STORE: Context Clothing
CITY: Madison, WI
FOUNDED BY: Sam Parker and Ryan Huber
PRICES: $$$ (out of 5)
WHY WE COSIGN: What DQM and UNFTD are to sneaker stores, Context Clothing is to denim shops. Not satisfied with just selling denim, these guys opted to head down the "boutique" path and make the in-store experience just as cool as the product. Much like sneakerheads, denim connoisseurs are often interested in the story behind the final product as much as the item itself. From the quality of the denim to the cut, Context knows everything there is to know and are more than happy to share the wealth (unlike their sometimes overly pretentious cousins in the sneaker industry).
Stocking brands like Atelier LaDurance, A.P.C., Dunderdon, Engineered Garments, Nom de Guerre, Nudie Jeans and Woolrich Woolen Mills, these guys have an eye for quality and that's for damn sure. So get your denim game as proper as your sneaker collection and make sure to stop buy...if you're ever in Wisconsin. You would be a fool not to, what else is in Wisconsin?
BRANDS CARRIED: Atelier LaDurance, Nom De Guerre, Nudie, A.P.C., Kicking Mule Workshop, Woolrich Woolen Mills, Wings + Horns, Somet, Shades of Greige, Quoddy, Momotaro, Krane, Kenton Sorenson Leather, Jean Shop, Band of Outsiders, Dunderdon, Canada Goose and Engineered Garments.
For pics of the store, an interview with the owner and contact info, see below...
Complex: What was the inspiration behind Context Clothing, and how has it influenced the overall look and feel of your store?
Ryan Huber: We opened in December of 2005 and quickly became popular among dry selvage denim fans. Our eye for fabric and heritage production stems directly from my interest and knowledge of vintage. Sam and I have a passion for customer service that is directly related to our experiences in the bar business. The web site and store layout are products of my art education (UW Wisconsin, Madison Art BFA) as I designed and built all the display pieces with my friend. We also have a full African Lioness displayed in our window just for kicks.
Complex: What are your retail plans for the future?
Ryan Huber: Our future retail plans include launching the best denim repair service in the country, which we offer in the shop. We are also looking into bottling and selling the beer we currently brew for the shop. Our current focus on heritage production, fit, and fabrics is opening doors to offer more refined suiting and shirting. The denim head also wants the best shirt and wants to know how and where it was produced. We present our collections with what we call "transparency in production." We pride ourselves on our product knowledge and only carry the best.
Complex: Any anticipated collaborations?
Ryan Huber: We are constantly working on collaborations and have a few in the works with The Hill-Side, Gitman Brother's Vintage, and Alden Shoes.
113 King Street
Madison, WI 53703
Monday - Wednesday: 12 p.m. - 5 p.m.
Thursday - Saturday: 12 p.m. - 7 p.m.
Sunday: 12 p.m. - 3 p.m.