I had to have my OCBD darted in the back a little bit, but that's true for really any shirt I buy OTR, so...
Definitely a good slim fit in the chest/shoulders though.
There's a reason everybody is so excited about the Kamakura shirts-- they're amazing. But I don't think that's why they're being talked about all the time. Nope. It's something else. It's because they have an *identity*. What do I mean? Read on...
For years, we've all been spending 100 bucks to buy some corporate committee's flaccid version of the once-great Brooks Brothers shirt. We've seen Land's End - which, let's face it, was always second rate- get even worse by chopping their collar down to a fashionable nub. We've been sending away to David Mercer for baggy, 80's style, shirts which, however nice they are, start at $135 for anything besides oxford cloth--- and rise considerably from there. Same with Gitman and O'Connell's. J. Crew? Gant? Come on. These are throwaway offerings created for people who have never worn a shirt made with care.
I can already hear people saying "Well, what about Luxire and Paris and all those bespoke places...?", but that brings me right back to my original point; the oxford cloth button down shirt is the quintessential off the rack shirt and it should NOT be made in some fancy bespoke place. American manufacturers created the popularity of the button down shirt in all its common-place, casual greatness. The shirts had an identity; they were affordable, relaxed but smart, and at the height of their popularity they defined a real American egalitarian ideal--- *everyone* could have access to the same great, classic look.
So let's start with a review of the shirts: first off, they are made beautifully- someone cares about the stitching, the shell buttons-- and for once the damn collar rolls!!! The fabrics are either great workhorse oxford cloths or nice day-to-day pinpoints (*my favorites...though I don't own any broadcloths.) Though they do offer Made to Measure and 300 count shirts, the great thing about the shirts at Kamakura is that they are your everyday shirt- but done with old fashioned care and style and workmanship. All somehow in a shirt that is under $80!! (PS- Their knit oxford pique shirt is one of the most comfortable things I own and no one has yet guessed it isn't cloth.)
But- and here's my point if anyone is still reading- Kamakura is doing well not only because their product is good. It's because they re-embody a lot of the ideals that started the popularity of the button down in the first place. They haven't just "Frankenstein-ed" the best parts of historically great shirts together (the way most other makers have done). Instead,they've made shirts that have an IDENTITY ALL THEIR OWN. They have re-imagined the traditional American button down and come up with THEIR version; somewhat slimmer, more precise, neat without being fashion-y and topped it off with a grand collar that frames the neck and face.
So why am I posting this long speech? I'm selfish. I want to buy shirts from this place for a long, long time. I want them to do well so they'll have more patterns available and bring in the jackets and other products I see they sell in their Japanese stores. Also, when is the last time you went into a tiny store in Manhattan and had the sales people offer you Japanese desserts, iced water or ran to hold the door as you left?