Prep-school boy grows up, learns how to dress, but keeps a
roguish charm. That’s how we’d define this label, with its functional,
well-made apparel, from worn-in chinos and button-downs to Shetland
sweaters and madras ties.
Prices: A work bag starts at about $200; ties
are in the $100 range; shirts are $150 to $200.
Don’t-miss item: Jack Spade’s iconic messenger
bag is the ideal combination of simple design and exemplary construction.
Opening in early December, Gant features sportswear born of
East Coast tradition—ivory fisherman sweaters, plaid blazers, on-trend
chinos. The clothes are nice enough to wear to work but comfy enough for a
Prices: Casual cool doesn't come cheap—soft
moleskin cargo pants are about $400, a plaid blazer $950. Ties and shirts
start around $100.
Don't-miss item: Outerwear. A wool-blend
toggle coat is a perfect evocation of Ivy League.
The British shirtmaker has made a splash since opening in DC
this summer. The impressive shirts, ties, and suits are popular with style
setters, especially those looking for a happy medium between off the rack
Prices: Shirt specials such as four for $199
are the norm.
Don't-miss item: While shirts in loads of
patterns and colors—plus terrific ties to go with them—are the chief draw,
don't overlook the suits, shoes, and cufflinks.
Four-year-old Lost Boys, one of the pioneers of breakout men's
fashion in Washington, is stocked with straight-off-the-runway looks from
the likes of John Varvatos and Band of Outsiders as well as such finds as
a line of Swedish basics called the White Briefs.
Prices:Separates start around $200 and go up
to about $2,000 for a designer jacket.
Don't-miss item: Rogan's shawl-collar sweater
in oatmeal pairs perfectly with dark denim and a black leather
This spot reeks of rugged manliness crossed with hipster chic.
Work shirts by Dickies and weathered Filson bags mingle with well-crafted,
classic Americana styles from Tanner Goods, Levi's, and Pendleton's
Prices: You can score a decent T-shirt for
$25. The most expensive item we could find recently was a $900 leather
Don't-miss item: Footwear with an edge. Try a
pair of Chippewa Boots or a work-to-weekend style from Red Wing Shoes.
A haven of retro-prepster chinos and oxford button-downs,
Bonobos—previously only an online retailer—has opened a shop in Bethesda.
"Guides" help you navigate fit and style while providing tips to update a
wardrobe. Appointments are encouraged.
Prices: Pants and shirts start around $75,
suits from $670.
Don't-miss item: Along with solid sportswear,
this brand encourages you to explore color. Opt for anything in a bright
green, pink, or purple.
This emporium has everything for the sporty yet refined man
about town. For winter, think sweaters, tailored trousers, houndstooth
jackets, and Hickey Freeman suits. And you'll be hard-pressed to find a
better-turned-out sales staff.
Prices: Suits typically run $675 to $2,495 for
off the rack, $995 to $4,500 for made to measure. Knits and outerwear
start at $150.
Don't-miss item: A cashmere sportcoat. It'll
cost $1,700 to $2,000 but will be a wardrobe staple for years.
Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-295-9098.
Local Lines We Love
Washington is a hotbed of promising design shops. Here are four of the best.
Hugh & Crye: Semicustom-fit shirts are the focus of this Georgetown shop, though we also love the hand-block-printed pocket squares.
Smathers & Branson: This Bethesda duo has been turning out preppy needlepoint belts, wallets, and other accessories since 2005.
Durkl 2047: Skater gear grows up in a big way in Durkl's colorful, high-quality windbreakers, hoodies, and duffles.
Read Wall: Updated takes on classic American sportswear include such details as oxford-lined pockets and contrasting collars on polos.
Tie One On
The roster of small-batch neck-wear companies based here is impressive. TV power anchors such as George Stephanopoulos favor the silk ties by Sette. Boating flags to fox hunts, patterns on Charles & Patrick ties are as preppy as their Georgetown roots. Annapolis's Starboard Clothing Co. has enough madras and tattersall to outfit a boatload of Southern gentlemen. Accoutre's funky bow ties come in everything from chambray to corduroy.
This article appears in the December 2012 issue of The Washingtonian.