Goldie’s Hot List ~ Johnnie-O Apparel

August 13, 2015 ~ Whaddya get when you intertwine country club lifestyle with West Coast surf and East Coast prep?  Why Johnnie-O’s of course! 

This week’s MUST HAVE is the Johnnie-O brand of apparel.  In Johnnie-O’s “West Coast Prep,” you can go from eagling the 18th hole at your favorite golf course to mingling at a dinner party with the ease of a Malibu sunset and an accessory change or two

Johnnie-o staple item ~ “The Jack Polo” stripped short sleeve 4 button polo shirt $69 - $79

Johnnie-O staple item the “Jack Polo” stripped short sleeve 4 button polo shirt ($69 – $79)

Johnnie-O’s signature logo is a stand up paddle boarder and catchy surf/prep phrases trademark the brand comprised of traditional oxford shirts ($98.00), graphic tees ($38 – $42), belts ($55), hats ($24), flip flops ($39) and other specialty items and accessories

Johnnie-O’s started out as a spring/summer line of apparel and now offers a range of fall fashions like corduroy slacks ($98) and outer wear;  vests ($85), jackets and pullovers ($115 – $195) and long sleeve polos ($79) for men, boys and tots

Johnny-O’s fresh original fashion concepts can’t be beat!  Take Johnnie-O’s “tweener” button down shirt as described by Johnnie-O Founder John O’Donnell,  “On button-down shirts, men are always struggling with that second button dilemma, do you button or not button that second button. The minute you button it, you look a little too buttoned up, but when you don’t it looks like you’re going too far. I invented a hidden placket button, a tweener button, like in-between. It has been a massive home run for us”  ($95 – $115)

No miss looks such as the “Player’s Blazer,” offered in Maliblu and Stone Canyon, is a cotton poplin gingham lined sporty blazer with inside zip pocket and logo on the center back yolk ($195) and “Tailgators” chino style fleece lined shorts ($85) are sure to round out any young man’s wardrobe

 We’ll catcha next time ladies

In the past, Johnnie-O carried a few specialty items such as the wedge polo dress and graphic tees and polos for women and girls.   Instead of expanding the women and girls line O’Donnell told me, “We are actually taking a bit of a hiatus to re-figure our women and girls line.   We’re trying to be very disciplined and carve out who we are, you know when you are just starting out, not trying to be everything to everybody and hopefully drop the women and girls back into the line in a much bigger way, something that people can really sink their teeth into”  

 California Dreamin’ 

It’s pretty safe to say that Johnnie-O’s Creator and Founder, Chicago native John O’Donnell’s lifestyle epitomizes his brand to a tee!   John’s been playin’ golf since the age of 12 and played competitively as a freshman at UCLA

After graduating from UCLA in the late 1980’s O’Donnell worked in radio and television sales and then in the financial world but keep his golfing juices flowing as a top-ranked amateur competing in 5 USGA events.    A bit bored with the corporate lifestyle , John came up with the concept of West Coast Prep and in 2005 started Johnnie-O’s as a hobby with many of his family and friends lending a helping hand and spreading the good word.  John’s fourth on the totem pole out of seven siblings (4 girls, 3 boys) with twenty something nieces and nephews to boot

Johnnie-O Founder John O'Donnell

Johnnie-O Founder John O’Donnell

10 years later, Johnnie-O’s currently employs a full time staff of about 26 employees and the Johnny –O brand can be found in over 400 stores nationwide

Big Moves.  Johnny-O CEO Dave Gatto took over the reins from John O’Donnell in January 2015.  Johnnie-O’s “World Headquarters” moved from the Johnnie-O flagship store dubbed “The Love Shack” on Wilshire Blvd in Santa Monica to a 5,000 sq. ft. space in West Los Angeles

John’s vision.  “We’ve created an office space where people actually want to go into work.  There’s a coupla kitchens, a great social area, people on the roof deck getting some sun any time of the day.  We don’t mind dogs in the office, it’s a real community environment.  You can hang after work and have a couple margaritas on the roof and listen to music” 

Tally Ho!  Johnnie-O corporate now straddles both coasts with an East Coast base in Greenwich, Connecticut and in true West Coast spirit, Johnnie-O’s has been known to offer few pop up stores on the fly in New York City, Greenwich and super sample sales in South Hampton too

Celebutot Sightings

L.A. the land of celebrity.   Lots of celebrity tots have been spotted out and about in Johnnie-O’s Daddy and me items

John’s younger brother  NCIS actor Chris O’Donnell (Boston College grad) has been known to sport a shirt from time to time on CBS and John’s good friend Billy Bush is a big fan

Johnnie-O’s graphic tees, polos and trucker hats have had placement on hit TV shows including “Entourage” and “How I Met Your Mother” and a Farrelly Bros movie

Sports figures Scotty Pippin, Pete Sampras, Drew Brees, Peyton and Eli Manning are fans.  Ryan Seacrest, Adrian Grenier, Ashton Kutcher, Bradley Cooper, Molly Sims have also been spotted wearing Johnnie-O 

Celebs such as Jimmy Buffet are fans of Johnnie-O (bathing trunks as shown on Jimmy)

Celebs such as Jimmy Buffet are fans of Johnnie-O (swimming trunks as shown on Jimmy)

It’s still all about the golf

John told me he thinks it’s really fun when he spots “celebrities and golfers wearing our stuff in their personal lives, off the course.”  He went on to say, “I get lots of player’s agents and mini-tour guys calling me to send out a few items.   In fact PGA Tour Player Justin Leonard called a few weeks ago to ask for a few outfits to wear during the Quicken Loans National PGA TOUR event.  Apparently his apparel deal had just ended, so I sent him about 5 outfits and sure enough he was tied for lead after first round so we got a nice bit of TV coverage out of that, great exposure for the brand, that’s how we roll” 

Btw Johnnie-O offers a navy golf bag by Jones with signature logo ($150.00)

This past spring event organizers of the PGA TOUR’s Northern Trust Open at Riveria Country Club in Pacific Palisades, CA  invited Johnnie –O to help energize and add a hip and fun factor to the event by sponsoring a Johnnie-O hospitality tent “The Green Room” at the band OAR’s performance  

“Post third round play the band came on and rocked it pretty good.  It was such a good fit OAR had a blast and they appreciated being there.  We had a beautiful day, the golf had just ended at about 4:00 pm and the band started.  They were right on this little stage so people were right up close to them and golf fans migrated from different holes all over the property to see the band and rock out for about 90 minutes.  We had such a blast that we have re-upped for next year’s event,” quipped O’Donnell  Enuf said

Be sure check out the newest back to school fall looks at  

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About Liza Churchill

2019 Marks WATD Sports Reporter Liza Churchill’s 10th Anniversary covering the local South Shore, Regional and National Golf Beat as a member of WATD’s Sports Team!