Five Plus One is our weekly series of buyer’s guides. We pick a specific category and dig up five great options along with one that’s a little outside the norm.
If there is one thing the fashion industry has taught me, it’s how to justify unnecessary purchases. That doesn’t mean your splurges have to be excessively expensive, however. This week, we’re looking at long-sleeved waffle knit tees—a perfect layering piece that offers a lot of bang for your buck.
1) Filson: Waffle Knit Thermal Crew
First up is Filson’s Waffle Knit Thermal Crew, a 12oz., 100% cotton tee with all the bells and whistles you could hope for. The fabric is made using Peruvian cotton, and the garment is beautifully constructed with bar tack reinforcements, ribbing at the wrists and neck, and all the great attention to detail that you’d expect from Filson.
2) Uniqlo: Waffle Crewneck Long Sleeve T-Shirt
While I like top-tier t-shirts as much as the next guy, it can be difficult to justify spending serious money on something so basic—but luckily you don’t have to. Uniqlo’s Waffle Crewneck is made with an 80%/20% cotton/polyester blend fabric that has both a fantastic fit and wonderful texture. Plus, it’s available in a ton of different colors, which is a rarity in the waffle knit shirt game.
Available for $20 from Uniqlo.
3) Lady White Co: Long Sleeve Box Thermal
For many of us, Lady White Co. is our go-to brand for t-shirts, and their Long Sleeve Box Thermal does nothing but up their game even further. It’s made in the USA from North Carolina-sourced thread and fabric, and is constructed with a stretchy, high crew neck collar with a tapered body. Color-wise, it’s available in a dark green and a clean white—two of the most common choices for vintage-inspired waffle-knit thermals—so it’s really hard to go wrong either way.
4) Alex Mill: Waffle Crew
Alex Mill’s Waffle Crew is another great option if you’re looking for a simple waffle t-shirt, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t stand out from the pack. While ribbed necklines and cuffs are common, Alex Mill chose use the waffle fabric itself for the cuffs and collar, which, at least in my opinion, creates a more streamlined look. While the colors available are pretty standard fare, the actual shades are a bit on the unique side, so you don’t have to worry about overlapping with too much of your current wardrobe.
5) The Real McCoy’s: Military Thermal Shirt
Alright, I’ll admit it: I cheated. The Real McCoy’s Military Thermal Shirt doesn’t technically feature a waffle knit, but rather a more complicated raschel knit. That said, it offers the same great thermal properties, is just as comfortable, and might look even better. And like all of The Real McCoy’s pieces, this shirt is made in Japan using only the best fabric and construction techniques available.
Plus One – Barns: BR-3050 Big Waffle Vintage Thermal
While finding a waffle knit tee that is truly unique can be a bit tough, Barns‘ BR-3050 Big Waffle Vintage Thermal manages to do a great job switching things up. With its elongated shoulders, and chain stitch runoff at the hem and asymmetric cuffs, this thermal stands out from anything else on the market, yet it remains understated enough to be part of your everyday clothing rotation.
Available for $87 from Denimio.