Derrick Miller has one of the more interesting resumes in menswear. The Minnesota native has worked in editorial at GQ, design at Ralph Lauren, co-founded the bespoke tailoring operation Miller’s Oath and revived the English shoe brand Barker Black. After spending more than 20 years in the industry, Miller’s discovered a thing or two—and now he’s sharing them with the rest of the world through Maker & Company.
“I started Maker & Co. about a year ago because there are all these small artisanal brands I loved that really couldn’t compete on their own online,” says Miller, who serves as the company’s creative director. “Companies like Abbeyhorn would have a hard time getting people onto their website. Unless a prospective customer knew exactly who the manufacturer was, there’s no way you’d ever accidentally run across a small artisanal maker of horn goods.”
While the 272-year-old purveyor of gifts made from deer antlers and buffalo horns is a good example, it’s just the tip of the Maker & Company iceberg. The site hosts brands that may ring familiar to the keyed-in menswear consumer, such as Frank Clegg, Fox Flannel and Inis Meáin, as well as more arcane finds like Wassookeag Moccasin, which makes deerskin-lined buffalo hide moccasins in Central Maine, and William Eadon, an organic perfumer working out of Brooklyn. There’s even a selection of vintage timepieces, like a 1975 Cartier Tank Jumbo with a Paris-signed dial, sourced by Foundwell.
The roster is the result of Miller’s many years building industry connections and his passion for seeking out specialty brands while traveling. Miller says the qualifying process for new makers is easy: “I need to love what they do.” On a more practical note, he confirms that every product featured is made entirely by the maker, and not outsourced to a third party at any point in the production process.
But Miller isn’t content to simply play host—he also collaborates with artisans to produce unique goods sold under the Maker & Company label, which has included Aran sweaters made with Inis Meáin, Irish linen band collar shirts made in Texas and hand-embroidered bullion patches.
Though the website was launched last year, it represents the second iteration of Maker & Company. The company was founded in 2011 as a straightforward men’s clothing brand but fell to the wayside after its founder, Chris Crowley, passed away in 2014. After being introduced to Crowley’s best friend years later, Miller decided to reinvent the company as an online specialty store.
“One of the quotes that Chris based the company on was ‘We celebrate the makers, the tailors and craftspeople,” says Miller. “This gives you a really good idea of what he was going for and I try to uphold his vision for the original company with a more modern interpretation.”
Naturally, we couldn’t help but poke around Maker & Company ourselves. Here are just a few of our favorites from the current lineup.
Lavenham Bomber Gilet
Originally founded as a maker of horse blankets in the 1960s, Lavenham evolved to supply that other Sloane Ranger essential: the quilted gilet. This solution to fleece fatigue features a bomber collar for a more modern touch and curvy, corduroy-bound pockets.
Hand & Lock 17th Lancers Silver Bullion Blazer Crest
Hand & Lock is a 254-year-old firm that’s embroidered for the likes of the Royal Family and the British military. This hand-stitched, silver bullion crest was the symbol of a now-defunct British cavalry regiment, so it can be worn without accusations of stolen valor.
Maker & Company Western Shirt
Founded in 1883, Texas-based Hamilton is the oldest continually operational shirtmaker in America. This shirt, based on a piece worn by Lyle Lovett, may nod to the brand’s Longhorn roots but its olive hue makes it more contemporary than Country-Western.
Abbeyhorn Silver Horn Whiskey Tot
Maker & Company’s selection isn’t limited to wearable items, as evidenced by this horn cup crafted by an English maker established in 1749.
George Esquivel ‘Boswell’ Boot
These suede side zips from LA-based George Esquivel, one of the few bespoke shoemakers working in the States, have a stacked heel to satisfy the cowboy boot-curios but feature a sleek shape that’s better suited to urban wear.