Before entering Garrison Bespoke, I surveyed the area and admired the well-dressed businessmen playing Eye Spy with Garrison’s window display. Dressed in blue and each completely unique, from raw denim to seductive silks, each mannequin presented a looking glass into the “tribes” of men that roam our city. “The great thing about making Garrison suits is that clothing goes with you for 14 hours per day. And in a way, [Garrison Bespoke] is part of that experience for men. You can impact a large group of people with a body of work,” said Michael Nguyen, founder of Garrison. Since opening the doors six years ago, they have been ranked the Top Bespoke Tailor and have made quite the impression on the modern man.
As we continue to follow the evolution of men’s retail it is obvious that there are great retailers in the city, but the value of Garrison is that they help piece together looks that are directly fitted to one’s personality. “We are more than a store that just makes suits. We help men develop and own their style.” It’s about facilitating a dialogue about men’s fashion and helping men communicate what is appealing to them and how it can translate into an everyday look. After all, if a man is going to spend a full day in a suit, he might as well look damn good. “Some men might want to wear a hot pink suit to the office. It may not be appropriate, so we’ll give the client a suit that makes them feel like they’re wearing hot pink… it’s all about the details.” Michael explained.
With over 1,800 clients, the stylists at Garrison are hard at work cultivating relationships and understanding the psychology of the male shopper. They take the time to understand their client’s personal taste, whose style they admire, and why. Although Michael acknowledges each client’s proclaimed uniqueness, he notes, “We are all different but, sometimes, different in the same ways,” a theory that has allowed him and his stylists to cater to the different “tribes” of men and the similar details that are valued over others.
This fall, we can look forward to a collection inspired by hunting and the outdoors –an oxymoron to the essence of the metropolis that I dare say looks very forward-thinking. “We liked the idea of creating a line that’s very outdoorsy and masculine… earth tones, mixed in a way that’s still business,” Michael explained as we looked through tactile tweeds for autumn. With the biggest fabric library in Canada, sourced from Britain, Italy, and Scandinavia, one can only imagine the possibilities of this collection. They can service a wide range of clients because of their fabrics, making each suit “custom” in every sense of the word. There’s a reason why Garrison is ranked so high in the world of men’s tailoring, and it goes beyond their resources and eye for design. It’s because they are interested in you. It’s about what you do, how you do it, and how you want to feel. I think we can all get on board with that.
WORDS: JONATHAN BRODERICK
PHOTOS: TARA NOELLE
LOCATION: GARRISON BESPOKE
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