Downtown Retailer Rebrands to Commuter Clothing Co., Moves to EastonDecember 17, 2018 10:40 am Susan Post
Flying Gent is trading a Downtown location for a pop-up and a new name at Easton Town Center. Making the transition to Commuter Clothing Co., the retailer and its expanded offerings are now found at 3922 Townsfair Way next to World of Beer.
While Flying Gent was focused on clothing and accessories for a stylish, traveling urban gentleman, Commuter Clothing Co. will serve a wider customer base of both men and women.
“Part of the decision to go to Easton was to have a little bit broader appeal,” says Owner Branden Givand.
If he was going to “peel the band-aid off” of moving to a new location, Givand wanted to take the opportunity to reassess the brand and create a name that was more recognizable to the store’s appeal.
Commuter Clothing Co. will be geared towards comfortable, reliable basics and staples for both men and women.
The ladies’ line will include leggings, shawls and cardigans, bags, totes and gift items throughout the holidays. Menswear will offer casual basics, joggers, casual jackets, dopp kits and more. Remaining Flying Gent items are also being sold at discounted prices. Givand says new items that fit the rebrand will continue to roll out over the next few weeks.
Easton is a new direction for the retailer which has called Downtown home for the past six years. The decision was complex. Givand has had an emotional stake in seeing a thriving Downtown retail landscape return. He’d connected with his retailing neighbors in the Gay Street area like zerOz and Brioso Coffee, but calls the decision to finally move a non-emotional one.
Just before the holiday season Givand was surveying the landscape Downtown. He’d found each year become more difficult when holidays should be prime-time for a retailer. Givand decided he could stay put and hope for his handful or normal customers, “Or I could be proactive,” he says.
He’d turned down calls from suburban opportunities in the past, wanting to stay Downtown in his neighborhood, with friends and fellow business owners, but, “Martyrdom is not a good biz strategy,” Givand says.
He made some calls, found a spot at Easton, and within a few weeks time was on the move.
Givand has realized he will be serving many of the same customers despite the drastically different locations. With Easton’s everything in one place appeal, Commuter Clothing Co. is catching people where they already shop. While there are shop local supporters that want to support the businesses in their neighborhood, most Columbus shoppers make at least the occasional trip to Easton.
The addition of women’s clothing also appeals to Flying Gent’s previous customer base. Givand says about 70 percent of shoppers are women. Now, while looking something for their guy, they can also find something for themselves.
The Commuter Clothing Co. pop-up will run through January 31 after which Givand is leaving his options open.
“Our goal really here is to focus on creating the best brand top-to-bottom experience and experiment with things before we make a permanent decision,” he says.
The pop-up could stay at Easton, find another spot or continue to rotate locations.
Commuter Clothing Co. is open 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Sunday. The store will also host special pop-ups featuring zerOz and Brioso Coffee throughout the holiday season.
For more information, visit flyinggent.com.
All photos by Susan Post