Shop Talk: Pur•Suit
When is a pop-up no longer a pop-up? Well, after two years in the South Campus Gateway, men’s clothing store Pursuit is still clinging to the term for the time being.
“Originally the concept was a class project while I was in the MBA program at Ohio State and we launched after I graduated,” says owner and founder Nate DeMars. “We may be Columbus’ longest running pop-up shop but we are working building out a more robust, permanent Pursuit store at the Gateway sometime in early 2014.”
As the name implies, Pursuit specializes in suits for the young and stylish generation while catering toward a college and post-college demographic that is looking for affordable options. Slim-fit styles are at the forefront of the store, and an assortment of accessories include shirts, ties, belts, cufflinks and more.
“Customers are always surprised by the great assortment of bow ties we offer,” adds DeMars. “And I mean real bow ties, that you tie yourself, not clip-on bow ties! Don’t worry, we’ll teach you how to tie them.”
If running one pop-up retail store wasn’t enough work, DeMars spun off his annual ugly sweater sales from Pursuit this year into its own full-fledged shop next door. Christmisc is obviously a much more seasonal pop-up side project that will run through the end of the year, but the new shop has allowed DeMars to experiment with event ideas and sales promotions that he will refine and implement with new plans for Pursuit next year.
“We launched an online store mid-year and our mobile retail project (aka: The Suit Truck) is currently under construction and slated to launch in January,” he says. “That will allow us to hit other areas of Columbus and easily pop-up on campuses, offices, and events across Ohio with a suit store unlike anything anywhere.”
The brick-and-mortar version of Pursuit will remain in the South Campus Gateway area, as the target customer of the business is still rad students and post-college young men.
“Easton has become a national model for major national retail and the growth and development in the Short North is staggering,” says DeMars. “But I feel strongly that campus is not served well by creative local retailers. There is so much room to bring local, interesting, retailers to campus. I think students are often written off as a homogenous group, but that’s a whole other topic.”
For more information, visit www.pursuityourself.com.
Photos by Walker Evans.