Men's Shirts

Lamb’s Twill Shirt

Another item from the Fall 1988 Catalogue, the Lamb’s Twill Shirt came in three variations. From the catalogue: “This luxurious cotton twill fabric feels like the lamb gave you the shirt off its back. As elegant as fine wool, yet soft, reasonably priced, and easy to care for. Generously cut, in three plaid patterns–each equally […]

Kasuri Shirt

From the Summer 1987 catalogue: “From Asia to America, almost every region on earth has a way of coloring yarn in intervals, then weaving the “space-dyed” threads together to create a shimmering, feathered effect. In Jaoan, this craft is called kasuri; in Indonesia, ikat; Guatamala, jaspe, meaning speckled or variegated. We’ve modeled our versions after […]

Shirt 1866 Men’s Painter’s Shirt

The pictures below are not the same Painter’s Shirt shown in the catalog page: the buttons are on the man’s side and in the catalog the buttons are on the women’s. It is mostly marketed as a women’s shirt (the blue one is a little androgynous) but the size chart show both men and women. […]

1982 Bush Shirt

This is the earliest Banana Republic piece we’ve documented and it’s a very exciting find. From the collection of Gary Pinkerton, this is the Bush Shirt from the 1982 Holiday catalog. This makes it a definitive pre GAP item, and as such it’s exciting to confirm that the Stars and Bananas tag was in use […]

Bushman’s Shirt

Debuting in the Fall 1985 Catalogue: “For trekking the Outback, adventurous Aussies like to rely on the durability of tough cotton twill. But most twill, until washed a few times, feels stiff. How to improve on a good thing? Weave a 100% cotton gabardine–a twill so fine it soothes the skin. Then pre-wash it for […]

Pamplona Shirt

Whoever wrote the copy for the Pamplona shirt was channeling Hemingway in a serious way. From the Spring 1987 catalogue: “It was hot and fine in the plaza. The American sat at his usual table. “The ordinary,” he said to the waiter, who was young and sleepy and nervous. The waiter was thinking about the […]

Proletarian Shirt

From the Fall 1988 Catalogue: “Corduroy (cord du roi in French) was created just for kings, but this shirt is made of more robust, plebeian stuff–its aristocracy is born of honest labor. The fabric’s sturdy, low-profile ridges give it the softness and look of corduroy, but make it gutsy enough to engage in hard work […]

Platonic Shirt

This shirt is an exciting find, as it’s quite rare due to a limited run in only two early catalogues; Originally introduced in the Summer 1984 catalogue and discontinued after the Fall 1984 catalogue, the artwork for the Platonic shirt was changed in the Fall catalogue with a more accurate illustration by Ellery Knight. The […]

Nile Shirt

From the Spring 1988 catalogue: “Along the banks of the Nile, as in so many equatorial zones, we noticed how many dwellers shun the all-white clothing rule, choosing instead to weather the swelter in darker hues. The toasty tones of our brown plaid shirt recall the baked Sudan, where dun-colored native garb is both practical […]

Artisan’s Nightshirt

As advertised: “At the turn of the century, British artisans-the empire’s potters, silversmiths, cabinetmakers-wore shirts made of the thickest, plushest traditionally stripped cotton flannel, woven 29 inches wide; the fabric was doubled and the shirt sized by cutting a hole for the neck. The resulting garment was more like a cozy place to live than […]

Leather Shirt

This suede shirt is not listed in the catalogue. BR did make a leather shirt called The Real Thing Chamois Shirt, but it didn’t have these pocket flaps. Made in Korea, the labeling appears to be correct, so I don’t suspect a knockoff.

FAKE: Odd Small Pocket Shirt

Another FAKE! From eBay March 2021 comes this terribly odd shirt that has been identified as a knock-off. While the tag looks correct as an early one, it’s sewn in an unusual way, and the very small single pocket is incredibly odd. I asked Patricia Ziegler about it and she said: “You’ve developed a great […]

Shoulder Loop Shirt

This shirt came up in February 2021, but I’m unable to locate it in any catalogues. It’s a linen/cotton blend made in Hong Kong and is distinguished by loops on the shoulders, we think they are called glove loops. A red version of the same design but in 100% cotton and made in India. A […]

San Remo Shirt

From the Summer 1987 catalogue: “We went to San Remo for the art film festival and discovered a lovely, unpretentious village a stone’s throw from the glitz of Monaco. It’s sort of an off-Broadway version of the Riviera: a town full of stubborn artists, gregarious merchants, resplendent greenhouses, friendly hotels, and delicious cheap seafood. We […]

Chambray Workshirt

From the Spring 1988 catalogue: “Casting aside the well-worn adage “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” we present a variant of our well-worn and well-loved “White-Collar” Workshirt. The softly sturdy chambray that serves steadfastly in both boardroom and back shop now works a short-sleeved shift. Equally opportune for weekend roustabouts and industrious workers of […]

