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Published April 16, 2012

Charles in Charge
Proper English Shirts in Downtown DC

Charles TyrwhittThe British have given us many amazing things.

The rule of law. The rediscovery of blues music. Amusing story arcs on Mad Men.

But mostly, great shirts.

So say hello to Charles Tyrwhitt, a London dealer of poplin, gingham and oxford, now open downtown as only their third US store.

The store is pretty much what you’d expect: a Union Jack here, a vintage steamer trunk there and rows upon rows of neatly folded shirts arrayed on dark wood shelves. And these are buttoned-up shirts, a bit more David Cameron than Richard Branson.

But that’s not to say it’s all about slim-fitting, spread-collared white herringbones and blue twills. A few more 80-degree days and you’ll be ready to up your arsenal of lilacs, greens, even the blue-and-red Prince of Wales check (which, word to the wise, may or may not attract angry mobs).

Of course, you can’t leave the house in just a shirt (we don’t make the rules). So you’ll also want to turn your attention to their handmade silk ties, madras-print pocket squares and Black Label suits—three-piece numbers, 100% stitched in mohair blends, with exposed stitching and functional buttons.

They’ll never mess with a man who wears a waistcoat in July.
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