Week of requests: the best long-sleeved tees

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“I feel like I spend hours a week searching for the perfect long sleeve T shirt,” writes a commenter named Patricia. “Not graphic, not super trendy, with not-too-thin material, and not too tight, but still cool and chic.” And aren’t we all looking for just that? What follows are my candidates for best long-sleeve tees, starting with this slightly spendy one from ATM, which is just ever-so-slightly cropped.

This is from Outdoor Voices and I’m sure some of you will balk at the fact that it is 100% synthetic, but it is soft as all get-out and really breathes too.

This is from Splendid, a brand whose tees I’ve had really good luck with, and it’s got such a nice deep V.

A pretty classic tee with nice proportions.

I do love a boatneck tee, and this one comes in a number of good colors and is pretty cheap.

This is a dolman-sleeve tee, and I like that it’s on the slouchier side.

And here’s another tee that’s nicely oversized, but not too boxy.

This is a pretty thick tee—almost sweatshirt-thick—and I like the high neckline, which is unusual for me.

This one is from Kule, who make the best striped tees.

I like that this navy tee has a slight shirttail hem.

I’m a big fan of J. Crew’s Vintage cotton tees—they’re super-soft and so comfy.

And finally: this bubble sleeve is just a fun touch.

 

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22 Thoughts on Week of requests: the best long-sleeved tees
    Patricia Sisson
    7 Jan 2021
    4:39pm

    Hi Kim! I’m the Patricia who made the long-sleeved t-shirt request. After yesterday’s horror show at the Capitol, I’ve been feeling so deeply blue. What a sweet, cheerful surprise to come upon your response with such a juicy list of t-shirts. OK, so looking at t-shirts cheered me up. Shallow as that may be, you perked me right up. Many Thanks.

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      D.Morgendorffer
      7 Jan 2021
      7:38pm

      I don’t think it’s shallow…I personally find it moving that a frequent human response to trauma is a turn to aesthetics, like a plant turning to the sun. I think beauty and the dignity of ordinary life are a brief shelter in hard times, giving us time and means to gather strength to help. Of course, there are difficult things in this world that must be faced.
      But, being forced to stay in a raw, emotional place with no break seems like it could be eventually desensitizing, which is no good for empathy and compassionate action. The only shirt I’m ever against is a hair shirt. So, good on you for finding cheer with some nice shirts!

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    Joannawnyc
    7 Jan 2021
    11:21am

    I second the recommendation for Uniqlo 1×1 rib, if you don’t mind slightly odd colors. I also like the Madewell Northside tee, though the l/s one doesn’t come in many colors. Otherwise I am a long-term J Crew, Splendid and James Perse fan.

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    themis
    7 Jan 2021
    11:37am

    I’m glad to see this topic today; this is the weak spot in my closet. I happily bought the Madewell dolman tee – even though the reviews said it was essentially cropped – because that green is so good. I figure I can wear it under a cardi or jacket to keep everything covered. I cannot wait for the cropped+high waisted combination to go away. It does NOT WORK on my body type; those waists go up to my ribs and they pinch.

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      HickfromStyx
      7 Jan 2021
      3:40pm

      I hope high-waisted styles stay. A style for every body. Body equality. My body is a pear. Cramming every body shape into one style is fashion tyranny.

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        Viajera
        7 Jan 2021
        4:54pm

        I hear you, yet I think stockpiling is the only short- or medium-term solution. For whatever reason, manufacturers all get into these trends together, and we are just stuck with it, until we aren’t anymore (we are then stuck with something new). It’s annoying but oh well. A good stockpile might last until the next time ____ rolls around. Although, then there are body shape changes. After that, I don’t even know – dressmakers?

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      Mary
      7 Jan 2021
      12:12pm

      I’m not a fan of high-rise either but I think we’re in the minority – you can’t swing a cat without hitting a You Tuber waxing poetic about high-rise.

      My teenage daughters are absolutely appalled by anyone not clad in high rise jeans! I’ve tried over and over to give them a try.

