To Stalk: That J. Crew Gingham Shirt

There is definitely a uniform among girls who go out. It varies, of course, depending on where you go and what your “scene” is, but in New York City on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday night I can guarantee that you will see the following items in such repetition that you may think you’re seeing the same girl multiplied by 250. I assure you it’s not your alcohol intake. The items are as follows:

– A leather jacket

– A black, tight “bandage” skirt

– Nude pumps

– A white tank top

– A black, Chanel-esque purse

For a while it seemed there was no male equivalent. Guys would go out in polo shirts, oxfords under under vests (shudder), sportcoats and khakis or various forms of jeans. The shoes were all over the place — loafers, sneakers, flip flops with the bottle openers on the soles or those terrible, terrible square-toed “dressy” things. But they all looked different. At the very least, you could easily assess who it was that you’d just been talking to do a mere five minutes ago.

But then it happened. THE SHIRT.

An unassuming gingham shirt — always based in white with corresponding checks in either navy or black, buttoned down, typically rolled at the sleeves, tucked into belts or worn over pants — found its way into literally every. Single. Man’s. Wardrobe.


Raise your hand if you don’t know a guy who owns this shirt. Just what I thought. All hands on deck.

My friends and I began to count these shirts. On a slow night we’d average 10-15. Other times, we’d get all the way up to 30. Then the shirt began permeating into the daylight hours and soon it was as if men were cartoon characters with a single item to complete and punctuate their now-eternal uniform.

Surely the trend began because some guy saw another guy and was like, “Hey, that’s a nice shirt,” and he was like, “Thanks I got it at J.Crew, it wasn’t that expensive and you can throw it in the wash.” But how it grew from a few “twinsies!” into billiontuplets is nothing short of a phenomenon, leaving me to wonder two very important things:

1) How many guys do you know with this shirt?


2) Do they acknowledge their 800 twins? Ignore it? Do they do that same thing we do when we see a girl wearing the same outfit as us, where we either compliment it (“Cute shirt!”) or make some sort of faux-jab (“Ugh, can’t believe you’re wearing that shirt”) because the big old joke is that we are both wearing it?

More importantly, do you think they turn to their friend after and ask: “But I look better in it right?”

Which is awkward, because their friend is also, uh, wearing the shirt.

Join me in the crusade, will you, and stalk that J. Crew Gingham Shirt.

Images via @thatjcrewginghamshirt Instagram, Illustration by Charlotte Fassler

  • Cay

    Oh my god. This is so true. I have turned guys down at bars and told them it was because they were wearing a blue-checked shirt.

    (Lest you think this is particularly unkind, I’ve noticed that they tend to be particularly prevalent among the finance banker bros and icky bridge-and-tunnel crowd. So, no.)

    • Amelia Diamond

      i am telling you…EVERYONE HAS IT. Even I might.

      • I have this shirt.

        • Nat Way

          Me too!

          • Jamie Leland

            Me three!

          • Trente Chic

            And the bartenders at the standard inside

          • Bird

            a place of the same name(the standard club) in my little hometown also has this shirt and jeans for uniform… this is mega awkward!

          • Jessica

            Me four!

      • Teresa

        I’m not ashamed to say I have that same blue one in my closet, and I’m wearing a short sleeved version in red today. It might be basic, but it’s an American classic.

    • Euge P

      Me five!! H&M, perfect fit, half the price. Win-win!

  • I would like to notify to all y’all that I am in fact a male who does NOT own the gingham shirt an I’m proud of it ;’) SO THERE

    • Amelia Diamond

      but now you kinda want it right

      • Mmmmmmmmmmm no.

        BUUUT I wouldn’t mind if every other male had it. It certainly is nice to look at :’)

    • kneelbeforetigers

      Bravo… avoid mediocre clothing!

  • stop they made an instagram!?!?!? yahhhhhs

  • The gingham shirt is the next-phase evolution of madras plaid, therefore the official uniform of USC frat bros (sponsored by the Crew and Vineyard Vines, of course.)

    It’s only 8:30 and I’ve seen five so far today. Help.

    Love, Gigi
    Dolce and Gabriella

  • I feel like guys like things EVEN MORE if all the other guys have it.

  • My dog has that shirt too

  • Ladies, you know how to make it disappear, right?

    (Everyone buy herself one and wear it, wear it, wear it. Guys will stop soon.)

  • brunetteletters

    lol!!!! every single male owns this shirt hahaha so funny!! it’s a must in every guy’s closet. I have one too haha..

  • Sarah

    I took this at a bar the other weekend

    • Amelia Diamond

      this is perfect

      • Oh god noooooo! They look like a retired boy band!

  • Jamie Leland

    I used to date a guy who I only remember wearing (1) a Great Gatsby t-shirt, (2) a heather green American Apparel tank top, (3) a blue gingham shirt. I loved the gingham shirt so much, I got one for myself.

  • starryhye

    HA! My husband is guilty of wearing this shirt, but only because I bought it for him! Oops. Does it help that it’s a bright kelly green and white check instead? Well, I will say that he looks damn handsome in it.

    • My husband has one too (not from J. Crew though), and walked to work wearing it last week only to find three other guys and one woman wearing it too. Its officially a THING. That green sounds great though.

  • Nadine C

    My bf has one, but I think is cute, those kind of shirts match perfectly with watches and a vast majority of rings. I will give him a jewelry piece from Rad Jewelers, I think it might make him stand out from the crowd:

  • I about lost it when I walked by a bar last saturday and saw two guys sitting at separate tables, wearing this same shirt, and then saw two more guys walk past also wearing the shirt in the span of a few seconds. It was like being stuck in a weird remake of Being John Malkovich (Being #ThatJCrewGinghamShirt?)

  • Would all of our heads collectively explode if @thatjcrewginghamshirt partnered with White Boys in Salmon Shorts?

  • I’m looking forward to this when it comes over here to England. It’ll hopefully knock out the ‘blue and white stripey shirt’ that e.v.e.r.y guy has…

  • Hahahaha yes, I work with about 20 of these every day. It’s handled by ignoring it completely. No fun.

    Warm Regards,

  • I am one of four sisters and all four of our boyfriends/husbands have this shirt; mine has it in black check, blue check, and green check. I think my sister’s nephew even has it! And he’s barely 2. It really is EVERYWHERE!

  • Karlis Gama

    I think red pants with something navy is also a twin-kinda image.

  • I’d imagine that these two tweets probably represent the response of every gingham man in this great big gingham world

  • Dancingcheektocheek

    Thanks for reminding me I’m not missing much since I’m not often out Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. The uncouth bags and boring shirts rabble. Yuck.

  • I was supposed to say I don`t know anyone since my boyfriend doesn`t have one but then I remember I have friends.. lol I wonder if people on this side of the globe have that J. Crew gingham shirt?

    ROUGH & TOUGH☯ | I`m on Bloglovin!

  • Anna

    My brother most definitely has that shirt.

  • mercy

    not really good look
    regards tas selempang wanita

  • The cab driver is my favorite.

  • Abby

    Surprised that this has only happened one time. A few months ago my brother showed up at dinner wearing this shirt AS DID my dad. My boyfriend was wearing almost the exact same shirt, but with a micro gingham print in dark green. Our waiter thought we were a bunch of freaks and I felt a little bit left out.

  • @ameliadiamond:disqus Update! I just saw two people wearing this gingham shirt both in under 10 minutes! Did I mention one was a girl and they weren`t together at all? My face literally went from poker face to this:

  • Phineas Crumpy

    Gingham. I think it’s farm fashion. But yeah, I bet almost everyone has one. Wait, I forgot if I have one.