i’ve spent a lot of time lately in florence (alabama not italy) lately for work and have been impressed with this city in northwest alabama. not to mention that it is also my friend and partner’s hometown. but what is really cool about this city is billy reid, renowned fashion designer and winner of many cfda awards including men’s designer of the year.
billy reid’s flagship store is in florence, alabama in a converted bookstore with his design studio upstairs. he also has retail stores in new york, dallas, nashville and atlanta. you can also find his clothing in many bloomindales.
how to describe his style…i would classify it as southern classic with an edge. i feel like my husband could put on an outfit from his store and wear to work and then at night, just remove the tie and carry on. now he does carry women’s clothes but he is more well known for his gentlemen’s line.
but let me tell you a few things that you might not know…he throws an annual party called shindigs right downtown where by the way he also has a wharehouse sale at the same time. shindigs gathers musical artists across the country. he, in my opinion, also helped revived downtown. i’ve been going to florence for almost twenty years and i haven’t seen it so vibrant in a long time. ever since he opened his store, new restaurants and stores have opened and people are returning downtown; giving credence to the phrase, “if you build it they will come”.