Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Shops we love: Mandatory

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Mandatory in Cuba MallThere aren't many independent specialist menswear shops in Wellington, and fewer still that have their own label. House of Hank is one, and Hank certainly has a loyal following for his unique creations, but if you want something crisp and contemporary, Mandatory is your best bet.

For nearly ten years, Mandatory has been a beacon of Wellington style in Cuba Mall. Designers Clare Bowden and Fiona Voisey seem to have captured something very Wellington, realising that there are men here who'd prefer not to wear a suit, but don't want to look like skateboarders either.

Sure, there's always Zambesi, Little Brother, Workshop, Marvel, Satori and maybe Farrys, but Mandatory is designed in Wellington and feels right at home here. Besides, how can you not love a fashion label that called its 2005 winter collection Martini Militia?

See other shops we love.


At 11:26 am, January 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do we know if the clothes they sell are NZ Made? It's a good thing that we have local deisgners but not if it's all 'Made in China'.

At 4:09 pm, January 19, 2006, Blogger Tom said...

As far as I know (pause while I check the label on my shirt...) all of their own label stuff is made in New Zealand, and probably in Wellington too. They'll also take requests for alterations: not quite a bespoke service, but if you want a garment made slightly different they'll get the factory to make it that way.

They also stock a few other labels, some of which are Australian or possibly European, but I haven't checked to see where they're actually made. So far, everything I've seen there with a "Mandatory" label has been locally made.

At 4:55 pm, January 19, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's good to hear, thanks for the reply.

I might just have to check this shop out for myself at some stage.

At 5:02 pm, January 19, 2006, Blogger Tom said...

Yep, go and have a look. Bear in mind that "made in NZ" is pretty much incompatible with "cheap", but their designs are classic enough that you can get a lot of wear out of them.

At 5:37 pm, January 21, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes, good, but: not cheap, and also : too damn small. They don't have anything to fit me: nor, sadly, for that matter, do Marvel, which is otherwise a great shop.

At 8:57 pm, January 22, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey I haven't even been to the shop yet! lol. Darn 'anonymous' username, I guess there can be more than one person who uses it. I'll be in Wellington next week for NZUSA conference and i'll be sure to pop in and check it out

anonymous person 1


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