294 King Street, Charleston, SC 29401
Quality fabrics, classic silhouettes, attention to detail, seamless elegance. If you had to describe the look of the modern Southern gentleman, this might be a good start, and M. Dumas & Sons (or Dumas) — one of Charleston’s finest men’s specialty clothing retailers — is the ideal place to get that look.
Indeed, Dumas has been successfully dressing the men of South Carolina for over 100 years, and by all accounts, they know what they’re doing. With a focus on providing the best brands and highest customer service, they have certainly lived up to their slogan of “A century of style, a heritage of service.”
Founded in 1917 by Lithuanian immigrant Mendel Dumas, the shop started as a uniform vendor for the local services community. It quickly became the sole uniform provider for naval officers at the local base. Mendel’s twin sons, Joe and Abe, later joined the business as teenagers.
After WWII, and as the population resumed their recreational pastimes, saw an opportunity to provide apparel for outdoor activities, especially hunting and fishing. As the story goes, Dumas was reportedly the first store in South Carolina to carry Levi’s jeans.
In 1973, Mendel moved shop to a larger location at the corner of King and Society Streets in the heart of downtown Charleston, where they’ve been ever since. He also expanded the shop’s product offerings to include fashion denim, and with the addition of Tommy Bahama’s men’s fashion line in 1993, Dumas made a complete transition to a provider of menswear.
These days, the store is helmed by grandson David Dumas, who began his retail career folding clothes in his grandfather’s shop. David worked as an assistant buyer at Lord & Taylor and in apparel manufacturing before returning to Charleston to take over the store. Keeping that motto about style and service in front of mind, David spends his days making sure he is providing Charleston the highest quality customer service and most desirable fashions.
And quality is what you’ll get – whether online or in the store, Dumas carries a wide assortment of specialty store brands and an expertly curated selection of fine menswear and furnishings. For the classic fit suit, there’s Paul Bentley, or for a more European-styled slim fit, try Corneliani. Looking for that perfect sport coat that goes with just about everything? Let the professionals at Dumas show you one from Boglioli — known for its less structured, softer, contemporary styling. Add a blue houndstooth dress shirt from Eton or maybe one from Mizzen + Main in performance fabric with four-way stretch.
There are also a host of casual offerings, including chinos from Duck Head and Oxford, polos, shorts, and other activewear from Southern Tide. Dumas’ shoe selection includes offerings from Blucher (the classic open-lace shoe), Alden, and Cole Haan (loafers and wing shoes). There are aluminum spinner cabin bags from F.P.M. Milano and leather totes from Moor & Giles. Finally, grab a cake of solid cologne from
Fulton & Roark to make sure you smell as good as you look. Our favorite scent is Captiva, showcasing hints of green citrus, wild rock rose, and saltwater.
Visit M. Dumas & Sons online or in person.