Understanding the Dress Shirt: Custom Shirt Giveaway

by Antonio on April 12, 2009 · 338 comments

in Dress & Grooming, Style

blue_herringbone_shirt_folded

A man’s dress shirt can elegantly frame his face during a presentation and later absorb his perspiration during a tough round of questioning. It can play a supporting role by enhancing his sport jacket or it can stand alone and be the centerpiece of his outfit. The dress shirt ranges in price from the $9.99 Wal-Mart polyester special to over $600 for a name brand custom shirt. But why would you want to read an entire article about dress shirts?

Because details matter. In any given day we only speak with a small percentage of the people we see; the shirt you wear, in the absence of a jacket, is the most powerful signal you are using to non-verbally communicate with those around you. Your shirt, whether you like it or not, is speaking for you; make sure it’s saying what you intend.

What is a Dress Shirt

A proper dress shirt is a button-up shirt with a collar, long sleeves, and wrist cuffs. It is usually made from a cotton fabric woven and dyed into various, non-obtrusive patterns and colors. By altering these characteristics, a dress shirt can either send the message its wearer is ready for sport or ready to meet the president.

Dress Shirt Fit

Most men wear dress shirts that do not fit them properly. The problem is that ready made garments are made to fit many; as a result, they fit no one perfectly. We all compromise somewhere if a shirt fits us in the neck it fails us in the sleeve length; if it fits well in the sleeves, it billows out around the stomach. So the fit  I’ll describe here is generally only achievable on a custom shirt or one that’s close to fitting and then tailored by a skilled hand.

A well fitted dress shirt should first and foremost be comfortable; this is different for every man. Larger men are usually complimented by a looser fit while petite and thin men are complimented by a more form cut. In general, though, a shirt should:

  • Allow two fingers in the collar when buttoned.
  • Be tight enough around the wrist so that the cuffs must be unbuttoned to slip them off.
  • Have long enough sleeves so that you can raise your arms like wings and not pull the cuffs down the forearm; they should be short enough so that you don’t have more than 1 inch of fabric bunching near the cuff when your arms hang.
  • Shoulder points that extend to the end of the shoulder and no farther.
  • Have room in the chest and waist to pinch out 1-3 inches of fabric (depending on fit desired).

Dress Shirt Fabric

Cotton. The undisputed king of shirt fabrics, cotton has been the choice of those in the know for centuries. A finely woven cotton fabric exhibits all the properties a man could want from a garment worn close to the body, good heat & moisture conduction, durability, smoothness, and the ability to take shape when ironed.

Man-Made Fibers. Although they do not exhibit the same desirable properties as cotton, man made fibers have made a huge impact on the shirt scene due to their ability to do an acceptable job at a rock bottom price. Often wrinkle and stain resistant, these fibers have and will continue to play a major role in menswear. Although I recommend staying away from shirts with more than 50% man made fiber, for the budget minded, they may be a viable alternative.

Silk. A luxury fabric easily recognizable because of its sheen and light drape, it is not recommended for most as, the maintenance costs are high and long term durability low. But that’s just my opinion!

Dress Shirt Color

french_blue_shirt-_front

White – The most common shirt color; historically it has dominated the scene and was initially the only choice for a gentleman. The lack of color on a man’s collar and cuffs signified he did not have to do dirty work; colored shirts were looked upon with suspicion as it was assumed they were colored to hide stains. To this day, white still reigns as the most formal color, and its popularity has safely placed it among the iconic garments a man can wear. Where ever you may be, a man can safely assume a white shirt will never be out of place.

Blue – Blue’s dominance has more to do with its ability to compliment most men’s complexions rather than heritage. The popularity of blue exploded in the United States as more and more off-the-rack manufactures looked for colors and patterns that would sell. Today the color firmly holds a place as a safe alternative to white. And unfortunately, this is often the extent of the variety found in a man’s dress shirt collection.

Other Colors – Pink, gold, lavender, off-white, forest green, and even red, just a few of the multitude of colors available to the man who is willing to walk a different path. Whether these colors dominate the dress shirt, or highlight the pattern woven into it, they can compliment every complexion out there. And with less than 10% of the shirt wearing population even dabbling into these shades, the man who masters wearing them can easily set himself apart in a room of like dressed men.

Patterns

shirts_on_hangers

Solid – The simplest and most formal pattern, yet the most versatile. A solid shirt’s defers attention away from the color (unless it is gaudy) and instead helps a man better display the style and fit of his garment. And solid doesn’t always mean solid; different weaves can slyly give the impression of monotony from a distance only to reveal their true nature up close. A solid white poplin fabric has a very different look and feel from a solid white twill or herringbone.

Stripe – Most of us can’t go wrong with a classic blue on white, but consider adding certain accent colors such as red or pink to liven up the hues in the face. This pattern looks especially good with a solid colored suit.

