Ben Sherman

DECADES OF STYLE and ATTITUDE.

In 1963 at the height of the mod movement a small clothing factory opened in Brighton, and one of Britains most enduring style icons was born.

The Ben Sherman Originals label was set to become a corner stone of mod clothing. The company was founded by Brighton born Arthur Bernard Sugarman when he noticed the growing trend for imported American, Ivy League style, button down shirts made from Oxford cloth. The company started to produce shirts in the same style, but as they where made from higher quality materials and had superior stitching detail they soon became very popular amongst the super fashion conscious mods.

That popularity has spanned the decades, and in my opinion that is because wearing a Ben Sherman is more about loyalty to a way of life, than an unquestioning loyalty to a brand.

As evidence of this, we have a brand here that was born out of a desire to cater for a youth movement that at the time was pushing the boundaries of style, music and art. The company has always managed to retain, and never shied away from, that affinity with British sub-cultures down through the decades.

That ethos has seen the brand gain cult status and has been worn by mods,skinheads,suedeheads,casuals and followers of Britpop. Today, at the start of another new decade, it is being adopted by the switched on kids who are increasingly getting into Northern Soul and early Sixties R,n,b and club soul.

Ben Sherman is a brand that we are extremely happy to sell and promote and I can only see that being the case for many years to come.

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Comments

  •  I recall going to  the factory in Gloucester where these shirts were made after being offered boxes-full by Ronnie Wiseman at the tiny Ben Sherman main-office, in a down-at-heel block of offices off Carnaby St in 1965-6. These were 'seconds' that Ronnie took 12/6d (65p) each, for cash!

    These sometimes had almost nothing wrong with them, except for a trailing cotton thread, or a slight mis-match on the pattern. We knocked 'em out in our shop for 39/11 (£2.00) each in a 'see thru' paper packet, This compared to the 'new' cardboard boxed BS.shirts which retailed at 69/11d (£3.50) or 79/11 (£4.50)

    We'd open the shop on a Saturday morning at 9am, with a queue outside, and by 12noon we'd have sold perhaps 200 shirts of all colours and patterns, with many customers buying three, or four at a time. It was like a stampede!

    I made a small fortune out of these 'seconds '- all gone now, sadly....but many thanks Ronnie!

  • Mmm, so they where made in N.Ireland and where cheap and now they are made in China and arn't particularly cheap....... where did we go wrong !
  • They used to make them in the shirt factories in Derry too. right up to the late 80's.

    We all used to have cheap ben's back in the day

  • Tayto, thats the crisps is'nt it ?  I childhood memory of holidays in Ireland.
  • thats right ,sorry ,portadown is in lurgan ,its nearer the tayto factory at tandragee,they have sales a couple of times a year ,but its strictly cash ,money must go into the back pocket ,some nice stuff

  • Well I know the office is in Lurgan, but I think most of the shirts are made in China these days (what isn't ?)

    They do still have some really nice designs, its just difficult to get that across on a website (we have to degrade the image to make it download fast enough). They are a bit more expensive now though !   Every now and then we chuck out special offers at as little as a tenner, so always worth keeping an eye on. Size is another issue, and boy is it a pain. Basically, there are three fits in the same shirts, but for most blokes like us  Union fit is the best option. Or go up a size on the mod fit, if you want a more fitted look.

  • what a coincidence,we re working in the old ben sherman factory in belfast,i remember back in the 80s you could get a shirt for £4 ,3 for a tenner,real heavy checked and bold striped,proper sizes too ,since when has a xxl been for a 44in chest,,they make them somewhere near portadown now
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