Since it would seem that the climate in New York has transitioned to full-on winter over the course of a fortnight, it looks like the perfect time to touch on a collar that’s especially suited to the flannel and tweed outerwear we’ll be seeing on the streets. The club collar, with its rounded points, has been a staple of preppier wardrobes for the better part of the century; but it’s also a great, offbeat alternative to the button-down, even for those who aren’t strict adherents to the “Ivy League Look.”
The denim shirt has been an American staple since icons like Steve McQueen, Elvis Presley, and Marlon Brando popularized the look on and off the silver screen. And while it’s easy to see the appeal in trying to channel some of those no-fuss, no-nonsense vibes, the decidedly western styling hasn’t always been congruous with a polished, urban wardrobe. But there’s a new denim shirt in town – a slick, svelte re-tooling that still nods to the rough-and-tumble roots that made the garment so popular in the first place. The All-American bad boy has grown up, and this is what he’s wearing.
Trucker Style for the Sedan Set
The first thing you’ll notice about the new denim shirt is that it sports a trimmer fit than the first go-around. In the past, loggers and other heavy industry workers preferred a generous cut so that the shirt could be worn as a protective outer layer, almost like a jacket. However, if you aren’t looking to defend yourself from flying woodchips, a tailored silhouette will prove much more flattering.
Clean Up Your Act
Fit isn’t the only department where the re-envisioned denim takes cues from the modern dress shirt – gone are the snap-buttons, angled yoke, and decorative stitching, in favor of a more streamlined look. Tonal or mother-of-pearl buttons, along with an updated collar, go a long way in maturing the look. The collar can be a slimmed down version of the floppy button-down or forward point traditionally found, or a dressier option like a cutaway that never would have worked in the past. The denim itself is also more like fine shirting fabric: tightly woven and evenly dyed, it’s a big step in the right direction from the distressing and faux-fading we’ve seen in years past. We still get a nod to the functional heritage of the denim shirt with throwback details like chest pockets, and button-flap closures on more casual renditions.
Style to Go
The denim-dress hybrid is easy to dress up or down for any occasion in a pinch. Throw a leather jacket on top for a killer downtown look, or swap the leather for a suit and add some visual intrigue to your weekday uniform. Wear it untucked with a pair of chinos, and you’ve nailed the sweet spot between laid back and dressy.
Built to Last
Even though you can substitute the denim revamp for a dress shirt, don’t think you’ll have to pamper it like one. It’s still tough enough to make the hardiest oxford weak in the knees. So go ahead and skip the cleaner, you can put this shirt straight in the wash without a second thought. Don’t bother with ironing or pressing it afterward either, just throw it over the back of a chair till the weekend rolls around (like you weren’t going to do that anyway). The wrinkles only add to the carefree cool.
The denim dress shirt is an investment piece that you might be surprised to find yourself reaching for as often as the classic whites and pale blues. It’s next to impossible to look like you’re trying too hard while wearing one, and there’s a shade of indigo that goes with just about everything. Treading the line between trendy and timeless, rugged and refined, the reinvented denim is one of the most versatile shirts you can own this fall.
Customize or buy either of the ManuelRacim denim shirts featured in this post by clicking the icon below:
We’ve just sourced a Limited Edition range of fabrics from Thomas Mason for the fall, and suffice it to say they are nothing short of spectacular. The textile purveyor has been producing sought after fabrics since 1796, with a reputation for exacting quality and unsurpassed elegance. Our latest collaboration borrows from their impressive stable of archival patterns and is right on the mark for fall. Stop by our store to see the full range in stock now.
Floral has always been a persistent theme in womens wear for as long as we can remember, but during this past men’s fashion week, flowery prints were sprouting up on the runways for Prada, Dries Van Noten and more, in unexpectedly masculine form. From subtle details to large abstract prints, this season has men with diverse styles adopting the trend in full force.
We recently had the pleasure of collaborating with two bloggers who eyed the same Liberty of London floral for their custom shirts, and found ways to incorporate the print in their disparate styles.
There are a handful of days every year when even the lightest poplin shirting won’t be able to withstand the heat, and based on the weather this past week, it seems safe to say they’re getting close. Luckily, we have you covered, with a foolproof collection of breezy linen designs.