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Shirt recommendations

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Noahsi, Sep 30, 2018.

  1. Noahsi

    Noahsi Member

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    Hello experts -

    I will be starting a new job in a couple of months at a conservative office (investment bank), coming from a very casual tech environment (think shorts a t-shirts), and need to update my wardrobe for the new job.

    Suits are not required on a daily basis as I won’t be dealing with clients often - I’ve been told “business casual” though from the bit of time I’ve spent in the office it seems a bit dressier than business casual. Think slacks and nice button downs, no khakis or polo shirts.

    Can you recommend a place for shirts and pants in NYC where I live? I’m relatively trim and prefer a slimmer look. I tried on shirts at Pink and thought the fit wasn’t great - sleeves too long on the 16 neck, whereas the next size down was too tight in the neck - though the quality seemed good (but a little pricey). The shirts at suit supply didn’t really work for me either (cuffs too tight and sleeves too long which made them bunch up in the arm). In the past I’ve had a few shirts from Brooks Brothers but apart from being too boxy I found they didn’t hold up well, either tearing in the sleeves or staying the collar. I went to Rothmans yesterday and ended up buying a David Donahue slim fit shirt ($135) which so far has been the best fitting shirt I’ve found, seems like good quality (?), just don’t love the collar as I’d prefer a collar with a little bit of a wider spread. I also bought a pair of slacks there which needed some tailoring in the back to slim up, but at least that was included in the price. We’ll see how they come out next week.

    Anyway, would appreciate any advice on shirts (and pants) - budget is up $200 or so per shirt. Also I’m going to London for a bit in a couple of weeks so if there is a store there you prefer I can check that out as well.

    Thanks!
     

  2. Andy57

    Andy57 Distinguished Member

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    Take a look at The Armoury, in TriBeCa, 168 Duane St. Or Drake's, 39 1/2 Crosby St. When you're in London, all the great shirtmakers are in, or around, Jermyn Street, which runs parallel with Piccadilly. I recommend Budd (in the Piccadilly Arcade) and Emma Willis. Also look at Turnbull & Asser, for classic English shirts. If you want cheaper options, both Charles Tyrwhitt and TM Lewin have stores on Jermyn Street, too.
     

  3. Proleet

    Proleet Senior Member

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    Propercloth might also be an option for you if you’re hard to fit in rtw.
     

  4. SurreyBod

    SurreyBod Member

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    Fit aside (which will be individual), the issue I've always had with Thomas Pink formal shirts is that they don't wash well. After a few washes they tend to lose their shape, especially around the collar.
     

  5. comrade

    comrade Distinguished Member

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    For London, I would add Harvie and Hudson which are much less than
    Emma Wills and T &A. Also Drakes, London is a must. Excellent quality not too
    pricey. Hilditch and Key which tend to run full, but worth a try-on.
    Also, H& K has an end of year sale beginning in December with major
    discounts. No need to be in London, it's all on their website. A favorite of
    mine is Cordings for Country Shirts. They also offer very inexpensive
    more conventional business shirts. Very full,unless they now have slimmer
    fit. Shirts can also be tapered by a competent tailor.

    https://www.cordings.co.uk/menswear/shirts/where/cat/453
     

  6. papado

    papado Senior Member

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    For MTM in NYC for 175-200 each you can try out CEGO; I haven't checked him out yet but after plenty of mediocre proper cloth experiences I would say just go to someone who's skilled and who'll do good work on the first try and he's next on my list.
     

  7. Title17

    Title17 Member

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    Please do yourself a big favor and go to CEGO. Absolutely the best in NYC, and real value.
     

  8. cds

    cds Member

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    Off the rack-ish suggestions from fellow Manhattan person. I don't have patience for poor customer service and all recs below are nothing short of fantastic.

    Shirts - Get yourself to Kamakura or Drakes and try on their shirts. Get the basics - poplin spreads in white and light blue, poplins in light blue stripes, oxford button downs in white and blue. Have more than one white shirt. A nicer option are the G Inglese at NMWA. Costlier, but they look great and are nicely made. Cego as mentioned is a fine enough option, but get your needs down from off the rack down first before venturing into custom. All of the spreads, to be honest, work better under jackets. The button downs will hold up nicer alone (as you mentioned).

