It’s not always A or B, there’s probably C[ustomization].

March 13, 2009

Pah! You really can tell I’ve had an alcoholic week with that title… Anywhat, shirts make up one of my favourite categories of clothing purely due to their versatility and often form-enhancing disposition. However, I find it increasingly difficult to locate shirts that fit all components of the upper body satisfactorily, too often forearm width will be too great, length will be entirely, and incurably out of whack with width and collars are either much too restrictive or lacking requisite structure etc. etc. You’d never think I bought several the other day (more on that in due course)…



But I digress. The point is-out of my perpetual frustration-I’ve been considering getting a few staple custom dress shirts and could perhaps be of aid. The concept behind the site is to enable customers to design their ideal shirt, choosing from a vast array of details/colours/fabrics etc (I’m particularly fond of the french angle cuff and long-point collar).

It’s all a little too exciting to convey really (not least because one can devise seven trillion different designs) since it doesn’t end there, you can also choose from a sizeable offering of various buttons and collar stays, the real markers of individuality. And of course, you select measurements by either inserting your own particular specifications or choosing a standard size. Probably the closest thing to couture for shirts…

I’m not aware of the quality of service/product so if anyone has had any personal experience with the operation, do tell!

  • TJ Leeland March 31, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    Here's my personal experience: I received two shirts from yesterday, and was not happy with what I got. I ordered the slim-fit shirt and ended up with a joke. I have a slim build, with a bigger chest and shoulders, so slim-fit shirts look good on me and accentuate my slimmer waist and broader upper body. When I buy Arrow's slim-fit shirts, they come nicely tapered at the waist, and since I have a smaller waist than I do hips and chest, I expected about a 6 cm tapering in the shirts from too.Instead, I got a shapeless shirt with what appears to be what’s called a full-cut torso (no tapering in the waist). Full-cut is what you get with most off-the-rack shirts; in other words, it wasn’t tailored at all. Given that I gave them measurements and that I asked for a slim-fit, this is unacceptable. Their site talks about how their tailored shirts fit nicely in the waist, and that you'll never have to worry about your tails billowing out of your pants because of the excess material in the waist. Yeah, right. My off the rack Arrow slim-fit has less billowing than this joke of a "tailored" shirt. It's also too small in the armpit and too big in the cuff. From my measurements of the shirt itself (which might be incorrectly done, I admit) it seems the armpit is actually smaller than the measurement I gave them. I'm afraid it's going to rip if I move the wrong way. And, the cuff is so big I can take the shirt off without unbuttoning the cuff’s buttons. That doesn’t seem right to me, but I’m no expert.The fabric is nice and my wife loves the color of the Red Dragon fabric, and the stitching is well done. The shirt had some weird scuffs near the buttonholes but I was able to get them out. There appears to be some glue-like stuff on a seam. I don't know if this will come off after washing it. Anyhow, I contacted Allen in support and told him I'm unhappy. When Allen responded to my email he asked me to take pictures of where the shirt was off compared to the measurements I gave them when I ordered. You can't pull your measurements off their site, so he said he was including them in his email so I could compare the two. He didn't actually include the measurements though. I wondered if that was a stalling tactic, but since I still had my original notes I was able to give him a full accounting of where they went wrong — including pictures. I haven't heard back yet, and I'll try to make a point to come back and let you know what happens.I really want to like these shirts and this company. I'm hoping that Allen will do the right thing here. Otherwise I guess I'll dispute the charge and take the shirts to a local tailor to have them fixed. I guess it's better that they came too big instead of too small, but I'm not sure the issue with the armpit can be fixed.It's too bad.