Early Edition - 20 September 2016
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GANT The Shirtmakers
When it comes to shirts, many elements must combine in order to form the perfect garment. The fabric must be soft, yet durable. The collar sharp, yet stylish. The shirt is the perfect canvas onto which to include subtle, yet effective design and construction details. One company which prides itself on producing high quality, coveted shirts is GANT.
The story of the company all started with its founder – Ukraine born Berl Gantmacher. In 1907, Berl arrived in New York at the tender age of seventeen. He found work in the garment district, subsequently meeting his future wife; Rebecca Rose. After WW1 he went into business with Morris Shapiro, founding the Par-Ex Shirt Company. The company focused on manufacturing shirts of the highest quality for other brands.
Rebecca and Berl (now re-named as Bernard) had two sons – Marty and Elliott. Both sons enlisted in the army during WW2, studying at the University of Connecticut upon their return. By this time, the Par-Ex Shirt Company had moved to new premises in New Haven, Connecticut – in close proximity to Yale University.
Towards the end of the 1940s, Marty and Elliott convinced their father that they should be producing shirts under their own label, not manufacturing for other brands. In 1949, the GANT label was born.
Over the next decade or so, GANT became synonymous with the American collegiate style. The Ivy League look, or collegiate style reflected American tradition, academic excellence and a relaxed yet smart style.
Being based in New Haven, the GANT brand was at the heart of this new style, and formed a pivotal role in its inception and distribution.
Today, there are GANT stores worldwide, offering not only shirts but accessories and clothing to compliment the GANT style. With over 100 shirt styles to choose from for men, and over 30 shirt styles for women, the choice is excellent.
We tried out the men’s Oxford Pinstripe Shirt in Grey, and the women’s Oxford Bow Shirt. The men’s Oxford Pinstripe features perfectly matched stripes across the front pocket, and the back yoke into the sleeves. It also features a signature GANT locker loop on the back – it is said that in the 1950s, if a young fellow was ‘going steady’ with a girl; he would remove the loop to indicate this.
The women’s Oxford Bow Shirt features extremely soft cotton fabric, which feels light and delicate to wear. The sizing seemed pretty accurate, however be perhaps aware that the women’s sleeves are cut rather on the fitted side. If you prefer looser sleeves, I would advise to size-up, or contact GANT to check the sizing.
Overall, we were very impressed with the quality of our shirts. Every detail had been carefully considered, from the beautiful presentation box they arrived in, to the subtle details which sets these shirts apart from their peers.
To view the current collection of GANT shirts, visit www.gant.co.uk or for those outside of the UK, www.gant.com
GANT The Shirtmakers
18 September 2016