In recent months, we’ve watched as multiple women’s boutiques have shuttered their DC locations (R.I.P. Urban Chic, Ginger, and Anthom) and men’s boutiques have started popping up like daisies. Whether that’s because men here have suddenly created a demand for more stylish options or because the region was simply sorely lacking in menswear shops, we couldn’t say. But what we can say is that now is not a bad time to be a gentleman in DC who cares about what he wears–as evidenced by these 15 top-notch menswear stores in Washington.
The self-proclaimed “stuff for guys” shop is filled with exactly that, and it’s all arranged within the masculine Dupont storefront decorated with 150-year-old reclaimed barnwood. Perfect for the casual-side-of-business-casual office, Avenue Jack stocks Penguin dress shirts, Ben Sherman sweaters, The Tie Bar accessories, Levi denim, along with great men’s gift items like a railroad spike bottle opener or sturdy messenger bags. Avenue Jack, 1301 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-887-5225.
The wide-ranging styles at the Bonobos guideshops in Bethesda and Georgetown can take you from the golf course to the board room, all while embracing a preppy, clean-cut aesthetic. Fans of colored chinos will find them available in a rainbow of options, which can be paired with eye-popping patterned shirts that are more fashion-forward than Hawaiian-vacation. For the business class, the updated workwear selection is top-notch and relatively affordable: stylish, slim-cut suits in fresh color palettes (you have enough black suits–it’s time to branch out) along with dress shirts that can break up the monotonous blue-white-blue rotation of your work week. Bonobos, 3320 Cady’s Alley NW; 202-333-7949 and 4836 Bethesda Ave., Bethesda; 301-986-7949 and 7101 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda; 240-383-5973.
Anglophiles will appreciate the craftsmanship of Charles Tyrwhitt’s Jermyn Street-based menswear line. Originally launched to design the perfect men’s dress shirt, the brand has expanded to outfit gentlemen in $500 slim-fit suits, ties, casual shirts, and even men’s dress shoes. Expect classic silhouettes and patterns at the brand’s downtown storefront, a shopping spot that’s ideal for someone who wants to look well suited in a more conservative office setting. Charles Tyrwhitt, 1000 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-594-3529.
A more rugged, dressed-down look can be sourced at this 14th Street men’s shop. Expect flannel shirts, Vans slip-ons, and cozy Pendleton sweaters. You won’t find a lot of office-wear here, but for a casual Saturday spent brunching and kicking around town, Federal can supply your new uniform. Plus, they’ve got the grooming products to go with your new hipster look, from pomade to sandlewood-scented cologne. Federal, 2216 14th St., NW; 202-518-3375.
Seattle arrived in DC when Filson opened on 14th Street in September, bringing the upscale outdoorsy-aesthetic to the neighborhood. The brands flannel shirts and durable canvas jackets are perfect for weekend hikes, while stylish and timeless enough to work as a statement at your favorite bar. In addition to their casual apparel, Filson’s line of bags and briefcases will look stylish on the way to work or the airport, and the brand’s lifetime guarantee for all its products ensures that whatever you invest in your new favorite carry-on will serve you for a long time to come. Filson, 1543 14th St., NW; 202-759-9570.
You’ll likely be attracted by the surprisingly affordable prices at this new North End Shaw menswear shop–$45 button downs, $60 chinos, $74 sweaters–but you’ll stay for the ease in putting together a trendy, attractive wardrobe. The Canadian brand’s styling service–called “The Hunt Club”–can pair you with a Style Advisor to help outline your new wardrobe. To make it even easier, there’s an in-store barber chair so you can catch up on a shave or trim while eyeing your updated workwear look. Frank & Oak, 1924 8th St., NW; 202-499-1458.
For the up-and-coming office types that don’t want to look stuffy but also don’t want to stick out too much from the older generations around them, Gant’s balance between stylish and timeless is a home run. Conservative checked dress shirts are designed fitted–not billowy–while edgier items, like a leather bomber jacket, are designed in clean cuts that look classy, not rebellious. Gant, 3239 M St., NW; 202-625-1949.
A home-team shop that’s based right here in Navy Yard, Hugh & Crye’s shirts are sized around body type (skinny, tall, athletic, broad, average, slim) and designed to really fit a man’s body. For men who don’t have the patience (or bank account) to have every shirt tailored, Hugh & Crye’s unique sizing system offers a good alternative. Not only do they market a wide array of dress shirts, but we’re also obsessed with their brightly patterned tie and pocket squares that can jazz up any look, along with their playful popover shirts. Hugh & Crye, 300 Tingey St SE #140; 202-250-3807.
