The Original Style Army - Seattle Division
For the debut of our much-anticipated seasonal Guidebook, we wanted to highlight the community that makes the Northwest and Seattle a natural home for Division Road, which led us to check in with our customers about what they connected with this season. Designed as an archive rather than a future direction, the Guidebook speaks to our approach of looking to the past with a refined perspective to inform our constructions of wardrobes designed for longevity in terms of style and substance. Concluding our second year of business, a lot has happened in a relatively short period of time. While we’ve enlisted a large customer base and expanded or breadth, the original Division Road Army remains. We have an unrelenting respect for this community of core customers, who are essential to our identity as retailers.
Seattle is a city of distinct character that navigates the tastes of urban transplants and long-time locals, creating a style fabric that's woven between the people and the climate. In a metropolis of individuals that reject the median of social conformity, we find that gentlemen and women of all types are drawn to quality goods with an authentic story and history. Our customers seek the same kind of integrity, grit, and resilience in their clothing as they have cultivated in themselves. Here at the shop, we are honored to assist as stewards in their respective journeys of style. To show our appreciation for all of those who have demonstrated their support and loyalty to Division Road, we chose to feature some of our local stylistos in our first Guidebook to exhibit the approach, formula, and personality of those both born in and drawn to the Northwest. Using all of their own footwear and select items from their personal wardrobe, we put together signature looks that spoke to their takes on the single uniform aesthetic.
Since our launch, there have been four figures that were not only some of our first clients, but style icons in their own right and recognized as such in their spheres of influence. They embraced Division Road early on and remain to this day regulars at the shop. What brought our attention to these folks in particular is how they serve as counterexamples to Seattle’s perceived style profile – a kind of hippie meets yuppie aesthetic that is led by out-of-place technical outdoor garments, middle-tier national brand jeans and chinos made in third world countries, and footwear of a nondescript and disposable nature. This generalized assumption is false, and proven so with the tastes of our local Division Road Army – Seattle Company.
Jeff Depano is known globally as an Instagram star within our heritage-based niche, and started coming into the shop in our early days. Known for his Ivy meets Evergreen style program achieved by combining iconic prep and workwear pieces, we saw that his compositions very much aligned with that of Division Road. When Depano comes through with questions, ideas, or products in mind, he operates with a cool seriousness that translates well into his menswear palette. He brings in combinations that we hadn’t previously considered, and his bottom up methodology in dressing speaks directly to our approach at the shop. Through innovative thinking and a strong connection to a broad style circle, Depano has become both a collaborator as well as a shopping regular. Favorite brands include Gitman Vintage, Private White, Shockoe Atelier, Dehen 1920, Viberg and Tricker’s.
“All yoga becomes hot yoga if you wear enough layers”
Kevin O’Neil was one of our first clients and we’ve been able to witness his style evolution and personal development from forum head to Instagram icon. Kevin is still testing himself on his style journey, which currently rests between updated workwear references paired with western influences, brought together with a refined dress consideration. Focused on fabrics and fit along with production techniques, Kevin has become an active student of the heritage garment trade. We enjoy seeing the styles he puts together because he embraces new pieces and experiments with all possible combinations in order to fine-tune exemplary ensembles. Though his intuition is sound, we must take credit for transitioning him into proper handgrade footwear. We’ve been with Kevin since his first pair, and since then he has assembled an impressive collection of Tricker’s, Viberg, and Wesco that would make even the decade-long veteran jealous. Kevin’s look, fueled by his studious enthusiasm, made him immediately familiar at the shop. Favorite brands include Corridor NYC, Nine Lives, Shockoe Atelier, Benzak, and all of our footwear offerings.
“Division Road dives deep into the style game and resurfaces with curiosities and knowledge from a by gone era yet suited for the modern man. More than a place to just shop, I use DR as resource to learn, be inspired, and conceive. They have been the biggest catalyst for my style's growth, bar none. So fortunate to have companions like these as we travel down my personal Journey of Style!”
Kurtis Dahl is a frequent visitor and early patron who can most accurately be regarded as a collector. Building upon his already impressive wardrobe, he has amassed a healthy selection of goods from Division Road and is always on the lookout to expand the breadth of his style. His aesthetic is hard to define, yet truly representative of his office-to-outdoors lifestyle with an all-encompassing appreciation of details from tailoring to workwear. Kurtis is drawn to items with a definitive cut and fit, and to undeniably unique footwear. He experiments within these parameters and puts together ensembles that are driven by the merit of the item first. He has a knack for identifying stand-out pieces, which in turn makes his wardrobe assortments equally distinct. Favorite brands include Private White, Nine Lives, Shockoe Atelier, Studio D'Artisan, Gitman Vintage, Tricker’s, and Viberg.
“The life un-realized due to lack of exploration, should be the only concern one has, all others are just part of an engineered false construct designed to inhibit said exploration and ultimately hinder one’s realization. Never remain shackled down, shrug them off, resume the adventure that is life, happiness is not a place but the continual exploration of surroundings and circumstance.”
"Bob" is our resident vintage veteran and represents the retired mogul at his finest. He serendipitously found us in our early days, initially unfamiliar with many of the brands and products we carry, yet has since become an avid collector. A true Baby Boomer, he relates to our goods as he did to those from his youth and early adulthood, when garments were still made in the United States by default and to a quality level that has since disappeared from the marketplace for decades. Hence, he has been very supportive of Division Road and the brands that we carry, understanding that we aim to revive this niche in a meaningful way. From head to toe, Bob is a perfect example of the Division Road uniform in action, proving that guys of all ages can come correct while buying smart. He brings a wealth of wisdom that goes deep into the importance of the longevity and quality in your purchases, which not only checks out with our vision, but fuels it further. Favorite brands include Private White, Gitman Vintage, Dehen 1920, Shockoe Atelier, Corridor NYC, Ebbets Field Flannels, and Viberg.
“Nothing really happens in business until something gets sold. Some believe technology will eliminate the need for sales people, but I disagree. A great sales professional is an artist, and those at the top, will use technology as a tool to enhance their connection with customers, tell a better story, and motivate people to see the value in what they are proposing.”