Trunk Clothiers, tucked away on Fitzrovia’s fashionable Chiltern Street, is something of an anomaly. In a city populated almost entirely by mass retail chains and monotonous trend following manufacturers, Trunk, discreet operation though it is, shines like a beacon of hope to those in search of something compelling. A thoroughly contemporary, lifestyle driven establishment – Trunk is perhaps one of the most original and thought-provokingly stocked menswear boutiques in Europe.
Its owner, Mats Klingberg is likewise something of an anomaly; a roguishly handsome Swede living in London with a thoroughly international take on life. “I’ve always been a bit of an explorer,” he explains, “I love discovering new things, new places, new people and new experiences, so I’m constantly on the look out for things that I haven’t experienced before.” It was this spirit of adventure, and evident immaculate taste in menswear, that led Mats to the point he’s reached today. “I’d been thinking about starting my own business for quite some time and realising that I did most of my own shopping on travels to Italy, Japan and Sweden and not in London even though London has so many great shops on offer. I felt like I’d identified a gap in the market.”
It may or may not have been a gap in the market, but one thing is for certain, Trunk – without any doubt in The Rake’s collective mind – contains one of the most exotic, uncompromising and inspirational collections of little known artisanal brands on the planet. As Mats puts it, “I wanted to create a shop that was a bit off the beaten track, that felt nice and cosy, where we greeted our customers by first name and where we offered a lovely selection of lesser known but very special brands that stood for provenance, quality and timeless designs.”
This, it has to be said, is a rather modest description. Trunk is a long-time go-to of the inner circles of the sartorial establishment, the place that one goes in London to discover new, quirky must-haves, limited edition specials and all manner of weird and wonderful eye-catchers. This is helped by the fact that Trunk has not one but two boutique premises on Chiltern Street, No. 8 is Trunk Clothiers (which as the name suggests is filled with clothes) and a little further down the street at No. 34 is Trunk Labs – an ever so slightly more esoteric space, which is devoted to footwear, accessories and generally cool stuff – candles, cosmetics, rakish stationary and the like. All of which makes Trunk a rather curious menswear hybrid, part gentlemen’s outfitter, part curiosity shop, part emporium.