I recently acquired two shirts from Swedish retailer John Henric during the Black Friday sales after having seen them used and recommended by some gentlemen on Instagram.
I bought an indigo denim popover shirt, and an oxford button down – both in size 42. I was impressed with both, so I decided to do a writeup.
This shirt was one I had my eye on for a while, after seeing one worn by Linus Norrbom. I’d been wanting to try a popover shirt for several months, and saw this one to be a great opportunity with its appealing fabric and design.
I was even more impressed with the fabric when the shirt arrived. The colour was as rich as the images showed, and it was surprisingly lightweight. The fabric feels high quality, the buttons are good and the finishing is good. The collar and cuffs are lined, but not fused. There’s a nice roll to the collar.
The fit off the peg is pretty solid. Across the front it’s good, with adequate room in the chest and a slimmer waist. There’s no pulling at the placket, which is pretty rare for my chest. It’s a bit looser at the back than I’d consider ideal, but given it’s a casual shirt a touch of slouch isn’t an issue I immediately need to address.
My only qualm with this shirt is the choice of a single back pleat design. I always find it to be a tad unflattering on my body type, as I have a broadly muscled back. It always causes a bit of billowing, which probably exacerbates the slouchy fit at the back.
I’ll probably get it taken in sometime this year, possibly having darts added to the back and see how that goes. It’s a very minor qualm, and something I can’t really complain about given it’s a RTW product.
The colour and design have proven versatile for casual and dressy casual, and I think I’ll get a lot of wear out of it when temperatures cool down. I particularly like how it pairs with this linen jacket:
The second shirt I bought was an oxford cloth button down, which somehow had not been present in my wardrobe until now.
Again, the fabric and finishing felt high quality. I liked the darker, cobalt-esque blue of the stripes.
This one fit a bit tighter than the popover, with a touch of chest snugness evidenced by the slight pulling at the placket. I would probably have benefited from buying one size up and having it altered, just for a bit of extra room in the chest.
I did appreciate that this shirt didn’t have a single back pleat, instead having side darts. I’m assuming this was chosen so that the shirt could be worn more easily with business casual outfits on the dressier end of the scale. The shirt features single button cuffs with holes for cufflinks should you choose to wear those.
I think the collar of this shirt is slightly better suited to wearing open as opposed to wearing with a tie, simply due to the placement of the wing fastening buttons which brings the collar in a bit too much to achieve perfect proportioning with jacket collars on my frame. Of course, you could unfasten the buttons to spread the collar tips further apart when donning a necktie as one of the below images will show.
Still, there’s adequate room under the collar for a tie knot to breathe so wearing a tie isn’t an issue with this shirt. Which is good news.
Like the popover, the collar and cuffs are interlined but not fused. I like the interlining as it plays better with a necktie as opposed to an unlined soft collar, but has a bit more drape to it than a fused collar would.
Overall I’m quite satisfied with this shirt, it’ll be a versatile piece that I’ll get a lot of wear from, so long as I don’t go putting on weight.
The Shopping Experience
John Henric’s website was easy to navigate and had clear size guides. The checkout experience was quite good, though I noticed at the time that I couldn’t add multiple items to cart across multiple browser tabs.
The prices across the board are quite reasonable, which plays into JH’s mantra of ‘affordable luxury without the middleman’. The quality of the products I’ve purchased also falls in line with that mantra.
A particularly attractive selling point for John Henric is the offer of free worldwide express shipping. My order arrived from Sweden to Australia inside a week. As an Australian, free international shipping of any sort is attractive given the usual prices of international freight to here. Adding express to that offer is even better!
The caveat is that JH doesn’t offer free returns. To me, this isn’t a big issue especially given the free express shipping for delivery.
Now, to make a return would probably be costing given it’d have to ship back to Sweden. However, if you know your measurements and how to shop for them, a need for returns shouldn’t be present. I’ve since ordered other products including a watch cap and a turtleneck sweater and have had no issues with sizing – the size charts are good.
Conclusion: Quality products and good value for money.
John Henric offer a variety of goods aside from shirting which I haven’t talked about, but it is all well priced and the other items I have purchased have been good quality. Their knitted blazers look like an interesting idea…
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