- The potential for a better fit without tailoring
- Control over collar style and other details
- More fabric options than off-the-rack
- More information on fabric, construction and the overall manufacturing process
- Small cost premium when including additional tailoring to off-the-rack shirts
- Usually less expensive than traditional tailor-made shirts
There are downsides, of course (the biggest being the potential for receiving a less-than-perfect fit), but my experiences have overall been positive. I’ve made it clear that I think Ratio and Proper Cloth are the best of the internet in delivering these criteria. I’ve had some time to pick up more shirts for each, and in the election-year spirit I decided to compare them head to head. I’ve created a helpful rubric with what I believe are the most important parameters to consider when shopping for a MTM shirt, as well as how the two companies stack up in each category. You will have to weight them yourself depending on what is most important to you. If you decide to look outside of Ratio and Proper Cloth for a MTM shirt, you may want to consider these same variables before purchasing.
Consensus: they’re both great companies making high-quality products and I don’t think you could go wrong with either. They do have different styles and areas of expertise, though. Proper Cloth is probably your best option for the shirt fanatic that wants control over every aspect and is interested in luxe options like name-brand mills and mother-of-pearl buttons. Ratio excels in helping the man who just wants to fill his wardrobe with well-fitting, high-quality garments with classic styling. I’ve had a great time interacting with both companies and I fully endorse both.
TL;DR: If you want a monogrammed mini-gingham Albini shirt with contrasting club collar and mother-of-pearl buttons, head to Proper Cloth. If you’re new to nice shirts and looking for the perfect OCBD that you can wear the sh*t out of, go to Ratio. Anything in between and they’ll both treat you well.
If you want to try Proper Cloth, my referral link will get you $25 off your first shirt.
If you want to check out Ratio, this link will get you $20 off your first shirt.