Cut from a different cloth: London's most stylish independent menswear boutiques

Benedict Browne

6 January 2022

Where to shop for sophisticated menswear in the capital

6 January 2022 | Benedict Browne

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ne of the best things about living in London, for the sartorially minded at least, is having access to the sort of menswear brands you just won’t find on the provincial High Street. (Another is being able to drop into a sample sale and bag yourself a bargain before work – hands up if you’ve ever swung past the Music Room en route to the office).

Across the capital, a collection of independent, multi-brand retailers is demonstrating that when it comes to shopping for the finest men's clothes, bricks-and-mortar will always beat browsing online. Here’s our guide to London’s best menswear boutiques – shops that eschew the short-lived thrill of fast fashion in favour of properly-made wardrobe staples that stand the test of time. See you at the check-out.

Clutch Cafe, Fitzrovia

From exceptionally well-made pieces of outerwear with military and workwear origins to vintage trinkets that grab your attention, Clutch Cafe in Fitzrovia is a store like no other. Owned by the magazine of the same name, it’s a mecca for Japanese menswear and houses innumerable pieces you’d struggle to find elsewhere in Europe. The staff are highly knowledgeable, welcoming and would be happy to wax lyrical all day about the intricacies of a pair of selvedge jeans or horsehide jacket.

78 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 7NT, clutch-cafe.com

Couverture & Garbstore, Notting Hill

Notting Hill’s Couverture & Garbstore hits the nail on the head when it comes to relevant retailing for men. It champions emerging talent and independent brands, as well as stocking many Asian designers that are hard to find elsewhere in London, such as Kapital. The boutique's three in-house brands are Garbstore, The English Difference & Drop Out Sports. There is something for everyone across both levels of the store and it has a reputation for producing limited-edition collaborations with a range of cool brands through its in-house label. Head to Kensington Park Road for key streetwear and workwear staples.

188 Kensington Park Road, London, W11 2ES, couvertureandthegarbstore.com

Dover Street Market, Mayfair

The iconic concept store, Dover Street Market, was founded by Comme des Garçons’ creative director Rei Kawakubo and bridges the gap between high-end retailer and art gallery. Every visit is an experience and DSM offers the very best in luxury fashion and streetwear, with products ranging in price points. If you can’t make it to the store, don’t worry – the online shop has an even more extensive offering.

18-22 Haymarket, London, SW1Y 4DG, london.doverstreetmarket.com

Goodhood, Shoreditch

Located on Curtain Road in East London, Goodhood has in the past 14 years cemented itself as one of London’s coolest independent retailers. While it offers a range of menswear, womenswear, footwear, accessories, homeware, and beauty and grooming products, it's streetwear that forms the core of the store, through brands including Stussy and Neighbourhood. Brace yourself to discover an impressive range of brands you’ve never heard of, too.

151 Curtain Road, London, EC2A 3QE, goodhoodstore.com

John Simons, Marylebone

John Simons has been in the retail game for more than 60 years and he’s credited with bringing the ‘Ivy Look’ to the UK back in the 1960s. Not only that, but it’s thought that it was Simons who coined Baracuta’s iconic G9 jacket the 'Harrington’, which is quite the accolade. John Simons specialises in hard-wearing and timeless clothing, so expect to find black calf penny loafers, Oxford-cloth button-down shirts, tweed blazers and chore jackets made from heavy-duty canvas.

46 Chiltern Street, London, W1U 7QR, johnsimons.co.uk

Trunk Clothiers, Marylebone

Mats Klingberg (centre) was a former financier before he founded Trunk Clothiers 

Chiltern Street in Marylebone wouldn’t have its reputation as a menswear destination if it weren’t for Trunk Clothiers. Modern, sophisticated and damn-well priced, Trunk’s strength is curating collections that are versatile and long-lasting. While it has its eponymous in-house label, there’s also a range of brands that you’ll struggle to find elsewhere, including Camoshita, De Bonne Facture and Resolute. There’s also a great offering of accessories, stationery and grooming goods.

8 Chiltern Street, London, W1U 7PU, trunkclothiers.com

Read more: The essential guide to Savile Row