While many continue to work from home, local clothing stores are still feeling the economic impact of the pandemic

DUBUQUE, Iowa (KCRG) – Graham’s Style Store has been styling professional men since 1936. This past year, however, has been like no other.

“When you don’t have these big conferences, business trips, seminars, things like that all over the country, all of a sudden the need to get dressed and buy new clothes goes down drastically,” said Ben Graham, president of the store.

The transition to working from home means that workers only have to dress to the waist, and even that has become more casual. Graham’s regular clients, lawyers, accountants and bankers, don’t stop by as often.

“These people work from home, so you know how many people break their shoelaces downtown and walk into the store in the middle of the week?” Graham said. “Nobody breaks their shoe laces because they all work from home or they’ve spilled coffee on their shirts and have a party in the afternoon. We miss these little incidents which cause the front door to rotate.

Graham said grants and loans, like the Paycheck Protection Program, have helped him keep his eight employees working, but now, as more people are getting vaccinated and returning to work in their offices, he hopes they will remember to buy local.

“When you get your stimulus check, your tax return, I think maybe it’s time to reconsider whether we need a bigger six inch TV screen right now or get that something. more on Amazon, ”Graham said. “We really need to get money flowing throughout our community and support our local jewelry stores, our local bookstores, our clothing stores. Think locally.

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Anne G. Cash

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