Union Pacific Shirt

From the final, Fall 1988 catalogue: “The substantial brushed cotton cloth of our Union Pacific Shirt is a swatch of American history: It’s woven in the pattern worn by conductors on the Union Pacific, Santa Fe, and Rio Grande lines when they crossed miles of rough new territory. Made in the USA, the fabric will […]

Bushman’s Shirt

Introduced in Summer 1985 and running through 1986, with short sleeves, epaulettes and pointed pocket flaps, the Bushman’s Shirt is easily confused with the Sahara Shirt, but the Bushman’s Shirt has pleats in the pockets. It only came in three colors: Khaki, Ivory and Pewter. From the catalogue: “For trekking the Outback, adventurous Aussies rely […]

Pyrenees Shirt

From the 1987 catalogue: “”Africa begins at the Pyrenees,” sniffed Alexandre Dumas. At the time it was a snub at Spain, but a century later we find it an apt comment on our own Pyrenees Shirt–sophisticated enough for the Continent, in rich, vibrant hues evocative of a bazaar on the Dark Continent. The fabric is […]

Buenos Aires Shirt

From Fall/Holiday 1986, an Indian made, striped, collared shirt distinguished by an extra panel in the armpits of its full sleeves for freedom of movement. “As sophisticated as the nightclubs of El Barrio Norte, this shirt embodies the debonair spirit of Buenos Aires. And when the sun comes up, it will still be as fresh […]

Tartan Shirt

From the Holiday 1986 catalogue: “The Scottish Highlands are a dreamworld of luminous lochs, special ridges, and clouds playing loose with the light; the landscape itself seem incurably romantic. Tartans–the rich textile color compositions of vanished Highland clans–grew naturally out of this place, like the mosses and berries first used to dye them. ROmantics ourselves, […]

Shirt 1035

This shirt is thus-far unidentified in the catalogues. It appears to be a heavy twill. The tag bearing the words ASSEMBLED IN MEXICO has not been seen before. I’d guess this is from late in the run, possibly even after the catalogues stopped but before new branding came in. Just guessing.

Knock-offs: The Banana Pocket

I’ve had this shirt in my collection for awhile and just didn’t know what to make of it. Patricia Ziegler has identified it to be a knock-off not made by Banana Republic. It’s a very mysterious item and I don’t quite understand what the point of making it was. It’s not like a Gucci handbag […]

White Collar Workshirt

The White-Collar Workshirt ran from 1984 through 1988, originally in Blue Chambray and later also in White or Khaki. It’s one of several shirts with a pencil slot in the pocket. From the catalogue: “Rugged enough to earn its blue collar, yet tailored finely enough for white-collar work, our chambray workshirt is the truest of […]

Chief Petty Officer’s Wool Shirt

This heavy wool shirt came up for sale on eBay in 2011 and for the longest time I couldn’t identify it. Now that I have a more complete catalogue collection I believe it to be the surplus Chief Petty Officer’s Wool Shirt from the 1983 Fall catalogue: “The U.S. Navy’s Chief Petty Officers are generally […]

Caribbean Shirt

The collarless Caribbean Shirt was originally sold in Summer 1984 in discrete striped patterns. In Summer 1985 it returned in solid colors of blue chambray and white. From the catalogue: “Our classic collarless shirt, loose-fitting with full-cut sleeves, has always been our hands-down favorite for the tropics. It can be worn over a swimsuit or […]

Traveler’s Shirt or Twill Shirt

The Fall/Holiday 1986 catalogues introduced the Egyptian Cotton Twill Shirt, which has a similar look to the Expedition Shirt with its angled chest pockets, but the pockets have a pleat in them and the shirt lacks epaulets. It came in Ivory, Khaki and Navy. The shirt was rebranded in Summer 1987 as the Egyptian Cotton […]

Cotton Canvas Shirt

This shirt was the immediate predecessor of the Expedition Shirt, having the same design minus the epaulets, and even using the same catalog copy. From the Winter 1984 catalogue: “Amedeo Modigliani never had this to paint on, or he might have endowed his subjects with much shorter necks and saved the extra canvas for his […]

Nairobi Business Shirt

From the Summer 1986 catalogue: “Cuffs would constrict, ties would torture, pinstripes seem priggish in summertime Nairobi, where offices more like ovens open onto sizzling streets and baking byways. Yet commerce must be conducted here, as in more temperate seasons, cooly and correctly–with the provision that one’s collar at all times remain open for business. […]

Carioca Shirt

Originally sold in both solids and stripes in 1984 the Carioca Shirt was mostly sold in multicolored stripes. From the catalogue: “A more festive, more stylish, more sensual people than the Cariocas of Rio you will find nowhere on earth. Brazilians seem to samba through life chanting, “No problem, no problem, no problem,” to the […]

