Anti-Bro: Steve and Barry’s

28 05 2008

UPDATE: Steve and Barry’s To Declare Bankruptcy, oh well.

Due to the small print on the ubiquitous 99 ¢ (and mostly up) stores it was with some skepticism that we set foot in Steve and Barry’s for the first time. For the uninitiated this chain clothing store, found in some of the Country’s most irrelevant shopping malls, supplies thousands of items for $9.98 or less. Many of the clothing lines sold in the store are created (at some level) and endorsed by names such as Laird Hamilton, Sarah Jessica Parker, Ben Wallace, Venus Williams, Stephon Marbury and Amanda Bynes.

We love the fact that this chain and the icons associated with it have chosen to market products that are accessible to real americans and not simply brand-laden enticements into credit card hell. In a day when nothing more than a logo is necessary to clip a hundred or even thousand dollar price tag onto a pair of shoes or accesories, this story is truly refreshing. Even the Times has noticed how these two guys seem to accomplish the impossible.

There is the caveat, which you certainly expected, that these products are manufactured in those same foreign factories that are maligned elsewhere for poor labor standards and lacking environmental stewardship. Remember, though, that Nike and Gucci are likely manufacturing right next door with a 20 fold price increase.

Of course all this means you won’t be seeing your neighborhood bro sporting some Steve and Barry’s gear anytime soon, even better reason to go buy some yourself.

Find a location here.