Not to be outdone by its sister brand J.Crew, which announced a massive list of changes to its product offering earlier this week, Madewell made big news on Wednesday by launching its first menswear line.
The brand, a heritage denim and workwear supplier founded in 1937 and revived by J.Crew in 2006, had for years only made women’s clothing. It was the kind of place where ladies with a little discretionary income could go and reliably find a great pair of jeans, a comfortable sweater and other wardrobe staples. And based on the first few pieces in its menswear offering, Madewell wants to be the same kind of place for men, too. (Our friends at Fashionista have already rejoiced that they’ll “finally have something other than ‘Everlane’ and ‘Uniqlo’ to say when our male friends/significant others ask us where to shop for basics.”)
What does that look like in practice? Madewell men’s is starting with 21 denim styles across three easy-to-understand fits (straight, slim and skinny) priced from $115. It also offers a classic jean jacket in two washes for $125, and a sherpa style for $175. Its t-shirts, sweatshirts and hoodies range in price from $35 to $98. (It’s also offering three sneaker styles from Veja, the socially conscious French footwear label.)
And while all the offerings are cut from better fabrics than what you’ll find at other price points, the big draw here is the jeans. Madewell’s design team reportedly spent two years figuring out how to imbue each pair with just enough polyester, elastane (and in some cases both) to give them the right amount of stretch. That kind of consideration makes us confident that Madewell will only continue to make clothes guys won’t want to take off.