Comments

  1. Where’s the denim?  Every man should have a denim shirt! I’ve even seen it done preppy, a button down version with a classic leather pilot’s jacket and khakis.

    A chambray work shirt is also a consideration.

    Otherwise, good work.

  2. On the Old Navy tip, I would suggest hitting up the Tall section and sizing down.  At 6’1, 190 I have a hard time finding Larges that don’t fit like sails.  The Old Navy Tall Medium fills that void.  

  3. I agree about Old Navy stuff wearing short and wide. In their pants, I get a size down in the waist and a size longer in the inseam.

  4. Don’t know if anyone cares, but I got an email from banana that lets you take 30% off one full priced item (code BRMAD30) or 40% off two full priced items (code BRMAD40) …if anyone wants to get that white shirt in this post…

    good for today, 9/14, only

  5. I really like the J.Crew Factory secret wash / tailored fit shirts for the casual button up option. Usually don’t need tailoring, great fit, good quality, and usually always on sale at the brick and mortar stores. Also, for those of you still in school (or still have your student ID) J.Crew offers a 10% student discount at their brick and mortar stores.

  6. My experience with the Calibrate shirt is that it’s way too long to untuck, and the fabric is smooth/silky, which makes it difficult to dress down.  

  7. If you sign up for BR’s email-list, they’ve been running their “Mad For Wednesdays” promos for the past few weeks, and I’m guessing they’ll be continuing them for a few more. *And if you buy online and link via eBates.com, then you end up saving a little more in the not-so-long run.

  8. YAWN….Boring. Where is the Ben Sherman in this lineup? Why go for these boring safe patterns that every joe wears? Why not some uber classic and unusual Ben?

  9. I’m a big fan of the lands end canvas heritage shirts. I picked up two on sale for under $20 each and they look great under a nice v-neck sweater. Also, the contrast band on the inside of the sleeves is a great touch when you roll up your sleeves (the right way, of course). Plus, they are just oh-so-cheap if you pick ’em up during a sale. I’m a pretty slim guy, 5’9″/140lb, so I only wear these shirts under sweaters as they are a little wide for us slimmer gentlemen.

  10. As they say on Reddit, “Nice try, Ben Sherman.”

    Also isn’t Ben Sherman stuff usually super expensive compared to all the options you’ve posted here?

  11. Also these are “boring safe patterns” because the guy asked what should be the first few things in his wardrobe, dang!

  12. After never having shopped at Old Navy since I was a kid, I found out the current cut on the shirts fit me quite well and picked up a bunch of short sleeve summer shirts. Do the long sleeved shirts have collar stays? The short don’t and I wish they did.

    I’ve had luck with the Merona shirts at Target as well. When I go grocery shopping I always swing by the clearance section and they usually have one or two discounted down to $5-$10.

  13. I’d be hesitant to go with an Old Navy for your blue oxford…does anyone have any data on the longevity of their stuff? If you’re going to have to pay a fixed cost of X to have it tailored, you might as well get a more decent one to start with…

  14. to his point though – H&M has some pretty solid shirts for under $30 that have a little flair to them (military-style buttoned shoulders, accent fabric lining the buttons, etc.) – the build quality is always suspect, but for $30 it beats a $130 ted baker or the like…

  15. Epaulets are hard to put a sweater over.  Plus, people lose their minds about them in the comments section (and not in a complimentary way.)  Alex was looking to build.  These build.  To each his own, and I’m a bit of a minimalist anyway. 

  16. Epaulets are hard to put a sweater over.  Plus, people lose their minds about them in the comments section (and not in a complimentary way.)  Alex was looking to build.  These build.  To each his own, and I’m a bit of a minimalist anyway. 

  17. Epaulets are hard to put a sweater over.  Plus, people lose their minds about them in the comments section (and not in a complimentary way.)  Alex was looking to build.  These build.  To each his own, and I’m a bit of a minimalist anyway. 

  18. It’s a serious investment, but the Brooks Brothers Supima OCBD is one of the nicest shirts I’ve put on in awhile. Comes in neck/sleeve sizing, traditional, slim, or extra slim fit. Made in USA of USA-grown cotton (cloth imported.) I’m wearing one right now, and let me tell you – it feels like it will last for a long while.

    The fabric is a colored wheft/white weave (or vice-versa?) that produces a micro-check effect. Looks great, screams quality.