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        liz
        7 Jan 2021
        12:44pm

        It really does depend on body type. I am very short waisted so I really like high rise jeans.

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          Mary
          7 Jan 2021
          2:43pm

          Definitely depends on body type! You’re short-waisted and you prefer high-waisted?

          I also have a short torso and this is why I struggle with them – there’s not too much torso left!

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            Katy
            8 Jan 2021
            12:47am

            I’m with Mary on this one – I am very short waisted and always feel like Ed Grimley in high-waisted pants (if anyone remember him!).

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              liz
              8 Jan 2021
              11:04am

              I like the look. I have very long legs. I embraced low jeans too! My fav is when the jeans sit at my waist.

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    Ann
    7 Jan 2021
    5:20pm

    great post! a staple that is oddly missing from my wardrobe!

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    KT
    7 Jan 2021
    9:26am

    I am a big fan of Uniqlo’s 1×1 ribbed long sleeved t-shirts. With the caveat that I haven’t tried them this season, I love the fabric they use for these – it is nice and substantial, resists wrinkles well, and the price can’t be beat.

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    Eloise
    7 Jan 2021
    9:36am

    Yeah, when did t-shirts become as hard to shop for as jeans? Thanks for what look like great options – I usually default to Splendid but have a T. La that I like as well.

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    cw
    7 Jan 2021
    9:55am

    Stellar job finding good long sleeved basics. Ditto the J.Crew vintage tee. I usually order in my size AND one size larger for the Pandemic needed slouch.

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    Betsy Palmer
    7 Jan 2021
    10:51am

    Great post. I’m going to try the J Crew because of the recommendation. I still have the same complaint about T’s that I’ve had for years and that is that the crew necklines on most are not high/tight enough which is fine when you wear them alone but not great when you layer. I still think that 3 Dot and Vince are the best for that, but they are pricey.

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      kimbersam
      7 Jan 2021
      12:20pm

      Agree with you about the 3Dots, they are pretty terrific. I’m am glad to have TShirts to peruse because the news from DC is shattering. Thank you, Kim for the distraction.

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        Viajera
        7 Jan 2021
        2:58pm

        Ditto, kimbersam – it’s nice to see *somebody* doing their job. Thank you, Kim. I’m looking at yooooou, fbi and national security apparatus. (What is it, 16 … 19 agencies we have? … )

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      Joannawnyc
      7 Jan 2021
      11:17am

      The Uniqlo U tees have a high tight neckline but I don’t think there’s a l/s version

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      Eloise
      7 Jan 2021
      11:22am

      Old school Only Hearts long sleeve t-shirts were the BEST layering shirts, ever, but do yourself a favor and don’t even peek at the current website. What the *heck* happened to that brand?

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      AnneL
      8 Jan 2021
      9:04pm

      I just decided to bite the bullet and bought three 3dots heritage tees (scoop neck 3/4 sleeve) I know I’ll wear them under all of my sweaters for the rest of the winter and all spring. Finding that I’d rather have the exact shirt that I know I’m going to wear than a drawer full of tees that aren’t quite what I want.

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    Jax
    8 Jan 2021
    2:04pm

    Since lockdown, I’ve been wearing a lot of long-sleeved tees, working from home in California. It’s often chilly at home, but not outright cold. Tees are comfortable and I only alternate those with button-down shirts (esp flannel for colder days), or adding cardigans. I keep thinking I’ll dress it up more with a casual blazer/jacket or a nicer blouse, but when it comes down to it, I prefer the casual softness and I don’t want to dirty up my dressier stuff when preparing lunch or washing dishes.
    Most of my tees have been sourced from J. Crew (esp. love their earlier boatneck tees available in spring — the current ones from fall/winter are not as nice!) or Madewell. I think I’ve finally got enough in my stack, haha.

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Kim France

I was born in Houston, Texas in 1964 and have lived in New York City since 1988. I had a long career in magazines, working at Sassy, Elle, New York, and Spin, and in 2000, I founded Lucky magazine, which I edited for ten years.

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