|Baird McNutt for J. Crew|
Baird McNutt has been making fine Irish linen for over a century out of County Donegal, first exclusively with handkerchiefs and then moving on to apparel production in the 1960's. Lately, I've been seeing their linen everywhere. Aliotsy at ThisFits.me wrote a post featuring some Lands End "Around the World" premium dress shirts a few months ago that included some Baird McNutt linen, and Jomers just dropped their ultra-hyped chinos in four Baird McNutt linen/cotten blends this past week (which sold out in seconds as usual).
J. Crew has a lot of great Baird McNutt linen pieces on sale right now, most within the approximately $30-40 price range depending on the extra % promotion. In particular, the delave/faded fabrics have a ton of depth and a wonderful slubbiness to the fabric that is fantastic in person. There seems to be quite a selection in most sizes at the moment, which is surprising to me considering how much more compelling I find this to be compared to normal run-of-the-mill J. Crew fare. Honestly, it's the first time I've been really excited about something at J. Crew for a while.
You can find the Baird McNutt selection here on J. Crew's site, with sale items currently running at an extra 40% off with code summer - otherwise just search for "Irish linen." *Update 6/20 - still 40% off, but under a different code (listed at top of J. Crew page).
Some of my favorites below (most of which I bought myself, unless otherwise noted). Prices include online 40% off/in-store 50% off. Embrace the wrinkles.
One of the more unique pieces available, a nice take on WWII naval deck smocks done in navy linen with tons of great little details - buttoning stand collar, front flap pockets, drawstring hem. Take your normal size in this. If you prefer a different version, there's a white cotton (not Baird) horizontal striped version that also caught my eye on the sale rack.
These pants are much better looking in person than their strange fit pictures, which make them almost appear a shiny electric blue. It's more of a subtle horizontal striped texture of steel blues with hints of green mixed in there and a fair deal of nep (fibers which stick out from the surface of the cloth). Some of my new favorite summer pants, with an approachable 770 fit (not as skinny/slim as the 484).
If you read my blog regularly, you would know I'm somewhat of a slut for texture, and this band-collar shirt and the navy ink stripe shirt really have me all hot and bothered. My local store didn't have this in my size, but note that this shirt is listed as "classic fit" vs. "slim fit" of most/all of the other shirts available - something I've come to appreciate more with age and a graceful beer gut.
This is the only thing on the Baird list I haven't seen in person or purchased myself, as of yet. Bowery slim is a rather slim fit, so be warned if you haven't tried it before. Otherwise these look like a nice dressier option on a warm day.
Some Bonus J. Crew Weekend Sale Picks (not Baird related, but recommended from in-person looks):
Another textural piece in a versatile, yet substantial muted sage cotton, these fit slightly more roomy for me than other 484's (though the slightly roomier 770 is also available) and feel closer to a pair of jeans in person than a light pair of summer chinos. This would be a great transition piece for anchoring on cooler days moving forward.
This mid-weight selvedge seeded cotton is full of flecks and texture that can only be appreciated in person. Despite the amazing fabric, however, pushing $90 is a little outside of the range I would normally consider J. Crew pants, so you might want to sit tight and see if it drops further. No guarantees, though.
This is everything I'm looking for in a casual chambray shirt at the moment. Looks like it's been pretty popular as well, as I can't find my size online or in-person, but this is the first thing I'm going to buy if it comes back in stock. So don't buy this in a small if it comes back in stock...you wouldn't want it anyway. It's horrible...