Linen Shirt

From the Spring 88 catalogue: “Linen, the product of the flax plant, has long been known as the softest, strongest, lightest, drapiest, coolest, most absorbent, quickest-drying fiber on earth. Unfortunately, in modern times, linen has been priced beyond reach. We were lucky to get a deal on some of the world’s finest linen (Belgian), which […]

Men’s Ticking Shirt

The men’s Authentic Ticking Shirt debuted in Fall 1985 (AFTER the Women’s Ticking Shirt in Spring 1985)and continued through 1987. The popular, sturdy shirt came in Navy and Khaki Olive stripes. The stripes are three-part, two thin stripes on either side of a thick stripe, exactly like mattress ticking. From the catalogue: “Apart from opposing […]

Odyssey Shirt

The Odyssey Shirt is distinguished by the facing seams on the front and the pencil slot on its pocket. No epaulettes. From the Fall 1988 Catalogue: “Sturdy cotton canvas has been the sailmaker’s choice since at least the Homeric days. It’s also our choice for this classic shirt. We’ve sandwashed it (using the tiny grains […]

Expedition Shirts

The Cotton Canvas Expedition shirt was introduced early, in fall 1984, and was sold for most of the catalogue run until late 1987. It was preceded by the Cotton Canvas Shirt of the same design minus the epaulets and the catalog copy would be partially recycled for the first iteration of Expedition Shirt: “Amedeo Modigliani […]

90-Degree Shirt

These shirts were only offered in Fall 1988. From the catalogue: “We used all the right angles to create a boxed-plaid shirt of the coolest Indian cotton. The subdued plaids will please eyes eager for autumn’s rich, muted shades. The smooth, airy fabric will please skin seeking shelter from an early-autumn heat wave. Both fabric […]

Adirondack Shirt

Featured only in the Summer 1987 catalogue: “Plaid shirts traditionally go with crackling fires and low wind-chill factors, but we’ve broadened tradition to give them a summer home. This lightweight cotton one recalls the pleasures of camping in northern forests: pine-scented zephyrs, and owl’s call at dusk, the glassy sheen of a lake at dawn. […]

Oil Driller’s Shirt

From the Summer 1986 “Voices from Africa” catalogue: ” Life frequently gets warm for foreign technicians working the offshore oil fields of North Africa. Going about one’s business while the aircraft and carriers of super-powers and quasi-powers jostle for media coverage is enough to make any geologist break into a sweat on occasion. When you […]

Sahara Shirt

The Sahara Shirt is easily confused with the Short Sleeved Expedition Shirt. The obvious difference is in the pockets, the Sahara pockets come to a point at the button while the Expedition Shirt has angled corners on the pocket flap. It’s also confused with the Bushman’s Shirt which has pleats in the pockets. The Sahara […]

Mandalay Shirt

These colorful, lightweight shirts have a slight texture to them and are great summer shirts. Only offered in the Spring 1988 “Road to Mandalay” catalogue. Note the catalogue is using some spot photographs rather than illustrations. From catalogue: “We had these shirts woven in a village where hand looms are still used to make fine, […]

Corduroy Collar Denim Shirt

In contrast to the long-running Sierra Denim Shirt, the Corduroy Collar Denim Shirt only ran in the Fall 1985 Catalogue: “We roamed the High Lonesome for a considerable spell looking for a denim shirt that didn’t have pearl buttons or a collar that looked like a pair of Mule’s Ears. Finally, we came home and […]

Walter Mitty Shirt

“I-I think we’re lost, Mitty,” said young Shaw, shivering. It had been hours since they’d heard the comforting ta-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa of the forest service helicopter. Smiling, Mitty unbuttoned a shirt pocket and withdrew map, compass, and knife; from a narrow compartment in the pocket he produced a folding fishing rod. “Dinner.” He announced. Then, unsnapping the […]

Meridian Shirt

From the Summer 1988 Catalogue: “Like the meridian (longitude) lines on the map, the stripes woven into our crisp poplin shirt run straight and true. The smooth, tightly woven cotton remains unflappable even when the sun’s at its meridian (noon); the styling is classic enough for London, on the Greenwich Meridian (0° longitude), yet comfortable […]

No-Horse Shirt

The copy from the Fall 1986 catalogue tells it all: “The story so far: When we introduced this shirt, quite a few seasons back, we called it the Un-Alligator shirt, our commentary on encroaching logoization. Later, we renamed it No-Polo in homage to a certain designer who trotted countless ponies across countless chests. His attorneys […]

Sierra Denim Shirt

This is a shirt that ran from the 1983 catalogs to 1986 and really shows its Northern California 1970s roots. It came in Faded Blue and Bleached Blue. From the 1984 review by author and BR friend Herbert Gold: “Blue denim shirts followed the inventions of quill pens, the skull of Goethe filled with blood, […]