Check – Historically the purpose of the check was to signify a wearer’s background. Today, most men are intimidated to wear such a pattern with a suit as they think it will appear overpowering.  It won’t, as long as you remember not to mix like patterns; a checked shirt with a solid suit and striped tie are a great combination. However, it is the least formal pattern and should be worn carefully in business on the US East Coast and abroad.

Dress Shirt Style

The Shirt Collar

The purpose of a shirt collar is to properly balance and frame a man’s face. It’s the most visible part of a shirt when wearing a jacket and because of it’s proximity to the face, plays a very large role in determining the formality and use of the shirt. For this article we will only talk about turndown collars and its two major variants, the point and spread.

collar-straight-pointPoint Collars – The most common collar style seen in the US is the point collar; found on 95% of off-the-rack dress shirts, it is cut so that the collar points are reasonably close together with the collar angle being at or less than 60 degrees. The advantage of this collar style is that longer, more closely set points tend to draw the eye down which elongates the face. Unfortunately, most off-the-rack point collars seek the middle ground and do not have a small enough angle or long enough points to reap the full rewards of this effect.

collar-spreadSpread Collars – The second style is the spread or “cutaway” collar. These collars have the points “cut away” thus the name, revealing more of the upper shirt area; typically we see these collars with angles greater than 90 degrees. Spread collars are excellent for the gentleman with a medium to long shaped face, as they do the opposite of the point and spread out a man’s features.

Shirt Cuffs

Besides the collar, the shirt’s cuffs are the only visible parts of a shirt when a jacket is worn; they are divided into two types, button (casual to formal) and French (formal).

black_and_white_check_3

Button Cuffs – Button cuffs are single cuffs which wrap around the arm and are buttoned into place. These are the cuffs most commonly found on ready made shirts. Button cuffs may have a single button or may be adjustable, with two buttons side-by-side. Some have two buttonholes and two vertical buttons- a more formal option often called the “barrel cuff.” Button cuffs may also have a small button on the sleeve, between the cuff and the end of the cuff opening, intended to prevent the area from opening and exposing the gentleman’s wrist.

french_cuffs_knot

French Cuffs – French cuffs are the most formal option, yet are perfectly appropriate for daily wear in many industries such as finance. The French cuff is a double cuff, folded back and fastened with cufflinks to create a distinctive and distinguished appearance. Cufflinks must always be worn – though there are more subtle options available, such as fabric knots – so the gentleman must be prepared to keep a reasonable selection on hand.

Dress Shirt Buttons

mother_of_pearl_button

Most buttons today are made of plastic, a suitable material for the job asit is inexpensive and fairly strong. However, if a low quality resin is used, the base of your buttons will crack, and they may break within a year. An eloquent alternative to plastic is Mother of Pearl. Not actually pearl, these buttons are made from shell and are so hard that they can break needles. They are only found on higher end clothing today because of their cost and tendency to disintegrate over time when exposed to harsh detergents.

Closing Comments

This article could go on; we didn’t even get into monograms, pockets, split yokes, the placket, gussets, pattern matching, collar stays, and back style. For those interested in more, please visit A Tailored Suit’s Style Guide or the resources we listed in The Art of Manliness’s best online style links.

Matching a Tie With Your Dress Shirt

Matching your dress shirt with a tie and suit can be tricky business. Here’s a guide on how to match your tie with a dress shirt and suit.

The Contest

The Art of Manliness and A Tailored Suit have teamed up to give one lucky reader a hand-made custom dress shirt valued at $149. To enter you need to leave a comment describing your ideal dress shirt and specify 1) your fabric choice (include a reference #), 2 ) collar style, 3) cuff type,  and 4)breast pocket style. This information can readily be found within A Tailored Suit’s online Build Your Garment tool.  All comments must be submitted by Friday, April 17 at 10PM CST. The winner will be announced on Saturday, April 18, 2009.

Written by
Antonio Centeno & the Team at A Tailored Suit

201 Roy April 14, 2009 at 2:21 pm

The shirt I’d sport:

4-1-2 fabric,
classic spread collar,
one-button cut corner cuff, and
no pocket (i’m never going to use it so…)

BTW, really great giveaway

202 Rocco Galizio April 14, 2009 at 3:18 pm

Fabric: #4-6-64
Collar type: Narrow Straight Point
Cuff type: Contoured French Cuff
Breast pocket: Square pocket

Simple, yet elegant. Works well with the suits I own and the versatility is great for someone who is on the job hunt and therefor lacks the funds to invest in a large wardrobe.

