The Idle Man is an online destination for the twenty-something fashion-savvy man that was launched just over two years ago by Alex Outlaw and Oliver Tezcan. The brand received instant mainstream attention when they turned down an offer on Dragons Den as the stake was too high.
The Idle Man's focus is on timeless wardrobe staples from respected brands including Nudie, Edwin, Grenson, YMC, Superga and their own Idle Man brand. Their concept is to bring a considered edit of no-nonsense clothing to make men’s shopping experience straightforward and stress-free; style made easy
Since its inception, The Idle Man has seen rapid growth with the site attracting over one million visitors a month. Their combination of content and commerce has enabled their blog, The Idle Man Manual, to become one of the biggest mainstream fashion websites in the UK.
We caught up with co-founder and CMO Alex Outlaw to hear more about The Idle Man approach and their road to success.
BL: Tell us about The Idle Man and how it differs to other online retailers?
- The Idle Man is different from many online retailers due to our approach to menswear. We saw that nobody was looking after young guys in the fashion world and decided that something needed to change. We decided to start The Idle Man in 2014 and haven’t looked back since. Looking good isn’t hard if you know how and that’s where we come in. The Manual is designed to help guys who have no clue about fashion as well as those who do know about current trends. As well as The Manual, our physical store is now open in Farringdon and it’s a place for guys to come in and speak with our personal stylists to see what is best for them.
BL: How long did it take for your idea to come to life?
- Around 2 years of planning. Our CEO, Oliver Tezcan and I wanted to make sure that everything we did was planned and eventually we launched in 2014. Now we’re doing really well and we’re very proud of the business.
BL: You mention the desire in fashion to identify with a ‘tribe’. Which tribe do you belong to?
- Definitely the creative tribe. Working in this industry it’s important to think outside the box in order to get noticed. Being creative has led The Idle Man to where it is today.
BL: Do you have a go-to uniform?
- A white t-shirt, white trainers and raw denim. Keeping it simple makes life so much easier in the morning!
BL: Favourite brand/designer and why?
- The Idle Man obviously! Nudie Jeans as well because they recycle a lot of their materials and are one of the most sustainable manufacturers we’ve come across.
BL: Who or what is your biggest inspiration?
- It’s a bit cliche but my Dad. He started his own business and instilled the hardworking ethos in me from a young age.
BL: What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
- Keith Ferazzi lives by the motto of “set yourself personal goals and hit them.” I love it because it subconsciously guides you to where you want to go in life. You’ve got to make decisions that will help you to reach those goals, whether it’s owning a house or starting a business, you’ve got to set goals and make sure that you can hit them. If all else fails then be nice to your Mum.
BL: And the best piece of advice you can share?
- Work hard, set yourself goals and make time for your friends. The road is long and it’s hard to make it based purely on your talents. If you keep in contact with the people you meet you will be amazed how they can help.
BL: How do you define success?
- By reaching the goals you set.
BL: How do you switch off?
- I rarely ever switch off but that’s the nature of my job but a friend of mine recommended meditation, the only problem is I’ve not made the time for it yet.
BL: Favourite place in London?
- I’d have to say Shoreditch. I live and work here and it’s just in the heart of East London. It’s also constantly changing with new bars restaurants and stuff to do. Sure it looks a bit scruffy but that is part of the charm.
BL: What is next for The Idle Man? Will there be an Idle Woman?
- We’re just trying to conquer menswear for the minute but you can never say never!