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Hilditch & Key shirts - quality? - Page 3

post #31 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Len View Post

I have worn and enjoyed Hilditch shirts for around 30 years and do not recall a problem. Roger Talbot, their US rep, was a personal friend, too. It was so simple, and always a pleasure, to visit Roger when he was in NYC and order a few. That said, since he's retired it has become even easier for me to order. We became their US representatives, so now I don't even need to leave the store!! How easy is that??

Leonard

Awesome, you should be the best person to answer my question then, please do. thanks
post #32 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Carlos View Post

Quality has dipped a bit in recent years, IMO. I'd rank their work a bit below that of Harvie & Hudson, and well below that of Turnbull & Asser and others in that tier.

I'd say you are spot on with the quality ranking of these premier shirt makers Don Carlos!
post #33 of 43
Below Harvie and Hudson really? I have 2 of these and one of Hilditch and Key, and beg to differ.

Also, I think quality to price ratio wise T@A is mismatched.
I prefer BB Golden Fleece when on sale is hard to beat.

Yes I'm Americannnnn
post #34 of 43
Understood - personal taste I suppose - nothing wrong with being American:)
post #35 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimH View Post

Understood - personal taste I suppose - nothing wrong with being American:)

cheers.gif
post #36 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by sstomcat View Post

Below Harvie and Hudson really? I have 2 of these and one of Hilditch and Key, and beg to differ.

I agree.

I own both, bought within a year or so of each other. I also own Finamore and T &A.
I would rank H & H below, H &K as well as T &A and Finamore.
I am no expert on the fine points of quality in better shirts. In fact I have some shirts that are
more than 10 years old, notably Drakes ( yes, the tie people) and Hawes & Curtis ( old owners)
that seem as well-made as H&K , T& A, etc. What I don't like about H&H are the stiffer collars.
post #37 of 43
Visited the newly refurbished store in Jermyn Street yesterday and was very disappointed. Firstly they used to make shirts in both a classic and a slim fit. They have replaced that with a single shirt cut which is something between the two. Secondly the range of shirts in the store was not as large as I would have expected shortly after the grand opening. Finally, I was shocked at the prices. I was going to buy two single cuff white shirts but on finding that they were over £150 each I decided not to buy them. Prices have moved up by nearly 30% since before the store closed for a full refit. While this might work for the new owners, I as an old customer find it a bit rich. There has been no dicernible increase in quality and much as I have liked their shirts in the past I will be shopping elsewhere in the future. The new owners are clearly trying to create a new luxury brand but they should be aware that this will not happen simply by increasing prices.
post #38 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Youngman View Post

Visited the newly refurbished store in Jermyn Street yesterday and was very disappointed. Firstly they used to make shirts in both a classic and a slim fit. They have replaced that with a single shirt cut which is something between the two. Secondly the range of shirts in the store was not as large as I would have expected shortly after the grand opening. Finally, I was shocked at the prices. I was going to buy two single cuff white shirts but on finding that they were over £150 each I decided not to buy them. Prices have moved up by nearly 30% since before the store closed for a full refit. While this might work for the new owners, I as an old customer find it a bit rich. There has been no dicernible increase in quality and much as I have liked their shirts in the past I will be shopping elsewhere in the future. The new owners are clearly trying to create a new luxury brand but they should be aware that this will not happen simply by increasing prices.

 

I couldn't agree more about the prices.

 

I was in Jermyn Street this morning to buy in the sale, but H+K displayed a very limited range of sale stock.

 

Since getting home I checked online and they have a sale on, so a £125 shirt is reduced to £62.

 

I was a bit confused by this so just called up the shop.

 

Apparently they don't want to mix the old and new stock. This doesn't seem too clever. If they'd had the online sale shirts in store I'd have bought a few then and there (as I did at Turnbull and Asser)

 

I asked if I bought a shirt online could I bring it in to have the sleeves shortened, to which I was told 'Yes'. However when I asked if they still had my details, they replied 'Only if you've bought a shirt in the last year', which I haven't. I thought this was also not too clever. I can think of no better way to lose existing customers than to worsen custom service.

 

In terms of my perception of how H+K compare to H+H and T+A:

 

Fit:

 

I think it would be fair to say that the classic H+H fit is for the more generously proportioned gentleman.  I'm 5'9" and about 11 stone, but don't wear slim fit as I find it too constricting (I cycle to work). Even when I was heavier (up to 13 stone) H+K classic was a better fit for me than H+H. I haven't tried the new H+K fit, but to reduce classic and slim to a single fit sounds like a cost-saving exercise on their part. My preference is the T+A classic fit.

 

Quality

 

I have a number of  H+H shirts which are four years or more old which show minimal wear on the collar. All my H+K shirts (which are a minimum of two years old) are too worn at the collar to wear for work. It's too soon to say for T+A as I've only had them for a year.

 

Customer Service/Presentation

 

At T+A customer service and presentation are excellent. At H+H the customer service is also excellent, but the shops are a bit shambolic (although there's something endearingly un-corporate about that). I always thought the customer service at the smaller H+K (now Bates) was good, while the service at the larger shop was abysmal. I also don't like the re-fit of H+K - it's lost its warmth.

