Brimble & Clark’s Sim Khan is moving Washington style in a more dapper direction.
As a lawyer, Sim Khan “wore suits to go to war”; he’s dressing his clients at Brimble & Clark to do the same, but without sacrificing style.
There were many reasons Sim Khan went to law school. But for him, one stands out. “I liked the suits,” he chuckles. “Maybe that’s where that began.”
“That” is the custom-menswear company Brimble & Clark, which Khan launched in DC at the age of 30. The Montreal native’s sartorial journey started when he was a student at McGill University and discovered how much fun it was to have custom pieces made all over the world as he traveled, from Spain and Turkey to the United Kingdom, including a semester at Oxford.
Although leaving banking law for fashion was a risk, an early in with actress Rachel Bilson, best known as Summer on The O.C., helped get Khan’s work noticed by studio executives. Soon Brimble & Clark was making custom suits for the actors of X-Men, Twilight, and Captain America, along with musicians like Diplo and Major Lazer. Washington men took note, too: Khan has dressed Top Chef alum Spike Mendelsohn and his Sheppard business partner Vinoda Basnayake, event planner extraordinaire André Wells, DC United player Chris Pontius, and Bachelorette contestant–turned– bar owner Chris Bukowski.
“As a lawyer, I wore suits to go to war,” Khan says. “So now I make sure every Brimble & Clark suit is made with that purpose in mind.”
For the client, every experience begins with a fitting and an evaluation of his current wardrobe. “We’ll recommend different fabrics based on what you already have in your closet,” Khan explains. “We’ll look at your shirts and ties, we’ll look at your preexisting suits, so we can recommend the next suit for you to get.” All the textiles are sourced from Great Britain or Italy, and the company uses some of the world’s finest Italian lamb’s wool, milled by the Barberis Canonico family, whose firm has been in business for more than 350 years.
In a city plagued by “so many khakis,” Khan says, it’s sometimes tough to move clients in a more stylish direction, especially those in the political sector. “I don’t think most guys understand that wearing something that fits you better will actually make you look more authoritative, bigger, stronger, more appealing, more trustworthy.”
But he is making progress. “Some guys who work on the Hill will buy two sets of suits,” Khan observes with a laugh. “One is very big and boxy for their jobs, and the other is slim, because they actually want to get married one day.” 301-788-4431