“Fit is king, and if the shirt doesn’t fit you, you’re not going to look good or feel comfortable in it,” says Patrick. His company’s personal stylists take 11 measurements when they meet with you to ensure they nail the correct fit every time. Whether your traps are larger than the average Joe’s, or your pecs are your best body part, you can get a shirt that fits you perfectly and shows off the results of your hardcore workouts. Good luck finding that off the rack.
What your shirt is made of is the second most important factor when creating a custom shirt. Since you’ll be taking shirts to the cleaners often, it’s important to invest in quality fabrics that withstand all the wear and tear you’ll be putting them through. Aim for Italian fabrics (the country is known for producing the best men’s shirt fabrics in the world and it’s where most of J.Hilburn’s shirting mills are located) made of at least 80s 2-ply. If you travel a lot for work and rely on non-iron fabrics so you look fresh when you get off the plane or train, J.Hilburn has higher-quality fabrics than you’d find in typical wrinkle-free shirts you’d buy in a store, says Patrick.
“Remember that a custom shirt doesn’t always mean a dress shirt," says Patrick. "It can be casual if you want—linens, seasonal plaids, seersucker—and it can fit every aspect of your life, whether it’s work or weekend." Prints are really hot in menswear right now—especially Liberty of London prints, he adds. For a clean look, skip the front placket in a custom design if you’re choosing printed fabric.