By Kevin Collison
Cameron Niederhauser wants EAST + WEST, his new men’s clothing shop at 1828 Grand, to fuel the Crossroads evolution beyond being known for its art galleries and unique restaurants and bars.
“When I was thinking about where to locate the shop, I felt a draw to the Crossroads,” he said. “There wasn’t much retail. Hopefully this will be a place to move the Crossroads beyond food, beer and art, but also a retail destination.”
The new shop owner was relaxing on a contemporary leather couch at the center of his 1,300 square-foot establishment that opened in late February.
Around him were neat piles of raw denim jeans and racks of other casual men’s clothing from designers including Rogue Territory of LA, 3 Sixteen from New York and Norse Projects of Copenhagen.
“A lot of our clothes are manufactured in the U.S., Canada and Europe,” he said. “We emphasize classics with value and good construction and a mixed price point.”
Niederhauser’s journey to EAST + WEST began at the University of Missouri where he met Brian Simpson from St. Louis.
After graduating in 2013, he worked for Baldwin, a pioneering Kansas City clothing firm with an eye toward unique, local fashion design.
“I did everything from management to buying and curating third part brands and wholes sale,” he said. “I got a taste for the entire industry.”
After learning the retail ropes, he decided he wanted to open a shop of his own, a place that would translate the fashion sensibilities of the East and West Coasts to Kansas City tastes.
He reached out to his friend, Simpson, who at this point had opened his own EAST + WEST shop in St. Louis.
“When we talked about looking to run a store here, he proposed me owning and running an EAST + WEST in Kansas City,” Niederhauser said.
He opened on Feb. 24 and for now, it’s a one-man operation. His hours are from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, and noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays.
Niederhauser has reached out to other shopkeepers in the Crossroads and there are plans to put together a shopping guide flyer to distribute to their mutual customers.
“I’ve always wanted to make downtown Kansas City a more livable and attractive place to be,” he said.
Don’t miss any downtown news, sign up for our weekly CityScene KC email review here.