Here at Emmett, we are massive fans of the linen shirt, in fact, it is what we might be the most famous for. Bold colours and patterns abound with this fantastic material. We wear them even when the weather doesn’t quite call for it.
Linen, its old, Bronze Age, and Egyptian Pyramids old, no, even older than that. We have been wearing linen since before we could write, you could say it’s our clothing best friend. Flax or what becomes the luxurious linens we love first started being cultivated in 6000BC and we’ve hardly looked back. But maybe that is not so important anymore, what we really know is why you should always have a few in your wardrobe.
What Linen does, it does it the best. Firstly the Linen fabric is “heat-regulating” meaning that it absorbs heat easily away from the body and expels it to the outside air. This leaves you with a cooling feeling of freshness and dryness. Even in the hottest climates, a good linen shirt can leave you feeling cooler and more comfortable than if you had nothing on at all. Second, Linen is anti-allergen and non-irritant. This means that it will not harbour dust, detergents, or limestone residues. Thirdly, the fibres are incredibly resilient, being the strongest natural fibre we use in cloth making. A final quality of Linen over other natural fibres is that it is more ecologically friendly, requiring no additional watering in western Europe and a minimal amount of other needs than many other crops.
The fibres that get spun into yarn already bear the characteristic unevenness and charm that Linen is known for. This subtle variation allows new and interesting colour gradations after the dyeing process that changes beautifully as the garment ages.
This is all well and good but let’s get to the really interesting part: How and when to wear a linen shirt. The short answer is, whenever you want. Although linen is best suited to the summer months, we also produce a line of what we call Brushed Linen shirts in our Autumn Winter Collections. These are similar to the heavy brushed cotton we produce but still maintain the incredible heat-regulating qualities of our lighter linens.
One of the charms of linen comes in how it looks when it gets a little rumpled, subtle wrinkles that improve the casual carefree look throughout the day. In the city’s summer heat or lounging on the beach.