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Sam Buffa

Freemans Sporting Club, 8 Rivington St., nr. Bowery; 212-673-3209

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I like the store concept: Buy clothes in front, get a haircut in back.
The barbershop was my suggestion. We use long-standing British brands like Geo F. Trumper and DR Harris. Guys are trying to maintain a kempt look instead of letting their hair go totally wild and messy and dirty.

Describe the store’s aesthetic.
Colonial American. We looked through historical photos, distressed the walls a bit, went to antique fairs all over. In the back, we play NPR and have a black-and-white TV.

Did you discover any decent antiquing spots?
Brimfield, Massachusetts—that’s where we got our display cases. Our 500-pound, early-twentieth-century porcelain chairs were a pain in the ass to get in here, but they’re pieces of history. There are a lot of places on Atlantic Avenue, too. A place called Darr is cool for industrial antiques.

What’s new for hotter weather?
This week: a seersucker “shacket.” It’s like a shirt-jacket. Also, spring suits in lighter-weight wools—which aren’t cut pencil-thin. We have slim, standard American, and three-button, boxy-cut suits.

Why “Sporting Club”? Is there something to join?
We’re not exclusionary—there’s no membership or initiation. It’s pretty much a group of my friends. We all work in art and fashion. We go camping, fishing, on motorcycle rides. It’s nice to know how to start a fire, how to shoot a gun. It feels good to be a man sometimes.


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