Monday, January 24, 2011

Quick Store Rundown + Gazzarrini Sighting

Quick rundown of the better brands available of spring merchandise in different stores in NYC and New Jersey right now (at least from the ones I've visited thus far), including ones not mentioned in previous postings:

1) Jey Coleman -- NYC: Available at 34th St., 57th St. West side (near Bloomingdales), Soho Store, 18th St. (off of Union Square) and 43rd St. (near Grand Central); NJ: Paramus, NJ -- Totowa and East Hanover have not received any Jey Coleman merchandise as of yet. Suits at all these locations except for 43rd St. (may have arrived since my last visit). The 18th St. store has the widest selection of JCM non-suiting items I have seen thus far (shirts, knits, etc...)

2) Simon Peet -- NYC: Blazers seen at 34th St., Soho Store and 43rd St. (near Grand Central); Suits only available at 34th St.

3) Hackett London -- NYC: A number of blazers seen from this brand at the Soho store

4) Charles Tyrwhitt -- NYC: A number of blazers seen in the Soho and 34th St. locations

5) Mabitex -- Every Daffy's location carries at least a rack or two of Mabitex pants

6) Daniele Fiesoli -- Every Daffy's location carries some of this merchandise

7) Solosali -- Thus far I've only seen this in the NJ stores I've been to -- Paramus, Totowa and  East Hanover

8) Liu Jeans -- Same NJ stores (Paramus, Totowa, East Hanover), and also seen at the Soho store in NYC

9) Umberto Zebra -- Again same NJ stores (Paramus, Totowa, East Hanover), and also seen at the Soho store in NYC

10) Rice - I've only seen suits from Rice thus far -- usually have coats, and shirts as well. But lots of the suits seen at 34th St. and Soho locations. Not my favorite label, but decent cut and construction. Material quality could be better.

11) Futuro/Asfalto/Bocodo - Every Daffy's I've visited seems to at least have a limited selection of suits from these labels. Most stores also have some shirts, pants and shorts.

12) Alessandro Gherardeschi/Age/Hacienda Publica -- Most stores have received at least some t-shirts from Hacienda Publica. I've seen Gherardeschi and Age shirts in the Soho store in NYC, the 57th St. store, the 18th St. Store and the East Hanover store in NJ. The 18th St. store has a great selection of stuff from Hacienda Publica beyond basic t-shirts which most of the stores have received -- including some cool knits and great fitting casual pants.

13) Shirting from Milena SPA - Most stores have received a very limited selection of shirting from Delsiena, Milena, B>More, and some other brands from the company, including Monteroso and Massimo Acai.

14) Shoes from Boemos -- I'm hoping what I've seen isn't everything, but I've seen a few boxes of shoes from Italian manufacturer Boemos at the East Hanover store in New Jersey, but that was it. Daffy's is usually stocked to the brim with this stuff at the beginning of the season; hopefully it's just slowly trickling in.

15) Casual Shoes from J. Shoes, PF Flyers & Diesel -- Seen at Soho Store, 34th St. and East Hanover Store in NJ

****16) Gazzarrini - I spotted one lone Gazzarrini suit from the spring merchandise in the 34th St. store, I believe it was a size 42, only $139. I truly hope this just means there's more where that came from, and not that that is all we're getting this season.

That's about all I can think of off the top of my head worth mentioning. Here's some stuff I'm hoping we'll see soon in stores, all items traditionally found at Daffy's each season: Shirting from Mastai Ferretti (incl. Bonser and Agho), Alea Fashion Industries (incl. Rosso Malaspino, HB by Alea) and Robert Friedman. All sorts of goodies from Patrizia Pepe and (hopefully) Gazzarrini. Hopefully a wider selection of shoes from Boemos, and a few random pairs from Enrico Fantini.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Spring Knits

The first shipment of knits for have arrived. Some really nice stuff from two major Italian labels - Solosali & Daniele Fiesoli. This weekend, I picked up a cardigan from Solosali and a button-down shirt from Daniele Fiesoli.

1) Solosali -- Daffy's first introduced this brand last Fall, and the merchandise is very nice quality. Generally you'll find some chunkier knits from them. There were also a few short-sleeve knitted polo shirts and cardigans. As with any garment, but particularly with this brand, make sure you try it on first before purchasing -- some of the cuts are a bit unflattering for most guys.  Prices are a bit on the expensive side for Daffy's stuff, but range from $40-60, original MSRP's of over $200. But when you compare that w/the over $100 price tag is asking on this stuff, it's a steal.

2) Daniele Fiesoli - ( - Always a great source of well-made knits, right now they have a good stock of sweaters and t-shirts, as well as a few button-down shirts. Fiesoli also produces under labels called 'Wool & Co.', and 'Milky Wear'.  As a general note, with all knits at Daffy's, be sure to inspect the garments before purchasing. Many will often have holes or fabric-pulls that can't be seen upon first glance. The items, especially from Danielle Fisoli, are very delicate.


Mentioned previously, a brand called 'Kemitch', they also produce a brand called 'Sartoria Corsini'. A lot of suits, shirts and pants from them right now -- avoid at all costs - poor quality, out-of-date styling. Similarly poor quality and out-of-date styling is anything marked 'FB Classs' or 'Linen Sartoriale'. These are two sister brands found mostly in the suit department. Horrible quality and poor craftsmanship.

And then some stuff I'm ON THE FENCE about...

'Umberto Zebra' -- All sorts of different pieces - jackets, shirts, pants, etc... -- the quality isn't horrible, but the styling is always way over the top for my tastes - shiny fabrics, awkward styling queues. There are plenty of people who like the brand, I'll just say it's not my cup of tea.

