ATLANTA — We all have role models, and for Georgia-based style entrepreneur Kirk Stafford, his is easy to spot.
“No one does a better job of embodying what inspires him than Billy Reid. It’s why he’s so well respected,” Stafford told me.
Does Stafford have a little bit of the highly celebrated Southern designer in him? Reid took a circuituitous path in fashion before becoming one of the biggest names in menswear, and Stafford seems to be on his way too. After starting a bow tie company at 25, helping open a men’s boutique at 27 and launching a shoe brand at 28, the now 29-year-old Stafford is taking his talents to an East Hampton, N.Y., clothing company to be its COO.
Stafford met Reid once—“We talked Alabama football,” Stafford says—and channeled his idol when naming his shoe brand. For the rest of that anecdote, and more from my interview with Stafford at an Atlanta coffee shop, read my profile of him in this month’s The Love List.