J. Press is a traditional men's clothier founded in 1902 on Yale University's campus in New Haven, Connecticut by Jacobi Press. The brand also has stores in New York City and Washington, D.C.. In 1974, the Press family sold the rights to license J. Press for the Japanese market, making it the first American brand to be licensed in Japan.[1] In 1986, J. Press was acquired by the Japanese apparel company Onward Kashiyama, who had previously been his licensee for 14 years.[2] Japanese licensed distribution is roughly six times larger than the American-made J. Press.[3] J. Press is currently part of the Onward Group (Onward Holdings, Ltd.).[4]

J. Press
FoundedNew Haven, Connecticut (1902)
HeadquartersNew York City, New York, U.S.
Key people
Jacobi Press (Founder)
Jun Murakami (Current CEO)
Paul Press (Past President and CEO)
ProductsMen's Clothing
ParentOnward Kashiyama (Onward Holdings, Ltd.)


Founder Jacobi Press in New Haven, CT.

Jacobi Press immigrated to the US from Latvia in 1896 and founded the company six years later.[5]

Since its founding, J. Press' clothing has remained much the same. For example, the company produces the vast majority of its off-the-rack jackets in the traditional "three-button sack" style rarely found today in America, and for the most part, only produces plain-front trousers, for which the company suggests a traditional 134" cuff. Fabrics are generally subdued, except for traditionally bright-colored items such as casual trousers and sweaters. Its neckties bear traditional repp stripe, foulard, and paisley motifs. They also carry scarves and ties featuring motifs and colors for Ivy League schools, including Yale's Skull and Bones Society. J. Press dress overcoats are of lambswool, cashmere, or camel hair, or of herringbone tweed with a velvet collar in the Chesterfield style.

New Haven Store
Ties from the J. Press spring/summer 1962 catalog

J. Press is said to carry on a traditional Ivy League style of men's clothing.[6] J. Press caters most to an old-fashioned preppy subculture that eschews popular culture trends. The company makes an effort not to outsource the production of its clothing to developing countries or to use synthetic materials in its line.


The New Haven store was originally built in 1863 in the French Second Empire style as a residence for Cornelius Pierpont, a prominent local grocer. It was irreparably damaged by Winter Storm Nemo in February 2013; the company is temporarily renting a store at 260 College St., across from the Shubert Theatre.[7][8]

In 1912, the company opened a store in New York “appropriately equidistant from the Yale and Harvard Clubs.”[9]

In May 2007, J. Press moved to 380 Madison Avenue in New York City,[1] which closed indefinitely[10] in 2014.[11]

J. Press opened another store in New York on March 1, 2013, located at 304 Bleecker Street, which carries a younger subset of its line initially named “York Street,” called by the New York Times “a faint outline of the original,”[12] and later renamed “J. Press Blue.”[13]

In October 2017, J. Press closed the York Street store and opened a new store in midtown Manhattan, in the same building as the Yale Club. The store was expected to generate 25% of U.S. sales.[14] J Press has been constructing a new larger four story retail storefront at the original 260 York St., New Haven location.[15]

J. Press formerly had branches in Cambridge, Massachusetts (closed in August 2018 after 86 years),[16] San Francisco, California and Princeton, New Jersey.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b New Flagship Updates J. Press Archived 2007-09-29 at the Wayback Machine DNR, 2007-5-7. Retrieved on May 30, 2007.
  2. ^ Belkin, Lisa (October 27, 1986). "J. PRESS CHAIN IS BOUGHT BY A JAPANESE CLOTHIER". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-16.
  3. ^ Colman, David (June 18, 2009). "DRESS CODES; The All-American Back From Japan". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-16.
  4. ^ Onward Group
  5. ^ "Family Guy: The Richard Press Interview". Ivy Style. Retrieved 2012-01-06.
  6. ^ "J. Press has catered, since 1902, to the ultraconservatives of the Old Guard who feel Brooks Brothers is too trendy and women's departments are an abomination." Lisa Birnbach, ed. (1980). The Official Preppy Handbook. Workman Publishing. ISBN 978-0-89480-140-2. p. 152.
  7. ^ Paul Bass. "J Press Plans Demolition". New Haven Independent.
  8. ^ Carole Bass. "J. Press will tear down building". Yale Alumni Magazine.
  9. ^ Deleon, Jian (2014-01-08). "J. Press Temporarily Pulls Out of NYC Retail Scene; York Street Stores Unaffected". GQ. Retrieved 2019-09-28.
  10. ^ "J. Press Stores". Retrieved 28 December 2015.
  11. ^ Jian Deleon. "J. Press Temporarily Pulls Out of NYC Retail Scene; York Street Stores Unaffected". GQ.
  12. ^ Jon Caramanica. "Preppy Gets a Tweak". New York Times.
  13. ^ Joshua Espinoza. "J. Press York Street Has Come to an End". Complex.com.
  14. ^ Michael Rovner. "Clothier J. Press Looks to Spur U.S. Sales with New Midtown N.Y. Store". Wall Street Journal.
  15. ^ New Haven Independent: October 2019: J Press is developing a new storefront in it traditional location
  16. ^ Harvard Square Icon J. Press to Close Cambridge Store

External linksEdit