The history of denim is one that revolves around hard work and resilience. Made from dungaree cloth, traditional denim was originality conceived by Levi Strauss, a German immigrant who eventually moved out west to San Francisco to open a dry goods store upon catching wind of the Gold Rush. There he met Jacob Davis, a tailor who made tents, horse blankets and wagon covers for travelers. So upon a customer request for a sturdy pair of work pants that would last for years, Davis got a hold of Strauss’ denim and, well, the rest is history.
Today, denim is quite ubiquitous across the board, even making a comeback in the form of shirts. Modeled after the traditional Western Shirt, this rehashing of the brawny and durable denim shirt can be the perfect addition to any wardrobe. They’re versatile, even functioning as a jacket in some instances, and work perfectly in a casual work atmosphere. These days, you don’t have to be a gold miner to sport denim, but you do need to know where to look. Fortunately, we’ve done the heavy lifting for you. So take a gander through this list of the best denim shirts, we’re sure you’ll find a gem or two.
Simply a classic, this slim-fit denim shirt boasts an already broken-in structure resulting in a natural and already-worn look the first time you throw this thing on. The shirt also comes with armpit gussets for enhanced comfort, red selvedge piping, and all-around just looks the part of casual workwear that can be worn for a night on the town.
Taylor Stitch The Jack in Sea
Outfitted as an everyday staple, The Jack in Sea denim shirt is purposed to fit better and last longer than other leading brands, thanks in part to the shirt’s 5 oz Long Staple, Combed European Denim that softens and fades perfectly after a wash. It also features a tailored fit, soft button-down collar, a single needle construction, no pleats, and double stitched buttons and button holes. Tuck it in, keep in untucked, or roll up the sleeves when the time is right. It’s your tailored shirt. Do with it what you please.
Gant Rugger Indigo Denim Shirt
Thanks to the fashion-forward minds over at Gant Rugger, owning a classic indigo denim shirt is easy and won’t cost you all that much money. This particular shirt boasts their slim “Hugger” fit, a point collar, single chest pocket, is made from 100 percent cotton complete with indigo-dyed yarns, and features their signature box pleat with a locker loop out the back. Roll up the sleeves when it’s time to get the job done or keep them buttoned for a casual yet refined look. It’s up to you.
Wallace & Barnes Selvedge
With a nod to the vintage workwear of the early 1900s, it’s safe to say this premium denim shirt isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. It’s because this heirloom-worthy shirt is made from 10-ounce rugged selvedge denim from one of Japan’s oldest denim mills. You’ll also find comfort in the fact that this piece is machine washable, indigo-dyed, boasts a point collar and comes equipped with authentic workwear pockets for continued wear long after you punch out at 5 on the weekdays.
Iron & Resin Trucker Shirt
Built out to be as rugged and durable as the men who first sported denim back in the day, Iron & Resin’s Long-Sleeve Trucker Shirt is about a blue collar as it gets. Each piece is crafted from sturdy cotton denim, is made right here in the USA, boasts a vintage button-up look, a regular fit that makes layering underneath a breeze, and a corduroy-lined collar and cuffs for a bit of extra warmth. A must have this season that’s for sure.
Paige Hunter Shirt
Offering up a modern tailored fit complemented with saturated indigo for a deep blue wash, the Hunter Shirt from Paige is perfect for both work and evening wear after the office closes for the day. Also, because the piece is accented with metal trim, each Hunter shirt exudes a bit of that rough and rugged appearance we’re all looking for when purchasing a denim shirt. Keep it handy for those nights on the town, and pair it with a pair of tan or suede Chelsea boots for a solid look this Spring.
AMI Classic Slim-Fit Denim
Taking the classic men’s denim shirt to the next level, AMI does a fine job of taking an iconic men’s staple piece and adding a touch of modern influence to the composition. Each shirt is cut from washed and broken-in fabric, features a single patch pocket and flaunts pearlescent snaps down the front of the shirt. Also, its slim fit will keep you feeling comfortable and it even works well over an undershirt without feeling too constricting.
Shockoe Atelier Western Shirt
Proudly made with 10oz slub denim from Kuroki Mills in Japan, this handsome shirt is a minimalist take on the classic western shirt. However, subtle details in the piece make this a shirt left completely unto its own, thanks to a hidden selvedge pocket, patch chest pockets, pearl snap closures, two-tone stitching and a triple stitched back yoke. The denim was also rinsed at the mill to really bring out the texture, and is indigo-dyed for good measure.
Levi’s 1955 Sawtooth Denim Shirt
Inspired by the very pioneering workwear their namesake is credited with discovering, Levi’s Sawtooth denim shirt is a must-have for anyone interested in reliving the Dude-Ranch-days of the past. It boasts an emblematic Western pocket design, pearl snaps (including those down the front) and a Western yoke pattern at the shoulder and back. Combine that with a slim fit and durable medium weight denim construction and you have the makings of a quality denim shirt for years to come.
Chimala Western Shirt
Outfitted and designed by Chimala’s very own Ms. Noriko Machida, this western shirt is actually built out to already look worn-in by the time you purchase the piece. Each shirt is both cut and faded from distressed denim and boasts a slim cut that equates to a fashionable fit no matter what time of year you decide to sport this shirt. Whether pairings the shirt with another pair of different washed jeans, or as a complement to an all black attire, it’s sure to tie everything together quite nicely.
12 Pairs Of American Made Denim Jeans
No matter what the season, jeans are never out of style. So be sure to check out these best American-made denim jeans to help you complete the desired look.
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