A gentleman's shirt is arguably a design classic - the bedrock of a chap's outfit, from which the tie hangs (or under which the cravat goes) and over which the jacket sits. Over the decades collars may have lengthened, widened, shortened or changed styles in numerous other ways and colours come and gone but the crisp cotton shirt has by and large always remained a timeless garment. No chap's wardrobe is complete without a good selection of shirts and mine is no exception, with a mixed line-up ranging from high street to Jermyn Street (sometimes via the high street...!).
Ah, Jermyn Street - the centre, the Savile Row of British shirtmaking. The list of businesses occupying this famous street is a long and illustrious one, a chap's dream shopping destination. One name in particular, however, has celebrated a noteworthy anniversary this year.
Hawes & Curtis, who currently occupy numbers 33-34 and 82 of Jermyn Street (as well as several more locations in London and around the country), have recently marked 100 years in business - their first shop having opened in 1913.
Cary Grant was another Golden Era Hollywood actor who bought his clothes from Hawes & Curtis, beginning at the rise of his career in the late 1930s, and who runs Astaire close in the shirt stakes.
Robert Donat's splendid hounds-tooth suit, which he wore in 1935's The 39 Steps, also came from H&C (as did the short-trousers replica that Hitch presented to Donat after he complained once too often about the real one being ruined through all that running about over the Scottish moors!).
To celebrate this milestone Hawes and Curtis have not one but two Collections in their formal shirt range that take inspiration from their rich heritage - the 100 Years Collection and the 1913 Collection. Both feature various nods towards a century of shirt design with a good mix of traditional and modern styles and colours. Hawes and Curtis were kind enough to provide me with an example to review as part of this post so, taking inspiration from the chaps above, I selected their Plain White Twill Slim Fit Limited Edition Tie Bar shirt from the 100 Years Collection.
|Plain White Twill Slim Fit Limited Edition Tie Bar,|
from Hawes & Curtis' 100 Years Collection, £39.50
(or 2 shirts for £60)
Nowadays selling mainly shirts, but also other items of menswear including coats and jumpers, H&C's focus on this essential men's garment coupled with their 100 years in the trade certainly seems to have kept them in the upper echelon of shirtmakers (yet with comparatively reasonable prices). Ladies need not feel left out either, for like many modern shirtmakers H&C also sell women's shirts (with their own 100 Years Collection, I might add!) and accessories.
Based on my experiences I see no reason why Hawes and Curtis shan't celebrate many more anniversaries and I doubt that this will be the last of their shirts to make it into my wardrobe. On the whole, this is a company that should be on every chap's (and chapette's) radar, and here's to their next one hundred years!
*This was a sponsored post in collaboration with Hawes and Curtis*