While David Schottenstein was away at boarding school in Venice, Italy, he spent his free time frequenting stores like Giorgio Armani and Ermenegildo Zegna, where he cultivated his love for fine clothing. Now the 27-year-old entrepreneur, whose family started the DSW store chain, has launched Nobility, a tailored clothing collection that Schottenstein describes as heavy on handmade but light on price.
Nobility is being sold exclusively through Astor & Black, a Columbus, Ohio-based by-appointment men’s clothing business Schottenstein established in 2005. The Nobility label, he says, is intended to bridge the divide between high-priced designer suits and the introductory $499 tailored suit for which Astor & Black is known. “We started Nobility to make sure our garments would make a guy who typically wears Kiton or Brioni happy,” said Schottenstein.
Nobility suits are produced by a team of 30-year-veteran master tailors in both America and Hong Kong and incorporate all of the details one expects from a prestige suit brand. “The canvas inner lining goes through a soaking and drying process three times to make it feel soft as butter,” he pointed out. Additional details: buffalo-horn buttons; hand-sewn buttonholes, under collar, and armholes; hand pick stitching on every seam; and the inside of the jackets can be customized to include pockets for passport, cigarettes, and a cell phone. Plus, “the interior pant liner is made of superluxurious cotton and incorporates an ultrafine rubber strip to hold your shirt in place,” added Schottenstein. The suits are made from the company’s finest Scabal, Dormeuil, and Loro Piana fabrics, and are priced from $1,595 to just under $3,000 for a cashmere suit.
With the launch of Nobility, Astor & Black unveiled a new online service to make reordering suits easy. “After a guy has already been fitted, he can use our new Bespoke Visualizer to browse 3,000 suit fabrics and 1,000 shirt fabrics in whatever style he wants, and the computer is going to give him a simulation of what the final garment is going to look like,” said Schottenstein, adding how the online tool virtually takes all of the guesswork out of buying a custom suit. (877.ASTOR.18, www.astorandblack.com)