In Dutch, Snyder means “one who makes outer garments” so it was natural for Iowa-born Todd Snyder to leave his hometown of Ames in 1989 to work as a tailor’s assistant in Des Moines at the renowned Iowa haberdashery Badowers. While studying textiles and clothing at Iowa State University he pinned suits, ripped seams, and learned the art of cutting and sewing to the point where he could make his own oxfords, vests, and trousers — a trait that would come in handy the following year when he moved to New York and interned at Ralph Lauren. By wearing shirts he’d sewn from deadstock fabrics he sourced cheap in the Garment District, Snyder caught the eyes of Polo’s menswear designer, who soon had the young Midwesterner sketching shirts and ties for the label.

From there he went on to design men’s sportswear at J.Crew and the Gap, outerwear for Polo Ralph Lauren, and returned to the Gap in 2000 as Director of Menswear. Four years later Snyder became SVP of menswear at J. Crew where he revamped men’s styling across the board, introduced formalwear, and launched a series of heritage brand collaborations. He also unveiled the brand’s 10 Easy Pieces campaign — detailing the essentials of classic wardrobe like a simple white oxford, a well-fit black blazer, or an iconic trench — as well as launching a slew of collaborations with heritage brands like Timex, Red Wing, Thomas Mason, and Alden that culminated in the popular Liquor Store boutique, opened in 2008.

Snyder left J.Crew shortly thereafter launching his own collection of casual American classics in 2011. Inspired by extensive research on military tailoring, Jermyn Street, and classic Hollywood style, the collection features everything from selvedge chinos to stonewashed Loro Piana sweaters and three-piece British wool suits. Now in his third season, Snyder has expanded his portfolio to include elegantly unstructured one-button tuxedos and countless innovative iterations of vintage cargos, trenches and military knits. Snyder melds New York urbanity in every garment, but it wouldn’t be Todd Snyder without a little dose of Iowa’s rustic charm. As Craig the owner of Badowers used to tell his young apprentice, “A perfectly fitted suit makes the man”.


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