News from Mandatory
Wellington’s Mandatory menswear is relocating its Cuba Mall shop after CubaDupa weekend, 24–25 March. After 20 years in its current location the store is a mainstay of the Cuba Street retail scene, but has found new premises that will allow the fashion label to fulfill a long-held dream.
Says co-owner Clare Bowden, ‘For many years we’ve wanted to combine our shop and workroom. We’re so proud that we make our clothing here in Wellington, and really want to share that feel-good factor by showing people how we roll and who’s making their clothes.’
The Mandatory workroom has been in the historic Hope Gibbons Building for the last 20 years. ‘The Gibbons family have been fantastic landlords and we’ve loved sharing the building with so many other local creatives, but we’re ready forge ahead in a new space where all eight of us can work together,’ says Clare.
Mandatory’s new premises will be at 21 Ghuznee Street, in the former Union Clothing Company factory that most recently housed Abel Traders secondhand shop. The new store opens, complete with fresh branding, on April 10.
Their Ghuznee Street neighbour is The Service Depot, another longstanding champion of New Zealand fashion, which recently moved from Wakefield Street. Next along, in the former Salvation Army Family Store, the Whistling Sisters brewery opens this Friday. The trio’s fresh looks and slick styling have given this landmark corner a major makeover in a very short space of time.
Says Clare, ‘It seems like “Cuba Street cool” is creeping down every street and laneway these days, and we’re pretty excited to be setting up shop in a new hotspot with other passionate local indies.’
The timing has worked out perfectly, allowing a super-sized CubaDupa Relocation Sale (19–25 March) before the Mandatory team moves in to 21 Ghuznee ready to launch their Winter ’18 range. A 21st birthday celebration will follow when the dust has settled.
‘It’s a real credit to our staff that despite planning the move, refitting new premises and undertaking a major rebrand, we haven’t been distracted from our business of making fine menswear. Our winter range is shaping up beautifully and we can’t wait to show it off in appropriate scale in our fabulous new fashion house,’ says Clare.
Clare is quick to admit that Mandatory will miss its small but sweet position in the heart of the Mall. ‘Our shop has been so brilliantly positioned to enjoy the vibrant life of Cuba Street. It’s been fun being so connected to its everyday people, performers, artists and visitors from all over the world.’
‘We’ve made lifelong friends in small businesses up and down the street, and they’ve all given us a huge amount of support in the last 20 years. Thank goodness we’re moving just one block away.’
Established in 1997 by Clare Bowden and Fiona Edwards, Mandatory menswear specialises in custom suits alongside smart casual, work and special occasion wear, released in limited, seasonal ranges. Weddings, parties, anything – Mandatory is first choice for the stylish man looking for skilful tailoring, high-quality fabrics and first-class personal service.
Mandatory has been a mainstay of the Cuba Street scene since 1997, for all of that time sandwiched together with other local icons The Matterhorn, Rex Royale, and Farmers – all sadly now departed.
Read more at www.mandatory.co.nz