Patterned shirts have taken the world by storm. Whether it’s plaid, polka dot, or gingham, patterned shirts are finding their way into suits and blazers now. The old idea that patterns were for casual looks is almost long gone. While I advocate use of patterns to spice things up, there is a definitely a special place in my heart for the standard white shirt. Who better to make them than a company who has that right in the name?
According to their website, Standard Shirt was founded by three friends in New York who found discontent with both off the rack and bespoke shirt options. Instead of sacrificing certain aspects (price for quality, etc) to get what they wanted, they created Standard Shirt and partnered with a manufacturer in Seoul, Korea. Their labels, buttons, and packaging are also created in-house to reduce costs. Designing all takes place at their headquarters.
Their name refers to the fact that the white shirt is the standard for suits. When it fits properly, it is elegant and crisp. Every guy needs at least one well fitting white shirt, and these are the guys to go with for that item.
Sizing and Price
In order to get the fit just right, Standard Shirt provides measurements down to the quarter of an inch. For example, if you’re in between a 15” and 15.5” neck, they’ve got you covered. For some of you guys with more precise measurements , they even include thirds of an inch! The commitment that they have to provide perfect proportions is great. If you’re used to Banana Republic, H&M, or other mall brand stuff, you’re probably used to the simple Small, Medium, Large sizing. With Standard Shirt, you can find the size that you like in the measurements you need. And for $59, they are definitely available to everyone.
Most dress shirts that are typically available to people at the mall are about $40-$100. As stated previously many of the brands that make these products only produce them in set proportions. For example, while a Small can fit guys with a chest 36-38, arm length will be fixed at a certain length; a gentleman with longer arms will be at a loss. It also will be difficult for guys who prefer a slim fit, but with specific other proportions. Brands that do produce true shirt measurements (neck and sleeve length are an indication for overall length for many) can cost much more than $100. That’s why Standard Shirt works as the best shirt for every consumer at their price.
As of this moment, Standard Shirt only makes two types of collars: cutaway and spread. Both shirts are made in the same factory and crafted from high-quality cotton. Buttons are mother-of-pearl and the cuffs and collar are reinforced. The latter two are made with extra fabric to withstand repeated washes and wearings.
Additionally, all shirts from Standard Shirt are cut slim. They wanted to create a shirt that fits a modern silhouette that is slim but not skinny. Perhaps in the future, they could expand to tuxedo shirts, button down collars, or even (my favourite) spear points!
I was sent a Spread Collar shirt with 15.5” collar and 34” sleeves for the review. Unfortunately, they were out of my size (15”-32”) so this review will not focus on fit. There are some examples of the fit, but that information should not be taken into consideration since the shirt is not my correct size.
First off, let me say the branding is perfect. The package clearly displays the logo in a very clean way. Upon opening the box, the shirt was wrapped in plastic, another mark of a high-quality item. The logo, which displays the manufacturing location and the size, was also displayed on the inside collar of the shirt. Overall, the presentation was perfect; it felt like an almost bespoke experience. The guys at Standard Shirt really care about crafting a great customer experience.
The shirt did feel stiff right out of the box, but that’s normal for a dress shirt. As expected, the buttons were tough and the collar was pretty rigid. It’s a personal choice, but I prefer my collars to be extremely soft instead of stiff. However, it wasn’t too stiff to be uncomfortable. I would suggest a wash before wearing, just to let it soften out.
While the collar was stiff, the design was fantastic. You don’t really find shirts like this at this price. Large spread collars are definitely the way to go, if you like the look. Most of the other brands don’t have large collars with a good spread. BR in particular makes a pretty good selection in the Monogram collection, but their normal non-irons have tiny collars. Again, Standard Shirt takes the cake.
Wearing The Shirt
To showcase the shirt, I went with a classic Italian inspired look: white shirt, foulard tie, and pinstripe suit. In fact, this look is almost a straight up 1980’s throw back. Foulard ties in bold prints and pinstripe suits dominated the menswear of Wall Street. There’s nothing wrong with taking inspiration from previous years. I simply updated the look by swapping shoulder pands and boxy fit for a slim fitting linen version.
For the past few Pitti Uomo’s, spread collars have been a huge hit. Most accessible (mall brand) manufacturers don’t get this right. More often than not, the collar width is much too small; Standard Shirt corrects this issue. They have been able to craft a collar that has both enough fabric and a nice spread. The result is a collar that isn’t too trendy and has the right amount of “classic” that allows this to be used with a variety of outfits. While I have this with a suit, you can also dress it down like you would any other shirt!
If you haven’t noticed, I’m wearing three patterns. Personally, I always recommend that you always incorporate patterns into an outfit. Thanks to the solid White Standard Shirt, it becomes a grounding piece for me to experiment and use three different patterns in my outfit! If you are planning on wearing a printed tie or a patterned suit, a white shirt can make sure that these details are showcased!
There’s an unspoken “rule” that your tie knot has to take in empty space in the tie. I don’t adhere to this rule. I always go with a four-in-hand for a tight, cylindrical knot, rather than one that is too triangular. Personally, I like the aesthetic of a small knot and a large collar. As I’ve said before, any overly triangular knot just reeks of the 1970’s. While this outfit does have some 1980’s vibes, it is ultimately a classic look.
Since the shirt was not the correct size, the shirt was too long in both the sleeves in the body. Instead of having the shirt go past my cuff on my jacket, I simply rolled up my sleeves the entire time. To counteract some of the bagginess (and hide the length of the shirt) I tucked in the shirt as far as it could go. Even though the shirt was a bit too big, the shirt still looked great! It’s still a tad baggy for my taste, but it was very passable. I’m sure it’ll look better once they send me one in the right size! Be on the lookout for this next one!
I gotta say, Standard Shirt really impressed me. For a price cheaper than BR and J. Crew you can go with Standard Shirt and get a piece that not only has more specific measurements, but is crafted better with superior quality and design. Get yours by going on their site! You don’t need to wear their shirt with a suit. You can definitely dress it down by ditching the tie an unbuttoning a few buttons! While I mainly advocate patterns, use your Standard Shirt to allow your outfit to experiment in other areas like the tie, pocket square, and suit! Leave those ill fitting shirts at home and set the standard with these guys.
Always a pleasure,
Street x Sprezza
Photography by Ethan W. and Vince H.