Sharply, the Seattle-based menswear brand built on basics, opened a temporary shop this week at the Refinery Hotel in New York City’s Garment District. The 750-square-foot, street level space offers the brand’s full range of “Made in USA” T-shirts, henleys and sweatshirts, plus denim from Los Angeles-based S.M.N. Studio.
Hotels, it seems, are becoming a hotbed for apparel pop-ups. Denim and basics brand, Cotton Citizen, set up shop at 11 Howard last year, while Abercrombie & Fitch found a match in millennial-focused Sbe hotels where it held co-branded events and pop-ups.
The pop-up at Refinery, which will remain open until April 11, is Sharply’s second at the hotel, following a three-week residency last November. Three weeks, as it turns outs, is the ideal amount of time for the direct-to-consumer brand to build buzz, says Adam Crouch, Sharply manager of operations and customer experience.
“We’ve done a weekend pop-up in Nashville and Atlanta, but three or three-and-a-half weeks is enough time where it doesn’t get old for the local community, but we still have enough time to advertise and drive traffic,” he said. “There’s enough time for people to put it on their calendar and stop by.”
Crouch says the brand—which has one physical retail store in its hometown of Seattle—doesn’t have plans to open a permanent spot in New York. Rather, the pop-up offers consumers who may have seen the brand online or on social media the opportunity to touch the garments.
“Guys are very simple creatures, they just want to feel the clothes and make sure it fits,” Crouch said. “And so this is the first point of contact for many new customers.”
And after the pop-up, interest in the brand lives on. Crouch says Sharply sees online orders increase from the New York area during and after pop-ups. Free shipping and returns help, as well as Sharply’s Home Try On program, which allows consumers to select two sizes, keep one and return the other with a free, pre-paid label.
The pop-up also allows Sharply to build a lifestyle of products around its own. The pop-up features small leather accessories and dopp kits from Portland, Ore.-based Wood & Faulk, prints by House of Spoil and denim from S.M.N. Studio. The standard slim jeans, which retail for $214-$286, feature 1.5 percent stretch, which Crouch says gives the right amount of flexibility without bagging out.
Quality, convenience and a fair price are part of Sharply’s mission to help streamline men’s wardrobes. “Every guy knows their uniform,” Crouch said. “We’re here for your basics that never go out of style.”