Our Larimer Sq Shop located in Denver, CO has closed its doors.
I had the great pleasure of interviewing our long-time hatter and shop manager, Larry Nix:
Q: How long have you worked for Goorin Bros.? Were you always at our Larimer Sq location?/A: I have worked for Goorin at the Larimer Square location for over 11 years, and needless to say I have seen lots of change. Not only in our community, our staff, and product, but especially in myself. I grew up in that store, I became a father, a husband, and a mentor in that store. And I definitely became a hat expert in that space. Over the years I've had lots of opportunities to work elsewhere within the company too. I've slang hats at the North Beach store, Seattle store, Nashville store, French Quarter and Magazine Street stores, Austin store, Haight Street and Union Square stores, Uptown in Minneapolis store, and our lovely Boulder shop. Although a few of those stores are no longer with us I'll forever be grateful for the friendships and memories that were made. It's always been such a blessing to be a traveling hat salesman in the 21st century.
Q: What’s Larimer Sq like?/ A: Larimer Square is where Denver City began. It's history is rich with stories of bold women, cowboys and miners, greed and debauchery, and flavor, style and sass. When we opened in 2010, Larimer Square was the epicenter of Denver's nightlife. Booming clubs, rich cuisine, fancy cars, and the lights...it's all about those lights. I'll never forget my first time exploring Denver and finding such a unique part of our city that was both welcoming and formidable at the same time. Throughout the early part of this century, it's always had glow and charm that I hope it will never lose. But it hasn't always had that reputation. I won't bore you with a history lesson. ;)
Q: Have you always loved hats? What are some of your go-to styles you typically wear?/ A: Just ask my momma. Yes. I've always been a hat wearer. As a child, little boy, even high school, which is where your hat wearing is ultimately tested. I had my first custom cowboy hat made in 2007, and that took me to another level. At the time, I was a sawyer on a tree removal team in Breckenridge, CO, and I KNOW that I must have looked like a weirdo to most the other men in that profession. Instead of a free, greasy Stihl hat you received when purchasing a chainsaw or a pair of chaps, I wore a cowboy hat, everyday. Even in that job I had standout style hahaha. My go-to styles today are of course the Colonel Pierce (the greatest hat ever made), tons of animal farm, my unique Hampui medicine hat, and my dozens of cowboy hats.
Q: Any person or place from history inspire you or your style?/ A: I pull style inspiration from everywhere. Whether it's photos of a young Al Green, or a piece of art, or punk styling of the late 70s/early 80s, or James Dean, or Stevie Ray Vaughan..all of it. I just like anything that doesn't pay attention to the status quo. I don't follow trends, I start them.
Q: What are your favorite styles Goorin has made, past or current? / A: Again, the Colonel Pierce. I think my wife has every color that's been made, and I don't blame her one bit! Also, the Country Boy. That hat was affordable, tons of style, and looks better (imo) the more wear it shows. Perfectly flat brims are for posers. The wonk shows character lol.
Q: Local spots by the shop that you love to visit? Or favorite spots to visit in Denver?/ A: How would I know about local spots?!? I was always at the shop hahaha! I'm kidding. I have my favorite spots around LoDo in Denver. Little Owl coffee, Uncle Ramen, anything by Jen Jasinski or Frank Bonnano, but my favorite BY FAR was that little hat shop. What a diamond in the rough that store was.
Q: Has the Denver shops hosted any cool events over the years?/ A: Boy have we! Too many to list!! We've had concerts, dances, music videos filmed, parties, soirees, weird-out-of-this-world events, whiskey tastings, wedding photoshoots, mescal tutorials, fashion and style events, school parties, tons of celebrities, and even more things I can't remember (I blame that on the whiskey tastings ;)
Q: When you’re not slingin hats, what do you love to do for fun? / A: When I'm not slangin' lid, I love being a father, a friend, and a husband. When I'm not doing that you can either find me running up mountains or on stage singin' (mostly) country music. Life is good.
Q: What has been the most rewarding part about introducing people to hats? / A: Hands down, the absolute BEST part of running a hat shop, is meeting characters. That front door is a vetting process that only accepts a certain type of individual to pass. Sure, it let's some lookie-lous and no-gooders in every once in a while, but the true individuals hang long enough to make it worth while. I've made some of my best friendships in that lil hat shop. Met my wife there! But back to the original question, I realized fairly quickly that it could be a heavy job too. From meeting cancer fighters to funeral goers, sometimes the conversation can go well beyond “retail therapy” and into deep dives into someone's life. It can get real, and I'm going to miss that the most.
Q: What’s your advice to those who haven’t joined the hat club yet?/ A: Life is short, wear the hat.
Q: What will you miss most about the shop? / A: The people. Simple as that. The people that shop there. The people that work there. Meeting all KINDS of folks from all KINDS of professions and walks-of-life. In that store there was no race, no religion, no creed, no bad moods, just humans going through human things. And I was there to help them help me figure out life. Every day was one day closer to enlightenment. That's what I'll miss the most.