BACKSTORY: What do you get when you merge a film editor and a personal trainer? James Frank Club, a new online men’s store with an assortment of independent and artisanal brands. Cofounded by Jim Rubino, the film editor, and his trainer, Trevor Handberry, the site offers everything from suits and denim to bags, barware, grooming products and home goods. The idea for the business came after Rubino was frustrated with the duplication he found at the men’s stores around New York. Believing there had to be more guys looking for small, lesser-known brands, he broached the subject with Handberry during a gym session and asked for his help. “Trevor has a lot of fashion sense,” Rubino said. “I liked the difference in our personalities and thought it would be a good blend.” So Handberry set out on a “Google journey,” he said, to find high quality brands that were not widely distributed.
BRANDS OFFERED: The duo came up with a list of more than 500 potential brands and narrowed down the list to around 80 including Norman Russell and Ace Rivington denim, Mitchell Evans shirts, Malcolm Alexander suits, Radley Raven ties and Winding Wheel Supply belts. “Every item in the shop has been carefully and thoughtfully selected and we hope to be the go-to for all things independent and cool in the men’s lifestyle space,” Handberry said.
POINT OF DIFFERENTIATION: The e-commerce site will include professional write-ups of each brand by a magazine journalist, as well as underground artists and music, and Rubino will use his filmmaking skills to create custom video content for some of the labels featured. The site will launch on Dec. 6 when a 1,000-square-foot pop-up will bow at 208 Bowery on the Lower East Side. The pop-up will remain open until Dec. 11.