Having bought and endured my fair share of poor quality business shirts, I thought it might be worth sharing some of the things I’ve learned. High quality doesn’t have to come with a high price tag. But, a word of advice, a high price is certainly no guarantee of high quality.
100% Pure, Two Fold Cotton
Most cotton is crafted from single yarns, meaning that strands of the cotton staple are spun to make a single thread. This thread is used to weave traditional shirting fabrics, which are not quite as luxurious as the ones made from double-cotton.
To make a two-fold yarn, a long and fine staple yarn is chosen first. Then, these separate yarns from the cotton staple are spun together again creating a very fine yarn that has essentially been folded together twice. This is finally woven into a shirting which has a smoother, silkier finish.
The extra care and processing that goes into manufacturing two-fold cotton is reflected in the higher price point of the final piece.
The bottom line is that shirts made from two fold cotton never scratch or itch. Instead, they are soft, lustrous, breathable and comfortable.
Yeah, I’m a fan.
The Brass Stiffener
The best collars are two piece, with a fabric interlining sewn in. The removable brass collar stiffeners are the essential piece that stops your collars from curling.
Personally, I can’t stand it when the tips of the collars curl up. It doesn’t matter how much ironing or starch spray you use!
Collar stiffeners are brilliant. I only wish I had more spare ones as I keep misplacing them.
Lock Stitched Buttons
Simple really. You should be able to easily turn your buttons at a 90 degree angle. This ensures that once buttoned, your shirt placket will always lie flat.
Pretty important really as the buttons are key piece of the shirt and the overall look.
A Split Back Yoke
Here is something that has become less common, in our modern world of cheap and mass produced everything. Look for a four piece back yoke. Not the most obvious feature, I know, but worth it, as your shirt will fit you better.
Variety Is More Than Just Spice
You’ve heard the saying that variety is the spice of life. In terms of business shirts, it’s also a sign of quality and attention to detail.
While not a guarantee in itself, combined with the features above, gives a very strong indication that your looking at some seriously good shirts. Look for some of these options:
- A good range of colour options
- A good range of designs and patterns
- A choice of collar styles
- Single and double-cuff sleeves on offer
- A choice of sleeve lengths
- A choice of shirt fits
Finally, let me recommend trying something different, whether it’s a brighter colour than usual, or a new collar style. I can tell you from experience that you’ll end up loving your choice more often than not, and, you might even find a new favourite.
Feel free to comment below. I’d love to hear you thoughts and experiences. All the best.