J. Stark

time Everyday: 10am - 6pm

On the corner of Cannon and Coming St is J. Stark, a workshop featuring timeless American made goods that are built to last. The store features tough and dependable weekenders, briefcases, tote Bags, and wallets, all crafted by hard working local artisans. 


BY: Ryan Kirk Contributing writer

If it’s immortality you’re looking for, good news — we’ve found it. Sure, wallpaper changes, technology advances, and the color of our hair fades. We as individuals are not undying, nor shall we reach a future that is not ours. However, like a time capsule buried in the front yard of the house you grew up in, there are pieces of our history that can and will outlive us. It is those TIMELESS pieces that are just the downright coolest cargo on the planet.

At the forefront of the everlasting are three things: rock ‘n’ roll, leather wallets, and waxed canvas goods. While J. Stark may not be yelling into a microphone, they do offer an array of essentials that are as timeless as a track from David Bowie.

While the store is simple, their hard work and inviting spirit are displayed throughout, showcasing the brand’s ethos: obsessive quality & timeless design.

The only time stamp these goods have are from the punch card that the fella making them clocked in and out with. J. Stark offers handmade goods that tell time through adventure and not from a watch. When your pals back at home don’t know if your wallet was handed down two generations or picked up from a brick and mortar two weeks ago, that’s when you know you’re carrying something abiding. It’s all about the journey, the nicks and gashes that mark the leather or scratch the canvas. It’s what builds character.

Among the items offered are wallets, Dopp kits, travel bags, briefcases, and tote bags. All products are made in the USA at top-of-the-line quality by hardworking artisans who are obsessed with their craft.

Each creation comes with a story, as the names of the products are a tribute to store owner Erik Holmberg’s parents and come from different streets in Cleveland, where they grew up. So, when you purchase an item like their Prospect Briefcase, just know that the story is already underway. Who knows, maybe Prospect Ave. was his parents’ first kiss or a snow-filled street that one of them walked down to get to school, got in scuffles on, or cruised a ’57 Chevy down. Whatever it is, even before purchase, the story has already begun. It’s up to you to add to it — and that’s pretty damn cool.

The physical brick and mortar in Charleston is painted in a classic black and white. Inside, their products are showcased like pieces of art in an industrial shop. Bags of all kinds are lined up on work shelves, trunks, and wooden tables. While the store is simple, their hard work and inviting spirit are displayed throughout, showcasing the brand’s ethos: obsessive quality & timeless design.

Now, let’s address the store’s moniker. If the name Stark sounded familiar, it’s not from HBO’s Game of Thrones but was inspired a Hollywood picture. Jim Stark was the character James Dean played in Rebel Without a Cause. Stark was a complex character who went through issues that we all did when we were younger and can all relate to.

The products made by J. Stark are classic and are items that, no matter our personal style, we can all connect with. Chucktown is such a classic city, timeless in its charming way. It makes perfect sense that it would be the home of a brand that creates everlasting essentials for stylish men and is named after an undying film that we can all relate to. And even if we can’t, we’ve all tried on that infamous red blazer, looked in the mirror, and thought, …James Dean?


The detail is in the name, J. Stark is a nod to the character Jim Stark that James Dean played in Rebel Without a Cause

Choose between backpacks, travel bags, briefcases and totes — all designed to fit a specific lifestyle and function, built to last

Our CYTIES pick-up: The Catawba Weekender in charcoal waxed canvas, the perfect size for a long weekend jaunt

Dive into the shops hand selected accessories of sunglasses, home goods to pack up your new bag