203 Chris Bigler April 14, 2009 at 4:33 pm

Fabric: #4-6-64
Collar Type: Narrow Straight Point
Cuff Type: Cut Corner Cuff
Breast Pocket: Square

Classic

204 Dan April 14, 2009 at 4:35 pm

Fabric; #4-6-16
Medium Spread Collar
Two Button Cut Corner Cuff
Diamond Cut Pocket

This site has some great giveaways

205 Chris Twellman April 14, 2009 at 4:40 pm

I like to think that my style is a classic fashionable look without appearing trendy. I have a body type that cannot be fit by the standard off the rack shirt, but want a custom shirt that is just as at home with a nice pair of jeans as with a $4000 custom suit. I think the following exemplifies that:

1) Fabric # 4-6-47 — more exciting that a solid, plus the dotted stripe is more modern
2) Classic Spread — I like a full windsor Knot and this leaves space to show it off
3) Two Button Square Edge — looks sharp when buttoned or unbutton the first to let loose a little
4) No pocket

206 Kim V April 14, 2009 at 4:45 pm

My ideal shirt would be
1) # – 4-8-45
2) Classic Button Down
3) 2 button cut corner
4) No pocket

207 Joshua M April 14, 2009 at 4:47 pm

Another great article, lots of good advice.
Fabric:Essential Business Blue #4-7-78
Collar: Classic Spread Collar
Cuff: One Button Cut Corner Cuff
Breast Pocket: None
The shirt I would choose. Thanks again.
Joshua

208 Eric April 14, 2009 at 4:53 pm

Fabric- 4-6-85 (Love the color; paired with a good tie would knock it outta the park)
Collar: Regular Business
Cuff: Contoured French Cuff (I absolutely LOVE French cuffs and a fabric knot will tone it down just a little bit compared to cufflinks)
Pocket: Toss-up between no pocket and diamond pocket. Both look good.

My body type just does not allow me to wear off-the-rack shirts. I have to get nearly every one I purchase taken in since I have such broad shoulders compared to my waist size. Another great contest!

209 Ivan April 14, 2009 at 5:23 pm

Fabric – Cotton – pre shrunk if possible. It has to be breathable. #4-3-3
Collar – Classic Button Down Collar
Cuff – No particular preference but if I have to choose, it would be Two Button Rounded Edge Cuff
Pocket: I would go for a square pocket that is deep enough to actually drop a pen in. Rounded or Diamond cut pockets tend to make pens move towards the center of the pocket and I like my pen to stay put on the inside edge of the pocket.

210 JasonH April 14, 2009 at 5:40 pm

Something icy blue and classy in a european cut.

Fabric: #4-8-31
Collar type: Classic Spread
Cuff type: Square Edge French Cuff
Breast pocket: None

211 Stephen April 14, 2009 at 6:17 pm

My ideal shirt is:
1) Cotton #4-8-50
2) Spread collar
3) French Cuff
4) with NO breast pocket

Thanks!

212 Andrew April 14, 2009 at 7:46 pm

Great Giveaway!

My Idea Dress Shirt:

Fabric: 4-7-78
Collar: Straight Point, Moderate length
Cuff: One Button Rounded Edge
Breast Pocket: Diamond Cut Left side

213 Rob April 14, 2009 at 8:22 pm

1: Black 4-1-41
2:Regular Business Collar
3:One Button Square edge
4: No pocket

Simple quiet quality

214 Carl D April 14, 2009 at 9:01 pm

My ideal shirt is:
1)Ideal cotton: 4-6-79
2) Spread collar
3) French Cuff
4) with NO breast pocket

Let’s keep it classy

215 Josh A April 15, 2009 at 4:17 am

Great stuff!! Thank you for the insight!

I guess my ideal would be…

#4-6-47
Regular Business Collar
Square Edge French Cuff
No Pocket

Thanks for holding the contest!

216 Mike Reed April 15, 2009 at 5:18 am

I only recently discovered your website and have been so impressed thus far by the time and attention paid to real men and an appreciation of what manliness ought to be rather than the poor cliche it has become. Hard work, faithfulness to one’s friends and family and strength of character. Just not enough appreciation for that or striving to become that these days.

That said, what a great contest idea! So excited at the possibility of such a high-end and classic shirt; thanks to A Tailored Suit and Art of Manliness for sponsoring it.

If I had to choose, my ideal shirt would be as follows:
* Material: #4-6-64 (White Herringbone)
* Classic Spread Collar
* Contoured French Cuff
* No Pocket
* Covered Panel Front Style
* Plain Back
* Monogram: MWR on right cuff in black script
* As an extra note: Form fit: it’s so hard finding good shirts that fit in the neck and sleeve but are still slim.
To echo one of the above comments, hopefully this would be a shirt my grandfather would approve of and wear.

Once again, thanks for such a great contest!
Mike

217 Mark Parris April 15, 2009 at 5:46 am

1) Orange #4-2-6
2) Classic spread collar
3) Square edge French cuff
4) No pocket

Thanks! I’ve always wanted to try a shirt from this vendor – hope I win!

218 Greg April 15, 2009 at 6:02 am

You’ve always got the coolest contests.

My perfect shirt?
1) Fabric: Poplin, white and red stripe on a light blue background, #4-6-30
2) Collar: Straight Point Collar
3) Cuff: Contoured French Cuff
4) Pocket: No Pocket

219 MarkM April 15, 2009 at 9:23 am

Fabric: ID# 4-6-20
Collar type: Straight point
Cuff type: Rounded edge French cuff
Breast pocket: Square pocket on left breast.