    Pants - Go to Armoury or NMWA and get some Rota in light and mid gray high twist wools. Once braver add some brown variations...navy even. Drakes has excellent basic wool and cotton options. If you have a bit more time, call the guys from Stoffa for some MTM wool/flannel. This last option to me is completely worth it as trousers hold up far better than shirts over the long run. Good luck.
     

  9. iris

    iris Well-Known Member

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    Go to Kamakura. Right across the street from JPM (former Bear Stearns bldg) on 48th and Madison, though they have a secondary location in Brookfield Place. Stick with their basic offerings in Tokyo fit (slim).
     

  10. TAFJIR

    TAFJIR Well-Known Member

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    What are you going to be doing at the investment bank? If you’re a VP or below do yourself a favor and don’t spend $200 on nice shirts which you’ll only wear to the office and will inevitably ruin with ink and food stains (you eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at your desk). I bought 6 MTM shirts from Kamakura ($180 ea) and while the shirts weere fantastic, I ended up cooking through them after 3 years of daily office wear. Again, to each their own, but advice to my younger self (started as an associate) would be not to buy a half dozen Spier & Mackay or max, Kamakura OTR shirts and call it good. Save your $200 shirts for the weekend (same goes for suits, cooked through all 3 of my full canvas Eidos suits after 3 years of daily wear). Sorry, but unless you’re seeing clients every day (call it Director or MD), I feel like it’s a waste to spend $200 on a work shirt (only my opinion of course)
     

  11. Loathing

    Loathing Distinguished Member

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    I don't know what it's like in NYC, but ime in London even plenty of interns will be wearing $150+ shirts.

    And tbh clients are the last people in the world who want to see you wearing $200-300 shirts, because it's their money that's paying for those shirts.

    Ultimately expensive shirts are for your own pleasure. No one else really cares. You definitely don't need to be an MD on $400k+ to afford a $200 shirt.

    @OT — I highly recommend starting with Drake's shirts. 3 for £300 for excellent shirts made in England is unbeatable.

    Thomas Pink and Suitsupply are garbage and, insanely, more expensive than Drake's.
     

  12. Noahsi

    Noahsi Member

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    Hi - thank you for all of the input!

    I had heard about Kamakura elsewhere so will check them out as well as Drakes. Armoury looks more expensive, at least on the website , but perhaps will check them out as well.

    I will be a VP working as a trader and am not anticipating spending much time if any at all with clients. Probably not more than a few days per month.

    I think the main criteria for me is fit and comfort - coming from an extremely casual work environment I am oddly nervous about having to dress up every day. I last spent a bit of time at the office on a Friday a couple of weeks ago and tried to scope out how people were dressed, but was also told that Friday’s are a bit more casual with polo shirts now allowed (though evidently hardly anyone wears, lol!).

    I agree that I am leaning towards spending less rather than more on work outfits but happy to spend more if it will really make a difference in comfort, durability, and looking sharp.
     

  13. Title17

    Title17 Member

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    Of course there is no "one size fits all," right or wrong answer here. Much depends on how you want to balance the various factors involved. But I think it stands to reason that, unless you get really lucky with matching your proportions to a company's stock pattern, you will not get the same fit and comfort from an off the rack shirt (even from the very fine brands suggested) that you would from a custom shirt from CEGO. I certainly agree with Loathing's excellent point that you spend on a shirt for your own enjoyment, not your co-workers' or clients'. On the other hand, wearing a high-quality shirt that fits really well can not only increase your own sense of confidence, but makes a strong impression. Not because anyone will know where you bought your shirt, or how much you paid for it, but because it is so unusual in many settings to see someone with a properly fitted shirt.
     

  14. Versace Guy

    Versace Guy Senior Member

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    Ignore my username. Some of my favorite "budget" workshirts are Charles Tyrwhitt and Ledbury. They do very well as daily beater shirts and last considerably longer than other shirts in their price range. Charles Tyrwhitt can be had at < $50 on sale, and Ledbury can be had for < $100 on sale. If you are lucky and shop online a bit, Borrelli, which is top-end quality hand-made, MOP and all all that jazz, can be had for < $200.
     

  15. smittycl

    smittycl Distinguished Member

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    I can second the Ledbury thing. Italian fabric and quality construction. I also sale shop Barneys and the other luxury big guys. You can get Zegna and Finamore shirts at steep discounts. Have yet to have any shirts made but am sure I’m headed that way.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2018

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