A shout out to Todd Snyder and the creation of his iconic brand.

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About Todd Snyder
Iowa native Todd Snyder launched his eponymous menswear collection exclusively at Bergdorf Goodman, Ron Herman, and Neiman Marcus for Fall 2011. Inspired by Savile Row craftsmanship, military tailoring, and a distinct New York sensibility, the line has garnered wide critical and commercial praise in the US. In 2012, the line was picked up by Barneys New York and select Nordstrom stores. This success is a humbling reaffirmation of Snyder’s roots. In Dutch, his surname means “one who makes outer garments” and while studying textile and clothing design at Iowa State University, Snyder learned the art of cutting and sewing at the Des Moines haberdashery Badowers. He spent the following two decades honing his skills in New York, designing outerwear for Polo Ralph Lauren, working as Director of Menswear for the Gap, and SVP of menswear at J. Crew, where he revamped men’s styling, introduced formalwear, and launched a series of collaborations with heritage brands like Timex, Red Wing, Thomas Mason, and Alden that culminated in the popular Liquor Store boutique, opened in 2008. At the helm of his own brand, Snyder still strives to deliver on the rubric set forth by his Badowers mentor: “A perfectly fitted suit makes the man.”

Visiting Faribault Woolen Mill Co.

It looks like the cold is here to stay so it is time to get your scarves out.

There isn’t a better scarf than the 100% wool, Made in America, classic patterns of Faribault Woolen Mill Co. (milled and manufactured in Faribault, Minnesota since 1865) and at only $55, these are a steal. About a month ago, we went up to Faribault and got a tour of the factory. I found myself strangely connected to my American heritage experiencing this impressive facility (one of only a few left in the USA.)

Find out more about Faribault Woolen Mill Co. or take the tour yourself when you are in southern Minnesota next time.

Badowers History Lesson

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One of my favorite things about Badowers is the history of the store.   50 plus years of dressing the men of Des Moines.  For me it’s a source of pride and influences the way I think about our neighborhood and community.   We are a Men’s store in a city that 50 years ago had dozens, and now only one.   But to be honest there isn’t much of an archive of the past.  Over the past month I’ve had the opportunity to talk to a few customers who bought their first suit at Badowers and still shop here today.   Last week Mike Badower, son of the founder and master tailor, stopped by the shop.   Mike was kind enough to send us these ads and photos.

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Cause and Effect + Ruell and Ray Recap

In early November we were lucky enough to have Billy Moore and Ashley James stop by the shop for an event. A one day event turned into three days.  Billy brought with him his most colorful collection to date, along with some one -of- a- kind bags and accessories.  Ashley has perfected her fits and there are quite a few guys in Des Moines enjoying their first pair of Ruell and Ray.  I have a pair of Spence Slim in Natural that I haven’t taken off for 3 weeks, getting just the right amount of dirty for an off white Jean, and breaking in nicely.

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Des Moines Shoe and Luggage

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My shoes did look embarrassing. Des Moines shoe and luggage is where I go when I need a shoe repaired, resoled, or something done for a client. The Raymond family has been in the shoe repair business for over 40 years and occupies a shop in Valley Junction that has been a shoe shop for over 100 years. Most men spend too little on their shoes, wear them for a year and then throw them out. Every time I stop by the store they ask me to bring a new Alden and Allen Edmonds catalog. In the same way a tailor appreciates working on well made suits. These guys love working on shoes that are made to be worn and worn out, then brought back to life like they were designed to. They give great advice about quality and shoe care products. They work on everything from bags to custom shoes and boots. But it’s sad to see all these great old machines and knowledge work on lesser quality shoes.

Des Moines Shoe and Luggage
204 5th st
West Des Moines 50265

M-F 8am to 5:30 pm
Sat 8am to 3pm
Closed Sunday and 12- 12:30 Daily for lunch

The boot is the Dalton in Walnut Shell Cordovan from Allen Edmonds