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In Focus: 18 East Wolf Button Down Shirt

Every now and again I fall in love with clothing.

I can tell you the first time I fell in love with something I wore as an adult. It was a pair of Adsum x Reebok Pyro’s. Today, I want to talk about the last thing I fell in love with.

To say I fell in love with a piece of clothing seems to trivialise the emotion of love, but I believe that clothing should stir something inside us, fostering an emotional connection between garment and wearer.

Today I came home to a package, wrapped up tightly and concealing my latest piece of online shopping. Roughly brick shaped and not far off the weight of one, was the 18 East Wolf Button-Down Shirt.

Instantly struck by the heftiness of what boils down to an Oxford Shirt, closer inspection began to reveal imperfections in the cloth. It was the slight slub texture across the fabric, the seemingly random fading across the body and sleeves.

The process of dying this shirt is unusual, mud is painted onto the fabric, dried, cracked and then dyed by hand. The result is beautiful. Putting it on felt like wearing one of my dad’s old Brooks Brothers shirts as a smock in Art lessons. Comforting, well-fitting, and with the hallmarks of something that’s been already used and loved for many, many years.

This whole article took 10 minutes to write, takes 2 minutes to read, but in the space of 5 minutes, I felt a range of emotions about a piece of clothing. I wanted to memorialise that, and remember that when I buy something, I’ll be seeking that same feeling when it arrives that I did today.

Antonio and the 18 East team. I salute you, you’ve done it again.

All photos are credited to 18 East! Check their stuff here.


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