NEW YORK - As a 12-year-old in the Dominican Republic, Pablo Vargas began spending afternoons at his cousin's tailor shop. His father sent him there after school, hoping he would learn a skill that would prove useful in adulthood.
That skill became Pablo's career, which he continued to pursue after immigrating to the United States in 1984. He soon started work at Stanton Tailor Shop on the Lower East Side. Seven years later, he became the owner.
For Pablo and his staff, a typical day on the job involves mending pockets, tightening waists, and tapering legs.
During fittings, Pablo listens to customers with care, striving not to impose his own agenda but to cater to their preferences.
"It makes me feel good when the people go out and they feel confident in what they're wearing, it being altered the right way," he said.
It's part of what keeps his customers loyal. Some even return to Stanton Tailor Shop with jackets and dresses after moving as far as Brooklyn or Washington Heights.
"They trust us, and I appreciate that," he said.
Over the decades, he's seen clothing tastes and trends come and go.
"They change every day," he said.
He's also seen tailor shops in the neighborhood shutter one by one.
He credits his business's longevity to perseverance and passion.
"I love my job," he said.
Stanton Tailor Shop
90-96 Stanton St
New York, NY 10002
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