The Alfani Spectrum trim-fit shirt line from Macy’s strikes a canny balance between stodgy business and city hip (definitely leaning towards the latter), providing a wide range of color choices for men who want to explore different combinations in their wear. Macy’s offers other comparably-priced shirt lines, but I’ve found that these use the right combination of comfortable fabrics, the ability to use collar stays, decent manufacture quality and the ability to get a little creative and stay frosty at the same time.
Alfani Spectrum Trim-fit shirts come in lots of colors.
The Alfani Spectrum Trim-Fit shirt line — like Alfani Spectrum’s offerings — delivers comfort, quality, and easy, versatile style in an amazing number of hues, as seen in the droll and colorful video below:[youtube:http://youtu.be/YyfIzhFehvk]
Alfani Spectrum Trim-fit shirts are light-weight and comfortable.
The fabric is quite comfortable compared to many comparably-priced shirts without the slick synthetic feel that you get from many Van Heusen or Geoffrey Beene sateen or poplin shirts. The Spectrum shirts are French double-stitched, and the stitch count appears to be 15-16 stitches an inch, which is a good indicator of decent quality. The Alfani Spectrum shirts also use the currently-popular spread collar with a rather thin collar width and removable two-inch collar stays. They do seem to have a bit of a light feel, so I strongly recommend washing and drying on the delicate cycle without mixing in heavier garments such as designer jeans.
The size ranges aren’t ideal, but here’s what you can do…
The Alfani Spectrum trim-fit shirts’ size ranges are not necessarily ideal, because while they do not do the stupid S-M-L-XL sizing of many cheap shirts, you won’t be able to get specific matches such as 17″ collar and 32″ sleeve that you will get at Brooks Brothers or Jos. A. Bank. Typical meat-size combinations are the following:
16-16.5/32-33, 16-16.5/34/35, 17-17.5/34-35, 17-17.5/36-37
I was fortunate that the 16-16.5/32-33 shirt fits me perfectly and the collar is not overly tight. If necessary, buy the next size up and have the sleeves altered, particularly for colors that you will simply not find anywhere else, such as the Blueberry, Prune, Forest and Burgundy. (They also come in white and business blue, breaking the boring Nordstrom Rack oxford-shirt mold.) As these are trim-fit shirts, you’ll find that the only thing that needs to be changed is the sleeve length, reducing alteration cost. Make sure that the sleeves do not extend beyond the very bottom of the bump on your hand. Once you have your sleeves shortened, you’ll have a well-fitting shirt that delivers easy, versatile style no matter where you go.
(NOTE: In expensive parts of the country, like here in Silicon Valley, shortening sleeves will run you $15-$25. In other parts of the country, it’ll cost less).
Mix and Match.
For myself, one very pleasant aspect of the Spectrum line is how well so many of its shirts match up with my collection of ties from The Tie Bar. Some of my bolder red, purple, blue and green paisley ties, for example, appear as though they were made for matching with these shirts. These are the first reasonably priced dress shirts I’ve found that come in those darker hues, which means that you can really experiment with these things and still look reasonably conservative at work. I typically match the tie to the slacks and use the shirt to set them off, but with these shirts I pair them with a tie of similar hue and set them off with navy, grey or black slacks. It’s very subtle, calming and yet extremely easy on the eyes. For a date, there is nothing better than one of these with a carefully matched tie. First, it shows you really give a crap. Second, you’ll look fantastic. In my view, for the price (typically around $32) they simply can’t be beat.
Be aware that shirts of this type, being a trim fit, pay off for the guy who goes to the gym or otherwise stays in shape. Stay on top of your core work – this is your reward.
The Alfani Spectrum trim-fit shirt line is sold at Macy’s. This article is not written with any relationship to Macy’s or Alfani and with no evaluation units provided.