A unique hybrid of a custom tailor and an upscale men’s specialty shop, J. Michaels is one of the most enjoyable shopping experiences anywhere. Founded in 1989, and occupying a 100 year old home on West End Avenue, our business grew initially by calling on accomplished men in their offices or homes and consulting them from the perspective of how to build a great visual reputation by using their clothing as an effective tool in nonverbal communication.
Today J. Michaels remains Nashville’s bespoke, custom, and made-to-measure clothing specialist, while also housing a tasteful array of ready-made merchandise from great brands like Peter Millar, Bills Khakis, Hiltl, Barbour Outerwear, Robert Talbott, Gardeur, Luciano Barbera, Alden and Santoni Shoes, Hickey Freeman, Oxxford, Belvest and others, along with our own special private label items. You are sure to feel welcome and at home in this sophisticated yet relaxed environment with a fun, professional staff and well stocked bar.
However, how one dresses is a visual extension of one’s self image, and, for some, self expression is among the great joys of life.
At J. Michaels, though, we consider the most crucial factor in how one presents themselves to the world, via what they wear, to be the psychological impact their clothing has on others, particularly those whom they want to influence. Psychologists tell us that 85% of communication is non-verbal and that people form their first impression of us within the first 60 seconds they meet us.
The first 20 seconds, people draw impressions and form opinions about how educated, sophisticated, honest, diligent, competent, confident, aware, informed and evolved we are based solely on our appearance—how we’re dressed, how we’re groomed, and what kind of shape we’re in. The scientific reason for it is because the optic nerve is 33 times stronger than the auditory nerve. The actual reality of it is that people believe what they see, even if it conflicts with what they are hearing, and they don’t even realize it.
So, at J. Michaels we have always advised our clients from the perspective of dressing for effect, not to be confused with dressing to impress or to attract attention. In fact, at our inception in 1989, we began building our business by having one on one conversations with our customers in their offices about their business, civic, and social lifestyles and the image they wanted to project in each, specializing in custom made clothing and superior personal service. Our vision was to become a hybrid of a custom tailor and an upscale specialty store, so, as our business grew, we began adding fine ready-made brands, and eventually evolved into that vision when we opened our current store in 2001. We still emphasize helping our clients save time by setting appointments to see them in their offices or homes if they so desire us to. But, a great number of our clients choose to come to the store to take advantage of the comprehensive experience of Nashville’s most extensive fabric library, our multiple custom resources and tasteful selection of world class ready-made brands.
When you call here during business hours, you’ll talk to the friendliest, most accommodating, knowledgeable people you can find anywhere. Let’s face it, a lot of the brands you’ll find on our site are available many places, but, at J. Michaels, we strive to make your experience shopping for them a true delight. And your 100% satisfaction is guaranteed.
So, thanks you for choosing to check us out, and we hope that when you choose to do business with us, you’ll find it to be an exceptional experience. If it isn’t, let us know, and we will make it right.
My husband loves suits; he's a suit nerd...He found an oasis where he can make every single decision about the clothes he buys.
J. Michaels was an amazing experience, top to bottom.
You couldn't ask for better service. I have shopped with them for almost 20 years and the good lord willing I will for another 20 years.
The best place for bespoke tailoring in Nashville. Period.
Mike Mahaffey was born in Dallas, Texas and graduated from The University of Texas with a degree in Journalism in 1978. He founded J. Michaels Clothiers in 1989 after moving to Nashville in 1986 from Dallas, where he had worked with custom clothier R.W. Furr since 1981.
He has served on the Board of Directors of The Custom Tailors and Designers Association of America and on the Board of the Exchange Club Family Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse, was the co-founder of the American West clothing brand, Cacties, and frequently conducts seminars on How to Build a Great Visual Reputation. His passions in the clothing business center around the personal relationships established and built with customers and co-workers; packaging clients in the most effective manner for their business and personal interactions; the architectural, engineering, and technical aspects of measuring and fitting; and teaching others the science of professional selling.
Mike and his wife, Mary Bit, live in Nashville, and together they have three children: Brad, Mary Kate and Wes Taylor (deceased) and two grandchildren. His interests outside of work include spending time with friends, writing and making music, riding horses, all things concerning the West, golf, great literature, philosophy, behavioral psychology, and the pursuit of the revelations concerning God’s relationship with mankind.
Jim Brandon was born in Murray, Kentucky and graduated from Murray State University [home of the Racers] in 1974 with a degree in Marketing & Health Education. While at Murray he was a member of Sigma Chi Fraternity. In August of 1970 Jim found his calling when he went to work for The College Shop directly across from the main campus. While working at the store between classes, he realized his love for the business and upon graduation moved to Nashville to go to work for Levy’s. Jim spent the next fifteen years gaining experience in management, buying and the fitting of tailored clothing.
Looking to expand his footprint in the realm of made-to-measure, Jim teamed up with Mike Mahaffey in 1992 bringing with him over twenty years of retail experience and has been integral in molding J. Michaels into the hybrid menswear specialty store & made-to-measure clothier it is now known to be. Often referred to as ‘the best dressed man in Nashville, Jim’s exacting attention to detail, signature sartorial style and guarded parameters in traditional menswear has given his clients a leg up in their business and casual wardrobes.
His love for the men’s business is finding new product for the store and making that personal connection with his clients to make sure he equips them for all of their work or social clothing needs. Jim and his wife Debbie live in Nashville and have three children – Nathan, Eric & Jamie. His interests outside the work center around his growing family, including five grandchildren.
Michael Barrett was born in Nashville, TN and has lived in the Nashville area his entire life. He graduated from David Lipscomb University with a BA degree in Bible and Business Communications in 1976. He began in the men’s clothing business in 1972 when he worked with Cain-Sloan in Green Hills and, after a year and a half, he began a lengthy career with Levy’s in 1974. Michael came on board with J. Michaels Clothiers in 2002, where he has developed many business and personal relationships along the way.
Michael has been an active member of the Brentwood Rotary Club since 1992, being on the Board of Directors six years and serving as President in 2007-2008. He completed the Rotary Leadership Institute and served the Rotary District 6760 as Assistant Governor from 2011-2015. In 2016, he graduated from the City of Brentwood Police Citizens Academy, to broaden his interest in local law enforcement and his support and understanding for what they do.
Michael has resided in Brentwood, TN for fifty years and has been active in the church his entire adult life. He is the father of two adult sons, Patrick and Brent, and three lovely grandchildren. He is an avid fan of collegiate sports, especially the University of Tennessee, as well as his local pro teams, the Tennessee Titans and the Nashville Predators. He prides himself in his ability to provide a personal one on one service that caters to local dignitaries, members in the entertainment business as well as the general public and is dedicated to making the process of purchasing clothing as stress free as possible for his valued clientele.
Trained in the old world tradition of master tailoring, Dennis Moore has over thirty years experience in garment construction, flat pattern drafting, and master alterations. A native Nashvillian, Dennis apprenticed at Solomon’s School of Tailoring after graduating from Hillwood High School in 1985 and has been an integral part of our in house alterations for the past 15 years. His expertise and knowledge allows us to offer a full range of options to our customers, including hand sewn working buttonholes and bespoke alterations to the finest made garments in the world.
Dennis and his wife, Leonora, enjoy travel and are very involved in their church, New Faith Baptist, where Dennis heads up their Youth Group program. He enjoys spending time with his two grown children & granddaughter in addition to flying RC Helicopters and joyriding in his Jeep every chance he gets.