Photo by Muffy Aldrich
The Modern Guide to The Thing Before Preppy

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Mercer & Sons Shirts

Pink Floyd 8 MM Check Broadcloth #248, Button Down Collar <>
Mercer & Sons is a small company that makes shirts the old-fashioned way, offering traditional style and fit.
Photos by Salt Water New England.
Mercer Classic Blue 1/8" Bengal Broadcloth Stripe <

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 3MM Nile Blue Bengal Stripe, Button Down Collars <>

Pink Pima Cotton Oxford Shirt <>
"Each and every collar is cut, turned, trimmed and pointed by hand."

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.  
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. 
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.
Classic Pima Oxford in Blue 

Pink Sands Seersucker Check <>

Classic Blue 1/8" Bengal Broadcloth Strip <>

Classic Pima Oxford in Blue, James Bond Tattersall Brushed Cotton Flannel <> 

Mercer Shirts are famous for their collar roll and button placement on their barrel cuffs.

Pink and White University Stripe Pima Cotton Oxford <>

Buzzard's Bay Blue and White Cotton Seersucker Stripe <>

Skye Blue 100's Two-ply Superfine End-on-End Broadcloth <>

White Pima Oxford <>

Blue and White University Stripe 100% Pima Cotton Oxford <>

Skye Blue 100's Two-ply Superfine End-on-End Broadcloth,  <>

Pink Sands Bengal Stripe <>

Cool Blue Seersucker Check <>

Mercer & Sons Shirts - Hand Cut and Sewn in the USA of English Fabric

Mercer is a sponsor of Salt Water New England.