When a group of British dandies heard that Abercrombie & Fitch — clothier of choice for cast members of “The Jersey Shore” would be coming to London’s Savile Row, they nearly dropped their monocles. How dare the maker of logo sweatpants and lowbrow t-shirts set up shop on the street known for suits of impeccable tailoring — and in the building that formerly housed the Beatles’ Apple Records, no less? Harrumph.
The dandies took to the streets in three-piece suits and snap-brim hats, organized by the magazine The Chap, according to the Associated Press. The publication is for and about the new breed of “young fogey,” who dresses in tweed and cultivates a robust beard and moustache, while ironically pursuing activities like beagling and croquet (we have them in D.C., too).
“Many foreign visitors come to London to see where Beau Brummell had his waistcoats made — which we are pretty certain was not Abercrombie & Fitch,” said a statement from The Chap, tongue planted firmly in cheek. “There is also the issue of the store's habit of pumping cheap cologne out of its doors to entice gullible tourists in: This will affect not only the character of the Row but also its smell.”
Readers of The Chap aren’t the only ones who object to Abercrombie’s plans to build a store for its children’s clothing line in the space: The Savile Row Bespoke Tailors Group also tried to block the company’s planning application, saying it changed the tone and safety of the street. The company, which has been around since 1892, acquired its current image as a teen clothing store in the late 1990s, with the help of a strategic overhaul and some really hunky models.