The Monday, July 21, 2003 edition of DNR features this article under the heading "NEW BOOK CONNECTS CUSTOMERS, RETAILERS" : "NEW YORK - The Men's Clothing Guide by Steve Brinkman helps men to pick the right labels-then tells consumers where to buy them. The book is subtitled "How and Where to Buy the Best Men's Clothing in America" and it delivers on its promise. The first seven chapters are a guide to men's fashion, covering topics such as do's and don'ts, color, cut and style, and business casual dress. Brinkman gives men sensible advice, telling them to shop within their budgets and reminding them that it's better to buy a few well-made items that will last than a lot of inexpensive items that will shrink or fall apart. And he praises independent specialty stores for their attentive service, diverse merchandise and competitive prices. It's in the second half of the book that Brinkman really makes fashion accessible to the average guy: he gives the shopping details on 1,200 men's fashion retailers around the country, including more than 300 independents. Brinkman said he's visited more than 1,000 of the stores himself, and he's not afraid to commend retailers he likes, such as Dan Higdon of Texas Clothiers in Austin, of whom he writes: "He likes to inventory clothes that take the Texas heat into account - structured but unlined and super-lightweight fabrics. If you're anywhere near Austin, the accessories alone are worth a visit." To help narrow things down, Brinkman has created a searchable database at his Web site: MensSpecialtyRetail.com. There, visitors can easily perform custom searches to find all the retailers that carry Etro, or all the men's stores in Birmingham, Ala. Â Â The book was a labor of love for Brinkman, who quit a career in medical product sales to write it. "My intent is to get people back into stores and to get men comfortable shopping again," he said. "Ultimately I envision being a full-time advocate for men's specialty stores. I love men's fashion and I want to open up some new avenues for growth." Brinkman is hosting a cocktail party to celebrate the launch on July 19 at the Warwick Hotel here. The event is being co-hosted by the new better clothing and sportswear label Kenyon Ross. Retailers interested in carrying the book can reach Brinkman at 510-710-5721. They can also purchase it through Brinkman's Web site. -THOMAS CUNNINGHAM"
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7/22/03 at 7:28pm