Virtue Aesthetics

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Several years ago (around 2014) I bought a must-iron made in the USA OCBD from Brooks Brothers. The sales associate insisted that I buy my typical size, that the shirts are true to size and will not shrink if you follow the laundering instructions on the tag. I mentioned I had read online that the vast majority of people who have bought these shirts found that they did indeed shrink and advised to go up a size. Of course the shirt shrank and I had to return it.
I'm wondering if the same shrinkage issues prevail today and if I should go up a full neck size (or go up half a neck size) and a full sleeve size (or even 2 sleeve sizes?). Or if I should just follow the in-store advice. I really don't want to size up only to find that the shirts no longer shrink and I'm stuck with a shirt that's too small.
For reference I'm a 16 35 Regent in the non-iron shirts. Also wondering if anyone has any experience with the must-iron pinpoint button downs? I have heard that they shrink less than the OCBDs, but for example with J Press I understand that the pinpoints shrink far more than the OCBDs. This is all very tedious!

a) 16 x 35
b) 16.5 x 35
c) 17 x 35
d) 16 x 36
e) 16.5 x 36
f) 17 x 36

:fool:
 

xcubbies

Super Member
Might help us all if someone like you did some actual experimentation to determine the percentage of shrinkage washing the shirts at different temperatures and drying employing different settings. Y
Should you agree to take on this responsibility you might want to use a), c), e) and include several 15 1/2", 15" shirts into the study, just to ascertain that the cotton material is the same in the different sizes. Possibly include 14 1/2 for that matter, in the interests of thoroughness.
 

Charles Dana

Honors Member
Might help us all if someone like you did some actual experimentation to determine the percentage of shrinkage washing the shirts at different temperatures and drying employing different settings. Y
Should you agree to take on this responsibility you might want to use a), c), e) and include several 15 1/2", 15" shirts into the study, just to ascertain that the cotton material is the same in the different sizes. Possibly include 14 1/2 for that matter, in the interests of thoroughness.
Exactly. But Virtue Aesthetics will need to start his experiment with four batches of brand-new, must-iron shirts, all in a range of sizes: two batches of standard OCBDs and two batches of pinpoint oxfords.

One batch of OCBDs and one batch of pinpoints: Machine wash warm, tumble dry

One batch of OCBDs and one batch of pinpoints:
Machine wash warm, hang dry

For all batches, he must take complete before-and-after measurements of each shirt to the nearest micron using a robot-controlled laser sensor. (He can probably order one from Amazon.)

Important: While conducting this experiment, he will be required to wear a white lab coat with his real name embroidered over the left chest pocket. (Unless he wears a white lab coat, not a single academic journal in the country will publish his findings.) He’ll also need a lab assistant. It’s OK if the lab assistant is a Labrador.

Finally, he’ll compare the before-and-after measurements, and he’ll have his answer.

Alternatively, Virtue can say “Oh, screw it” and buy his must-iron shirts one-half size larger in the neck and one inch longer in the sleeves. Then he can wash the shirts in warm water and tumble dry on high heat. Then do that one more time. Afterwards, he can follow his usual washing routine. If the sleeves don’t shrink enough and thus are still too long, he can move the cuff buttons over to make the cuffs tighter. The collars will probably shrink but if they don’t, he will still look OK.

(Because I am acutely aware of how quickly time flies, and I’d rather be watching raccoon videos on You Tube, I’m firmly in the “Oh, screw it” camp when it comes to whether or not to begin some project.)
 
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Color 8

Senior Member
. . .
Alternatively, Virtue can say “Oh, screw it” and buy his must-iron shirts one-half size larger in the neck and one inch longer in the sleeves. Then he can wash the shirts in warm water and tumble dry on high heat. Then do that one more time. Afterwards, he can follow his usual washing routine. If the sleeves don’t shrink enough and thus are still too long, he can move the cuff buttons over to make the cuffs tighter. The collars will probably shrink but if they don’t, he will still look OK.

(Because I am acutely aware of how quickly time flies, and I’d rather be watching raccoon videos on You Tube, I’m firmly in the “Oh, screw it” camp when it comes to whether or not to begin some project.)
Exactly.

