A considered discourse on one of our favorite fabrics
Celebrated for its distinctive textural stripe pattern, corduroy has enjoyed a longstanding popularity since its debut during the 18th century. Today, corduroy goes by many names, carries conflicting associations, and remains as one of the more unique fabrics in production. Given its conflated history, we wanted to offer our perspective on why corduroy deserves a well-appointed place in your closet.
First and foremost, corduroy is more versatile than most people realize. Since the 1700’s, it’s been used to craft a wide variety of different garments—particularly trousers, jackets and shirts. Considered to be a more durable fabric, corduroy was also often used for upholstery and other utilitarian purposes.
Because it’s suited to such a wide variety of applications, the most confounding aspect of corduroy stems from its versatility. To this day, corduroy is colloquially understood both as “poor man’s velvet” and as deriving from the luxurious “corde du roi” (or cord of the King in French). In actuality, neither are entirely accurate; corduroy has been popular amongst people of all classes for the better part of two centuries.
While there is great variation, we feel that the character of corduroy hinges on how it’s made. The process is relatively straightforward: extra sets of fiber are woven into a base fabric to form ridges of raised vertical stripes. Whereas many of these fabrics include synthetic fibers, our luxurious micro-corduroy shirts are crafted from 100% cotton. This unique combination of tiny cords and quality cotton provide a soft touch and slight sheen you can’t replicate with other fibers.
Whereas the ridges of traditional corduroy appear slightly coarse, our micro-corduroy fabric offers a more restrained and delicate structure—lending a no-nonsense touch of texture to an otherwise solid colored shirt. And because micro-corduroy has become such a staple of our seasonal collections, we’re always exploring new colorways to choose from.