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The Armoury Shirt: 11 Steps by Hand

We're very proud of our house label shirt. Here we take a deeper look into the Neapolitan styling and construction that make it so special.

Comune di Napoli

Naples has a rich history of shirt-making. The classic Neapolitan shirt is known for its distinctive styling and for the amount of handwork that goes into its construction. We always admired the look and feel of a Neapolitan shirt, so Naples was a natural choice to produce our house-label.

Tradizione Napoletana

Every shirt is hand-cut, either according to our house pattern or a client's personal pattern. From here, the various components are given interlining and begin to take shape.

The collar and sleeves are attached by hand. This is critical because the hand-attachment of the collar and sleeves provides differences in fit and feel that are unachievable by flat machine sewing.

11 Steps by Hand

To better illustrate the handwork that goes into Armoury shirts, we produced a special shirt with all of the handwork performed in burgundy contrast stitching. This helps highlight each of the 11 distinct hand operations that go into making our shirts.

One of the most notable steps of handwork is attaching the collar, which helps the shirt to better stand up under jackets. For Step 2, the yoke is set and sewn on by hand.

The sleeve is hand-attached, and, in the Neapolitan tradition, this consists of a larger than usual sleeve-head fit into a small arm-hole. This creates a slight shirred or "grinze" effect that also provides more ease of movement. Step 4 is the bartack at the end of the sleeve gusset, which is known as the "travetto".

Steps 5 and 6 are the button-hole and button shank. The button-hole itself is sewn by hand, a traditional sign of a handmade shirt, and each button is also hand-sewn in a crow stitch style and shanked to prove a firm attachment.

Steps 7 and 8 are the bottom gusset and the hand-rolled edge along the hem of the shirt. The gusset is the small fabric triangle at the bottom of the shirt which binds the front and back of the shirt. It is hand-sewn exclusively to ensure greater strength. The bottom of the shirt is rolled in the same way as a fine pocket square, and this hand step is unapologetically purely aesthetic.

Lastly, steps 9, 10 and 11 involve handwork along the placket, which consists of two blind hand-stitches and a bartack to insure the stitching does not unravel.

The Armoury Shirt Collars

We've worked to produce two Armoury collars, a classic spread and a generous button-down. The spread collar is slightly scalloped and sits at a slightly higher point on the neck, which makes it suitable with or without a tie. Our button-down collar is less dramatic and sits a bit lower, which helps it stand nicely when worn open under a jacket. Both are made with two layers of interlining, and this helps them maintain their shape over time.

The Conical Cuff

We prefer a cuff that hugs the wrist, and this can be difficult to find on ready-to-wear shirts because manufacturers typically want to make shirts that fit (over) the largest variety of wrist sizes. The benefit of the conical cuff is that it tapers along with the sleeve; this is in contrast to the more common straight barrel cuff, which sits straight and loose.

Fine Fabrics

We source our shirting fabric from Thomas Mason and Carlo Riva. Thomas Mason is a favorite of ours because we think it strikes a nice balance between a soft luxury feel and durability. Carlo Riva, on the other hand, utilizes the absolute finest cotton available, and the result is the finest and softest shirtings available.

Custom Shirts at The Armoury

We offer a made-to-measure program for our handmade shirts year-round at both our Hong Kong and New York locations. There is no minimum order quantity and fitting shirts or "provas" can be made upon request.

Made-to-Measure/Made-to-Order: Starting at $450 USD with a wait time of 8 weeks.

Shop Ready-to-Wear Armoury Shirts

B47 Landmark Central
15 Queen’s Road Central
Central, Hong Kong

Mon to Sat: 11am - 7:30pm
Sun: 12pm - 6pm

Pedder Arcade

501 Pedder Building
12 Pedder Street
Central, Hong Kong

Mon to Sat: 11am - 7:30pm
Sun: 12pm - 6pm


168 Duane Street
New York, NY 10013
United States

Mon to Sat: 11am - 7pm
Sun: 12pm - 6pm

Upper East Side

13 East 69th Street
New York, NY 10021
United States

Mon to Sat: 10am - 6pm
Sun: 12pm - 6pm