Atlanta-based menswear designer/retailer Sid Mashburn opened the Dutch doors of his first West Coast outpost at the Brentwood Country Mart on Oct. 4, and it's a bigger deal for SoCal men (and the women who might be shopping for them) than the 750-square-foot space might initially indicate.
One reason is that the shop, sandwiched between the Christian Louboutin boutique and the Diesel bookstore, will eventually be joined by a separate 500-square-foot, appointment-only, made-to-measure and tailoring space nearby in the same complex. Another reason is that the affable Mashburn hasn't just replicated the merchandise mix that's put him on the menswear map in a handful of cities across the country since opening his first shop in Atlanta in 2007 (his wares are available online at sidmashburn.com), he's also made sure to staff the place with folks who provide the kind of customer service that's worth the visit. (Spend five minutes in the store and you'll know exactly what we mean.)
The boutique is tiny but flooded with natural light thanks to skylights and large windows facing 26th Street, and the masculine (but not clubby) décor includes seagrass carpeting, dark gray shelving, tartan curtains, vintage Turkish kilims and a mood board by the door that can't help but put a smile on your face thanks to the random juxtaposition of items including photos (think Elmo from "Sesame Street"), signs ("No Negativity Allowed," for example), newspaper and magazine articles (one, depicting a skier taking a tumble, is titled: "How to Fall Safely") and a red-and-white pack of Kings candy cigarettes straight out of a mid-1960s childhood.
The store is stocked with Sid Mashburn-branded tailored clothing (suits start at $995, with most of the off-the-peg options falling in the $1,250 range), dress shirts (a plaid button-down we picked up had a $145 price tag), and English-made leather footwear (even though we've never particularly been a fan of the monk strap shoe, a pair of $595 Sid Mashburn double monks in autumn brown calfskin had us rethink our long-held aversion). The shelves and cases are also filled with an assortment of light outerwear pieces, neckwear and accessories, the most memorable of which are conversation-starting leather belts with sterling silver arrowhead buckles, brass oyster shell buckles and even brass buckles crafted from fully functional hoof picks (equestrians, take note).
It's not all Mashburn merchandise, though, because the store also stocks a tightly curated collection of brands that paddle in the same lane; Tretorn shoes, for example, Timex watches, Victorinox pocket knives and sturdy Filson satchels. Of particular note are a selection of white Levi's 501s that team Mashburn has garment-dyed to approximate their favorite (but long discontinued) muted shades including stone gray, olive green and khaki.
The Santa Monica boutique joins Sid Mashburn stores in Atlanta, Dallas, Houston and Washington, and it's currently the only one of these locations that doesn't have a complementary Ann Mashburn women's shop (named after Sid's wife and fellow designer), a deficit the partners in lifestyle hope to rectify in the not-too-distant future.
Sid Mashburn, 225 26th St., Santa Monica.
Tiffany & Co. set to celebrate its Rodeo Drive renovation
Tiffany & Co. is putting the finishing touches on an 18-month renovation of its boutique at the corner of Rodeo Drive and Wilshire Boulevard that gives the interior of the three-story space a decidedly Gilded Age vibe thanks to white marble, lightened walnut wood and mirrored panels. The first floor with a door that opens onto Rodeo Drive just north of Wilshire Boulevard is home to the fashion collections (including the Elsa Peretti and Paloma Picasso ranges), a dedicated watch salon (the first of its kind in a Tiffany store west of Chicago) and a small room showcasing Patek Philippe luxury timepieces that's similar to the one the Swiss watch brand opened on the mezzanine level of Tiffany's Fifth Avenue flagship in 2008.
Just up a flight of the elegant white marble staircase is the second-floor area (which, as before, is also accessible from the Two Rodeo Drive cobblestone walkway) that holds the company's statement jewelry collection (also known as "over-the-top bling") in one room and bridal offerings (engagement rings, wedding rings and the like) in an adjoining room. A soon-to-be-completed third-floor space (formerly home to the customer service department) is set to become a VIP salon/event space.
A star-studded private party on Oct. 13, hosted by Tiffany senior vice president Jennifer de Winter in partnership with the Art of Elysium, will mark the official grand opening of the boutique.
Tiffany & Co., 210 N. Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills.