(l-r) The owners of Elevated Citizen: Kaleb Ryan, founder/designer; Jessica Ryan, CFO; and Mike Venable, operations/designer. Courtesy photo

(l-r) The owners of Elevated Citizen: Kaleb Ryan, founder/designer; Jessica Ryan, CFO; and Mike Venable, operations/designer. Courtesy photo

 

BY SARA SHEIKH

Men’s clothing designer Kaleb Ryan has opened Elevated Citizen in Bloomington, the first brick-and-mortar store to showcase his menswear line, EC Chantal.

Since establishing EC Chantal in 2013, Ryan has traveled the country to both promote the brand and meet with clients like Cincinnati Reds players Adam Duvall and Tucker Barnhart and The Bold and the Beautiful actor Don Diamont.

A Bloomington native, Ryan, 34, didn’t aspire to be a clothing de- signer; instead, he studied biology at Indiana University and planned to become a veterinarian. When he realized being a vet wasn’t his calling, he started a career in retail sales.

His experience selling high-end menswear fed Ryan’s interest in fashion, and he soon discovered that the most cost-e ective way to stock his own wardrobe was designing menswear, which he then turned into a business.

“I buy a lot of clothing, and I was trying to gure out how to pay as little as possible for it,” Ryan says. “I originally wanted to take EC Chantal to the retail world, but one thing led to another, and I found that retail added unnecessary expenses that increased pricing.”

By eliminating the markup of retail stores owned by others, Elevated Citizen offers on-the-rack, semi-custom, or full-custom clothing. Age doesn’t determine the market for the EC Chantal brand; Ryan says “fashion-forward” clients of all ages seek out his line. “If you have to wear clothes, you may as well have fun with it,” Ryan says.

Depending on the fabric and the amount of custom work involved, customers will nd sports jackets starting at $445, shirts starting at $125, and suits starting at $645.

In addition to the EC Chantal line, Elevated Citizen also stocks a few other lines, including Italian scarves and Unsimply Stitched boxer briefs.

The store is located at 114 S. College. Hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, and by appointment. To make an appointment, call 812-287-7714. You can also find Elevated Citizen at elevatedcitizen.com.