Thanks for putting this up

220 MarcS April 15, 2009 at 10:01 am

Just started reading this blog – Awesome contest

My ideal dress shirt -

#1 – Properly fitted!!! – For me that means a strong taper from the shoulders down to my waist. (I guess A Tailored Suit calls it a “form fit”)

Fabric – Lavenders are my meat and potatoes, something with a muted but complex pattern like 4-8-34

Collar Type – Standard Business – I like to show off my ties, but the spread collars just don’t like my face

Cuff – Square Edge French – It’s classic, what else can I say

Pocket – Diamond cut pocket on the left side

Panel Front with a Center Box Pleat and there it is – my Ideal shirt

221 Paul April 15, 2009 at 10:33 am

My ideal shirt:

1) # 4-3-3 Blue
2) Classic spread collar
3) Rounded edge french cuff
4) no breast pocket

222 JamesD April 15, 2009 at 10:38 am

Fabric: 4-6-85.
Size: 15 1\2, sleeves 36
Fit: tailored.
Collar: Medium Spread.
Cuffs: one button cuff corner cut
Pocket: None
Front: Regular front
Pleats: Side Pleats

I wish I had known about site’s like A Tailored Suit before. I hate the fit and style of most store bought cloths.

223 James April 15, 2009 at 10:43 am

I am an attorney, so my perfect shirt is pretty conservative, but with my own flair.

1)White Herringbone pattern, #4-6-64
2) Collar: Wide Spread Collar
3) Cuff: Contoured French Cuff
4) Pocket: Diamond cut pocket, normally I would go for no pocket, but they are needed for practical purposes.
5) Panel front

224 Ian McPhee April 15, 2009 at 10:58 am

Alright, well since this would be the perfect birthday present, why not.

Fabric: #4-6-64

Collar: Classic Spread Collar

Cuff Type: Contoured French Cuff

Pocket: Diamond Cut Pocket, Left Side

If A Tailored Suit are willing to do it, I will also take that with side pleats and a covered panel front. Oh and just the regular shirt fit. But that’s only if they’re willing to do these as well, I’ve noticed that you only mention 4 parts that they’ll customize if we get picked, but some other gentlemen have made further remarks, and I will too if given the option (and if the shirt remains free). Thank you to The Art of Manliness blog and to A Tailored Suit for allowing this great contest to occur! Congratulations to whomever wins this contest.

225 Stephen On Li April 15, 2009 at 11:16 am

My ideal dress shirt is a black-tie, soft-front, turn-down collar shirt for semi-formal occasions. It should be form-fitting with a classic spread collar that best suits my medium-long face. It should be true to the black tie tradition of the 1930′s with wide or “box” pleats on the front and a Marcella bosom and cuffs. French cuffs will be appropriate preferably utilizing 2 cuff links to match my height. Also desired is a bib front with a trouser tab to keep it neatly tucked in for a crisp sharp appearance.

1) Fabric Choice: White Twill 100% Cotton #4-6-79
2) Collar Style: Classic Spread Collar
3) Cuff Type: Square French Cuff
4) Breast Pocket Style: none

226 Jeffrey Denomme April 15, 2009 at 11:24 am

Hmm, ideal shirt would be:

Fabric: #4-2-2

Collar: Narrow Straight Point Collar

Cuff Type: Contoured French Cuff

Pocket: Diamond Cut Pocket, Left Side

Front: Covered Panel

Back: Centered Box Pleat

Fit: Regular

This makes for a nice formal dress shirt with a hint of Oriental styling which helps to distinguish from the rest of the crowd and plays up the blue colour and the light cotton weave. Oriental shirts are usually white but I like the pop the blue would give, also a button tie would accentuate the neck to balance the narrow straight point collar that draws the face.

Just my thoughts.

227 Jay April 15, 2009 at 12:26 pm

I would love one of these shirts. They look amazing.

1) fabric 4-6-69
2) Regular Business Collar
3) One Button Cut Corner Cuff
4) no pocket

Thanks!!!

228 Eliot Routh April 15, 2009 at 12:43 pm

I’m looking for something a bit more casual for country wear, but with a very classic look. (Ideally it would go well with a tweed suit.)

Something like:
Fabric: #4-6-5
Cuff: Two Button Square Edge Cuff
Pocket: None
Front: Panel
Fit: Regular

229 Ricky April 15, 2009 at 1:11 pm

100% Cotton

#4-6-59
Classic Spread Collar

Contoured French Cuff

Diamond Cut pocket

Panel Front Style

Plain Back

230 Jeff K April 15, 2009 at 1:22 pm

My ideal shirt would be versatile – classic enough to wear to the office with a suit, yet stylish enough to wear on a night out with jeans.

