What comes to mind when you hear, “Hart Schaffner Marx?” Perhaps you think of your dad’s two-button lawyerly-looking gray suit? You know, the one with the center-vent jacket, pleated trousers and conservative, boxy profile. Well made, yes; but certainly not anything to which you aspired.
The same often holds true for memories of that other built-in-America label, Hickey Freeman; quality, but not too much style. However, that’s all changed due to one very well-known menswear designer.
Yesterday, OTC and a select grouping of other menswear websites, had the chance to spend the evening with Image Granted’s Grant Harris and Cillian Shannon, manager of Streets of Georgetown, and learn more about Streets’ retail concept and the brands of HMX Group.
Under the guidance of legendary clothier Joseph Abboud, president and COO of HMX Group, the Hart Schaffner Marx and Hickey Freeman brands have been thoroughly re-thought, re-designed, and rebuilt. Parent company HMX Group – formed through the 2009 purchase of Hartmarx Corporation by Emerisque Brands UK and its partner SKNL North America – has brought back to life two of America’s most storied menswear labels with a decidedly modern twist.
These are not you dad’s suits.
The Streets retail concept is a way for HMX to bring together its entire collection of brands under one roof. The idea is the brainchild of Mr. Abboud himself, and is designed to showcase the modern, elegant, and quality-driven changes visited upon his family of brands. “Streets” references the high shopping street found in any major city and speaks to the tailoring of offerings that meet local demands.
Georgetown and Beverly Hills play host to the two active stores and more are planned in key markets such as Chicago, San Francisco, and New York.
The store houses both off-the-rack tailored clothing – Hickey Freeman, Hart Schaffner Marx, and Coppley – and sportswear, including the Bobby Jones golf collection and Palm Beach resort wear labels.
Core to the tailored clothing business model is Streets incredibly flexible Made to Measure shop up on the second floor. While they are still working to get an in-house tailoring shop set up, all customization, detail selection, mark-ups , and fittings are done in-store and the options made available, from fabrics to linings, is impressive.
Abboud’s deftly elegantly touch is especially apparent in the Hickey and Hart Schaffner products. Truly exceptional fabrics pair with a suite of suiting fits that subtly move from modern traditional to of-the-moment trim and contemporary. The stores collection of shirts, ties, and accessories are well chosen and compliment the bespoke feel of the space and quality of the tailored goods.
Washington D.C.’s Georgetown is itself in the midst of a retail renaissance. Major brands have moved in and the tone of the neighborhood is less college bar and more SOHO swank. Ralph Lauren, Rugby, Brooks Brothers, Rag and Bone, Jack Spade, Vineyard Vines, and a host of other major players and pricy boutiques are a good fit for the Streets of Georgetown.
Please make sure to stop by 1254 Wisconsin Avenue, NW, next time you are in town.