 

Cost

 

I mostly buy in the sale, so it's £80-90 for a T+A shirt (£165-£175 full price), £62 for an H+K shirt (£125 full price, although I think they may now be £155-175 in store), and £39.50 for an H+H shirt (£69.50 full price or three for £49.50 each)

 

 

Selection

 

H+K always seemed to have the best selection in the sale, but H+H full price is about the same as H+K on sale. You can't buy plain colours or classic patterns in the sale at T+A.

 

 

In summary, they're three different offers, but my experience is that in terms of durability H+K don't appear to be good value for money.

post #39 of 43

Have recently had some shirts from Guy Field London which I felt where great.

 

The shirt makers was set up by a fellow formally of Thomas Pink and Emmett London and the quality of cloth is fantastic.

 

I have a few royal oxfords made from a Thomas Sason cloth finished with mother of pearl buttons for £155 each.

 

Also like the fact their is no secret on where they made, as there all handmade in Italy.

post #40 of 43
I stumbled on this thread having just looked at the HK website, looking for boxers in the sale. I was rather startled by the hike in prices so googled "what has happened to hilditch and key?". It seems others are just as startled and asking themselves the sMe question.

I used to wear their shirts as standard. The slim fit worked for me and the price was good (c £90 a shirt I vaguely recall). However I switched after a couple of years because the fit was inconsistent (mainly the sleeve lengths, which were sometimes fine but sometimes too short), the collars were a bit small for my taste (T&A suffers from this too) and the fabric quality wasn't great ( they would wear at the collars and cuffs relatively quickly). Recently I have only used them for boxers in the sale.

I'd agree with others that the smaller store was really friendly, but the larger one had the atmosphere of a freezer.

Unless there has been a marked improvement in quality and choice then they have to be kidding with the price rise to £155 a shirt. If I was paying that it would be T&A before HK.
post #41 of 43
I passed through Bloomingdales yesterday (South Coast Plaza) and nearly choked when I saw the H&K shirts for $275. When I got to a computer I was equally shocked to see the website prices through the roof…I have a few H&K shirts that I had paid maybe $75 for a year or so ago…I think they are going with the Velblen good economic theory for pricing...

Personally, I would not pay more than $75 for a H&K shirt. I still prefer to pay $180 for Eaton classics….
post #42 of 43
I don't have any H&K, but I do have a few of the others mentioned. Here's my take:

H&H: Nice but uneven quality. I've got a couple of their recent butcher stripe shirts that are high quality fabric, reasonably well done pattern matching, and have the aforementioned lousy buttons but have sent back others that were - IMHO - pretty subpar versions in staple colors. Really seemed like shirts from two different companies. Normally I take a slim fit, but theirs was so constrictive as to be unwearable - easier to take traditional cut and have my tailor bring in sides. Good customer service on the returns though.

T&A: Lovely shirts, well made, beautiful fabrics, seem to last forever and just get softer over time, but very spendy as noted. You get what you pay for.

BB Golden Fleece: Just picked up a few of these in the 12/26 sale. Brooks has become a place where one has to really hunt for quality items these days (I've been shopping at their NY flagship since high school). Their once reliable shirt line has so many permutations in terms of cuts and fabrics that it can be tricky to find the good ones, even among their storied oxford button downs. The GF shirts are definitely a cut above the rest in terms of fabric and construction. They also feature BB's "Londoner" collar which is a nice interpretation of the spread and have thick MOP buttons. Probably not worth the price at full retail, but a reasonable deal on sale at around $150. FWIW, their "slim fit" is a bit more generous than what their mainline OCBD slim fits are, so it must be from a different pattern.

Charle Trywhitt: I've bought a few along the way in some basic colors, but have since donated them. Horrible, stiff collars, flimsy fabric. Only upside I can see is that you at least have the option of choosing between a button or french cuff on most models and barrel cuffs with a cutaway can be hard to find unless you are well north of $100 from oat shirt makers.

TMLewin: Although the business model is similar to CT (endless sales etc.), I think you can find a few gems in their lineup. They make a very attractive cutaway and the collars have light fusing, but it comes down to the fabric - I recently snagged some royal oxford shirts on a deep discount that were very impressive for the price point and I have some older end-on-ends that are going strong.Fails include the standard oxford, poplins, and twills
post #43 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Owen Meany View Post

I passed through Bloomingdales yesterday (South Coast Plaza) and nearly choked when I saw the H&K shirts for $275. When I got to a computer I was equally shocked to see the website prices through the roof…I have a few H&K shirts that I had paid maybe $75 for a year or so ago…I think they are going with the Velblen good economic theory for pricing...

Personally, I would not pay more than $75 for a H&K shirt. I still prefer to pay $180 for Eaton classics….

They did raise their prices but there are currently- or at least a week ago, bargains on their website in the sale section.
Eaton? or Eton?- Not equivalent to H &K .Every Eton I've ever seen has a hard fused collar. H& K shirts are not fused

http://sale.hilditchandkey.co.uk/Gentlemen/Shirts/Default.aspx
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