I’ll go with:

Fabric: 4-6-78
Collar: Regular business
Cuff: One button square edge
Breast pocket: None

231 Phil April 15, 2009 at 2:21 pm

I’m going for a banker look:
Fabric: Blue w/ white stripes, #4-6-29
Medium Spread Collar
Rounded Edge French Cuff
Diamond cut breast pocket on the left

232 Ron April 15, 2009 at 2:42 pm

My ideal shirt:
-dark, solid color that goes with my skin tone
-slim fit & makes me look taller
-no pockets

233 David Ould April 15, 2009 at 3:07 pm

excellent idea for a competition!

#4-6-7
Medium Spread Collar
Square Edge French Cuff
NO pocket
Regular Front
Plain back

234 Steven Bean April 15, 2009 at 4:47 pm

My ideal shirt-

Fabric Color: #4-2-5
Straight Point Collar
One Button Rounded Edge Cuff
Square Pocket

235 Lenard Cole April 15, 2009 at 5:41 pm

Colour: White
Collar: Point
Cuffs: French

236 James Moxness April 15, 2009 at 6:13 pm

My Ideal Dress Shirt:
Colour: #4-3-2
Form fit
Classic Spread Collar
Square Edge French Cuffs
Centered Box Pleat
Panel Front Style
No Breast Pocket

237 Peter V April 15, 2009 at 6:25 pm

Hello,

I would like my custom shirt to look like a custom shirt therefore it needs the type of detail generally not found off the rack.

I would go for:

Fabric 4-6-40 – blue striped distinguished
Collar – classic spread collar
Cuffs – Rounded edge French cuffs
Front: Panel Front
Fit: regular
Pocket: No Pocket (never put anything in a shirt pocket anyway!)

To make it a little different again I would go for White cuffs and collar.

Cheers

Peter

238 Joe April 15, 2009 at 6:29 pm

Ideal Shirt:

Color: 4-6-63
Collar: Straight Point Collar
Cuff: Rounded French Cuff
Pocket: No Pocket

239 James R April 15, 2009 at 6:30 pm

#4-7-89
Pointed collar
French Cuffs
No pocket please.
:)

240 Sam April 15, 2009 at 6:46 pm

Ooh, this is fun.

My ideal shirt:
Color: #4-1-41 (pure black, makes a nice fancy look with a black suit)
Medium spread collar, on the taller side
Square cut french cuffs
No pocket

241 Queen of the Click April 15, 2009 at 7:03 pm

I’ve been trying to get my Sweetie to go and get a suit made for himself, but he doesn’t want to go. Everyone in NYC has great fitting suits. He loves online shopping so maybe this will be the start to his love of custom suits and shirts.
I like:
Fabric: #4-6-7
Collar type: Straight point style
Cuff type: One Button Square Edge Cuff
Breast pocket: square pocket

242 Patrick April 15, 2009 at 7:23 pm

I’d have to go with:

Fabric: #4-8-30
Collar type: Medium spread collar
Cuff type: Contoured French Cuff
Breast pocket: Left diamond cut pocket

243 David April 15, 2009 at 7:25 pm

Hmm…

I’m really fond of my solid light green dress shirt. It’s cotton with a pointed collar and plastic buttons.

Sub out the buttons, replace them with mother-of-pearl, and that would have to be my ideal dress shirt, or at least really close to it.

244 Andy April 15, 2009 at 7:50 pm

#4-6-11
Classic Button-down collar
Rounded edge French cuff
Left rounded pocket
Panel front
Centered box pleat back

Since I have most of the basics (whites and blues in both button-down and spread/point, with barrel cuffs), the ideal dress shirt for me now is an interesting but not flashy patterned shirt that will add some variety to my wardrobe. I’m also interested in French cuffs, since my grandpa handed down a whole box of cuff links to me when he died last March.

245 Dan Izzo April 15, 2009 at 7:51 pm

Fabric # 4-6-70
Classic Spread Collar
Two Button Cut Corner Cuff
Square Pocket

246 Brewer Palmer April 15, 2009 at 9:04 pm

4-8-45
Classic Spread Collar
Two Button Cut Corner Cuff
No Pocket

247 chris April 15, 2009 at 9:11 pm

Fabric # 4-7-89
Classic Spread Collar
Contoured French Cuff
No Pocket
Panel Front
Plain Back
No Monogram
Form Fit

248 Andrew April 15, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Fabric: #4-3-1 or #4-6-79 (if the 4-3-1 doesn’t qualify as being over $149)
Collar Style: Straight Point Collar
Cuff Type: Square Edge French Cuff
Breast Pocket Style: None

Perfect shirt for interviews and making great first impressions.

249 Richard S April 15, 2009 at 9:19 pm

Ooh baby, ooh baby! A new shirt will come in great while searching for a new job!

Fabric# 4-6-64
Medium Spread Collar
Square Edge French Cuff
No Pocket

Thank you, thank you AoM

250 Levi April 15, 2009 at 10:14 pm

I really enjoy all of Tony’s posts. This would be just incredible to win.

