Since the 1950s, Carmel-based Robert Talbott has been known for its handmade, “seven-fold” silk ties, sold in some of the nation’s finest haberdasheries. Today, the company has seven stores offering a full range of menswear; the latest opened at Fashion Island in April. The company’s jackets and shirts are especially suited to the local lifestyle, so it’s no surprise that its creative director, Mark Calder, was once a buyer for At Ease, the now-closed Newport Coast men’s store.
Shoppers buy off-the-rack, or take advantage of the made-to-measure program where they choose the fabric, collar, cuffs, pockets, pleats, darts, even the thread color for sewing on the specially made mother-of-pearl buttons. “Our customer understands quality, is detailed-oriented, and prefers timeless style,” says store manager Christine Roddy. Clothing—made in Robert Talbott’s mainstay fabrics of Loro Piana cashmere-silk and Pima and Sea Island cotton—starts at $248 for shirts, $948 for sport coats, and $1,400 for suits. Italian silk ties average $155. Shoes will be added to the lineup this fall.
“I definitely think this is a lifestyle brand. Many come here to be completely outfitted, and for the impeccably high level of customer service,” Roddy says. She credits saleswoman Linda Brink, also formerly of At Ease, for the latter. “She has something of a cult following. People come all day, every day, asking for her.”