Meet the Brooklyn Tailors’ Team

Brooklyn Tailors was founded in 2007. In 2011, we opened our first storefront and in 2016, we opened our Williamsburg Flagship location at 327 Grand Street, where you'll currently find us. The company has some of the best, hardest workers around, so we’d like you to meet the whole team!

DANIEL LEWIS:  CO-OWNER & CREATIVE DIRECTOR

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My name is Daniel Lewis, and I’m the co-owner and Creative Director of Brooklyn Tailors. Being that we’re such a small business, naturally, I do a little bit of everything, and no two days are alike. But, my main focus is to design our collections, oversee our bespoke program, and direct the overall creative vision of the company, from our products themselves to our store designs, packaging, and other visuals.

Growing up in San Diego, I was always interested in art and creative things but never stuck to just one pursuit. I loved to draw as a kid, and as a teenager, I became very interested in music and played in bands all through high school and college. I also loved making things with my hands in the garage, whether it be something practical like a shelf for the house, or something purely creative. In college I studied fine arts, originally focusing on painting and eventually moving towards photography and video-based work. All along I always had an interest in fashion, but it wasn’t until I started obsessing over a very particular item that was missing from my wardrobe that I ever thought about doing it for a career. As I was getting ready to move to New York, I got completely frustrated when I couldn’t find a suit that I liked – the right fit, good design, good quality, at a price I could afford. I became fixated on finding that suit, and eventually, on learning how to make it myself. Learning how to design and build that garment that I had in my mind became a great way for me to pull together a lot of the things I enjoyed doing. It was creative, but it was also analytical and mathematical, creating a pattern and shapes and proportions. It was also extremely craft-oriented. What has always been most interesting to me about fashion is not necessarily the fashion itself and all the pomp and circumstance, but rather the craft and skill involved in designing and making something thoughtfully and well. I love making things and I love working with people who make things. My favorite part of my job is sitting down with our tailors and manufacturers and working on a new design or working on improving an existing one.  

I feel very lucky that I’ve been able to turn some of my interests and hobbies into a career. I get to make things, design things, and curate things that I love. And, I get to take inspiration from my outside interests and hobbies and use them to inform my work. I don’t play in bands anymore and do not have much time to make artwork these days, but music and art are still huge passions of mine and I get to seek inspiration and reference from them every day. I also love food and cooking, traveling, and working with my hands, projects at our home in the Hudson Valley, or even building things for our stores.

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In terms of my favorite Brooklyn Tailors product, right now the piece I’m most excited about is the suit I’m wearing in this photo - it’s our BKT35 unstructured jacket and BKT50 tailored trouser in an olive green fabric.  I’m obsessed with this color right now and love how this suit turned out. The fabric looks almost like a moleskin but it’s actually a twill weave in a wool and cotton blend. The cloth was made by one of my favorite mills in the world - Subalpino. They are a tiny family-run mill in Biella, Italy and they make some of the most interesting fabrics I’ve seen. This suit will be available this coming Fall as part of our FW18 collection, so stay tuned.

Another favorite of mine would be any of our BKT50 “Permanent Collection” suits. BKT50 is our signature model and is where Brooklyn Tailors all began. This suit embodies what the mission of our company was - to make something that was well-designed, great quality, modern yet classic, and at a price that while not cheap, was an amazing value. We haven’t changed this suit much at since we launched 11 years ago and that is the whole point.  The goal was to great a suit that would look good today and look good in 20 years and that means it’s about discrete detailing, subtlety and moderation. The fashion world is obsessed with constant change, new trends, out with the old and in with the new. I never believed that this is what men’s tailoring should be about. We want our suit to in a way be ignorant of what’s walking down the runways this season or next and be something that can evolve with the times without actually changing much.

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My other favorite item right now is the white poplin shirt we just did as part of our Japanese collection. The white shirt is the ultimate backbone or blank slate - the perfect building block onto which you can do just about anything. I love this particular one because it has some subtle details that set it apart. With our Japan collection, we’ve developed this chest pocket that sits inside the shirt and you only see the flap on the outside. It’s almost a utilitarian detail applied to a dressier shirt. I love to mix formal and casual elements together.