'Liu Jeans' -- Generally just some casual-wear - polo shirts, t-shirts; and usually all emblazoned with the Liu Jeans logo. After shopping at Daffy's for a few years now and buying nearly my entire wardrobe from them, I've sort of done-away with flashing logos on my clothes. But I'll let it slide for Liu Jeans, since the stuff is decent quality and has up-to-date styling.

IN OTHER NEWS...Sources tell me that a shipment of merchandise from Les Copains will be hitting stores soon -- truly some great high-end merchandise if you can find the stores that have it, and have your size. Still waiting for Patrizia Pepe and Gazzarrini; hoping to also see Transit in soon as welll

At some point this week, I will be delving a bit into the different Daffy's locations and which ones are worthwhile visiting. Stay tuned to for continual Spring merchandise updates.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Jey Cole Man is Back!! + Some Other Goodies

As you may have seen in a prior post, I gushed about a brand called 'Jey Cole Man' (made in Italy) -- well after a season's long disappearance from Daffy's racks, JCM merchandise is now back! I only saw bits and pieces today as the shipment from the truck was just being put out, but what I saw was really great -- even some leather jackets -- and who doesn't need a purple leather jacket for spring ;)

I also saw a blazer from a brand called 'Simon Peet' (made in Italy). Daffy's never gets much from this label, usually a blazer or two, and on occasion some suits appear down at the Soho store. The stuff is always slim cut, w/narrow lapels. One of the better brands of which I wish they  had more merchandise.

Other notables: Leather jackets from a brand called 'Alex & Co.' (made in Italy); can't find much about them online, other than it looks like they're based out of Florence, Italy. Nice stuff from what I saw.

STAY CLEAR: Daffy's also just got in their shipment of suits and other merchandise from a brand called 'Kemitch.' While it is made in Italy, the merchandise is poor quality and styling is generally out of date. Stay away from this stuff.

Monday, January 17, 2011

First Batch of Spring Merchandise

Since inventory took place last week, all Daffy's locations have started getting in their Spring merchandise. Some great stuff so far, including some brands that didn't show up at all last season. Here's a quick rundown --

Suiting -- Futuro/Asfalto/Bocodo (made in Italy) - Huge lot of suits + other items including sportcoats, vests, shirts, pants and shorts from NCM Srl -- a company which produces clothes made in Italy under the labels 'Futuro', 'Asfalto' & 'Bocodo' The suits are priced between $119-$149 -- you won't find a better-made, better fitting suit at this price -- forget Zara, H&M and Uniqlo, all retailers which provide low-quality made in China merchandise at even higher price points. Already bought a suit for myself, waiting to see if some other brands come in before snatching up another one (see, Gazzarrini, Jey Cole Man & Patrizia Pepe in a previous post).

As for the brands themselves, Futuro is more high-fashion, Asfalto is a bit more casual, Bocodo (which I believe is being phased out by NCM) is on the lower-end in terms of quality. The only thing to be careful of with all the merchandise with these brands is the material -- oftentimes there will be inferior/man-made fabrics substituted in place of wool or cotton. Make sure to look at the material tags on the items before purchasing.

Pants -- Mabitex -- Probably the best-made pants you will ever find at this price point. Cottons, wools and linens, ranging from $30-60. These pants retail upwards of $115 per pair. The only place I've ever seen them actually sold is at Saks Fifth Avenue, and only at the 5th Ave. location in NYC. Amongst the Mabitex pants, you will also find pants from Missoni, Dunhill and Loewe -- high-end brands for which Mabitex manufactures pants. Most of the pants are marked made in Romania.

Shirting -- The spring shirt collection (both dress and casual) has started to trickle in. Nothing major as of yet, but be on the look out for shirts from:

1) Dress and Casual Shirting from Milena SPA (made in Italy)  -- include brands like 'Milena', 'Delsiena', & 'B>More' Those brands sell for $90+ on, Daffy's sells them for less than $40/shirt, and believe me they're worth every penny.

2) Casual Shirting from Alessandro Gherardeschi (made in Italy) -- Makes some terrific button-downs under its own label, as well as under a brand called 'Age'. Daffy's is also stocking the company's layed-back sportswear line called 'Hacienda Publica'. Every so often, you'll also see a pair of pants, or a sportscoat from one of these brands, but they are rare -- so if you see it, buy it -- the stuff is made very well. The button-downs will set you back around $36, but they are well worth it. Original prices on these are about $115.

Other notables -- Some unknown Italian leather jackets. The interior labels were cut off on all but one of the jackets I saw, which said 'Les Mares'. They were quite nice if you can find them -- priced at $179, original price of over $600, but I couldn't find more information on them. I'll be waiting for the Compagnia Delle Pelli spring collection, which are probably the best leather jackets you will ever find -- hoping Daffy's doesn't let me down this season -- there are still a few of the CDP jackets left over from the F/W collection at the Herald Square location. 

Stuff to stay away from -- The Cosby sweaters are back for the Spring, so stay away from the knit sweaters until further notice (anything marked 'Robert Banks', 'Stacatto', 'Birillo'), unless you're into that kind of stuff. Suits from 'Romano's Le Collezione', 'Diego Ranieri', 'Eduardo Bonazzi', 'GAF' (also sometimes labeled as 'UGAF'), & 'Mr. Ramos'. There is also a good amount of stuff (suits, sportcoats, pants, etc...) from 'John Barritt' which also produces under the name 'Luck in Luck' -- I'm personally not a fan of the merchandise, but the cut and quality is a step above some of the other brands mentioned in this section.