Barton Strawn recognized a void in Raleigh’s retail landscape and seeks to fill it with Lumina, a men’s clothing retailer opening downtown this week. Lumina began selling neckwear in 2009 and has since expanded the brand to include shirts, trousers and accessories — all made in America.
“Eventually we would like to launch our own facility to make a lot of this stuff. But for us, it’s all about finding that balance between quality and the craftsmanship and the price point,” said Barton Strawn, one of Lumina’s founders. “We don’t want American made to become this exclusive thing.” “We strive for right around the J. Crew mark. Everything under $100.”
In addition to its abundance of neckwear options, the store will sell six styles of button-down shirts — though Strawn hopes to gradually offer up to 15 styles — and four styles of trousers. These staples will be stocked continuously, while blazers, seasonal items, varying fabrics and a selection of women’s products are forthcoming.
Lumina will also stock a variety of American-made accessory brands, including Field Notes journals, Ebbets Field Flannel North Carolina hats, Imperial Barber grooming products, Parrot Canvas totes and Zkano socks.
The space feels masculine. Through the large double doors a customer will find heavy wooden tables, exposed brick and a retired ladder hanging on a sidewall functioning as a shelf. The place has been under construction and the lingering smells of paint and sawdust are a reminder of such. But, for a men’s clothing store, the fragrant indication of labor seems more like a brand standard than an unwelcome consequence.
Strawn designs all the lines for Lumina. Originally from Wilmington, he went to school first for architecture and then for business. His three business partners fill a variety of roles. Justin Carey, who handles the financial and legal aspects, started the company with Barton during undergrad at N.C. State University. Paul Connor, who works with marketing and public relations, will focus on the retail sales presence. Peter Landis manages logistics and supply. In addition to the core team, Lumina has hired part-time assistance to do some of the technical aspects of the clothing design, like pattern drawings and grading.
Lumina is located at 123 E. Martin Street, near the intersection of Martin and Blount Streets. Store hours will be Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A grand opening event on Friday, Nov. 2, begins at 6:30 p.m. and is sponsored by Natty Greene’s Raleigh and Ray’s Hair Shop.