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Photography by Spacecrafting

J. Hilburn

Custom-Made Men’s Clothing

It’s said that the clothes don’t make the man. But what if the clothes make the man’s life easier? 

Custom clothier J.Hilburn does just that, with a personal-stylist sales model where men get individualized, attentive service without a huge time commitment — as well as a curated, custom-fit wardrobe attuned to their specific lifestyle. 

“Men experience so many frustrations when shopping in traditional retail settings,” says J.Hilburn stylist Sarah Ramsay, who outfits many of the Twin Cities’ most dapper men. “They walk into a store without really understanding what could grow their wardrobe and walk out with four more blue shirts. They want to understand how to integrate new clothing into their existing closet, and they want to feel confident in their fit and style when they walk into a room, whether it’s for work or play. We take the guesswork out of the equation. It sounds too good to be true — until you meet with your J.Hilburn stylist.”

Established in 2007, the company built its reputation providing affordable custom suits and dress shirts for execs then wisely expanded its offerings to include a broad array of clothing, from business casual to outerwear to resortwear. Stylists meet with new customers, take measurements, discuss their lifestyle and fit preferences, and select personalized details like buttons, collars, cuffs and suit lining. After a few weeks, they meet back up to confirm the fit of their first items, making any tweaks as necessary. After that, curating seasonal looks can be done through a virtual closet or an in-person style session, whichever the client prefers.

“I was hooked on working with J.Hilburn from the very beginning,” exclaims client Gary Kraemer, president of John Kraemer & Sons. “Sarah’s attention to detail, knowledge of product, keen design eye and great personality were all obvious at our first meeting. I quickly learned how great it felt to wear custom clothing that fits me perfectly every time.”

“We build this very powerful working wardrobe,” Ramsay adds. “Suddenly, he’s got fewer clothes, but he has endless options because of how I’ve curated and put together the wardrobe. She handles fit issues, styling questions and custom requests with aplomb — and even tackles closet clean outs and event-specific outfit quandaries.

When asked what a custom style request might look like, Ramsay rattles off a nearly endless list: plain, two-button sports coats to double-breasted, three-piece suits to simply a pair of trousers or a vest to layer under a jacket. A shirt with a convertible cuff that can function as either a French or button cuff. Knits, fabrics and styles that can be crafted nine different ways. Half linings or even deconstructed jackets to help keep men cooler. Belts with custom stitching to match a favorite jacket or pair of shoes. The best part? Clients can decide if they want to manage those details or just leave it to their stylist’s magic touch.

“You never get a second chance to make a first impression,” explains client Nick Halvorson, senior managing director of Principal Financial Group. “Sarah was able to work with me to add custom touches to my wardrobe to really create a unique, fashionable look. Being able to customize and create my look with her guidance and talents has been a spectacular experience. J.Hilburn delivers a level of product that is second to none.”

Currently, there are more than 60 J.Hilburn personal stylists available in the Twin Cities area. Ramsay notes that the camaraderie among her fellow stylists and the joy they get from boosting their clients’ confidence are just some of the perks of their fun, flexible jobs. “Our clients are the best dressed guys in the room,” she asserts. “We make it really easy, we save him a ton of time and money, and we help him look and feel better.”

But don’t just take it from her. As client and Fox Sports North television analyst Jim Petersen raves: “Sarah has made this whole process so easy. She comes to me and brings all the options. We sit at the kitchen table with my wife; we even look through my closet. She understands my style. If you want custom clothing at a good price, I don’t think there’s a better option out there.”

To find a J.Hilburn personal stylist near you, visit

Read this article as it appears in the magazine.

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