Wanting to offer Jacksonville’s fashion-conscious men a place to purchase dress clothes with a different kind of shopping experience led two friends to open A.J. Reese Clothiers at the Landing.
Derrick Bryant and Carl Williams are in their fourth week in business at Downtown’s riverfront retail center.
Williams said A.J. Reese is designed to be different from department stores and large clothing retailers by offering brands of suits and other furnishing’s that only A.J. Reese sells.
“Our clients know when they walk out of here, they won’t see other people wearing their suit,” said Williams.
The business partners also wanted an alternative to having to shop in Orlando, Atlanta, New York City or Chicago to find clothing they wanted to wear.
“We want to wear clothes with flair. We couldn’t find what we wanted in Jacksonville, so we decided to create a store,” Bryant said.
“Instead of having to go to it, we brought it here,” said Williams.
The store specializes in wool suits with coordinating shirts, shoes, neckwear and other accessories. Custom tailoring and wardrobe and image consultation is available.
“We want to serve a couple of niches, like bankers and attorneys. We can dress a man for business or social situations,” said Bryant.
“Many people who live and work in Jacksonville came here from other cities. Now, they can get what they’re used to in other cities here,” he said.
Bryant and Williams decided last December they wanted to open a store and started looking for the right location. They knew they found their home when they visited the Landing.
“Downtown chose us. We happened to be at the Landing one day and we saw an opportunity here. We wanted to have the benefits that come with being inside a mall and we want to be part of Downtown’s revitalization,” said Bryant.
Williams said the store carries labels from New York City and the West Coast as well as a line of neckwear made in Jacksonville.
“It’s easy to think our clothes are very expensive, but most of our suits are very affordable,” he said.
“Now, men have a place to shop with good variety and high-quality clothing. A lot of our clients tell us they don’t like shopping, but they like coming here to buy clothing,” said Williams.
A.J. Reese Clothiers is open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and by appointment Sunday and Monday. For more information, visit ajreese.com.