Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, Bruno Cucinelli, and John Frazier. The first three names you’ve likely heard of and associate with innovative ideas and entrepreneurship, the 4th is on his way to being a known entity as an entrepreneur, designer, and fashion brand. John Frazier is the 22-year-old college dropout behind this latest online custom shirt clothier – JohnByron.com. As you’ll see from our Interview, Frazier has channeled Thiel, Musk, and Cucinelli as he launched his unique clothing brand.
John Byron is not just another online custom men’s shirting company. Each of the shirts are individually crafted in the United States out of high quality exclusive fabrics hand selected by Frazier. Each shirt also has unique features such as custom quotes inserted into the collar. These unique quotes come from the likes of Mark Twain and Steve McQueen.
Here is our interview with John Frazier in which he details his passion for men’s clothing, the launch of John Byron and much more.
LuxuriousPrototype: Great to meet you. First off, how did you come up with the name John Byron?
John Frazier: The name is my grandfather’s who was a unique individual in our family. A favorite family story is of John Byron going off into the woods clean-shaven and come back after living off the land for three months with his paintings and this massive beard. He was always a well-dressed guy, but had this interesting little quirk in his character. I felt that this quirkiness in an otherwise clean cut façade was a perfect match for the brand.
LP: So, the quirkiness in some of the shirting and the unique quotes from famous individuals is part of this desired charm for the brand?
Frazier: We believe in the idea of embracing our own individuality. Not everyone is the same. Why would a guy want to buy the same shirt that 3,000 other guys are going to own. They are their own selves. Why does it have to be the same color, the same fabric, or the same buttons? Have some individuality about it.
We select fabrics that are unique and that you won’t find on other brands. Even subtle differences in the fabric, woven versus printed, etc. Every single fabric has something subtly unique to it. We are kind of preppy with a rakish twist to it. We focus on a quality product.
LP: What is your target demographic?
Frazier: An affluent individual making a few purchases in standard sizes. They then come back to our site and invest in making a custom profile. And then make big purchases.
LP: So do you have standard sizing?
Frazier: So that’s the thing, we have better than standard sizes. Our standard sizes are better than any competitor. Because they are one-off shirts, they can purchase a shirt based on whether they have a standard, square, or sloped. Provides for a better fit.
LP: Why did you decide to launch the brand? What inspired you to do it?
Frazier: Grew up around design. Would be in and out of showcase houses growing up. Always around interior designers, my Mom was a designer. I was helping her with the labor portion of design. Became interested in design and men’s fashion. More of a fan of formal wear than street wear.
LP: Where do you think men’s fashion trends are moving?
Frazier: I think that the casualness of dress is changing. My generation loves to dress up. We think it’s the cool thing. The preppy dressy trend is here to stay for a bit.
LP: Tell us more about the humanitarian side of your business. Sounds similar to Warby Parker and others.
Frazier: I believe in higher education levels, especially in quantitative skills. Advances in quantitative skills can increase the overall course of society. Feel that doing something good is a great motivator. A portion of our profits will go to education.
LP: What inspires you?
Frazier: My two biggest influencers are two members of the PayPal Mafia. One of them is Peter Thiel; he’s an interesting character. And also, Elon Musk. I find both of them fascinating and how they think about things. They don’t follow the trends. They look at the logic behind it and then decide what is right.
LP: What are some of your favorite brands?
Frazier: One of my favorite brands is Loro Piana; they are innovative and focus on quality. They aren’t about building a shirt, but building a better shirt. Bruno Cucinelli is another. He started off as an engineering student, then dropped out and began doing color cashmere. I also find Tesla to be a great brand. I’m a physics guy. I view things from an engineering viewpoint. Tesla is made in the USA. I love that aspect. And these three explain what I’m trying to do with John Byron.
The editors were impressed with this young man and look forward to seeing this brand move into the future. Currently, his company has great price points in comparison to competitors and unique fabrics such as lightweight linen and woven designs. We’ll check in with the company and with John Frazier in an upcoming article to let you know how things are going.
– Kevin Feather