Both the Thurston Bros and No Man Walks Alone stores are and should be cool. The big difference between Thurston and ToJ is that ToJ is sorta a fashion startup, and is really about fashion (lambskin, varsities, etc...) and Thurston Bros is a legit motorcycle gear shop. The lightest leather available from Aero, from fashion jackets, are as heavy as a the heaviest that Drew would have carried. If you are in RRL, or want a leather that you can really break in and live hard in, Aero is a better choice than ToJ. The fits are also dialed in, just because Aero has been around so long. However, the designs are pretty much what they are. It's good, in a way, because most MTO where there are too many options end up looking mediocre to terrible, unless the maker really works with you, and you are lucky. I mean, designers go throught tons of samples of original pieces to get things right. I expect that that's one of the many reasons Drew decided to not do just any options. To expect to get things right the first time is nearly impossible. I am going to get a blue cafe racer from them.
Aero and Vanson have always done MTO. The real difference is that Thurston Bros. has a MTO allotment with Aero, which means that you get your jacket in 5-7 weeks, as opposed to 4 months. For me, that's critical. I am going to get a blue cafe racer from them.
NMWA should be cool. I chatted with Greg about his stock, and I think that it will surprise you. It's not CM in the way, say, The Armoury is (i.e. great for that demographic, but not with that much that I need or want to buy for myself.) There is a lot of that as well, of course.