The Custom Flannel Shirt – A Timeless Staple

Both a sturdy staple and an ever-reborn product of cyclical fashion, flannel isn’t exclusive to weekend wear; it can also be sophisticated. The checks, the uniform solids; whatever your style, there’s a men’s flannel shirt in our new collection, waiting to be buttoned up and layered.

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Grey Flannel Sport Shirt with Two Chest Pockets paired with Custom Black Jeans.
By rocking a Surmesur flannel, you understand the true significance of comfort and style, something we can all appreciate!

Elevated Leisurewear – Chilly Season Fashion Lifesaver

If you’re like our stylists, you start thinking about putting your good old flannels back on as soon as it gets colder. It’s no surprise to anyone that winter is long and hard, even freezing sometimes. But winter is also made for good times, tasting new scotch whisky, ski weekends at the chalet, sports night with friends, and the coziest of all clothing: flannel shirts. Flannels can go with pretty much anything, but owning a few of them in a variety of shades and patterns makes styling completely foolproof.

Hands down, one of the most loved fabrics for fall and winter.

Our new range of flannels will allow you to design the comfiest shirt to wear all day, every day. Let’s explore our latest flannel collection and dive into the history of this timeless fabric, its most popular patterns and many of the unique features we love so much.

Custom made oatmeal flannel shirt for well-dressed men.
Warm, soft, durable and functional, flannel became trendy once again!

The Dressier Solid Flannel Shirt Worn Casually

Stunningly chic and packed with easy-to-throw-on comfort, our new solid flannels are the epitome of casual yet stylish attire. Take a look at this dapper gentleman’s casual pairing of an oatmeal flannel shirt and tailored blue jeans. A tried-and-true combo when you need to look cool and relaxed in a flash.

Exceptionally easy-to-wear, you can wear these wardrobe staples on their own for a laid-back look, but they’re also great items to layer under a sports coat or cozy sweater for added warmth all season long.

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Solid and coloured flannel fabrics
A curated selection of soft and polished flannel fabrics to create the perfect dressy men’s flannel shirt.

A Brief History of Flannel

Flannel is more than just a shirt with a plaid pattern. It’s a fabric with a long history dating back hundreds of years.

The Welsh invented flannel as an alternative for traditional plain wool clothing in the 17th century. The fabric, which was made of worsted yarn that was napped on one or both sides and sourced from the country’s numerous herds of sheep, provided much better protection against the Welsh’s notoriously wet and windy winters; it’s unclear who named it, but the French called it flanelle and the Germans called it Flanell.

Flannel soon became popular across Europe thanks to its durability, affordability, and warmth. Wool factories sprang up throughout England and France in the 19th century, thanks to the more effective mechanical “carding” method used by mills across the country during the Industrial Revolution. Hamilton Carhartt, an American entrepreneur who saw a need to improve the working man’s uniform in the United States, built a factory in Detroit, Michigan, in 1889 and began creating robust flannel clothes.

The fabled giant Paul Bunyan, dressed in a red plaid flannel shirt, enchanted the American public. Workmen, particularly loggers, and their children were impressed by his wild tales and heroism. The flannel shirt became a symbol for rough men at the turn of the twentieth century, probably because of its link with construction and frontiersmen.

Long before “Smells Like Teen Spirit” blew out boomboxes, the fabric was meant for one purely practical purpose: warmth.

After the war, flannel demonstrated that it wasn’t just for undershirts, work clothing, and beds; it could also be elegant. Gray flannel suits were the standard for almost all business people in the 1950s.

Flannel resurfaced with a vengeance as part of the grunge music phenomenon in the early 1990s. The anti-conformity ethos was symbolized by the shirts that united America’s working class in the 1950s. Bands from the Pacific Northwest, such as Nirvana, Alice in Chains, and Pearl Jam, used sloppy plaid flannels that were cheap and intended for comfort, the polar opposite of the tidy grey flannel suit of the 1950s.

Flannel has been synonymous with outdoor attire in recent years. Lighter kinds of cotton and more affordable synthetic fabrics have replaced the once rugged plaid shirts. Plaid flannel has also recently transitioned to high fashion.

​​Our custom-made plaid shirts are warm, rugged, soft and comfortable, which is why a few of them should be found in every guy’s wardrobe, whether or not he knows how to swing an axe.

One of the best ways to style a flannel checkered shirt is with black jeans. It's that simple.
One of the best ways to style a flannel checkered shirt is with black jeans. It’s that simple.

Wearing flannels doesn’t necessarily make you a lumberjack — though that’d be ok — but it does prepare you for the elements in a most style-appropriate manner.

Buffalo Check – a broad checkered plaid pattern usually of two colours

According to mythology and the Scottish Tartan Authority, Jock McCluskey, a reputed descendant of Rob Roy, brought the pattern to America in the 1800s. As a trader, he made friends with people from different tribes, offering finished goods in exchange for buffalo pelts and other stuff. According to legend, the Native Americans coveted the heavy Scottish blankets in the MacGregor Red and Black. They believed its intensely rich hue of red to be a sorcerer’s hex, a dye distilled from the spirit blood and ghostly souls of McCluskey’s prey and enemies. It was prized as a good luck talisman and revered as a spirit guardian that would deliver immortality.

Finally, around 1850, the Woolrich Woolen Mill began producing buffalo plaid shirts, which were an immediate success. It is assumed that the name comes from the fact that the mill’s founder at the time owned a herd of buffalo.

It is difficult to say how much of the history of buffalo plaid is factual and how much is folklore. But one thing is sure, this pattern is iconic and has stood the test of time.

Jock McCluskey, a reputed descendant of Rob Roy, brought the buffalo plaid to America in the 1800s.
Jock McCluskey and the Buffalo plaid

Choose a scale that really suits you

Finding the right checkered flannel for you is all about choosing a scale that fits your lifestyle. If you are looking for specific check patterns like buffalo check, gingham or even windowpane, don’t worry, we have it all! Whether you are at the office or you find yourself indulging during Sunday brunch, there is certainly a place – or several – in your wardrobe for an impeccable plaid flannel shirt. 

The most popular check patterns for men's flannel shirts.
A go-to for guys looking to add some warmth and colour to their cold-weather looks.

Laidback Essentials With Long-Lasting Toughness & Comfort

While certain shirts can be worn year-round, no shirt exemplifies the rugged and fancy winter style quite like a flannel shirt. The durability and versatility of a flannel shirt are undeniable. It is exceptionally reliable in colder settings yet handsome enough to wear to the office 5 days a week.

Pair it with a nice jacket, your favourite worn-in denim (or chino) and chukka boots and be prepared to turn a few heads – or – wear it exactly how you please as our flannel shirts can handle anything you throw at them. Book your personal stylist from the nearest Surmesur showroom to find the kind of men’s flannel shirt that stands out from the crowd, is well-crafted and easy to wear no matter the situation! 

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