Michael Mason, Owner
In a nutshell: I was a salaried manager working for the man, about 60 hours a week. My job and just over broke income kept me comfortably sustained…Almost weekly I was saying to myself - "If they only did it like this, or Why not do it this way, or If this was my business, and of course - Someday when I have my own business…”. One day I went to work and BOOM - the next thing I know - I’m unemployed. Just like that, what a day it was. I had no idea but this turned into the best day of my life.
After massaging my ego, after moaning, groaning, and blaming, I started listening and I heard opportunity knocking. I had a manly idea: Create a new man only shoe store/haberdashery. A light bulb went on and that was the start. I focused my energy and OMG, I was signing things and buying things and going into debt, but it was my debt and I was definitely calling the shots. Finally - I was the man! The doors opened in Southern California, my store, my idea (along with some very welcomed input) I was off and running towards what has evolved into today’s aRealMan.
After moving to New Mexico and trying the corporate gig again - on St Patrick’s Day 2009 - in Mesilla - at 11:00am - aRealMan re-opens the doors. A different, uniquely special man’s store was restarting something in the middle of a recession. People came in to shop or look around and almost everyday they still start by saying “wow you have…” and as they are leaving (smiling, and happy that they finally found the hard to find exactly what they’ve been looking for chapeau or ‘casually dress up shirt’) they would make recommendations, request and offer suggestions. By customer request, Shady Ladies opens featuring Clothes, Big Brims, Round Crowns, Sun Hats and portions of what was a haberdashery close.
Customers are the biggest influence on our products, they ask and we seek Hats that Clark Gable, Howard Hughes, or Bogart wore. The style Bear Bryant made infamously, the ones you see in movies, or a specific musician wearing, sometimes they are simply looking for the signature hat worn by their father, uncle or grandpa. A man’s haven and a woman’s joy. Find stylish, colorful, contemporary old school fashion. Interestingly designed embroidered resort shirts sized that fit maintenance and ready to wear.