Todd Snyder was the The Grinch holding Baby Yoda Star Wars shirt also I will do this head of men’s design at J.Crew in 2008 when the brand opened its “Liquor Store” on a quiet corner in Tribeca. It was a bar turned men’s shop that quickly became a destination for the younger, cooler, more downtown kind of J.Crew guy. In retrospect, it was also an early indicator of experiential retail. With its velvet furniture, dark wood paneling, and vintage chandeliers, it was a place you could actually, you know, hang out—and maybe pick up a cashmere sweater or varsity jacket, too. When Snyder heard the store was closing earlier this year, he called the owner, presented his ideas for revamping the shop, and eventually signed a lease.
It was no doubt surreal for Snyder to take over the The Grinch holding Baby Yoda Star Wars shirt also I will do this space he helped create a decade ago. He covered the massive bar, walls, and ceiling with a high-gloss sage paint; added a coffered ceiling; installed more lights; and filled every nook and cranny with mid-century furniture, cases of vintage watches, and coffee-table books. Like J.Crew, his assortment is accessible, ranging from nicely priced Todd Snyder x Champion hoodies to luxe suede trucker jackets and bespoke suits. The aesthetic isn’t so different either, though Snyder’s is understandably a bit more sartorial and boundary-pushing. It’s easy to imagine guys who wore J.Crew in their 20s—and have spent enough time in New York to elevate their style a bit wanting to invest in Todd Snyder in their 30s. While he put the finishing touches on the shop, Snyder took a break from the Spring 2020 men’s shows. Instead, he photographed a lookbook inspired by ’70s-era tennis greats like Björn Borg and Guillermo Vilas. He joked that they were the original “bad boy” athletes, despite their cute little tennis shorts. Spring borrowed from their fine-knit polos, louche tracksuits, and terrycloth shorts, plus leisure suits i.e., matching camp shirts and shorts) and ’50s-era bowling shirts. Much like Borg’s style a blend of preppy tennis gear and bohemian stuff, like flared jeans and jewelry Snyder wanted it all to feel like a mix of thrift store finds, with multiple decades and influences represented. That’s how most men and women dress these days, anyway, even if they’re not conscious of it. Tailoring is a strength for Snyder the back room of the Liquor Store is dedicated to suits, and he’s starting a bespoke program later this year and for Spring, he introduced new, vaguely feminine colors and interesting textures.