Talbots Enters Men's Apparel

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Select U.S. homes get a 24-page catalog this week for a new line of classic men's clothing by specialty retailer Talbots.


Talbot Mens is the Hingham, MA, retailer's first major brand extension since the 1998 introduction of Talbots Woman and is its sixth retail concept.


The catalog precedes the launch of a broader product line in spring, when Talbots Mens will open doors. Three stores will open in the spring, and another three in the fall. There will be six to nine stores in 2004 and a major rollout the next year if the concept takes off.


Starting with a circulation of 750,000, the catalog will include sports coats, dress trousers, dress shirts, sweaters, casual pants, jeans, sports shirts, silk ties and outerwear. Suits and shoes will not be offered.


The catalog went mainly to Talbots customers. Company research found that 60 percent of consumers shopping in upscale men's stores are women. So Talbots expects its initial Talbots Mens customer to be women. The typical wearer of Talbots Mens clothing is expected to be ages 35 to 55, college educated, married, professionally employed and living in the suburbs.


All men's merchandise launched online Oct. 4 at talbots.com.


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