20 August 2010

Off My Back: The Mystery Shirt

How much of a mystery can this be with that big ass label up there? Actually, it's not so much a mystery as it is complicated. I acquired this Oxxford shirt in 2002. That's one clue. While Oxxford is usually associated with Chicago and very well made but, anchor man/presidential, offend no one, suiting... They also sell shirts.

This one was not made in the US.

Evidence of hand sewing, pattern matching and unique fabric scream Italian. And there's strong evidence this was made by Kiton. Oxxford continues to offer shirting today but manufacture had moved to the US and the smart money will tell you a sister company, Individualized in NJ, now makes the Oxxford shirt.

But this shirt is my benchmark. It is worn no more than once a month. It gets hand washed and ironed. And for me, it is a small piece of art. Quiet and understated, only one man ever recognised how important it was. Avery Lucas narrowed his eyes at the shoulders and started grilling me with questions. And that's the best part of this story. I found it in Filene's Basement on North Michigan Avenue in Chicago for twenty bucks.


Laguna Beach Fogey said...

The particular shade of the green stripes might make me briefly hesitate, but overall this is a smashing shirt. Great find.

Anonymous said...

It's possible it was made by Kiton. Kiton uses MOP buttons and the entire sleeve is hand sewn. Also their button stitching has a clover or "lily" pattern \|/

It's a beautiful shirt though regardless.

I'm a bit more partial to Italian shirts over American. Hamilton has nothing on Finamore. Ha.

RIP Borrelli

TRVS said...

The Candy Man...I love it. It makes me want to eat peppermint stick ice cream.

Brummagem Joe said...

I almost have it's twin but in broadcloth and no button down. Purchased about 20 years ago in a Pink super sale in London for not much more than 20 bucks. Hard to match ties I find so usually worn open necked with blue jacket.

Anonymous said...

I havent seen everything, but I'd say thats the longest button down collar I have ever seen.

ADG said...

Hell of a good looking shirt.

Trailer Trad said...

I own a number of Oxxford suits and I'm puzzled that the pattern doesn't match at the shoulder and sleeves.
And the label seems to sloppily sewn on.

I tremble as I type this because, duh, you're The Man.

Trailer Trad said...

On the other hand, my latest blog entry is entitled 'John Daly is More Trad than You', so what I do I know?

La Maison Fou said...

Been gone from blogging for a while;
love the shirt and the reference to it as a piece of art.

I totally agree? I think everyone has those few items that can change a mood, put a spring in your step and get ya going down the road.

Very well made, crafted with a loving touch and well cared for from the owner? What else need be said???

Enjoy that one when you don it out!


Brummagem Joe said...

"but I'd say thats the longest button down collar I have ever seen."

Very 80's like the Schwartzenegger shoulders on jackets and topcoats.

tintin said...

LBT- I thought the same thing about the green and assumed it was why it ended up in Filenes. But all these years later that green is my favorite part of the shirt.

Anon- I love Borelli shirts but can't cram my fat body into them. Kiton seems to be cut a little larger which was another clue.

TRVS- You beatin me up on Affordable Wardrobe?

Joe- Me too. It's always worn open collared.

Brohammas- 3 1/2 inches.

ADG- Better looking than your college girl friends.

Trailer Trad- The Man? More like, Joe Shit the Rag Man.

If you mean the stripes at yolk to sleeve, they are close enough. Very rarely is it perfectly done. The label looks ok to me. How do like your suits? You running for office? By the way - where is your blog?

L- I try to find the art in all kind of things...except for ADGs college girlfriends.

Joe- It screams '80s but I'm thinking more Paninaro. Ciao.

Trailer Trad said...

If you're running for town dog catcher rocking Oxxford pinstripes, you're a shoe-in!


Ill conceived? You bet.

Anonymous said...

For any women wanting a similar shirt, one can be found at Orvis: http://www.orvis.com/store/product.aspx?pf_id=0P8H&dir_id=832&group_id=8313&cat_id=8318&subcat_id=6892

Family Man said...

Fabulous shirt. About the only tie that you might be able to pair with it is a mid- to dark blue solid, perhaps a grenadine.

But tain't nuttin' wrong with wearing it open-collared.

I recently acquired from my old man a similar, yet entirely different, shirt. Nowhere near as nice as yours in quality, I save it for warm, sunny weather. I wear it with a solid mid-blue tie, and tame it under a navy blazer.

tintin said...

Trailer- I always wanted to control the mosquito trucks in Florida. I wonder what elected office handles that. As they say in northeast Florida, "What do you call a man in a suit? The defendant."

Anon- THat looks nothing like my shirt but I do like it.

Family Man- Impossible to wear this summer. Horrible for me to admit but the idea of buttoning up for a tie reminds me of sitting in a Soviet T-55 in August on a sub caliber LAW range at Ft Bragg.

Family Man said...

Glad I don't live on the East Coast! How you put up with that weather is beyond me.

Unknown said...

I am the west coast sales manager for Individualized Shirts and yes for a very short time Oxxoford did have a collection made outside of the US. Today we have a small part of our NJ factory that is devoted to the Oxxford shirt. Due to the attention to detail and the number of artisans with the skill to work on this collection we are only able to produce about 50 shirts a day.

tintin said...

Tony- Thank you for the clarification. Any chance you know who made the Oxxford outside the US and for how long?

Anonymous said...


I believe the Italian made Oxxford shirts were done by Lorenzini. I too remember when the Michigan Avenue Filene's received that "mother lode".


AlanC said...

Voxsartoria on Style Forum, who generally knows his stuff, has some of the Italian Oxxford shirts, which he has posted are made by Kiton. If Vox says it then it's good enough for me. I recently had the good fortune to acquire a pink french cuff made in Italy Oxxford shirt.

Anonymous said...

It was made for Neiman Marcus as well as Suits they carried for some years, I still have one that they custom made for me, they even gave you the number of the casimir so that if you needed extra pants you could order them. I think I bougth mine in The Dallas Store.

My Name: marcelinosanchezabogado@prodigy.net.mx

Hazen Pingree said...

Oxxford's shirts were made by Lorenzini, who also made some shirts for Ralph Lauren's Purple Label line (when production shifted from England to Italy).