Jack Wills University Outfitters, a new clothing store scheduled to open next week at 136 Elm St., calls itself "Fabulously British."
"What sets us apart is the British authenticity that Jack Wills brings to the table," said Jim Hardy, Jack Wills' U.S. president. "There are other brands that have an Anglo look, but Jack Wills is the real deal. We were founded by two British guys who wanted to do a British take on the preppy look."
Hardy went on to say that Jack Wills is less traditional than some of the American preppy brands in that it pairs "high" and "low" styles.
"A tweed jacket, you're not wearing that with a Tattersall shirt and a foulard tie, especially for the university crowd. Why not wear it with a T-shirt? (Our shirts are) styled differently. It's a trimmer, more useful expression than much of what we encounter," he said.
When Hardy started with the company a year ago, there were only eight stores in the United States. In less than a year, five more have sprung up. New Canaan will be the 13th.
Their stores are typically located in resort or upscale communities, and has sites in Nantucket, Chatham, Greenwich, Philadelphia and Georgetown, in addition to several other locations.
Jack Wills has a group of young people -- called "Seasonnaires -- that are the face of the brand on campuses and in resort towns. They act as brand ambassadors in person and on Twitter.
"Seasonnaires are our trademarked brand ambassadors who are big fans of the brand and who love it so much that we find out about them and we develop a relationship. During the summer, we have them in our resort locations, where they work and live and have fun and connect with the community and sponsor parties of all different kinds. We also have a group who are in university now who are our campus brand ambassadors," said Hardy.
There will be a launch party at the store for its opening from 7 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 8.
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