Thursday, December 3, 2015

Mercer & Sons Shirts

Classic Pima Oxford in Blue.   "Each and every collar is cut, turned, trimmed and pointed by hand."
Mercer & Sons is a small company that makes shirts the old-fashioned way, offering traditional style and fit.
The best people to characterize Mercer Shirts are their very loyal customers, such as one did in a personal note.  He described how he had been "euphorically happy with Mercer shirts for years", and viewed these "real deal" shirts.

He loved the 100% cotton, with its thread count and non-non-iron feel.  He loved the pure, classic cut.

And there was one detail he loved most of all.  He wrote,
Something that only a true purist cares about is the collar roll, on the OCBD. Absolutely the best, IMO. Others have tried to take the shirt apart and copy the collar, but the roll that competitors come up with never approaches the perfect "bell shape" of the Mercer roll. 
Maybe the most compelling advantage of being a Mercer customer involves the fact when you call the 800 number, you talk to Dave Mercer, in person. He seems to know you personally after a short time, and will do whatever it takes to make you a satisfied customer. Could be the Maine heritage. 
He signed off, "Just one customer, with no interest in Mercer, with the exception that I hope that Dave and his wife Serena never decide to retire."

Along the way, this reader also described the shirts as being a great value.  He was not the first person to say this, which seems like a strange compliment for a shirt that is by most accounts not inexpensive.   This is because these last a very long time.  And for many people, the total cost per wearing will be significantly less than even much cheaper shirts.

Mercer Shirts are famous for their collar roll and button placement on their barrel cuffs.
"Italian and English classic two-fold, high count cotton shirtings. The old fashioned twisting technique of these long staple cotton fibers produce yarns of lustre and softness impossible to achieve with modern, high-speed looms. Style, excellence and the highest quality are obvious to both eye and hand. These already silken fabrics will soften even more over time, are quick and easy to iron, and offer the ultimate in looks, quality, and, yes, practicality." -   Mercer & Sons
Links:
While Mercer shirts are individually hand cut and custom ordered, Mercer stocks their heavyweight Pima Cotton oxford button downs, with their generous cut,  in both blue as well as white.

For Spring and Summer

Classic Skye Blue 1/8" Bengal Broadcloth Stripe and the Blue Two-Ply 100% Classic Pima Cotton Oxford (on the left)
Shirts shown:
  • Classic Skye Blue 1/8" Bengal Broadcloth Stripe - Signature Classic Full Cut - Button Down Collar
  • Buzzard's Bay Blue and White Cotton Seersucker Stripe - Signature Classic Full Cut - Button Down Collar
Link: <http://www.mercerandsons.com/swatches_and_pricing.htm>, then scroll down to bottom of page for swatch.

Mercer and Sons Buzzard's Bay Blue and White Cotton Seersucker Stripe

For Autumn and Winter


Shirts shown:
  • James Bond Favorite Tattersall - Green - British Brushed Cotton Flannel - Button Down Collar
  • Dorset Greens on Cream Plain - Lambton 80% Cotton, 20% Wool - Modified Spread Collar
Link <http://www.mercerandsons.com/italian_and_english_superfines_plaids_checks.htm>

Dorset Greens on Cream Plain - Lambton 80% Cotton, 20% Wool - Modified Spread Collar

James Bond Favorite Tattersall - Green - British Brushed Cotton Flannel - Button Down Collar

Other Comments

I only have six or seven of them in my closet right now, but that's because they wear so well that I haven't needed to replace them. They make the nonpareil, archetypal, classic OCBD.  (Michael, November 24, 2014) 
Own some tattersalls. First rate shirts. Reminds me of vintage B2 with collar roll & full cut. Old school grownup shop. Definitely not for J Crew -AF hybrid metrosexuals. (Comment, November 25, 2014) 
I've been purchasing from Mercer for years and I don't believe the shirt has any competitors. The Mercer shirt is a completely different garment than (for example) anything on offer from Brooks. And I mean anything... Now, whether those differences are worth paying extra for is up to you. As for the full cut: I've noticed that they no longer include the slogan "Baggier Is Better" on the label of their shirts, but I hope that this is their only concession to current fashion. A bit of bagginess in an oxford is essential. (Sartre, November 25, 2014)
Mercer & Sons Shirts - Hand Cut and Sewn in the USA of English Fabric