In terms of other brands that we carry, I’m really excited about this new (very old) collection of cologne’s that we’re carrying from Florence, Italy. Farmacia S.S. Annunziata is exactly what their name implies, a pharmacy that was established in Florence in 1561. In an age where it seems everyone’s obsessed with the latest dot com startup that’s going to “disrupt” the way you buy toothpaste or bedsheets, I have to say I’m far more impressed by a company who has been doing what they do forever, without much hype or promotion. Brenna and I stumbled into their historic pharmacy on a side street in Florence last summer and were firstly in love with the historic, beautiful space. And, it turned out that their parfums and other grooming and body care products were beyond incredible and exactly our taste. Their scents are deep, moody, and complex, and amazing quality. We couldn’t believe that they were sold almost nowhere in North America and we’re thrilled to be one of the few retailers offering them.

BRENNA LEWIS:  CO-OWNER & BUSINESS DIRECTOR

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My name is Brenna Lewis and I am the co-owner and Business Director of Brooklyn Tailors. My job has me handling everything from financial planning to HR to retail and production planning, and buying. But, because I am also an owner, I am sweeping the floor, meeting with our staff daily, dealing with contractors when something goes wrong, and generally putting out fires.

I am from San Diego, California. Danny and I met in middle school and started dating our freshman year of high school, so we’ve been together for 20 years now, 11 of those we’ve been working as a team on Brooklyn Tailors. My biggest area of interest outside of work is interior design and architecture. I scour antique stores and online auctions for interesting pieces and love hitting up flea markets when I travel. The majority of the design components in both of our stores (furniture, rugs, lighting, artwork), Danny and I found on our travels. We also designed and built out both stores ourselves, which was exhausting, but also extremely gratifying. I am also an avid reader, I love going to concerts, I am a big foodie and I’m trying to learn more about wine, I do the NYTimes Crossword puzzle every day in bed, and I love nothing more than traveling, both internationally and road trips across the US.

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My all-time favorite Brooklyn Tailors item is our bright navy fully-canvased suit that is part of our permanent collection. It’s such a beautiful and versatile piece and the color looks great on everyone. We have a great unstructured suit in green for the SS18 season that I love. It seemed like it might be a hard sell because it’s an unusual color for a suit, but we’re almost sold out already. We’re also doing a tan seersucker plaid short-sleeved shirt for this spring that’s super unique and fun. Danny has one and it fits in so great with his summer wardrobe.

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Since I can’t wear most of the clothing items at Brooklyn Tailors (although I have appropriated a few great men’s pieces for myself over the years), I’m partial to the home goods and body products we carry. I am also the buyer for those, so I better like them! My favorite is probably Shoyeido incense. I had known about them for a long time, but we stayed at this 18th century ryokan in a small onsen town in Japan and the official incense of the hotel was the White River (Shirakawa) Shoyeido coils. I loved it so much that I bought it and haven’t stopped burning it at home since. I was so happy to start selling (and burning) them at our stores.

ROBERT TROISE: MADE-TO-MEASURE SPECIALIST & SENIOR SALES ASSOCIATE

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My name is Robert, born and raised in NY. I’m a Made-to-Measure Specialist and Senior Sales Associate at Brooklyn Tailors. My interest in fashion was born when I heard the song ‘Ashes to Ashes’ by David Bowie for the first time when I was 12 years old. It opened my eyes to how art/fashion borrows from the varied resources of the past and reshapes them for a new present and future. I love the art scene in NYC (especially contemporary painting), playing the guitar, and I love to cook & drink wine.

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My favorite Brooklyn Tailors items are the BKT50 2-piece suit because of its modern fit. No matter what fabric, color or pattern, the BKT50 suit always looks ready for the red carpet.
The Brooklyn Tailors belt is the perfect complement to the BKT50 suit. I think belts are an item that men shop for with trepidation. So many belts out there are over-designed. At one-inch width, a very simple nickel or brass buckle, the Brooklyn tailors belt elevates the look of our suits without overstating its presence. Often times, less is more. The Brooklyn Tailors shirt jacket makes me feel like Pablo Picasso, especially when I have an oil crayon or two in the wonderful patch pockets. Every artist needs pockets.

Of the other brands we carry, I love shoes by Joseph Cheaney because they are comfortable, luxurious and smart in their design. They’ve had more than 100 years to perfect their shoes. You can feel it when you put them on.

JOVAN SYOFAN: ASSISTANT BUYER & MERCHANDISER/SALES ASSOCIATE

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My name is Jovan and I’m originally from West Sumatra, Indonesia. I moved to New York in my early twenties. I went to work in the fashion industry and fell in love. I started at Brooklyn Tailors during an internship and have been in company for 7 years now. I’m the Assistant Buyer at Brooklyn Tailors, which means I scour the internet, shops around the world, and tradeshows for the best products around. In my free time, I enjoy watching and playing basketball. Recently, I also started collecting pottery.

