Westchester at Work
Store owner David M. Frank of Yorktown
The Gig Store Owner
Name David M. Frank
Business David’s Fine Menswear, Shrub Oak
Does owning a menswear store pay?
David Frank earns between $50,000 and $60,000 a year, working on average 68 hours a week as his shop’s sole full-time employee. “Our custom suits range from $2,000 to $15,000,” he says.
On becoming a shopkeeper
Frank, 35, who has a Bachelor’s degree in economics from Iona College, worked as an investment trader for six years before opening his store in September, 2006. “I was tired of the hectic life and wanted to work for myself,” he says. “I’ve always loved fashion, so I thought about what I could do with it, and decided to open a high-end men’s fashion boutique.”
First memorable item of clothing
“It was my Bar Mitzvah suit, a Hickey Freeman that we bought in the old Lubin’s in
Own Dress Code
“I never wear the same item of clothing more than once in a month.” The day we chatted, Frank was wearing custom charcoal gray wool dress slacks ($600), a custom long-sleeved white cotton shirt ($250), a beige cashmere mock-turtle neck sweater with a three-quarter zipper by Tailor Byrd ($295), a black calfskin belt by Martin Dingman ($60), charcoal gray silk and cashmere socks by Marco Liani ($60), and a pair of Ferragamo black leather loafers with silver buckles ($390); all except the shoes were from his store. “On weekends, I dress in sweat pants.”
Items in the menswear shop owner’s own closet:
Ninety suits, 200 dress shirts, 12 sweaters, two pairs of jeans (“I don’t wear jeans that often”), seven pairs of shoes, and about 350 ties (“I never throw them out; I have ties going back ten years.”).
“Before I opened the store, I spent $10,000 a month on clothing, easily. I’m spending a lot less now because I don’t shop anywhere now other than in my own store.”
“Bergdorf’s, Saks, and Mitchells of Westport. Mitchells really knows how to treat its customers; I really respect its business model. And if I had only one tenth of one percent of their business, I’d be thrilled.”