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Posted at 4:19 PM ET, 07/12/2005

Toeing the District Line

By Fritz Hahn

Marshall Thompson was tired searching fruitlessly at local boutiques for the mod English clothing he favors, or paying too much money to have garments shipped across the Atlantic. So, as a firm believer in the "do-it-yourself ethic," he decided to open his own basement-level shop in Adams Morgan and help others with the same problem.

The District Line won't have the broad appeal of some clothing shops, but it stocks Fred Perry, Lonsdale and Merc -- brands favored by indie rockers and skinheads alike -- as well as shirts and jackets by more cutting-edge designers like Boxfresh and English Laundry. Blame the dollar tanking against the pound or the high cost of shipping. but casual pieces and suits aren't cheap -- most T-shirts are in the $25-40 dollar range. "I'm trying to find the price point for what people want to pay, and what we carry ... it's a delicate balance," Thompson explains.

Coming months will see the arrival of more brands, including the urban One True Saxon line, a fuller selection of Lonsdale and Boxfresh, and the debut of the shop's shoe section.

On Saturday, Thompson marks the grand opening of the District Line with a 10 percent discount on Fred Perry products (including polos, track jackets, hats, women's shirts and tennis dresses) and by giving away tickets to see D.C. United take on reigning English Premier League champions Chelsea at Fed Ex Field later this month.

-- Fritz

By Fritz Hahn  | July 12, 2005; 4:19 PM ET
 
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Comments

the proper place for Americans who think they can pull of English mod is in England. The proper time to do it was 1965. Watch this shop chase "Go" and "Now" down the drain.

Posted by: Renard | July 13, 2005 10:17 AM | Report abuse

wow. that was hilarious. nice snap, renard.

Posted by: edward | July 13, 2005 12:21 PM | Report abuse

I stopped through last week and picked up some great club wear. Definitely a great place to go if you want to look good and not worry about anyone wearing the same clothes. Big fan!

Posted by: Jessica | July 13, 2005 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I live in Adams Morgan, and I'm glad to see something other than bars in the neighborhood. Finally a place for men to buy decent clothes around here!

Posted by: Matt S | July 13, 2005 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Edward, though I gotta paraphrase Chuck Heston and the NRA: The only way you're going to get my copies of "Pinups" and "Quadrophenia" is by prying them out of my cold, dead hands. ;)

Posted by: Renard | July 14, 2005 8:40 AM | Report abuse

"Go" and "Now" were both indie rock record stores. This store sells clothes. I don't get the connection. And I'd rather shop there than go to H&M or the Gap.

Posted by: Duh | July 14, 2005 10:27 AM | Report abuse

"I'm trying to find the price point for what people want to pay, and what we carry ... it's a delicate balance."

Not the best quote to use. Why doesn't he just ask customers first how much they are willing to pay and then adjust the prices accordingly?

Posted by: Dan | July 14, 2005 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Why doesn't he just ask customers first how much they are willing to pay and then adjust the prices accordingly?

>> Because most people would want to pay considerably less then what he needs to clear so he can pay the rent.

Posted by: proper commerce... | July 14, 2005 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Re: Price Point

I took it to mean he was trying to figure out what to carry. I think he's still learning about his customer base and trying to figure out whether it's worth stocking the expensive vintage-style Fred Perry shirts rather than the newer, cheaper versions.

Posted by: Fritz | July 14, 2005 5:36 PM | Report abuse

edward and renard, ya'll should date, go on now, exchange emails or better yet, phone numbers and get on with it & leave this new shop owner alone. What have you done to improve your neighborhood lately? put up or shut up.

Posted by: put up or shut up | July 15, 2005 2:26 AM | Report abuse

hey does anyone know if they sell gift certificates?

Posted by: steph | July 27, 2005 1:52 PM | Report abuse

stopped in and loved it, great store and definitely worth a look!

Posted by: james vic | February 9, 2006 2:47 AM | Report abuse

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