Lumberjacks, Soldiers and Delivery Men, Oh My!
By Anthony Del Tufo
Do you feel like there's more pressure when working with your own line, or that people are looking for you to make a certain statement?
I have long walked away from the outside pressure to perform and entertain. Many customers remember my wild shows and avant-garde fashions. What I want them to understand now is that fashion is a business, and I am in the business of designing and producing quality menswear.
How do the men in New York influence your designs?
I live and work in the West Village. To me, this neighborhood represents everything I love about New York. There is a great sense of diversity and bohemian living. The guys who live there are a wonderful inspiration to me. They are always mixing their looks and showing me new ways to approach dressing.
And you opened a shop in the West Village.
Opening a store has long been my fantasy. In my own store, I have complete control of the environment in which my clothes are sold. I also work with other artisans to develop product that is interesting and compliments my clothing. When you wholesale to larger stores, it is difficult to control how product is presented and sold. Having my own store affords me the opportunity to meet my customer in person and learn from him directly.
What relationship did you want to have with the surrounding neighborhood?
After years of living on airplanes, I wanted to make my world smaller, not bigger. The West Village has wonderful shopping and is one of the last areas of New York that hasn't been overdeveloped with huge brand shops. I love working in my store and seeing peeps from the 'hood come by to say howdy.
Say howdy to John Bartlett -- and check out his sturdy jeans, plush sweaters and elegant suits -- at 143 Seventh Avenue, New York City, 212.633.6867.