As I said in OP's other thread, I have to send my shirts out most of the time, so I don't care how they fit when I buy them. It's only important how they fit after they've been sent out a few times.
 

OCBD365

Starting Member
I’m new to this forum and really don’t want to come out the gate guns blazing at the Grand Daddy so please consider this more cautionary advice to get the best use of your product.

A few years back I worked at BB and put my 60% employee discount to good use.

If you put your shirts in the dryer or launder your them regularly, get the sleeve and inch longer if you can. I’d go a half in on the neck.

There are complaints about size consistency and the current must iron Oxford cloth at BB isn’t the same cotton from your 2014.
 

At Law

Senior Member
I have noticed a large inconsistency on both OCBD's as well as non-irons.

The sizing of the shirts from the 2012-2104 era has reduced significantly.

The change from "Slim Fit" to "Regent" was not only a tag change. Their sizing was reduced a fair amount. And this is compounded even more after washing.
 

Titus_A

Super Member
Just about all my shirts are BB must-irons. For a long time I washed them at home and hung them to dry, but I have been sending them to the cleaners instead for the past six months or a year. I don't know that I have any remaining shirts from 2014 or before, as I have purchased new batches in the last couple of years.

My experience, for what it is worth, is that the sleeves on the must-iron OBCDs---the fancy-trad unlined-collar ones---do not shrink as much as either the older OBCDs or the BB must-iron pinpoints. I haven't noticed any real distinction in collar or body shrinkage.

Is that scientific evidence? No, it's almost useless anecdote. But this is an internet forum, so what does one expect?
 

carrda04

New Member
I have a handful of must-iron OCBD's from 2017-2019, and a couple must-iron pinpoint-ish shirts from the "Made in Malaysia" line (I am paying for an infant in daycare and a mortgage, so that price point is a necessity for some purchases).

I generally have my must-irons laundered, and when I launder myself I wash on cold and only hit the dryer for several minutes before hanging. In either case I've noticed nearly no shrinkage with either model. I think you can definitely still play it safe along the lines that others have suggested, but it's probably safe to say that whatever you acquire will shrink less than anything 2014 or older.
 

slew

Starting Member
I have a blue 15 1/2 - 34 OCBD from this year. After blasting it with 3 hot washes + high dryer cycles (wanted to shrink it down to a better fit) it's at 15 5/8 - 33 1/4. The shirt came with a +1/2 inch allowance in the collar. The yoke and chest shrank a little bit (unfortunately I didn't take prewash measurements so I'm not sure by how much).

If anyone has experience with the new white OCBD, please share. I'm curious if it shrinks more than the others like it used to.
 
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Color 8

Senior Member
I have a blue 15 1/2 - 34 OCBD from this year. After blasting it with 3 hot washes + high dryer cycles (wanted to shrink it down to a better fit) it's at 15 5/8 - 33 1/4. The shirt came with a +1/2 inch allowance in the collar. The yoke and chest shrank a little bit (unfortunately I didn't take prewash measurements so I'm not sure by how much).

If anyone has experience with the new white OCBD, please share. I'm curious if it shrinks more than the others like it used to.
IME :
1. Mass-produced shirts are not exact, will all fit a little differently and be made from different lots of cloth that will vary slightly, but you can find a size / fit that is "good enough."
Measuring them to the 1/8" and expecting consistent performance is an exercise in futility.

2. Trying to "fix" stuff in the laundry does more harm than good.
 

Mr. B. Scott Robinson

Advanced Member
I didn’t have a problem with shrinkage so much as fraying at the collar points and at the placket. This was particularly noticeable on the made in Malaysia shirts.

I stopped drying my shirts and the problem resolved. I also vastly expanded my shirt collection with almost 2 dozen recent BB goodwill finds, which allows for more rotation, which also helped. $1200 in shirts in my size for $75? Yes please!

Now I am slowly culling out the Malaysia shirts for made in USA. I think the difference in quality of the fabric is substantial.

Cheers,

BSR
 
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