Based in Richmond, the inspiration for the manufacturing of this line originated on London’s Jermyn Street, where Ledbury’s founders original learned the craft of shirtmaking while in their twenties. When launching Ledbury, they sought “to create the world’s greatest garment” in a men’s shirt. While they have a vast selection of men’s button ups that range from classic plaids to more-adventurous seersucker polka dot patterns, they’ve also expanded to some truly gorgeous sport coats (in the $625 to $825 price range), slacks, corduroys, and accessories. Ledbury is scheduled to open in Georgetown’s Cady’s Alley in late spring. Ledbury, 3319 Cady’s Alley, NW.
Wait, isn’t this a restaurant? Yes, it is, and it’s delicious. But the bit of in-house retail that Maketto hosts is enough to catch our eye–partially because it’s cool, partially because the setup is so beautiful–and partially because, randomly enough, GQ named it one of the best denim and casual shops in America. As an added bonus, Maketto also markets co-founder Will Sharp’s local line, Durkl, a collection that unabashedly uses bold primary colors in a sporty, casual way. Maketto, 1351 H St., NE; 202-838-9972.
Calling all prepsters! Your seersucker, embroidered, pastel-colored kingdom awaits you within Georgetown’s Onward Reserve. While much of Onward Reserve’s stock would look right at home on the race track, golf course, or sailing the Chesapeake, we’d encourage you to not shy away from bringing in some of the brand’s brighter pieces into the boardroom. There’s no need to stick to black, navy, and grey all the time, and Onward Reserve’s pastel button ups, needlepoint Smathers & Branson belts, and preppy Collared Green ties are the perfect way to break up the bland in your work wardrobe. Onward Reserve, 1063 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-838-9365.
When Paul Stuart arrived in CityCenterDC, it brought with it aspirational style for the gentleman who wants to dress well and inspiration for the gentleman who can afford to do so. The store isn’t inexpensive–a single dress shirt may run you $230 and a sport coat over $1,000–but the whole collection is a lesson in how to dress professionally without putting others to sleep. Creative jacket, tie, and pocket square pairings that aren’t afraid to mix patterns abound, and if you’ve got the cash, you could walk in and come back out an entirely new, respectably dressed man. Paul Stuart, 906 I St NW; 202-754-8866.
A native Washingtonian and St. Alban’s alum, Read Wall graduated from his prep school days into designing the grown man’s higher-end uniform. Clean-cut and conservative blazers, small-batch neckwear, knit ties, and custom shirting make it easy for the gentleman looking to update his professional look without making a full 360 to skinny pants and ultra-slim cut shirts. North End Shaw’s Read Wall offers a more stylish take on classic American menswear with a pop of intrigue–an orange knit tie or a bolder blue slack–sprinkled like treats throughout the collection. Read Wall, 1921 8th St., NW #105; 866-798-3655.
After making the leap from retail’s sweetheart Georgetown to the up-and-coming The Shay development this year, Steven Alan is still supplying DC with its reliably fashionable wears. Better for a more casual office than a suit-a-day setting, Steven Alan is good source for luxurious $80 t-shirts and $250 denim–though that’s not to say you can’t pick up a trendy skinny tie or classic men’s overcoat while you’re there. Steven Alan, 1924 8th St., NW, Suite 130; 202-827-8671.
If you’re new to town–or new to a more-formal office setting–and you need to fill your closet with suits, Suitsupply isn’t a bad place to start. The fact that you can pick up a $400 suit and have it tailored to fit your body on-site is awfully convenient, especially since with Suitsupply’s wide range of styles and cuts, you could wear a Suitsupply set every day and no one in your office would be the wiser. And if you can’t make it to their Georgetown storefront, they still make shopping online easy, guiding you based on your body type, your and preferred suit style to pick the suit that’s best for you. But if you can make it into the Georgetown store, we recommend it–if for no other reason than to Instagram their rainbow-coded wall of ties. Suitsupply, 2828 Pennsylvania Ave., NW; 202-800-7800.
What’s better than going shopping? Getting someone else to do it for you. Trunkclub is based in Chicago and will ship their stylist-selected boxes of apparel all over the country, but DC is one of the lucky few to have an actual Clubhouse here in town. You’ll book an appointment at the Chinatown space, then you’ll chill with a cold one while a stylist pulls together complete looks for you. Pass on some or pay for others and take home only what you like. Trunk Club, 525 9th St NW #700; 202-601-8701.