On a steep San Francisco hill, separating the Castro from the Mission, sits UNIONMADE. A shrine to all things premium—or as founder Todd Barket would say, “thoughtful”—the menswear stalwart has been a part of SF’s surprisingly robust shopping scene since 2009. Initially focused on premium denim and Japanese Americana, over the past 9 years the store has evolved into a trend-averse purveyor of a refined aesthetic that still defines how the majority of San Franciscans dress themselves (Costco cargo short clad tech invaders currently not-withstanding).

Opened on the cusp of the #menswear boom, UNIONMADE hit the blogosphere as one of the top destinations for everyone from denimheads to soft-shoulder diehards, grabbing RRL and unstructured Barena blazers. Yet, as those trends wavered, UNIONMADE stayed true to its roots and continued to offer inarguably good product, building a reputation as a dependable boutique committed to everyday clothing. Now, nearly a decade in business and boasting three stores—a women’s store a couple blocks away from the Sanchez St. flagship and a third Larkspur location in the North Bay—the store has developed loyal clientele who prize the store’s specific vision and authenticity. Yet, always looking forward, Barket—along with partner and co-owner Carl Chiara—always stocked brands that felt just enough out of their core customers comfort zone that invariably helped push their respective styles to even greater heights. Kapital is one of those brands.

The first U.S. wholesale partner to carry the brand, Barket and Chiara were both Kapital clients before they were stockists and are some of the brands foremost proponents in the industry. Now, after 15 years of hoarding, the two are ready to let go of their prized collection. Below, we spoke to Barket on running an independent boutique, the state of industry and how he became the first Kapital stockist in America.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Images courtesy of Brett Woodward.