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The search for the “perfect white tee” can feel fruitless. Everyone has a different idea of what it looks like, how it feels, and what sartorial purpose it serves. Yet the quest is a never-ending one. A capsule wardrobe simply does not exist without a white T-shirt, and people will always pine for that lived-in cotton T-shirt for its versatility, utility, and affordability.
For those of us who prefer the oversized, vintage-looking tee — slightly destroyed at the hems with a heather finish — the Justin Bieber-approved basics brand Elwood has a cult-favorite T-shirt that is finally restocked after selling out five times since its 2020 debut. It’s the genderless Oversized Core Tee, and it has a slightly long and boxy silhouette, vintage wash, worn-in hand-feel, and billowy sleeves. Although my wardrobe is already well-stocked with a plethora of white T-shirts from high and low brands, the Oversized Core Tee fills a very specific gap: It truly feels, looks, and wears like a decades-old vintage tee. It slouches over the body with a devil-be-damned insouciance, which contrasts well when paired with a crisp trouser or pleated skirt. Or, if you prefer to double down on that bed rot aesthetic, it’s an easy-going lounge piece to drape over your favorite sweatpants.
For the purposes of this story, I acquired the Oversized Core Tee in Vintage White, but this 100% organic cotton tee comes in an array of other neutral core colors, such as Vintage Black, Vintage Ash Grey, and Vintage Brown as well as seasonal limited-edition colors like Vintage Red, Vintage Royal, and Vintage Kelly Green (all of which are already sold out — sorry!). Because this style is unisex and oversized, I went down one size from my usual medium to a small — and it fits superbly on my 5’3” frame without me feeling like I was loosey-goosey in fabric.
It’s a bit lighter than tees from other basics brands like Aritzia and Everlane and a hell of a lot more relaxed with the distressed crewneck. It’s the kind of tee that you don’t have to feel bad about getting the occasional stain on (since that’s exactly the vibe), and at $30, there’s no reason to get overly precious about preserving its vintage-ness. In fact, I would say this is the kind of tee that would distress better with age and with a normal amount of washings.
Photo: Courtesy of Jinnie Lee.
While the Oversized Core Tee remains a fan favorite, the rest of Elwood’s lineup is worth a closer look as well. In the past year, the brand has introduced bi-monthly drops — and its latest limited-edition Summer Core Collection consists of soft loungewear, such as sweats, baby tees, and tanks in muted colors. Ahead, click to shop some of our favorite base-layering pieces from the Los Angeles-based brand before they sell out for good.
A throwback to ‘90s belly shirts.
A sporty short that reminds me of high-school track days.
A looser-fitting baby doll tee if you prefer something a tad breezier.
Fall’s quickly approaching. It’s time to stock up on these vintage-looking sweatshirts.
You will need a pair of lightweight nylon track pants for these upcoming transitional-dressing weeks.
If you’re nervous about these cult-favorite tees selling out again, you best grab this three-pack ASAP.
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