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Harleys has a new home.
This story first appeared in the October 6, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
After 60 years, the Shorewood, Wis., men’s retailer has relocated to a new store four blocks away from its former location. Although the new site is smaller — 4,200 square feet versus 7,000 square feet — owner Tim Ryan said space within the original unit was “very inefficient.” When the store opened in that spot in 1948, it carried both men’s and women’s, Ryan said, but over the years it exited the women’s business to focus on men’s.
The new store, which had its grand opening Sept. 25, boasts a more contemporary design, enhanced use of natural light, eggshell walls and maple trim. “The store is more than 180-degrees from the old one,” Ryan said. “The more-neutral color palette makes the inventory pop. “
Since the store is now closer to a university in this suburban Milwaukee town, Ryan said the mix was tweaked a bit to appeal to a younger customer. “We reintroduced Hugo Boss and brought in Victorinox and Borgo Ognissanti,” he said. The store’s main vendors continue to be Zegna and Zegna Sport, XMI, a popular Wisconsin company, Robert Graham and Agave denim.
Ryan said business has picked up since June and he’s expecting sales at the new store to be flat or slightly up. “We’re not being overly aggressive due to the economic times,” he said.
Harleys was founded by brothers Harold and Stanley Dubman and was purchased by Ryan and a partner in 1987. His partner retired in 2000 leaving Ryan as the sole owner.