After reading about my Made To Measure Shirt from Shanghai, J.J Threads founder and Baltimore native Mr. Wich contacted me asking if I would like to try out one of their custom made shirts. After checking out their website, I jumped at the chance.
I really liked the overall design of the site, but J.J.Threads boasts several unique features which set it apart from other online shirt makers. One of the main things Mr. Wich noticed upon moving the Hong Kong was while there were several made to measure shirt tailors, few offered the high-end fabric and unique range of colors he was looking for. That is how the website got its start. J.J. Threads sources fabrics from some of the best mills in the world, including Thomas Mason, Liberty of London, Somelos, Monti and Albini. They have even collaborated with a Baltimore artist who designed some original J.J. Threads prints made in the U.S.A. Such an impressive collection of designer fabrics had me immediately hooked.
Another unique aspect of J.J.Threads is their “Social Shopping” feature, which allows users to follow each other, see what designs are trending, and be rewarded for their design-creativity. It’s kind of like Facebook for shirt designs. After checking out some of the competition and getting some initial ideas, I got to work creating my very own J.J.Threads Buffalo Dandy shirt.
The most difficult part of the process was selecting a main fabric. With so many options, it was hard to choose just one. Like really hard… I finally settled on the Morricone plaid; an Italian, mid-weight brushed twill that seemed perfect for Winter. I had an idea where I wanted to use the same fabric in all my custom shirts so they all had a Dandy feel to them and look more like a collection. With that in mind, I chose the same purple inner cuffs as my Shanghai shirt. I also applied it to the inner collar and placket piping, which I hadn’t seen on too many other places and thought it was a unique touch. I kept the buttons rather simple because I didn’t want the shirt to be too loud, but did add the custom J.J.Threads red button hole and a cut-away collar which, again, is something rather uncommon in a Winter plaid shirt.
I was curious how their standard sizing shirts fit, so I forfeited providing my exact shirt measurements for a shirt that I felt anyone could order. But even in standard sizing, J.J.Threads allows you to make a shirt your own. Four custom fits are available (slim, athletic, regular and gentleman’s) and you can still select your collar and sleeve length as well as shirt size.
The final price of my custom made Buffalo Dandy shirt was $119 which is around the standard market cost, but again, most places don’t offer the extensive fabrics and color choices that J.J.Threads does. So to me, it was worth a little extra cost. 10-12 days later, my shirt arrived.
I really liked how the purple provided a hidden pop of color in the shirt and, in the end, I think the colors complemented each other surprisingly well. The first thing I noticed when I took the shirt out of the box was the weight. It had a heaver feel than most dress shirts (hence the medium weight) and the collar and cuffs were rather stiff. The collar I don’t mind as much and when the sleeves are down, the heaver cuff sit nicely in a winter sport coat. However, I do tend to roll my sleeves up throughout the day and the stiffer cuff makes that a little tough when worn for the first time. All of this could resolve itself after a few washes I’m sure.
While I didn’t provide my exact shirt size, I have to say the fit was pretty spot on. The slim cut was perfect, however the armhole sat slightly lower than I would prefer so it didn’t have that “it doesn’t feel like you’re even wearing a shirt ” feel that my Shanghai Shirt had. But again, for a standard fit shirt, I was quite pleased with the final product.
There are only two issues I had with the shirt. The most noticeable thing was the lack of sleeve placket buttons, which allow for pushing one’s sleeves up to be easier, but not incredibly noticeable when buttoned. I don’t blame them. When I used to sew my own shirts, I always skipped those. However, when paired with a sweater, the sleeves fold nicely over the cuffs and you barely notice the missing buttons. Also, with a slimmer cut this wasn’t really too much of an issue.
The last thing, and mind you, this is so minuscule that it’s not even an issue, just something I would like to point out, is I noticed there were several residual thread pieces on the inside of the shirt. Not attached to anything, just pieces of loose thread stuck throughout the inside of the shirt. Hardly a game changer… all I had to do was pick the threads off, but still. There was so many that it was noticeable and if you’re paying that much for shirt, I would think it should be as polished as possible.
I have to say I was quite impressed with J.J.Threads. I love the Social Shopping aspect, their vast collection of quality fabrics and impressive fit. I would like to thank Mr. Wich and J.J.Threads for my shirt and have no doubt these will start filling your closet once you try them. Check out their website, set up a profile (don’t forget to follow my page) and start making your own shirts today.