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Here are my favorite Brooklyn Tailors products right now:

  • Typewriter Cloth Suit Jacket in Olive Green from our Japanese line. It’s very lightweight and has a great casual look. I really like the green.

  • BKT14 Short Sleeve in Tan Seersucker Plaid. This shirt is a staple of summer. You can see this plaid has a really strong ‘70s look that matches with a lot of different trousers.  

  • Tropicana Tie in Navy from our Japanese line.  This tie reminds me of home, and it brings joy when you wear it!

My favorite third-party brands we carry are Trickers and Orslow. Tricker’s the oldest shoemaker in England and you can’t go wrong with their shoes. They have a really nice silhouette you can pair them with wide-leg trousers. The reason I like Orslow is they interpret classic American denim really well, but they have their own unique look.

NICOLAS JACQUET: ASSISTANT DESIGNER & MADE-TO-MEASURE SPECIALIST

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My name is Nicolas. I’m the French man of the company, born and raised in France. I grew up in the North but moved to the Southwest when I was 16; this is where I like to go when I travel back to France. I highly recommend this area to visit – beautiful city, beach, mountains, good wine, and good cheese. I’m the Assistant Designer and oversee all the technical parts of our custom fittings. I spent 8 years in the French Navy before I decided to change my life and start studying fashion design and pattern making. I studied fashion because I wanted a new start, a new completely different life. I was really into sports during my years in the Navy and always had a part of me liking to create and wanting to design clothes, so I chose fashion with a goal to design technical garments for outdoor sports. During my years of studies, I discovered high-end garments for men like tailoring, got my hand in beautiful fabrics and technical pattern making and garment sewing and loved it. My hobbies are outdoor sports with my wife and dog (hiking, running) as well as designing and sewing accessories for myself.

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The Military green unstructured suit is one of our favorite pieces, of course, because of my past. The military-inspired fashion always has my interest, but more than that I liked this suit because of the unstructured construction that I really like to wear during the summer. This one is made with a lightweight fabric what makes it even more breathable, so it can be worn even during the warmest weeks. The color choice makes it interesting because it is more fashion-forward suit that is great to have to complete your closet.

I also love the black denim uniform over shirt with the pleated pockets and snaps. The heavy black denim makes it look like more of a work shirt than a uniform shirt. It’s great to wear all year round - under a coat in the winter or just as an over-shirt with a t-shirt in the spring.

Lastly, our heavy black twill tuxedo with shawl collar is a fantastic piece. I always wanted to go to a formal black tie event dressed in a tux, to me it is the peak of the "chic” in terms of menswear. Unfortunately, black tie dress code is not very common in France. This one as great drape due to the heavy weight fabric and the grosgrain shawl collar makes it modern and more fashion-forward than a classic black tuxedo.

GRANT MARTIN: RETAIL OPERATIONS & SALES ASSOCIATE

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My name is Grant and I’m from Houston, TX. I work as the Retail Operations Manager and a Sales Associate, mainly in our Fort Greene store. My career in fashion kind of started by accident. I met some of the guys that worked for Billy Reid in Houston, and they invited me to come work for them. When I moved to New York, they asked me to help open their new West Village location, and from there I was bouncing between their NY locations doing merchandising before being asked to join the team at Carson Street Clothiers in Manhattan. The move to Carson Street is the moment that definitely made the fashion thing stick for me since I’ve done a bit of everything in the industry. Outside of Brooklyn Tailors, I work on music.

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Here are my favorite Brooklyn Tailors items:

  • The uniform shirt reminds me of Texas. My family builds homes, so everyone my dad worked with growing up wore rugged workwear even off the job site. The uniform shirts are a more elegant version of that same idea, but still plenty rugged.

  • The shirt jackets are the most versatile piece of clothing that I own, they’re really the perfect transition piece. I wore them over my hoodie and under my coat all winter long and now that it’s getting warmer I’m just wearing them over t-shirts.

  • The Brooklyn Tailors trousers from our Japanese line are incredibly comfortable and have a great carrot shape to the leg, so they’re very easy to wear. The subtle single pleat gives you some room around the waist without having to commit to the full pleated pant look, and the fabrics that were chosen are also incredibly light and functional. The khaki pair feels like you’re wearing pajama pants in public, but they look incredible.

And in terms of other collections, we're carrying at our store, I'm really excited about Orslow's jeans. Finding nice washes on denim isn't the easiest thing in the world these days since the raw denim trend popped some years back, and no one is washing denim better than Orslow.

Come Visit Us Soon!

 

April 29, 2018 by Daniel Lewis
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