Fabric: 4-6-11
Collar: Classic Buttoned Down
Cuff: Single Button Rounded Edge
No Pocket

Thanks.

251 Frank April 15, 2009 at 10:14 pm

My custom shirt would have:

1. Fabric: #4-6-40 (blue stripe)
2. Regular Business Collar
3. Contoured French Cuff
4. Diamond Cut Breast Pocket

Thanks, AoM!

252 Zach Wang April 15, 2009 at 10:32 pm

Color: #4-6-79
Collar: Straight Point Collar
Cuff: Square Edge French Cuff
Pocket: Square Pocket

253 Artimus April 15, 2009 at 10:40 pm

Fabric: #4-6-71
Collar: Regular Business
Cuff: Two Button Rounded
Pocket: Diamond Cut

Good luck everyone, and thanks to AoM.

254 tim April 16, 2009 at 2:23 am

Fabric #4-6-5
Classic Spread Collar
One Button Cut Corner Cuff
Diamond Cut Pocket

Panel Front Style
Centered Box Pleat
Form Fit

I have been considering buying this shirt for a long time

255 Arvid April 16, 2009 at 2:29 am

I love a good two-ply cotton twill with a nice pattern, and loud is good.

Fabric #4-8-86 seems to fit the bill nicely.
Regular Business Collar, Two Button Cut Corner Cuff, and no breast pocket.

And of course, the perfect shirt will have to fit perfectly…

256 Clark Adams April 16, 2009 at 2:46 am

Fabric #4-3-1
Classic Spread Collar
Rounded Edge French Cuff
No Pocket

Regular Front Style
Plain Back
Regular Fit

A good shirt may finally motivate me to get bespoke dress blues made!

Thanks AoM!

257 scottbr April 16, 2009 at 4:30 am

I thoroughly enjoy your articles on properly fitting garments. A custom dress shirt – one that doesn’t have enough excess fabric to make a shirt for one of my kids? Now that would be sweet.

1) Fabric: #4-6-68
2) Collar: straight point
3) Cuff: 2-button cut corner
4) Pocket: none

258 Matthew Leffler April 16, 2009 at 4:49 am

A custom shirt would take my wardrobe to a new level.

1) Fabric: #4-8-18
2) Collar: Classic Spread Collar
3) Cuff: 2-button cut corner
4) Pocket: none

259 DaveBinM April 16, 2009 at 5:00 am

Ideal shirt:

1) Fabric: #4-6-29
2) Collar: Narrow Straight Point Collar
3) Cuff: Two Button Cut Corner Cuff
4) None

As a side note:
Regular Front Style
Centered Box Pleat for the back
Form fit.

Thanks guys!

260 Jared Miller April 16, 2009 at 5:14 am

My ideal shirt:

1) Fabric: #4-6-81
2) Collar: Point collar
3) Cuffs: French Cuffs
4) Pocket: Diamond Cut

261 Robert Schaffner April 16, 2009 at 5:18 am

Fabric: #4-2-2
Collar type: Classic Spread Collar
Cuff type: One Button Square Edge Cuff
Breast pocket: square pocket

262 Troy April 16, 2009 at 5:20 am

Fabric # 4-6-64
Classic Straight Point Collar
Two Button Cut Corner Cuff
Square Pocket

263 Valla April 16, 2009 at 5:34 am

1) Fabric: $4-8-22
2) Classic Straight Point Collar
3) One-Button Square Edge Cuff
4) None

Glad that the site is bringing out the issues of off-the-rack shirts…for me, they always are too big at the waist and puff up around my torso after being tucked in (i.e. they never stay tucked in…). Switched to more fitted clothing (though not professionally tailored) and that made all the difference; i’m sure taking the next step would be that much better!

264 Robert April 16, 2009 at 5:44 am

Standard White
1) #4-6-64
2) Classic Straight Point
3) French
4) None

265 Anthony Pienta April 16, 2009 at 5:47 am

Fabric: #4-6-68
Collar: regular business collar
Cuff Type: 2-button cut corner cuff
Breast Pocket: diamond cut, left side
Front: Panel front style
Back: side pleats

266 MMushrush April 16, 2009 at 6:01 am

My custom shirt:

Fabric: #4-6-88
Collar: Straight point
Cuff Type: 2-Button square cuff
Breast Pocket: Diamond cut, left side

267 Athansor April 16, 2009 at 6:29 am

A classic white for me:

fabric #4-6-64
straight point collar
1-button rounded edge cuff
no breast pocket

268 dirtetimo13 April 16, 2009 at 6:42 am

My custom shirt

Fabric – #4-8-24
Collar – Narrow Straight Point
Cuff – Contoured French
Breast Pocket – None
Back – Plain Back
Front – Regular front

Thanks for bringing up these issues. I hate seeing guys wearing shirts puffed up at the waist. This isn’t a middle school formal, it’s the real world.

