When I find this shirt, some company is gonna be VERY happy
November 16, 2012 9:02 AM   Subscribe

Help me find women's fitted boat-necked cap-sleeved or 3/4 length-sleeved shirts in a variety of solid colors! (What, me picky?)

So yes. I have recently found myself gravitating towards brightly colored or printed shirts and pants, and then realizing I have barely anything to wear with them. So I'd like to fill out my wardrobe with some reliable basic shirts in a ton of solid colors.

The problem is that I know what I like in a basic shirt and it's kind of super specific. I've found random shirts that fit these criteria in thrift stores, worn them to death, and then mourned them when they passed on. Alas I forgot to ever write down the brands...

So yes, to reiterate, we're talking:

-fitted/nipped in a bit at the waist
-boat-necked- don't like crew necks so much, HATE v-necks
-cap-sleeves or 3/4 length-sleeves (for summer/winter)
-fabric unimportant but I'm picturing t-shirt material as being the most likely candidate
-many, many available colors. Ideally I'd like cream, brown, dark and light grey, black, rose, and then a few brighter colors as well.

Since I want to buy so many, I'm being super picky about this and haven't yet found anything ideal. This is the basic shape I want for short sleeved tops but doesn't come in many colors, this is ok but the neck isn't quite right and it looks flimsy (especially the edging...)

Under $30 a pop would be ideal, and cheaper is better as long as they're ok quality.
posted by showbiz_liz to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (23 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
Old Navy has these but the quality is usually suboptimal. On the other hand, they're well under your price limit.
posted by elizardbits at 9:07 AM on November 16, 2012 [1 favorite]

I have a shirt not unlike this from J. Crew, though I'm not sure when it was sold there -- I bought mine at a thrift store ~3 months ago.

I, too, am picky about t-shirts, and find that my main problem is finding colors I want. I'd suggest Gap and Loft, but those are the stores where I most often have color meltdowns. But they are general good sources of basic t-shirts.

American Apparel might also be worth a look, though I'm not sure they have exactly what you want. They are great about offering a ton of colors, and they frequently have good basic tees with slightly unusual details like alternative necks and sleeve lengths. I am a big fan of their "open neck" tees, which are like a crew neck, but not as high and tight around the neck.
posted by Sara C. at 9:08 AM on November 16, 2012

This is a wide scoopneck rather than a proper boatneck, but: H&M. I have half a dozen of these in black that I bought in 2009, and they've held up miraculously.

I do not not not vouch for all H&M T-shirts (I have also had my fair share of ones that balled up and came apart), but I love these basic shirts. There are several similar kinds in stores; the ones I vouch for feel smooth and tightly woven and are 95 percent cotton/5 percent elastane. I bought a couple as recently as yesterday in a store.
posted by purpleclover at 9:20 AM on November 16, 2012

Maybe LL Bean has what you need? Here's a filtered link. I have a number of their men's t-shirts and the comfort and quality is superb.
posted by Jacob G at 9:20 AM on November 16, 2012 [1 favorite]

I thought Kettlewell, as they do lots of colours in lots of styles (their 'thing' is that they sell things for seasonal colour palettes), but they're expensive plus US shipping on top of that.

Uniqlo did a lot of cheap, good quality scoop necks with cap sleeves last time I was there - it's worth keeping an eye on them to see if they bring out a boat neck. Actually, the ones I have look a lot like the American Apparel link, so it's possible 'boat neck' is the same thing?
posted by mippy at 9:23 AM on November 16, 2012

Seconding LL Bean. The quality is great and makes the price well worth it over Old Navy (and probably H&M as well although I have no firsthand experience with those), and the selection from the catalog will be way better than Gap. The other thing that's great about LL Bean is the customer service - returns are easy, they will always replace stuff you decide against keeping for any reason or if there is any defect.
posted by treehorn+bunny at 9:23 AM on November 16, 2012

re: the Gap, even their smallest sizes are often not fitted in any acceptable way. I'm a 36D and their smallest size t-shirts hang on me like maternity tents.
posted by elizardbits at 9:29 AM on November 16, 2012 [1 favorite]

Do check American Apparel. My mother in law has several boat neck, three quarter sleeve, thin/fitted jersey shirts from AA.
posted by Swisstine at 9:39 AM on November 16, 2012

J. Crew
Banana Republic (maybe not 3/4, but all the models are wearing it that way?)
Uniqlo Heattech (scoop neck, very fitted)
posted by acidic at 9:42 AM on November 16, 2012

Chico's sells these sometimes, though it looks like right now is mostly full-length sleeve season. Here's a bright blue one.
posted by small_ruminant at 9:57 AM on November 16, 2012

The two pictures you linked to look like scoop neck to me rather than boat neck.
This might work for you.
posted by tuesdayschild at 9:57 AM on November 16, 2012 [2 favorites]

More boat necked 3/4 sleeved solid color knit shirts from chico's.
posted by small_ruminant at 10:01 AM on November 16, 2012

I was also going to say LL Bean. Returns are super fast and simple, you don't even have to print anything, and they have a lot of good quality basic stuff.
posted by the young rope-rider at 10:08 AM on November 16, 2012

I have a couple of these boat-neck tees from Old Navy and they actually hold up really well for the price. Boden has some long-sleeved scoop-neck tees in your price range, their shirts tend to be of a really thick material.
posted by jabes at 10:19 AM on November 16, 2012

OO Anne Taylor Loft has about a billion of these. They are also having a crazy sale right now.
posted by Katine at 10:20 AM on November 16, 2012

Yeah, LL Bean or even Lands End is stocked full of pretty much exactly this.
posted by saradarlin at 11:15 AM on November 16, 2012

posted by michellenoel at 11:46 AM on November 16, 2012

J. Crew always has these. I am constantly recommending their shirts here, but I don't work for them or anything - they just make the world's most perfect shirts.
posted by k8lin at 12:16 PM on November 16, 2012

Just to echo what a couple other people said - you're not really looking for "boat-neck" - you're looking for "scoop-neck".

I have to agree with people that OldNavy may have them, but they'll be tissue thin and fall apart. The ones at The Gap are better, but Uniqlo is my favourite - and their online store is now open!
posted by dotgirl at 1:15 PM on November 16, 2012 [1 favorite]

If you can compromise on sleeve length, these are well made and come in a range of colors.

Michael Stars tees are good quality and come in a wide range of colors, though I know the price point and neckline are not your ideal.

Eddie Bauer tees are fairly well made and less boxy through the waist than LL Bean tees.
posted by Sidhedevil at 2:11 PM on November 16, 2012

I too would call that a scoop neck, not a boat neck, and would nth Uniqlo's Heattech scoop neck — comfortable, reasonably priced, and (so far, I haven't had mine terribly long) seem to be well made. (I don't know why it's only showing three colors; it comes in more.)
posted by Lexica at 5:22 PM on November 16, 2012

If the neck on the second one doesn't bother you that much, I can vouch for the fact that it's not actually as flimsy as it looks in that picture. I have several of those shirts and they're great-- extremely flattering and they hold up well.
posted by dizziest at 11:31 PM on November 16, 2012

J crew for sure.
posted by Summer Fall at 7:51 PM on November 18, 2012

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