new england shirt co

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We’ve recently partnered with New England Shirt Company and spoke with founder Robert Kidder about how the industry has changed over the past 75 years. They still make every shirt from start to finish in Fall River, Massachusetts. 

What makes your shirts different than others out there?
First of all, quality. We are a single-needle factory. And our attention to detail. So many shirts are made according to customers’ particular interest so you can get the shirt the way you want it. We really make the shirt to order. 

Why do you think you’ve been able to withstand the industry?
Because of the things that set us apart. We deliver a nice product and we deliver quickly with customer’s specifications. 

Most popular shirt style? 
The modeling is changing a lot, I’m probably a classic button- down person myself. Your business is reflective of that change. There is classic L.L.Bean and then the younger Signature line. We love what we see with the younger business– young people getting excited about products made in America.

What’s your favorite spot in Maine?
I love all of Maine and I’m about to make a trip to Portland. While in Maine I’m visiting three great museums: Portland Museum of Art, the Farnsworth Museum and the Bowdoin Museum of Art. 

I went to the visit the fellows at New England Shirt Co., what an impressive operation. It was wonderful to hear the hum of activity in a Fall River mill building at a time that many of these old mills are silent and empty.  This company is keeping the machines plenty busy. It was wonderful to see the beautiful plaids, stripes, ginghams in giant rolls and to see the finished shirts so neatly folded and stacked, waiting to be shipped to a host of haberdasheries -  felt like a Ralph Lauren dream sequence.  

It can’t be easy for New England Shirt Co to compete with mammoth off shore manufacturers spewing products but I am awfully glad that they do.  I think we all should take a closer look at companies like this and their beautifully crafted products, click our ruby red slippers twice and say “there’s no place like home”.