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Things To Think About When Choosing Shirting Fabrics

Posted on: 7th Apr, 2017

We posted recently on some of the key aspects to consider when choosing a bespoke shirt. We had another think about it recently and realised we still had more to say on the subject, so this week we’re back with some other style factors to think about. Each one of them need not be the be-all and end-all, but they’re worth looking at as a whole if you want to end up with a shirt that’s truly right for you.

Know Your Measurements

measuring for a shirt

When buying any bespoke shirt, whether it’s formal or casual, it’s crucial to know your measurements. A good fit will achieve clean lines across your whole body – which means there’s no excess material that billows out or bunches up at the joints. By the same token it shouldn’t be too tight either; not only will it feel uncomfortable, but it won’t look much better to anyone else, either.

So how do you know the fit is right? Well, on some level you’ll just know; it’ll feel comfortable and you’ll look good in the mirror. But we recognise that might be a bit less than helpful. If you want some slightly more tangible tips, check that the shoulder seams hug your shoulders – your shirt shouldn’t droop down out over the edges of them. Your sleeves, meanwhile, should extend to your wrists and no further. If they cover your knuckles, obviously, they’re too long! A good check to do is to unbutton your cuffs; if they reach too far past your wrists, again it’s probably a sign that your sleeves are too long.

Pinning Down The Details

Collar designs

You might be surprised to learn that some dress shirts even have pleats – extra folds of fabric designed to give you a bit more literal breathing room, especially if you’ve got a healthy bit of girth. Then again, if you’ve got a slightly narrower frame you may find that the pleats end up making your shirt billow out at the sides, which you’ll recognise from our previous paragraph as exactly what a well-fitting shirt shouldn’t do. It could work out, or it could not – as with many things, it’ll probably come down to just a matter of trying it out.

Collars are another thing you might want to pay attention to. There’s tons on the market, but at Acorn we’d recommend a semi-spread. It’s versatile, it generally looks good and it never goes out of fashion. There may be collars that suit you better or communicate more of the style you’re trying to go for, in which case go for it. But if you’re not sure and you’re new to the art, it’s rarely worth risking the style of the entire shirt on your collar – we think it’s best to go for the safest option!

A Final Word Of Advice

shirting fabric design

Choosing your fabric, as you’d expect, is a pretty big decision too. We covered this in a recent blog, so check that out if you want some pointers. If you’re still working out all these factors in terms of what’s best for you, we’d advise choosing a white dress shirt first, with something like Twill fabric. There’s time enough to experiment with colour later, but a white shirt is once again a safe option that looks fantastic while giving you the headspace to focus on other aspects of your personal style.

Individually, these might all sound like minor things, but always take the time to make sure everything is just so – trust us, you’ll be thankful for it in the long run!

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