269 Tim Snead April 16, 2009 at 6:54 am

Fabric 4-6-36
Collar medium spread
cuff countoured french
no pocket

270 Michael Luevane April 16, 2009 at 6:58 am

Custom shirt:

Fabric: #4-6-87
Collar: Regular Business Collar
Cuff type: Two Button Square Edge Cuff
Breast pocket: Left

271 Ben April 16, 2009 at 7:16 am

The perfect shirt is a solid, light blue power shirt. It has a medium weight fabric (good for layering in the winter and yet light enough to be worn on warm sunny days). The shirt needs to be traditional and classy at first glance but have some quirky flare upon closer inspection.
Shirt: #4-3-3
Collar: Medium Spread
Cuff: 2 button, cut corner cuff
Breast Pocket: None
Front Shirt Style: Panel Front Style
Back: Plain
Fit: Form Fit

272 Combsy April 16, 2009 at 7:23 am

My Ideal dress shirt.

1. Must change color whenever I want it to. That way if I am out of a certain color of slacks my shirt can adjust.

2. Must be stain proof…especially coffee

3. Must be completely wrinkle proof…and I mean it. I mean ideally the thing would iron itself every hour or so.

4. A great dress shirt would have interchangeable collars. That way you could adjust it to whether you are wearing a tie/bow tie or nothing.

5. It would be custom fit and have nano technology built it to create more fabric…if needed.

That would be my ideal shirt, unrealistic, but we were supposed to have flying cars by now!

273 Combsy April 16, 2009 at 7:24 am

My Ideal dress shirt.

1. Must change color whenever I want it to. That way if I am out of a certain color of slacks my shirt can adjust.

2. Must be stain proof…especially coffee

3. Must be completely wrinkle proof…and I mean it. I mean ideally the thing would iron itself every hour or so.

4. A great dress shirt would have interchangeable collars. That way you could adjust it to whether you are wearing a tie/bow tie or nothing.

5. It would be custom fit and have nano technology built in it to create more fabric…if needed.

That would be my ideal shirt, unrealistic, but we were supposed to have flying cars by now!

274 HP Schrei April 16, 2009 at 7:30 am

The ideal shirt should fit neatly, form an orchastrated composition with the rest of the suit and follow the customary formalism. With that in mind, I would say that the shirt that fits that description best is:

1) #4-2-1 White
2) Classic Spread Collar
3) Contoured French Cuff
4) No breast pocket

275 Ryan April 16, 2009 at 7:33 am

4-6-85
Straight Point collar
Contoured French Cuff
Diamond Pocket Left

276 Santa April 16, 2009 at 7:34 am

My ideal manly dress shirt has a close and comfortable fit to my body. Made of a light enough fabric that won’t cause me to sweat under normal outside temperature. And Is a color that can match well with both dark and light colored dress pants.

Fabric: #4-7-86
Collar type: Regular Business Collar
Cuff type: Square Edge French Cuff
Breast pocket: None

277 Jim Schmidt April 16, 2009 at 7:45 am

My favorite dress shirt was a plum-colored store-bought. Medium collar, one pocket, and slightly tapered at the ribs, so it accentuated the shoulders and chest. I stopped wearing it a while ago as I gained weight and the sleeves kept shrinking. Kind of a shame to not see that color represented in the builder. That being said, though…

Fabric #4-6-88
Collar: Medium Spread
Cuff type: One Button Square Edge Cuff
Breast Pocket: Left
Front: Panel Front Style
Back: Plain
Regular Fit

278 Blake April 16, 2009 at 7:49 am

My ideal shirt would be

#4-6-17
Medium spread collar
Contoured French Cuff
No Pocket
Regular front and plain back

Just keep it simple with a touch of sophistication

279 JC Hanisko April 16, 2009 at 7:51 am

My ideal dress shirt would be form fitted, worn with just the right tie to pull things together or by itself as the center of attention under one of my usually dark jackets.

Fabric #4-3-6 (yes, pink)
Collar: Classic Spread
Cuffs: Contoured French
Pocket: None
Panel Front and Side Pleats

280 Phil April 16, 2009 at 7:55 am

describing your ideal dress shirt and specify 1) your fabric choice (include a reference #), 2 ) collar style, 3) cuff type, and 4)breast pocket style.

Definitely something slim and made of a subtly unusual fabric.

