Cars or Clothes with Sid Mashburn
I simply asked Sid Mashburn “Clothes or Cars?” Since we were at his “Another Coffee and Classics” event, and he was a clothing designer. Thought that would a perfect start off question and he answered “Clothes!” Sid Mashburn the founder of a brick and mortar and E commerce store named after himself. The first store was opened in 2007 in Atlanta. From there he opened a few more stores in Houston, Dallas and Washington D.C. With Sid being from Mississippi, his goal is to be able to put on whatever he wears to Mississippi, Manhattan and Milan. The veteran clothing designer who worked for J.Crew, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, and Lands End; had a love and a passion for clothes since the age of 8, with the help of his older siblings. Something similar to my story, being the only boy growing up in my household; I had my mom and older sister to keep me looking appropriate when going out and dressing well always stuck with me throughout my years.
When stepping into a Sid Mashburn store you get a relaxed, warm, sophisticated stocked mainly with his own line of timeless, handmade apparel. The Sid Mashburn customer is the preppy, collegiate student who listens to old school & current music, rocks tortoise-shell glasses, a pair of 501 Levis, burgundy loafers and makes everything fit his personal style.
1. David – Cars or Clothes?
Sid – Clothing! Clothing for sure. Growing up my two sisters and brother were my real turn on to clothing. They were all 8-12 years older than me. So they were always dressing. Event when I was 8 or 9 years old, I was like “I want these jeans.” I remember writing a letter to my sister asking her to purchase me a puka shell necklace at the age of 8 years old.
2. David – What drove you to start your own company/brand?
Sid – In high school I would go to the men’s shops and buy shirts. My mother taught me how to press my shirts, not very well. Later on we found a place that would press shirts for .25cents. I’ll show up as a senior in high school with about 30 shirts and people would look at me as ask “who are you?” But one thing my mom did do for me was tapered my pants. We’d have to open both seams on both sides because I wanted them pegged, super pegged (tapered). They were probably 14 inches at the ankle which was pretty small. I was doing that in high school thinking “man I would like stripe shirts.”
3. David – Was their one outfit that stood out to you?
Sid – One of my favorite outfits I remember wearing was my navy blazer, a cotton striped sweater that was thin and light as a t-shirt, my dark 501 Levis and a pair of canvas grey sole lace ups with tassels on the laces. That was my junior year around 1978.
4. Did you do any thrifing growing up?
Sid – Between junior and senior year I got kicked out of class and had to attend summer school. I couldn’t get a great job, so I worked at a grocery store and quickly saved up a bunch of money. I went to Boston to visit my older sister and stayed for 2 weeks. While visiting my older sister I went to all these thrift stores, I purchased all these crazy military jackets, medical coats, butchers coats and dentist jackets. It was amazing! It was amazing! All the items that I found.
5. David – What are 5 essentials you would suggest a young man own, to start building his closet?
Sid – Gotta start with a navy blazer, gotta have that and you can find one at all price points, If you can’t find one at a store try eBay or thrifting. Find a great tailor; gotta have that. After you find a great tailor that understands what you are going for in reference to style. Get a couple woven shirts, you need a great white shirt and a great blue shirt. I love Levi’s 501, I think those are a great price point and you can’t go wrong with a slim fit denim. Last a great pair of shoes, a good pair of tassel loafers.
6. David – What is one outfit you can wear for any occasion?
Sid – Following my essentials list….
You can wear jeans with the blazer, you can wear jeans with the white shirt. You can show up to something dressy without buying a suit.
7. David – What is next for the Sid Mashburn brand?
Sid – We’re looking for new opportunities, throughout the country. Where we can open another store front, doesn’t have to be as big as the Houston location, we can do a smaller location. So we can position ourselves to get to the customers that really like us. New York is our top city online, we’d love to have a location in New York.
8. David – Any advice you’ll like to give?
Sid – Yes! GET A JOB! If you’re a young man in high school. Getting a job will give you the freedom to spend or save your own money. Having a job gives you an experience on how to treat people, how to conduct yourself in a professional environment, how to have fun but to also how to do business.
Being able to talk to Sid for a couple of minutes about family, basketball, fashion, comic books and cars. I got that he was a cool dude. Very down to earth, humble, charming as he is from the south and overall a good person with a perspective on what a men’s wear store should be. For me I felt like I was talking to a walking fashion encyclopedia and it was a huge honor and opportunity for me to be able to have this interview with someone who has such a huge presence in the men’s fashion culture. He is a huge inspiration to me not only in men’s fashion but to be a person of good character, morals, standards and treat everyone with respect.