Armed with many scare quotes, some merchants and neighbors in Hayes are none too pleased about the possibility of East Coast-based shirtmaker Gant taking over the former Into Video space at 552 Hayes Street. The brand is not a huge one, and with fewer than 11 stores, they pass the test of acceptability under Hayes Valley law, in terms of big chain retailers. Nevertheless, as Racked reports, "the store is a bit too large and East Coast-y for the neighbors' tastes."
Tough shit would be the answer in most other parts of the country, but here in S.F. there are sure to be some community meetings, and there's already a drive by several nearby merchants to get Supervisor London Breed to sponsor new planning legislation that would ban "Large Corporate Entities," of which they say Gant is one. In all caps, a note posted on one such store reads "SHOP LOCAL, SMALL BUSINESS, SAVE SMALL BUSINESS." Objectors are encouraged to email Ms. Breed at [email protected].
It bears mentioning that at least one boutique on the street, Azalea, catering to a well-heeled hipster clientele, already sells Gant items, as do other shops like Union Made and Citizen in the Castro. It's become kind of a thing in the last few years, and works well with the plaid, neo-preppy aesthetic favored by many.
We will say that Hayes Valley has become like a mini-SoHo, but is more charming for the fact that all the boutiques are small and local in flavor, and not, like all Prada.