A visit to Blank Label in DC

2016-02-22 16.04.27The Blank Label studio in Washington, D.C., feels a bit more New York than capitol city. Located on the second floor of an historic building a short walk from the White House, the loft-like vibe is designed to get you thinking about well-fitting urban clothing.

A quick ride up the tiny elevator deposits you in the world of Blank Label, a brand that was an early player at the leading edge of customized, made to order menswear. It’s open, airy, relaxed, and geared toward personalized service. Two separate lounge areas allow for some private chit chat as you ready yourself for the consultation.

As will other labels that originally launched online, Blank Label, founded in 2012, began to appreciate the necessity of having a physical space where men could get their hands on fabrics, see actual examples of suits, shirts, jackets, and trousers, and talk with a real person. Equally important to the experience is having someone who knows what they are doing take your measurements and help guide you through the process at least once.

Even through follow-up orders might be submitted remotely – a few new shirts or a favorite suit in in a new fabric – that initial interaction with a real person in an actual shop, is vital to building confidence in both the brand and one’s own judgement.

And, as ground zero of the two-button navy and/or grey suit crowd, Washington is the place to be.

As part of our introduction of Blank Label to you, OTC is excited to be working on the review of a made to measure suit. Our fabric and lining selections are shown below – classic and sharp, but nothing crazy (so very DC). We opted for a lovely lightweight midnight navy fabric that is perfect as we move into Spring.

Below are a few views of Blank Label’s DC home from our visit to this surprisingly sun-filled menswear retreat.

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  1. Joseph Crangle

    Considering Blank Label started online, they seem to have embraced bricks and mortar with gusto. There merchandise is classic, but I love the clean, modern aesthetic of the retail space. If they intend to expand internationally, please consider Toronto!

  2. Fan Bi


    Thanks for the compliment, yes we have very much embraced brick-and-mortar. We find that it’s easier for most guys, i.e. turn up to a place vs figuring out sizing themselves. It’s also an opportunity to make the experience more fun, personalized as well as convenient.

  3. “I am going to shill for another of these companies that have been popping up over the last five years which pretends to have in-house tailoring and expert knowledge but in fact just takes your basic measurements and then send a request to underpaid garment workers in some factory in Shenhanzhou, China. In three weeks, you’ll get back a mediocre-quality suit with about even odds whether it fits properly or not.”

  4. TheCheapBespokeConundrum,

    I’m with Blank Label so hope you don’t mind me responding here. I can’t tell if the concern is more about the fit process or the manufacturing abroad, but I’m happy to address both.

    Blank Label provides a three week training before our Specialists start seeing clients, and even then they will be shadowed for the first couple of months. You’re certainly right that fit knowledge is something that is complex and necessary to deliver anything worthwhile. Short of having a full bespoke experience at three times the price point, we’ve found that tens of thousands of clients have been happy with this experience.

    As for the manufacturing abroad, one of our core goals has always been to deliver a quality, personally-fitting, custom product at a price point that is accessible, and we’re able to do that by manufacturing in Shanghai. We’ve looked at multiple factories Stateside but haven’t been able to either find one that met the product specifications or wouldn’t dramatically alter the price for our clients.

    It’s always exciting to see people feel strongly about our niche and I always welcome the discourse.

  5. Auston

    What is the color of the overcoat in the first picture. Is it grey or purple, and is the color still offered.

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