Being a big fan of reproduction garments in general, it is at times a little disheartening that many repro. garments available are not suitable for me…
Usually it’s sizing issues when it comes to Japanese products, or fabric/weight suitability when it comes to the American/British stuff due to wool & heavy cottons being somewhat contraindicated in my local climate for pretty much all of the year (I would have a dozen horsehide jackets otherwise :P).
So I was rather excited to have found Bela, the man behind Hepville, who took up my request for reproduction shirts that won’t lead to hyperthermia in the Australian Summer!
A couple of Summer-time shirts made of linen batiste, slightly modified from a 1944 pattern:
A made-to-measure custom job, but unlike most garment makers Hepville specialises in men’s clothing from the 1940s to 1950s.
It really does make a difference when the guy making your shirt geeks out massively on repro. and vintage garments…details and specs. can be mixed around, but in the end the flavour is entirely authentic.
The shirts have a boxier, more tube-like & relaxed fit compared to most modern day shirts.
The process begins with a undyed German linen batiste – as light as opaque fabrics go – that is extremely breathable and crease-resistant.
This is a very fine, narrow-loom fabric, with slight irregularities and subtle slubbing that makes for a wonderful texture.
The dyeing is then done by Bela in wine red and forest green – my favourite colours beside indigo blue!
The shirts are then made with a 1944 work-shirt pattern, AFAIK originally designed to feature heavier cotton fabrics.
We played around with the smaller details, so that whilst the shirts are no longer strictly reproduction, they very well could have been commissioned 70 years ago.
A good Summer-time shirt would have a collar loop, no?
The differences in wearing these and the regular chambrays and cotton twills in my closet is astounding!
This linen baptiste breathes so much better, and on a hot Australian Summer day this makes a whole world of difference in terms of comfort.
My first outing with the red shirt was at the local beach: having the sea breezes blow past the fabric and wicking the heat away was just a sensational feeling…
I have little doubt I’ll wear anything in a shirt other than linen unless I’m at work on the hotter days to come…the cottons will have to wait a couple of months.
The wide collar finishing with tapering, pointy tips:
Very well-made button holes:
I love the cat-eye buttons too:
The gussets on the side-seams were a custom request:
All in all, two fantastic shirts from Bela.
These definitely have a very different vibe to factory reproductions, not to mention the made-to-measure service means that man-sized folk are catered for.
Right now I’m thinking a few Hepville long-sleeve linen shirts will be necessary when Autumn arrives 😉
A big thanks to Bela for the wonderful shirts and all the amazing little details…really looking forward to more from Hepville in the near future!