buy it right the first time and you’ll only have to buy it once.

    Also, naval inspired peacoats (with the 6 buttons arranged in a two vertical rows) in wool or cotton. You’ll probably want wool if you’re in the Northeast during winter.

    Michael left a comment on 10/18/2009 at 7:47 PM:

    I must admit, I stumbled upon this blog accidentally and I am quite hooked. Your passion and knowledge is unparalled, and it is always nice to see things in my closet mentioned! I am just curious, but do you have any advice on a new coat style for the upcoming fall/winter?

    L.A.S left a comment on 10/17/2009 at 8:06 AM:

    Informative post…I’d like to say I’m pretty sartorially inclined and knowledgable, but I had never heard of this designer.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 10/17/2009 at 2:40 AM:

    Julie—Stay tuned for the next two weeks. I’ll be writing about some of my favorite women’s options.

    Julie left a comment on 10/16/2009 at 4:57 PM:

    Fred…I absolutely love your blog!  You can tell it is a sincere passion and the detail and thought you put into it is going to play very well into your success someday!  Keep the great info coming…I always love to see the options for preppy women’s clothing!


  • Sid Mashburn

    Top Drawer | Store Profiles | Prep Essentials  

    He’s not carrying Lacoste going forward (you can get them practically anywhere these days), “I like Fred Perry polos instead,” he says. “You don’t see these as much.”

    Immediately Sid comes off as a southern gentleman. “Water? Beer?”

    I take a Negra Modelo. It’s a welcome escape from the Atlanta heat. He’s impeccably dressed too. Tie slightly askew, no break in his A.P.C jeans and sporting his brogues sock-less. Within minutes we’re talking shop and his sheer knowledge of menswear is impressive. What’s more impressive, he’s a really nice guy.

    Photographed in Atlanta, GA

    Peter and Matt

    With stints at Ralph Lauren, Land’s End, J. Crew and Tommy Hilfiger, Sid is on to something...and it’s good. His men’s store is a reflection of his personal style. It’s essentially a haberdashery for a new generation. He carries an assortment of iconic pieces every guy should own while nurturing the wide-eyed anticipation of happening upon something you’ve never seen before. In addition to carrying his own label—Sid Mashburn, you’ll find Levi’s, A.P.C., Brunello Cuccinelli, Kiton, Sartorio, Edward Green, Caruso, Polo, Jack Spade, Ray-Ban, Persol and Globe Trotter luggage meticulously showcased.

    Sid Mashburn is about relationships; relationships with their suppliers and, most importantly, their customers. This, and the Negra Modelo, is what keeps them coming back. They trust him.

    Sep 8, 2009 | Permalink (21) View/Leave Comments

    Roger johns left a comment on 3/3/2014 at 10:57 PM:

    Wonderful store very dapper and very neat

    My Affair with Michael Bastian left a comment on 5/14/2011 at 5:28 PM:


    Joy left a comment on 2/17/2011 at 2:02 PM:

    Truly spectacular. Saving everything to the desktop!

    Richard Ross left a comment on 9/7/2010 at 9:11 AM:

    I love that we can click on the couch picture to view it full size! So much more detail can be examined.

    After this post I am extremely tempted to plan a weekend trip to the store. It seems that you could hang out there for a couple of hours and have some wonderful conversation.

    harold Fandino left a comment on 9/6/2010 at 8:32 PM:

    Going to ATL in two weeks, looking forward to stopping by and checking Sids store out.

    Kristi left a comment on 1/12/2010 at 1:55 PM:

    Gorgeous photos! Must have been a wonderful visit.

    SMII left a comment on 12/7/2009 at 8:20 PM:

    Given the remarkable reports of Sid’s, I may have my bespoke garment resized for my son upon his BS graduation.


    EGR left a comment on 11/26/2009 at 2:50 PM:

    Sid’s is a wonderful men’s store and (in my opinion) one of the best in the country…Barney’s, Rothmann’s, Wilkes-Bashford included.  The selection is broad but thoughtful (mac raincoats to Stan Smith kicks).  the staff is warm and welcoming (particularly important to me as i am a man of color who is constantly under-appreciated and closely monitored in upper east side/NYC stores…)  in short, have been a Sid Mashburn client for abt 6 months…and look forward to many many years of patronage and just plain ole hangin’ with those guys…

    Sidenote: They have the greatest garment bags (off white with bright green trimming…).  Buy a pair of pants and they’ll hit you up with one (or two).

    Cheers, EGR

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 11/9/2009 at 11:52 AM:

    Jay—You’re absolutely right about Tommy Hilfiger.  I had him listed under clothiers more for his prep ideal, yet the company has moved away from being product-based. I’ve added Fred Perry in his stead.

    AbsoreombBuro left a comment on 11/2/2009 at 3:34 PM:

    Hello everyone,

    Im new to the forum and just wanted to introduce myself, my name is Joseph and I’m form UK. I’ve been a long time lurker who has finally decided to make an account and contribute.

    Mordechai left a comment on 9/29/2009 at 8:48 PM:

    Sid is one great conversationalist, dapper dude and southern gentleman !

    Rashidi left a comment on 9/29/2009 at 2:59 PM:

    This is definitely my favorite store in Atlanta, Sid, Matt and Justin, always remember my name. I’ve gotten some raw denim from there, and had both shortened, and tapered some.

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 9/24/2009 at 3:16 PM:

    E—Thanks for sharing your experience at Sid’s. I appreciate the depth your comment brings to the post. I’ll have to talk to Justin about the monogramming on my next visit.

    E left a comment on 9/24/2009 at 3:10 PM:

    Me & a few of my buddies have become real “sid-heads” over the past couple years.  It is the best men’s store in Atlanta (I would even say in the South). I have had a couple of my friend’s wives get mad at me for introducing their husbands to Sid’s. 

    Anyway - beside the clothes and shoes, there are two things that I love about Sid’s which weren’t mentioned:

    1.Sid has found a women that does hand-monogramming. I have had a couple shirts done and they look amazing.  The monograms are very original and look like nothing the blah machine-stuff.  Have Justin show examples next time you are in.

    2. Sid emphasizes tailoring and he has two amazing tailors.  I have had a couple typical “baggy” cut brooks brother suits redone.  They have brought new life to them.  They were even able to remove the pleats.

    NSK left a comment on 9/16/2009 at 9:39 PM:

    Great photography.

    Conor left a comment on 9/11/2009 at 12:26 PM:

    Good post and great pictures. I’ve seen pictures of Mashburn, but these are great.

    Brian Crofts left a comment on 9/9/2009 at 11:30 PM:

    Fred, even though I got to see a preview, I’m still blown away-site is brilliant.  Love the combination of your fashion and photo skillz ... definitely a good combo.  Love the shots in this post ...

    Cassandra left a comment on 9/8/2009 at 10:34 PM:

    It looks great…love the pics all together :)

    F.E. Castleberry left a comment on 9/8/2009 at 5:49 PM:

    Karla & Steven—Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I appreciate that. Very kind words. Cheers!

    Steven Chellappa left a comment on 9/8/2009 at 4:15 PM:

    Wow!  Fred this blog is fantastic!  Seriously… your fashion intuitiveness and finesse is something I hope to, one day, be able to reach and convey as well as you do!  Congrats on this super blog! :D

    Karla Alfaro left a comment on 9/8/2009 at 2:47 PM:

    Fred, your blog is AMAZING.


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