1. Fabric #4-8-90
2. High straight point collar
3. Contoured French Cuffs
4. No pocket

281 Jared Cramer April 16, 2009 at 8:51 am

My ideal shirt (in actuality)
1) #4-1-41 (Black)
2) Tonsure Style Clergy collar (or, at least, a collar that will work with a neckband clergy collar, usually a mandarin style shirt collar fits this necessity).
3) Rounded Edge French Cuff
4) Square Pocket

My ideal shirt (for the contest)
1) #4-6-79 (White)
2) Classic Spread Collar
3) Rounded Edge French Cuff
4) Square Pocket

282 Seth April 16, 2009 at 8:53 am

Fabric: 4-3-4
Collar: Classic Straight Point
Cuff: 2 button cut corner
Pocket: Left- rounded

283 Sean April 16, 2009 at 9:32 am

Collar:Classic Spread
Cuff:two Button, corner cut
Pocket: Left, Diamond Cut
Fabric: 4-8-64

284 Andrew April 16, 2009 at 9:51 am

Custom shirt:

Fabric: #4-6-64
Collar:Narrow Straight Point Collar
Cuff type: Square Edge French Cuff
Breast pocket: none

285 Kent April 16, 2009 at 9:52 am

Fabric: #4-6-79
Collar type: Classic Spread Collar
Cuff type: Contoured French Cuff
Breast pocket: No Pocket

286 Joe April 16, 2009 at 10:02 am

1) 4-8-45
2) Classic Spread
3) One Button Cut Corner Cuff
4) None

287 Lee April 16, 2009 at 10:03 am

Great idea for a contest. Now I have a chance to get the shirt that suits (no pun intended) my collection of ties.

Fabric # 4-6-79
Straight point collar
French contoured cuff – how cool is that?
Regular front
Center box pleat for the back
Diamond pocket on left
Black, block monogram “LTT” on right cuff (opposite the watch side of course)

This would be very cool! Thanks much.

288 SK April 16, 2009 at 10:25 am

Here goes nothing!

4-3-1 Fabric
Classic Spread Collar
Contoured French Cuff
No Pocket

289 Andy April 16, 2009 at 10:42 am

I would have to go with:

1.) #4-6-79 (white, alittle boring but you can’t go wrong with it.)
2.) spread collar
3.) one button cut corner cuff
4.) no pocket (never use shirt pockets)

290 Sho April 16, 2009 at 11:08 am

I love the work you guys put into this site. It’s one of my daily reads.

1. Fabric: #4-6-68
2. Straight Point Collar
3. Two Button Cut Corner Cuff
4. No Pocket

291 Patrick McDaniel April 16, 2009 at 11:09 am

I’m a very large guy with no stomach so my dress shirts never fit well and I can’t afford to get a nice tailored shirt. So my choice would be:

1) #4-1-41
2) Straight Point Collar
3) Contoured French Cuff
4) No Breast Pocket

292 phil green April 16, 2009 at 11:33 am

I’d like a dress shirt that was

1.) #4-6-75
2.) classic button down collar
3.) one button cut corner cuff
4.) square pocket

293 Brian D. April 16, 2009 at 12:09 pm

I’m a fairly skinny guy so I’ve always had trouble getting shirts that fit correctly, especially in getting shirts that don’t end up billowing around my waist.

Fabric: #4-6-79
Collar: Medium Spread Collar
Cuff: One Button Cut Corner Cuff
Breast Pocket: No Pocket

294 Kekoa April 16, 2009 at 12:34 pm

Fabric: #4-8-29
Collar type: Straight point collar
Cuff type: Rounded edge French cuff
Breast pocket: Square pocket

295 Robby April 16, 2009 at 12:34 pm

1) #4-6-14
2) Collar: Pinned Collar
3) Cuff: Contoured French Cuff
4) Breast Pocket: Diamond Cut Pocket

296 Daniel April 16, 2009 at 1:23 pm

1)# 4-6-88
2) Collar: Regular Business Collar
3) Cuff: Contoured French Cuff
4) Diamond Cut Pocket on Left
Panel Front and Side Pleats

It’s hard to find good looking shirts for beefy guys.

297 Chris April 16, 2009 at 1:41 pm

I would go for a venerable wardrobe workhorse, with a pattern and other features that says “I didn’t buy this at Macy’s.” Such as:

#4-6-69
Medium spread collar
Square edge French cuffs
No pocket
panel front/side pleat back
and a left cuff monogram to finish it off.

I know, I know, it’s blue, but that’s the beauty of it. If this is going to be my very first shirt of this quality, I want to be able to wear it with a lot of stuff!

298 Skitch Hodgson April 16, 2009 at 2:08 pm

#4-6-17
Medium Spread Collar
Square Edge French Cuff
Square Pocket

Ever since seeing James Bond in a tux with his french cuff style sleeves I’ve wanted that same look. Nothing says stylish and manly like wearing the untimate men’s jewelry, the cufflinks! Unfortunately, I’m a tall guy and that kind of think doesn’t come cheap for me. Custom Shirts is the only way to go.

299 Ryan April 16, 2009 at 2:53 pm

Great article. My ideal shirt would be…

Fabric: #4-6-46
Collar: Straight point
Cuff: Two button cut
Pocket: Diamond

300 Jason C. Mauney April 16, 2009 at 3:09 pm

Great contest!

My ideal shirt:

1) Fabric – #4-6-18 – “Red”
2) Classic Spread Collar
3) One Button Square Edge Cuff
4) Square Pocket

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