Monday, February 18, 2013

Introductory offer on fancy London shirts

Recently I was surprised to find a Charles Tyrwhitt catalogue tucked in among the usual supermarket and discount department store junk mail. It's a very high-end purveyor of men's business shirts, ties, suits, etc.

The copy in the brochure ("I believe you cannot buy a better shirt anywhere at any price") was quite charmingly persuasive, because mail-order people just don't pimp their stuff in that formal yet personal voice any more.

The company, I learn, was founded by Nicholas Charles Tyrwhitt Wheeler in 1986, while he was a student at Bristol University. Wheeler came from good establishment stock, having previously been educated at The Dragon School and Eton College. His first job was as a management consultant but the mail-order shirt business proved so successful that he set up a shopfront in Jermyn Street, which is to fancy shirtmakers what Savile Row is to tailors.

Charles Tyrwhitt now has separate websites in the United States and, as of last October, Australia. The offer in the catalogue I received was that for the "next 10 days only", their shirts are only $39.50 (normally $140 or $160).

The shirts come in an appealing range of textures and patterns, and seem to have either regular or cutaway collars. There are classic fit, slim fit or extra slim fit, in either regular or non-iron versions. There is also quite a nice range of 'business casual', casual and polo shirts. All come with a six-month guarantee.

The 'next 10 days bizzo' seems really odd, as how would they possibly know when you received the catalogue? However a search for the fine print reveals that this offer ends at midnight on Saturday 8 June 2013. So no need to rush. Check out the website.

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