Measurements of Brooks Brothers OCBDs over the Years

Ivy Style enthusiast Farrago has put together a great post over at Talk Ivy providing measurements of Brooks Brothers OCBDs ranging from the 1960s up to the recently updated 2016 OCBD. These are the types of posts that keep forums going. He was kind enough to allow me to repost this great information over here.

As promised, I got around to combing through the museum. I took measurements on the collars, chest, and length (back and front). I weighed the shirts as well. Apologies for my usual poor photos.
1960 Brooks Brothers OCBD

1960’s Brooks Brothers White OCBD

No pocket. Purple label without care instructions. 6 button front . Gussets on the sides. Note the collar length of this shirt.
Collar: 3 ”
Weight: 10.51 oz.
Chest: 24 1/4″
Front: 30 ”
Back: 32 ”
1970 Brooks Brothers OCBD

1970’s Brooks Brothers Yellow OCBD

Pocket. Red label without care instructions. 6 button front.
Collar: 3 7/16″
Weight: 12.28 oz.
Chest: 25 1/4″
Front: 28 1/4 ”
Back: 31 1/2 ”
1980 Brooks Brothers OCBD

Late 1980’s Brooks Brothers Blue Blazer Stripe OCBD

7 button front.
Collar: 3 3/8″
Weight: 11.96 oz.
Chest: 25 ”
Front: 30 1/2 ”
Back: 31 1/2 ”
Early 1990s Brooks Brothers OCBD

Early 1990’s Brooks Brothers Yellow w/ Blue Track Stripe OCBD

7 button front.
Collar: 3 1/4″
Weight: 11.22 oz.
Chest: 24 3/4 ”
Front: 28 3/4 ”
Back: 30  ”

Mid 1990s Brooks Brothers OCBD

Mid 1990’s Brooks Brothers Ecru OCBD

7 button front.
Collar: 3 3/8″
Weight: 12.10 oz.
Chest: 24 1/4 ”
Front: 28 1/4 ”
Back: 30 1/2  ”
2008 Brooks Brothers OCBD

2008 Brooks Brothers Pink OCBD

7 button front. Lined. Note the weight.
Collar: 3 3/8″
Weight: 13.76 oz.
Chest: 24 1/2 ”
Front: 29 1/2 ”
Back: 31 1/4  ”

2016 Brooks Brothers OCBD

2016 Brooks Brothers Helio Stripe OCBD

7 button front. Gussets. No pocket. The Madison cut is the nearest to the now discontinued Traditional cut.
Collar: 3 7/16″
Weight: 12.14 oz.
Chest: 23 1/2 ”
Front: 28  ”
Back: 30 1/4  “

oxford cloth button down
Jerrod Swanton is a simple man interested in simple, classic, and traditional style.

10 Comments on "Measurements of Brooks Brothers OCBDs over the Years"

  1. Dutch Uncle says:

    I was pleased to see that I was correct when I remembered that collars were 3″ in 1960.
    I always wonder why Ivy fetishists in 2015 think that longer collars are “authentic”.

  2. ChildDoc says:

    Many thanks for your repost re. evolution of spec’s of the latest iteration of the Brooks OCBD shirt. As a lot of the focus in this, and numerous other posts, seems to be on length of collar points, collar roll, lining/fusings (or not) of collars and cuffs, presence/absence of breast pocket, and number (6 vs. 7) of placket buttons, I am surprised that no one seems to focus much on issues of what makes a “quality” shirt–such as single needle tailoring throughout (generating smoother seams with minimal puckering), MOP buttons (greater durability), side seam gussets (reinforcement at stress seam points), quality of cotton (Supima), etc.–not to mention place/conditions of the manufacturing team.

    Having personally visited the Brooks Garland factory and the environs around Garland, NC I can attest to what this factory means to this community and region. I believe workers at this facility have historically produced a quality product–the sum of which, in my opinion, should supersede excessive rumination on individual component details/fluctuations such as 1/16-1/8 inch differences in length of collar points (perhaps “roll” is affected as much or more by collar button placement?), 1-2 inch differences in chest size and/or front/back shirt length, number of buttons on the placket, etc.These are not issues of quality but rather matters of individual choice/preference.

    I say enjoy a quality U.S.A. made product and encourage, through consumption, continued production of an item dear to readers of this blog. I think those of us who enjoy classic clothing items would do well to encourage companies like Brooks Brothers to continue to produce such items–as opposed to sending negative feedback in response to positive efforts–mindlessly blogging off into irrelevance and oblivion.

  3. rl1856 says:

    Thank you for confirming my suspicion that recent BB OCBD shirts are in fact more trimly cut than in years past. Measurements above show a reduction of a full 1 inch since 2008 and 1.5 inches since late 1980s. Less fabric means higher profit margin per shirt….every wonder why “trim” cut is now the “standard” cut ?

  4. Steve L. says:

    Very surprised to see the 1960s measurements. I wasn’t around to wear OCBDs back then so my personal recollections have always been of collars longer than that. Even so, the continuing variations in things reveal a product that was less consistent than I would have supposed. Very interesting information. Button placement does affect how a collar rolls, but I’m not exactly sure of the geometry. I would guess that the slight slimming of the torso reflects trends BB sees in the sales of its various cuts.

    • Don says:

      Early 1960s ties and lapels were quite skinny. Longer collar points would have looked all out of proportion back then. 3″ was plenty long in 1960.

  5. Ezra Cornell says:

    Beautifully said. Amen and amen.

  6. Roger C. Russell II says:

    This is an interesting post. Like Steve L. I am also surprised about the lack of consistency. The weight of the shirt from the 1960’s also surprised me. I thought it would have been heavier.

  7. gamma says:

    This is a great post–thanks for sharing the content with us.

    With regard to the measurements, I wonder if shrinkage has been taken into account? Since there are so many variables (dry cleaning, cold/warm/hot washing, machine vs. air drying), it seems the optimal comparison would be between brand-new shirts. Still, this is probably the best possible comparison yet, unless someone out there has a stash of NOS shirts (unlikely).

  8. barnaby says:

    gamma – someone does!
    I wouldn’t expect a measurement dissertation though. He’s a busy man so just enjoy the pics.

  9. Gary K says:

    Nicely done! I too always wondered why precise measurement of the collar length was so hugely important to the tradly crowd (of which I claim to be member). Three inches is fine, and in my view, a fraction over doesn’t make all that much difference. I do remember when I worked in a men’s department during my college days in the 70s, complaints from some of our customers about collars becoming too big. Our store’s buttondowns were edging toward 3.5 inches and apparently that 1/2 inch was seen as trendy and it put off a lot of our more traditional customers.

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