  19. Hey Joe, what’s that Gap shirt, 2nd from the right?  Blue gingham is amazing but sorta overdone – that shirt’s pattern is a great alternative

  20. I agree, which is why I picked it up about a year or so ago, before GAP seemed to go all emo dark and brooding.  Which, hopefully they’ll snap out of.  Haven’t seen anything in store similar since.

  21. Of course, I understand…and if those ON shirts last, then hoo-ray, beer.  I just wasn’t sure if they would, and then your costs end up creeping up anyway.

  22. Of course, I understand…and if those ON shirts last, then hoo-ray, beer.  I just wasn’t sure if they would, and then your costs end up creeping up anyway.

  23. For a foundation to a casual shirt wardrobe this is spot on if you ask me… Candystripes, gingham and light blue. The versatility of these three is mindnumbing.

  24. And yes, I completely acknowledge that they’re going to be seen as “boring” by some.  BUT… that doesn’t mean they’re the wrong answer.  Can’t suggestion flashy just for the sake of flashy.

  25. This may have been just a fluke, but on the first washing (and drying) of my light blue OCBD from Old Navy, a thread was separated from the weave near the middle button leaving a ~3 inch dark blue line where the thread was previously.  Regardless, it is still my favorite off the rack button down I own due to the shape of its collar, its fit, and its cost keeping in mind my style is almost always what I would describe as smart (very) casual.

  26. Sorry if this is a dumb question but what does “not a neck & sleeve dress shirt” refer to?

    Also, no short sleeve shirts? To me long sleeve shirts are less casual.

  27. I get almost all of my casual button ups from either J.Crew or LEC. I have LEC’s OCBD in white, light blue, pale yellow, light orange, and the white with grey striped one you referenced earlier. They all could maybe use a lil tailoring but are nice off the rack. I didnt pay more then $20 for anyone of them. I also have striped poplins from LEC and J.Crew and gingham shirts from both. Probably didnt pay more then $30 for a single one. With sales and coupon codes these shirts are easy to find. GAP and american living can also be a good place for cheap casual shirts.

  28. Neck and sleeve refers to the measurements typically used for dress shirts i.e. 16 34/45 as opposed to say a large.

  29. Always been a button down collar fan myself for casual shirts. Like that tattersall. How are the LEC shirts? I’ve tried their pants/polos, but never button down shirts.

  30. I don’t see why you can’t have casual shirts that are “neck & sleeve”… so long as they’re still casual shirts and not full-on dress shirts.  …?

  31. Hi Joe,

    Do you feel spread collars are appropriate to be worn casually / without a tie?  I always thought they were slightly more formal than a point collar and demanded a tie.

  32. BTW, I had that old LEC grey striped shirt.  Accidentally bleached it and miss it.  Ran very small though, and wasn’t a fan of the small collar.

  33. If it’s not a cutaway collar, you can get a pair of wurkin stiffs and they’ll stand up well enough to frame your face (and not fly away)

  34. Abercrombie and Hollister shirts are definitely short enough to wear untucked and you can get them SUPER cheap on sale. If you can stomach going into a store, I usually always order online. The shirts are also nice and super slim.

  35. The bengal stripe is going to be darker than the lighter-striped idea.  Although it varies with brand (and shirt), bengal stripe tends to be pretty dark and fuller with the color of the shirt vs. a regular striped shirt.

  36. What are the actual material/structural differences between casual shirts and formal shirts? I’m planning on having some casual shirts tailor-made, and need to be able to properly explain what I’m after.

  37. No love for Express? I’ve picked up 4 of their shirts since Christmas and they are fantastic. Great off the rack, especially in their “fitted” style.

  38. Agreed. The material is iffy but their fitted styles fit perfect right off the rack, and they’re pretty much designed to be worn untucked. I bought one not too long ago that looks exactly like the Calibrate Black and White for half that or less, and it looks great, and the white, no pocket, fitted 1MX shirt I got years ago is still my go to for the casual white button up.

  39. I think if you’re old enough to be reading this site, you’re too old to be shopping at Abercrombie and Hollister

  40. It depends on what items you buy from both stores. Abercrombie makes good jeans (surprise, surprise!) for a mass market brand. If you’re able to find a cut that you like, and if it’s a dark wash with no manufactured rips & holes, no one would know if they’re Abercrombie unless they catch the leather patch on right hip. Since Abercrombie owns Hollister their jeans tend to be the same as well. If one does buy a button down shirt there’s the possibility to remove the logo with a seam ripper. The quick dismissal of both Abercrombie and Hollister is sometimes unwarranted.