The JFW Story

History & Heritage

Our commitment to quality isn't just a passing phase. It's grounded in over 50 years of experience.

1922: Starting the Family Business

Leo Davis founded the Davis Family Clothing in Trenton, Illinois, a small city outside of St. Louis. Providing quality clothing and accessories for men and boys, Davis Family Clothing quickly became a modest success.

The Davis Family Clothing Store, Trenton, Illinois, circa 1920's

The Davis Family Clothing Store, Trenton, IL, circa 1920's


Jim Davis, the founder of Jim's Formal Wear

1954: Continuing Leo's Legacy

After Leo's death, his son Jim takes over the store, renaming it Jim's Men's and Boys' Shop.

Jim, working with his brother, Allen, focus on providing their community with quality menswear products and excellent service at a fair price.

1964: Jim's Formal Wear Launches

Responding to his customers' needs for quality formalwear rentals, Jim opened "Jim's Formal Wear". He purchased 200 black coats, 200 white coats, 600 formal shirts and a 900 square foot house near the men's store in downtown Trenton as a tuxedo distribution center. He and his wife, Betty, took orders on a pad by the house's kitchen phone. Doing business in a small town means that you really can't afford to lose one customer and they spent all their effort providing exceptional service and expanding their customer base.


JFW's first location

JFW Tuxedo Styles from the 1960'S AND 1970'S

1964-1970's: A Family Affair

Jim and his family members take orders, hem sleeves and pants, and assemble tuxedo orders. They even deliver the orders from the back of the family station wagon! Their example established the company's culture of hard work and dedication to the customer.

1970's-1980's: Rapid Growth and Regional Expansion

Rapid growth occurs, due to the quality of Jim's inventory and the impressive customer service demonstrated by the Davis family and the JFW employees. During this time, JFW expands to seven regional service centers in six states.


Early JFW Distribution Center - Trenton, IL


Gary Davis

1984-2013: Taking JFW Nationwide

Jim's youngest son Gary and his wife June purchase Jim's Formal Wear. Under their guidance, they grew the business to over seven times its size by making acquisitions, improving infrastructure, and investing in the latest technologies.

Today: Commitment to Our Humble Beginnings

Currently, Gary's son (and Jim's grandson) Steve serves as President and CEO. There are seven strategically located service centers, and eight regional delivery hubs that comprise nearly 250,000 square feet of office, production and warehouse space. The company currently carries nearly 250,000 tuxedos and employs 500 full time team members and staff, and hires additional 500 seasonal employees for prom and wedding seasons. JFW takes pride in serving over 5,000 menswear stores, bridal shops, and other formalwear-related retailers throughout the country.

Davis Family Clothing Store

Our promise to you is to provide quality tuxedos with exceptional service at a fair price. It's the guiding principle behind JFW for over 50 years and something we'll always believe in.