My Denim Shirt

There’s nothing like walking the sidewalks of Canal Street in New York. Surrounded by the many anonymous yet very serviceable clothing shops that line the street, you at once feel alienated and engaged. The signs climb the the walls of the buildings in that part of town, each vying for your attention. The only real way to to know what shop you want to go into is by looking into them and seeing what they have to offer. 

It was a particularly cold day, I remember, when I popped my head inside one such anonymous storefront. I went in more for respite and relief than shopping. I fidgeted around, toying with the stacks of clothes. Busying myself to waste time and ignore heading outside.

That was, until I came across a denim shirt. There it was. The familiar red label poking its head out from the left of the applied breast pocket. It had been years since I had considered a denim shirt. The exaggerated yoke sewn into the front and back. The mother of pearl snaps that decorated the front, instead of the more familiar buttons. “Where have you been hiding, my old, familiar friend?” I could hear myself saying.  

Maybe I wanted to be a cowboy that day. Or perhaps, it’s true, that some things are so classic that they never go out of style. Whatever the reason, I purchased it (under $30 if I remember correctly) and it has been a part of my wardrobe ever since.

Over the years I have paired the shirt with jeans to go out with friends, a pair of khaki cut-offs to scale the beaches of Cape Cod, and even with a tux jacket to head to events downtown. It become a trusted friend and fail safe member of the family. 

Items like denim shirts are rare. They don’t require much thought. They become softer and better with time —almost becoming customized to your body, learning your silhouette and frame. Like an old friend that you can pick up a conversation with even after years of not seeing each other, my denim shirt always seems to work.

Maybe it is for that reason that I have always wanted to create homes that are as essential as a denim shirt. 

- Written by Jon Call - Edited by Melissa Rayworth

Jon Call