what makes a shirt 'quality'/ more expensive? pix

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by The_Foxx, May 13, 2006.

  1. The_Foxx

    The_Foxx Senior member

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    this is from an online auction of a slightly damaged shirt (small hole in back that could be repaired), but i think it (and the additional closeup photos) illustrate some of the details of a well-made shirt that contains lots of handwork. notice the 'crow's foot' stitching of the buttons, the shape of the collar/ lack of tiespace at the point where the two sides of the collar meet to form a perfect inverted "v" when worn, size and shape of the heavy buttons, etc.

    [​IMG]

    http://cgi.ebay.com/525-Kiton-dress-...QQcmdZViewItem
     
  2. gdl203

    gdl203 Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    I agree with most points except for the tie space. I much prefer some space and fail to see how the absence of tie space would be a sign of quality.
     
  3. The_Foxx

    The_Foxx Senior member

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    hmmm....well, i guess i get that one from flusser's books, but a shirt collar is basically made up of triangles, in my view-- two triangles of the collar itself, and an inverted triangle in the center. with the exception of button-down collar shirts, i think anything but the tiniest of tie-space just looks cheap and frankly, kinda shitty.
     
  4. drake

    drake Senior member

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    Care to explain how "crow's foot stitching" is somehow superior to other methods? Or how about collar shape? Shouldn't collar shape be more about what suits an indiviguals face rather than one size fits all? Also, how does handwork equate to "well-made"? If anything, handwork would seem to be to be the opposite of "well-made" due to the inherit inferiority of the human hand to machine work. Bleh, just felt like ranting. I don't like how Italian shirts (like Kiton and Borelli) are held up as brilliant shirts when they are really nothing more than gimmicky RTW shirts at the end of the day...
    this is from an online auction of a slightly damaged shirt (small hole in back that could be repaired), but i think it (and the additional closeup photos) illustrate some of the details of a well-made shirt that contains lots of handwork. notice the 'crow's foot' stitching of the buttons, the shape of the collar/ lack of tiespace at the point where the two sides of the collar meet to form a perfect inverted "v" when worn, size and shape of the heavy buttons, etc.
     
  5. gdl203

    gdl203 Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    hmmm....well, i guess i get that one from flusser's books, but a shirt collar is basically made up of triangles, in my view-- two triangles of the collar itself, and an inverted triangle in the center. with the exception of button-down collar shirts, i think anything but the tiniest of tie-space just looks cheap and frankly, kinda shitty.

    I think some tie space looks much better and more balanced with a thick knot. I guess we disagree here. I wouldn't call a shirt with a tiny tie space shitty though. Must be a personality thing
     
  6. Edward Appleby

    Edward Appleby Senior member

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    Bleh, just felt like ranting. I don't like how Italian shirts (like Kiton and Borelli) are held up as brilliant shirts when they are really nothing more than gimmicky RTW shirts at the end of the day...

    A lot of people, perhaps most notably Kabbaz, consider Charvet to be the finest RTW shirt. Also, many English shirts are considered on par with the Italians around here, as far as construction goes.Their fit, however, tends to be a little blousier off the rack than the Italian shirts, which makes them less desirable. It's not really fair to compare Italian RTW shirts to any bespoke shirt, which is what you seem to be doing.
     
  7. drake

    drake Senior member

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    If I am not mistaken Kiton shirts cost about as much (if not more) than bespoke. It seems a fair comparison to make. I get annoyed that people seem to salivate over these shirts that cost as much as bespoke and you get nothing more than a gimmick.
    A lot of people, perhaps most notably Kabbaz, consider Charvet to be the finest RTW shirt. Also, many English shirts are considered on par with the Italians around here, as far as construction goes.Their fit, however, tends to be a little blousier off the rack than the Italian shirts, which makes them less desirable. It's not really fair to compare Italian RTW shirts to any bespoke shirt, which is what you seem to be doing.
     
  8. Edward Appleby

    Edward Appleby Senior member

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    If I am not mistaken Kiton shirts cost about as much (if not more) than bespoke. It seems a fair comparison to make.
    That's definitely true, especially in the case of Kiton, but Ebay/discount availability mitigates it a bit (and much more so with Borrelli.)
     
  9. norcaltransplant

    norcaltransplant Senior member

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    Disclaimer: I don't own any Borrelli, Matuozzo, or Kiton shirtings. My experience is limited to Lorenzini and Truzzi for better Italians, and Hilditch & Key and New & Lingwood for British shirtings.

    I personally agree with drake in his comments about differentiating good shirts and great shirts. Crow's foot stichng is an aesthetic choice rather being a sign of better quality. For whats its worth, my Truzzi shirts, which are $100-150 less than Borrelli or Kiton, share the same characteristics cited by Foxx as signs of quality. Borrelli and Kiton undoubtedly use better fabrics, but most of the handwork details is aesthetic fluff rather than serving any specific function.

    My own preferences:
    1) Slim fit (I refuse to even consider Borrelli even at discount for this reason)
    2) Single needle stiching--its noticeable even at a reasonably distance. Cleanliness is better.
    3) Pattern matching across the sleeves and yoke.
    4) Thick MOP buttons
    5) Medium-heavy interlinings

    Non-essentials:
    6) Hand-set sleeves, textured sleevehead
    7) Hand-set collar
    8) Gusset--Completely worthless but cool
     
  10. VMan

    VMan Senior member

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    If I am not mistaken Kiton shirts cost about as much (if not more) than bespoke. It seems a fair comparison to make.

    I get annoyed that these shirts cost as much as bespoke and you get nothing more than a gimmick.


    What's the Kiton price range? Do they start about $525? The priciest Kiton shirt I've seen had a retail of $875, and was a very fine cotton/linen blend. That wasn't an inflated Ebay price either, it was the true price on the tag.
     
  11. Thracozaag

    Thracozaag Senior member

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    Borrelli, Kiton, Matuozzo, Finamore, Attolini and Barba shirts are hardly "gimmick" products.

    koji
     
  12. Edward Appleby

    Edward Appleby Senior member

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    Also, how does handwork equate to "well-made"? If anything, handwork would seem to be to be the opposite of "well-made" due to the inherit inferiority of the human hand to machine work.

    For people who are into more classic clothing (i.e., this forum), it's not just about durability. Handwork is desirable because it preserve the artisnal nature of the garment, and supporting companies that employ skilled craftsmen keeps the knowledge and tradition alive that would otherwise go the way of hand wood and stone carving.
     
  13. Jovan

    Jovan Banned for Good

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    Actually a gusset strengthens the bottom where you tuck, untuck, and basically abuse the shirt the most, thus prolonging its life. I requested gussets on my shirt as well as a split yoke when I got one through the Baron. Which reminds me, no one has noted split yoke as a sign of quality yet. I've always found the shoulders sit better when I'm wearing a shirt that features it.
     
  14. Thracozaag

    Thracozaag Senior member

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    For people who are into more classic clothing (i.e., this forum), it's not just about durability. Handwork is desirable because it preserve the artisnal nature of the garment, and supporting companies that employ skilled craftsmen keeps the knowledge and tradition alive that would otherwise go the way of hand wood and stone carving.

    Ironically though, the hand-made shirts in my collection have lasted, on the whole, longer than the machine-made products.

    koji
     
  15. norcaltransplant

    norcaltransplant Senior member

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    There was a discussion about the utility of the side gusset about a year or two ago with Mr. Kabbaz. I believe the general consensus was the strength of the shirt was more dependent on the quality of the stiching rather than the placement of the gusset itself.
     

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