In 2009, when Todd Barket opened his shop Unionmade in a former liquor store on a tree-lined street in San Francisco, he wanted to present a collection of well made goods with a real sense of craftsmanship and value. The shop quickly developed a following online, expanded into an adjacent storefront, and the roster of brands on offer grew and diversified into a global lineup of both menswear mainstays and up-and-coming cult brands. Four years later, they've just opened their fourth location, a large outpost at The Grove, the always-bustling outdoor shopping center in Los Angeles. We caught up with Barket at the shop's opening to learn more about Unionmade's expanding empire.
You've got a small outpost in the Brentwood neighborhood. What was the impetus to open a second location in LA?
We always wanted a larger store here to fully show the collections and make it feel a bit more like what we do online and in San Francisco. We thought The Grove was a great location based on the type of guy who shops there and the need for a good men's store.
$80, by Converse
Does the product selection differ from store to store?
All of our stores are bought differently and tailored to the neighborhood customer. The core items are always the same—Gitman, Alden, Levi's Vintage Clothing, Beams, etc. The top tier of seasonal lines is what we change up by location. But the Grove, San Francisco and online will also be much more in synch and carry new lines seasonally as well as some of our favorites such as T(S)S and Haversack.
Any new brands you're excited about?
We're excited for Omnigod, which is this great line from Tokyo. They have a store in Daikanyama that we love. They're indigo based. Another line from Japan we just picked up is called Natic Marine. They make really interesting technical outerwear and knits with a nautical point of view.
What should a guy be buying as we
transition into spring?
I always think every guy should have an unlined blazer, it's the perfect way to look great all the time and it's really easy. I'm actually into the polo shirt lately, especially with a self collar and a clean short. For shoes, I'm loving the 1970s Chuck Taylor. It's the perfect shoe for spring and into summer.
189 The Grove Drive in Los Angeles, CA. 323.965.2248