Forget fancy adverts and marketing budgets, there are much better ways to tell a high quality dress shirt from a low quality shirt. We look at patterns and yokes, collar stays and fabric to determine the best ways to identify a shirt worth buying as an investment item.
1. Split Yoke
The first thing to look for is a split yoke. This means the shirt has two pieces of fabric that run behind the collar joined together to form the yoke. The fabric should be cut on the bias, giving a neat look to the front of the shirt. The bias cut gives a greater range of motion length-wise, so you get more flexibility in movement.
2. Patterns Match
The patterns on shirts can be difficult to match when two pieces of fabric meet at a seam. A well-made shirt will match the pattern so it looks neat and does not break the pattern. There should be perfect matching at the yoke and seams. It is always difficult to make a shirt pattern match well and the most difficult parts which cannot always be matched are the cuffs, sleeves and side seams.
3. Collar Stays
The best quality dress shirts have removable collar stays so you can keep them in or remove them as you wish. This keeps the collar straight and stiff to project a good shape. You can even have a go at making your own shirt with stays if you are a dab hand at sewing. There are plenty of shirt patterns and collar patterns online that teach you how to create your own shirt.
4. Excellent Fabric
Any cotton shirt should be made from high quality cotton fabric. A high thread count is essential for a high quality shirt as this keeps the cotton dense. It is best to have two ply in a shirt as this gives a better texture. The best quality shirts, such as mens Farah shirts from stores such as http://ejmenswear.com/brands/farah, are made from top quality pure fabrics and not polyester blends.
5. Mother of Pearl
Look for mother of pearl buttons as these signal good quality. Mother of pearl is attractive, with depth of colour and high shine. These buttons add class to any shirt, however, always be sure to look for other signs of quality dress shirts too.