Ignatius Joseph fashion entrepreneur
”Every man needs a nice shirt”
”I gew up in Sri Lanka. Every Sunday we went to church. I was fascinated by how my dad and the men in my surroundings so carefully dressed themselves in wellironed and starched white shirts. Just like a religious experience. Later I began working in the hotel industry. I met many businessmen and was fascinated by the important place the shirt held in the male wardrobe. We put incredible demands on a shirt. It must stay unwrinkled during long journeys and give a fresh impression. I soon noticed how uniformly dull the selection was. That inspired me to start my own shirt label. Most of those around me laughed at the idea, but I was convinced that it was possible. Every man needs a nice shirt. For me, being born in a former British colony, European style has always has a fascination. Countries like England, France and Italy have an enormous shirt tradition. Myself, I chose Italy, which I consider world-leaders for shirts. They make a shirt look so simple and simultaneously so rich in features. Yet they dress themselves only in blue, blue, blue and some white. You cannot reinvent the shirt. You can possibly give it a new identity, but without complications. Many underestimate the expressiveness of a plain coloured shirt. Such as wearing a white shirt with a pair of jeans. It cannot get more elegant or more natural than that. Exclusivity does not sit in a label or eye-catching details. It sits in the shape of a hand-sewn collar or the shine in a really fine-woven fabric. It sadens me deeply to see a trend where skilled weavers and shirt makers are becoming redundant. We have created a climate where quality and individual style are no longer encouraged. When I stroll along the streets of European cities, people look at me as if I am crazy. Maybe I am, but for me this is a natural way of dressing. Just as natural as the shirt will always be, in the male wardrobe."