Brand Profile: The Hill-Side

Brothers Sandy and Emil Corsillo, founders of The Hill-side, with menswear blogger and brand supporter James Wilson.
Brothers Sandy and Emil Corsillo, founders of The Hill-Side, with menswear blogger and brand supporter James Wilson. Image courtesy of GQ.

An increased focus in recent years on men’s style and fashion has had a lot of really positive benefits for those outside the industry, too — like the launch of GQ’s Best New Menswear Designers in America program. It’s an awesome way to check out what’s new and what’s next while finding out about great brands — like The Hill-Side (and on that note, the brand’s collaboration with GAP as part of the program should be drool-worthy). You might recognize the brand from its appearance on the head of a certain famous NBA player, too. The Brooklyn-based brand was launched in 2009 by denim-obsessed brothers Sandy & Emil Corsillo with business partner & friend Hisashi Oguchi. Obsessed with outstanding fabrics & Japanese workwear brands, the brand has found itself a nice niche — eclectic styles that manage to look of-the-moment at the same.

Some of the store's wares, including standout socks and great chinos, on display in Brooklyn.
Some of the store’s wares, including standout socks and great chinos, on display in Brooklyn.

I had the chance to stop into Hickoree’s, the brand’s physical outpost opened by the team in Brooklyn. And man, was I impressed with what I saw. In addition to stocking gear from The Hill-Side itself, the store also sells items you never knew you needed — like cool leather keyholders and Japanese pottery. The space is also, for one, exceptionally cool. There’s almost too much high-quality menswear to even begin to describe. The store stocks everything from indigo T-shirts and jeans from Blue Blue Japan to amazing chambray slip-ons and hemp denim sneakers (made in Japan for the brand).

Indigo wares on display from Blue Blue Japan, among others.
Indigo wares on display from Blue Blue Japan, among others.

Casual, washed shirts from The Hill-Side and the Gitman Brothers Vintage line are a highlight too, as are the unique trousers the store also stocks (like these sturdy jeans from Phivgel). The brand’s lightweight, infinitely wearable blazers are unlined and unconstruced, making them easy-wearing, and they have a tailored fit that’s not too restrictive. There’s also a standout selection of ties and pocket squares made from soft, textured fabrics — something that put the brand on the map in the first place. Pair that with a casual shirt and one of the many workwear-inspired jackets they also stock, and you’d have one standout outfit. Things can be topped off with a set of super comfortable and breathable socks  in a variety of colors (also the brand’s own). In fact, I picked up an olive Donegal tweed pocket square and some charcoal-tipped socks on this trip.

Beautiful ties in textured fabric from The Hill-side.
Beautiful ties in textured fabric from The Hill-Side.

Another personal highlight had to be the store’s stunning selection of sneakers — all from The Hill-Side itself. Whereas lots of brands are going for super clean, minimal shoes at the moment, there’s something to be said for sneakers that have unique texture and great construction (Donegal tweed sneakers or denim sneakers for the fall, anyone?). A set of herringbone twill sneakers in all-black were also quite well-made.

Just one pair of the awesome sneakers sold by The Hill-side.
Just one pair of the awesome sneakers sold by The Hill-Side.

Now, it’s absolutely worth noting that these pieces, from the blazers to the sneakers and even the socks aren’t cheap. They’ll set you back a pretty penny, to be sure. But the fabrics are beautiful on every piece, the quality and construction is top-notch and the styling potential for say, a chambray blazer or some clean white slip-ons, is huge. The great thing about the brand is that even though their line has expanded to more eclectic pieces (for example, small wooden display planes), they still have a grounded, defined sense of who they are — vintage, workwear-inspired and still very on-trend without trying too hard.

Soft-washed shirts from Gitman Brothers Vintage. Very well-made.
Soft-washed shirts from Gitman Brothers Vintage and The Hill-Side. Very well-made.

While not everyone will probably be able to get into the physical store soon, it’s for sure worth a trip if you ever find yourself in Brooklyn. And in the meantime, the brand’s excellent and quirky Web shop will have to suffice. Happy shopping!

What’s your favorite piece from The Hill-Side? Let me know!

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