The perfect white T-shirt and other t-shirts in minimalistic wardrobe
The perfect white t-shirt? Could this keep you awake at night? Since the previous post about searching for the perfect T-shirt is one of the most popular posts on this blog, I guess many of you are still looking for one. That’s why I decided to write this continuation of the first part. (It’s here: The perfect summer t-shirt read it to learn about fabrics etc.). From this post you will find out what are my perfect T-shirts, as well as what other T-shirts should be in the minimalist’s wardrobe in my opinion.
Is it worth to have a perfect white t-shirt of a good quality?
No beating around the bush: definitely yes. First of all, it is worth to have a white t-shirt with a classic cut and without prints. It matches absolutely any style, casual, sports or smart office style. It simply works in every situation and does not cause problems when creating outfit. If there is any “must have” in the closet the t-shirt can be called that!
Is it worth to have a simple t-shirt of a good quality?
Also definitely yes. For many reasons. First of all: comfort of wearing. It is the thing closest to the body and the soft material will be pleasant to wear. Comfort also depends on the cut of T-shirt, when nothing disturbs our moves or pulls the cloth out of the pants (important in office attire). The decent cut will also give the body the right look. Another thing: the longevity of the T-shirt. T-shirts are usually heavily used. Because they go with everything, most of us wear them frequently. The one of good quality will last longer without stretching, twisting or ripping at the seams. A perfect white t-shirt should also keep its original color for as long as possible.
White & co. My T-shirts that are a perfect match to the minimalist’s wardrobe
In a minimalist wardrobe, plain one-color T-shirts with a classic straight cut and without prints or visible logos will work best. You will be able to combine them perfectly with other clothes. They will suit any occasion where you can be dressed in a T-shirt. The colors that I recommend and that I have in my clothing base are: white, black, gray and navy blue (which I am currently looking for). If you prefer other colors, it’s also a good idea! For example, beige or cinnamon, fashionable this season, will also work well. I would avoid very vivid or neon colors, they will not be so universal. Also the patterns are not good option in a minimalistic closet, though I have one exception here. I have a T-shirt with navy blue and white stripes. As it is a timeless, very classic pattern, it fits perfectly many outfits and is also easy to style. In the mater of so called breton t-shirts, it was important for me that the stripes were delicate, not too wide, and the shirt itself had a white hem around the neckline to brighten the complexion a bit.
The perfect white t-shirt – my selection criteria
This paragraph basically applies to all of my shirts, not just the white ones. The imaginary perfect t-shirt haunted me for several years and I was not very successful in this field. The criteria were: minimum 90% cotton (or modal or tencel), fitted but not too tight, very short sleeves, round neckline and not too wide, non-translucent, thick fibre, nicely made.
What worked for me?
It was not easy to find that ideal one. After some time, the situation changed. In the last 3 years, I have had positive experiences with only two brands. One is from the mass market segment, the other is premium, so it should meet the needs and expectations of most of you.
The first brand is Massimo Dutti. I have 5 basic T-shirts. This is the most basic model, available in several colors, that depends on the season (I know, because I put off buying a navy blue one, and it was not in stock the next spring). The t-shirts I have are in white, gray and black. I use them a lot, especially in summer. Since last year in the summer, I bought new white and black one, I could see how they look like in comparison to those used for 1.5 years. The black T-shirt I was using looked identical to the new one, the color kept its intensity. In the case of the white one it was no longer as snow-white as the new one, but still white. The t-shirts kept their shape perfectly. In addition, the t-shirt fits well. The material is thick, non-translucent. It is not a cheap light, airy cloth for hot weather. Selected in your size, it is perfectly fitted to the body, which can be a hint when buying.
Price: circa 15 euro
The second brand I can speak good things about is the MLE Collection. I have two classic white t-shirts (slim fit version, not oversize). These shirts also lost the glaring white visible when brand new (I could compare, because I bought mine in a two-month interval), but after more than 9 months of use, they still remain white. The shape remained unchanged, without deformations, pilling or other problems. It is well-made of body-friendly material, it fits well. It is not perfectly fitted along its entire length and it’s line is completely straight. It’s shorter than the Massimo Dutti T-shirt, so if it’s to be tucked in, it suits high waisted garments better. The fibre is of nice good quality, better than the Massimo Dutti T-shirt and for me this is the perfect white t-shirt.
Price: circa 35 euro
Downsides: it’s hard to say whether they are to come back in stock
What should we keep in mind buying perfect t-shirt?
Here’s the short list:
Here is a short list of the most important things:
1| Breathable material. At least 80% of the composition should be cotton, modal, tencel or viscose / rayon.
2| Good quality fiber. The fact it’s cotton doesn’t yet mean the quality; trust your senses – use your fingers to feel whether the material is nicely thick, soft, pleasant to the touch, or rough and stiff.
3| Quality of sewing. That is how do the seams look (whether they side seams are parallel to the fabric weave, if not, they will twist in the laundry!), is any thread hanging loose, are there any holes next to the seams (they are caused by the broken needle).
4| The quality of the material. Whether it is thick or translucent. Translucent material is not suitable for some occasions and it is sometimes so thin that tearing off the price tag leaves a hole.
5| Value for money. Optional, but for me it’s important not to overpay for t-shirts, which are a short-longevity items.
6| Opinions about the item. When we buy online, we often have the section with comments from other buyers that are worth reading.
7| Cut and neckline. A very individual matter. Wearing t-shirt it should be comfortable and we need to feel at ease – it’s not good when the T-shirt comes out of pants or skirt, it is also not comfortable to constantly hold your neckline for not to show too much when bending over. In addition, a large decolletage is often not appropriate at work.
8| Aesthetics. In case of t-shirts with stripes check whether the stripes are printed parallel to the t-Tshirt line, especially around the neckline. All curved lines will be easy to notice on you and it will look unaesthetic.
Can the perfect white t-shirt have its downsides?
Unfortunately, the downside is that it’s often difficult to keep the color. I think it is worth trying to put some effort into washing them. I hand wash the white ones after each use, without any fabric softener (apparently it could make the color graish – if you know something about it, leave the info in the comment), but with a bit of a good but delicate bleaching agent. If you have any of your idea for washing white T-shirts or shirts, share in the comment!