While I can’t exactly say that I ‘live’ in t-shirts, they are a staple in my wardrobe, mostly becuase I love to layer. Lately, however, I have been extremely frustrated with most of recent t-shirt purchases. I love the lighter, thinner trend in tees, but unfortunately, many designers who are now trying to do it have fallen far short of the quality of “original” standard, C&C California.
Here are my reviews of shirts I own – most of them for at least six months. Some of these I’ve already reviewed, but I feel now that they need revisions…and some are new reviews.
I hope this helps you make a more educated decision with regard to future t-shirt purchases – I know I have learned quite a bit!!
James Perse Turtleneck
I bought this a couple of months ago and have loved it becuase of the length and feel of the material. I wash it in cold water and dry on low heat (according to the care instructions) – but haven’t always done that. The last time I put it on, I noticed a small hole at the back of the neck, in a totally random place! It’s hardly noticable, but definitely there. I have always been very pleased with James Perse quality, but this came right after I also discovered a small hole in my tie-back skirt (which I love and wore to death last spring/summer). My feeling is that it has something to do with the blend – cotton/lycra – not lasting as long as 100% cotton. And, maybe I shouldn’t have put them in the dryer at all.
James Perse Short Sleeve Shirt
This is 100% cotton. I have four of JP’s 100% cotton tees and they are the most fabulous t-shirts I own. They keep their shape, don’t shrink, and fit a woman’s body perfectly. I have had all of these tees for at least six months and none of them show any signs of wear – they look and feel brand new.
Splendid Wool Blend Thermal
This one is sooo disappointing! I bought this a few months ago and really loved it for layering because it’s so thin and warm. But it only took 4-5 wears before I started noticing holes. Now, they’re all over the place, popping up randomly! I should have known better as I had a similar experience with a Splendid thermal from last year, and the material is EXTREMELY thin, but emotion won out and I bought the shirt anyway.
Splendid 3/4 Sleeve Tee
I also have this and while it’s not been worn as often as the wool blend thermal, it’s the same material as a Splendid tee shirt I have had for six months and is still in great shape. This is a cotton/modal blend, which seems to hold up much better than James Perse’s cotton/lycra blend; it is also thicker, but much less soft and form-fitting. So…there are tradoffs, for sure.
This I’ve had for a couple of months, worn a handful of times and it already has a small hole towards the bottom. It’s also cotton/modal, but very very thin, with a ‘holey’ texture, so it’s not that surprising that it should have a small hole. That doesn’t mean it SHOULD, however.
American Apparel Hoody
I am still very pleased with my AA hoody, and I’ve had this one for almost a year. The only drawback it has is that it’s shorter than I like now, but otherwise, the cotton is sturdy and will probably never fall apart. My problem with AA t-shirts is that they tend not to hold their shape very well, and they shrink more over time, but they are generally very good, and half the price of James Perse and Splendid.
Zooey Open Henley
I have had this in black for about six months and while I haven’t worn it very often, it’s holding up nicely. It does have some unraveling at the bottom becuase of the unfinished hem, but it’s minor. So far, so good with Zooey!
C&C California Extra Long Sleeve Tee
I have two of these I’ve had for more than a year and they’ve held up best, aside from my James Perse 100% cotton tees. I haven’t noticed any holes in the actual shirt, but one of them is coming apart at the seam. That is easily fixed and totally worth it to be able to keep wearing the shirt. These were the ‘original’ thin, long, tees and in my opinion, still the best.
ugh, this is a mess! The hem at the botton is unfinished and rolled, so it no longer sits right and is unraveling like crazy! It still works for layering when you’re not going to see the bottom hem, but otherwise, I don’t wear it very often.
I also have had two Marc by Marc Jacobs VERY thin t-shirts get holes (after only a few wears), both my Club Monaco very thin v-necks have multiple holes, and a Theory cotton/lycra blend short sleeve t-shirt has more holes in the front than I can count! So, clearly, price is not the problem; the more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean the ‘best’ quality – it does mean that you will get a more unique design and color, but what good is that if you can’t wear the shirt for all the holes! I would also recommend NOT drying your t-shirts at all. I won’t be doing it anymore, lazy or not.
More brands/designers to try (although I have not)