Apocryphal Affiliates Shirts

I love, love, LOVE the Apocryphal Affiliates Shirts. The series of 4 was only sold in the summer 1986 catalog, and advertised as being in limited quantities and very rarely show up on eBay. The team at BR must have had a ball inventing these fictional colonialist sporting clubs and creating logos for each of […]

The Naturalist’s Shirt

The Naturalist’s Shirt was a staple of the brand from 1983-1988 (and beyond) and is distinguished from other BR shirts by front pockets that do not have closure flaps, as well as no epaulettes. Most commonly, these shirts have smooth dark copper snaps rather than buttons. However, they did switch to buttons for a brief […]

New Zealand Tramping Shirt

From the Fall 1985 “Notes from the Outback” catalogue: “Despite their damp, chilly climate, New Zealanders are vigorous hikers, horseback riders, skiers, hunters, and fisherman–as comfortable outdoors as in. They’ll even go tramping in a freezing downpour, wearing shorts and this remarkable shirt. It warms like a coat and functions like a heavy sweater–being roomy […]

Journeyman’s Shirt

Similar to the Outback Shirt, this collarless striped shirt was sold in the Summer 1988 catalogue. Check out the unusual coconut-husk buttons. Thanks, Gary Pinkerton for the pics! “Time was when a man didn’t just roll up his sleeves to do an honest day’s work, he also removed his collar. Our Journeyman’s Shirt honors the […]

Proletarian Shirt

The keyword for this shirt is Corduroy. BR didn’t make a lot of them, there was a corduroy shirt with leather elbow patches and a leather collar called the Lodge shirt and there was this shirt seen in the Fall 1988 catalogue. It was made in Manila, Green and Blue. Pictures below from a September […]

Outback Shirt

Sold from Spring 1985 to Summer 1986, they came in several different colors. See the catalog thumbnails below. The striped, collarless design of this shirt would be revisited in the 1988 Journeyman’s Shirt. From the catalogue: “India is famous for its hand-loomed fabrics but its equally superlative milled textiles are often overlooked. Made of longer […]

Quiet Madras Shirt

From the catalogue: “Play word association with “madras” and you probably think “preppy”, “golf course”, “fifties”, or any combination thereof. Truth is, madras doesn’t have to signify loud plaids in violent colors: it refers simply to the lightweight yet surprisingly strong cotton hand-loomed in the villages of southern India. The subtle patterns and soft hues […]

Egyptian Cotton Safari Shirt

From the catalogue: “Egypt’s long fiber cotton enjoys a reputation as the world’s finest. Old-timers who’ve led hundreds of safaris through the African bush wouldn’t think of owning a safari shirt out of any other fabric. This is because its long fibers build strength into the weave of the garment without adding bulk. Our Egyptian […]

Short Sleeved Expedition Shirt

Originally sold as part of the Expedition Outfit in 1984, this shirt was reissued on its own in summer 1987. From the catalogue: “Any expedition is a foray into the imagination as much as a geographic journey. Our Short-Sleeved Expedition Shirt-in touch 100% cotton canvas, pre-washed for suppleness-is designed with creative exploration in mind. What […]

Houndstooth Shirt

From the catalogue: “Houndstooth is a true composite with a checkered past. To the British it looks like dog’s fangs; in France they think it resembles chicken’s feet and call it coq. We’ve even seen houndstooth gaucho pants in Argentina. Our Minister of Checks and Balances has chosen a most subtle version of this worldly […]

The Ventilated Shirt

The BR Ventilated Shirt was originally manufactured for the British Army for use in tropical outposts. The cotton shirt is soft and light with an intricate weave to allow breathability. Introduced in 1983 it was sold in both short and long sleeves, with the short sleeved version selling until 1988. Interestingly, the earliest long-sleeved “Authentic […]

Yukon Shirt

I love the Yukon shirt. Ubiquitous in the catalogs, lined up in a wonderful array of colors like candies in a bowl. It came in a short-sleeved version, but to me the proper Yukon shirt is the long sleeve variety that will keep you cozy on a crisp fall day. It was introduced in summer […]

“Safari” Shirt Guide

I’ve always had a hard time keeping these shirts straight in my mind, especially “Safari” vs “Expedition” so I created this guide as a cheat sheet. They all have different types and weights of fabric, but online pictures make it hard to tell. Pockets hold the most clues.

Bombay Shirt

The Bombay Shirt was available for a long time, from 1982-1988 in the catalogs that I know of. The distinctive light cotton shirt sports no less than FIVE pockets with buttons: One on each sleeve and three on the chest, with epaulettes on the shoulders and tabs on the sleeve for holding up the rolled […]