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Mike & Carol Trotta then and now. (Photos courtesy of Mike & Carol Trotta)
CINCINNATI - What does it take for a family business to survive and thrive for 25 years or more? Our weekly feature shares the secrets to success of local businesses with staying power.
In an age when apparel chain stores are still hanging on and online shopping is taking off, people who value a custom look and fit still find their way to a Cincinnati tailor with staying power.
Family owned and operated, Mike & Carol Trotta has been providing custom clothing for men and women since it was founded by Mike Trotta Sr. in 1936.
Become a WCPO Insider to read a Q&A with Mike Trotta Jr. and view vintage photos of the business through the years.
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CINCINNATI - In an age when apparel chain stores are still hanging on and online shopping is taking off, a man who values a custom look and fit still find his way to a Cincinnati tailor with staying power.
Originally known as Trotta Custom Tailors, the business originally specialized in men’s custom clothing. As the need for custom garments grew, so did the business, with Mike Sr.'s wife, Anne, joining the business in 1946. For six years, Mike and Anne ran the small company until they expanded in 1952 and moved the store to its present Walnut Street location in downtown Cincinnati.
In 1968, after graduating college, Mike Trotta Jr. joined his parents in the family business, and the three oversaw and expanded the company until 1991.
In that year, Mike and Anne’s daughter Carol joined the business and established the women's department after a successful career at fabled but now-gone downtown clothing retailer Gidding-Jenny.
With this addition, the store became Mike & Carol Trotta, offering men’s custom and ready-made clothing and accessories and "better bridge clothing" for women.
Throughout the growth of the company, the business has remained true to the heritage of its founder, Mike Trotta Sr., in it’s "commitment to quality, service and classic style," according to Mike Jr.
Meet the Boss, Mike Trotta Jr.
Following in his father's footsteps, Trotta has been a tailor for 46 years and married to wife, Linda, for the same number of years. They have four children and nine grandchildren.
1. Who are your customers?
Our customer is any Individual who desires finer custom made clothing with excellent fit.
2. What's great about doing business in downtown Cincinnati?
The people of Cincinnati are what make doing business here great. Our customers are very loyal. We're continuously trying to adjust to the changes within our community.
3. What's challenging about doing business in our region?
The challenge is finding high quality products that fit the constantly changing fashion environment in Cincinnati.
4. What has proven to be the key to Mike Trotta's longevity?
We've been successful because of our passion, honesty, integrity and our ability to change. In this business, demands change season after season, and our goal is to provide the highest quality of service and product we can offer.
5. Fill in the blank: "I bet you didn't know...." about Mike Trotta Tailors
That we have suited up five generations of Cincinnati’s finest!
Pictured above: Carol, Anne and Mike Trotta Jr.
Connect with Mike & Carol Trotta:
(Photos courtesy of Mike & Carol Trotta)
You can follow WCPO contributor Kevin J. Hines on Twitter: @KEVINVENTION