The most commonly seen shirt used by German troops all services during WWII. No pockets.
Hand Wash Only! (Details above)
Note: We will NOT sew insignia (including shoulderboard loops) on the knit shirts.
The German military began the War wearing a white collarless shirt first issued in 1933. This was rapidly found to be impractical due to the bright color and the lack of a collar. In 1940 a more practical model appeared that was made from field gray knit cloth with a collar. At some point, shirts appeared with 2 breast pockets. All of these shirts were rather long- much more so than a regular dress shirt. If you have ever worn trousers with suspenders and a tunic- and had the shirt come untucked- you will immediately appreciate the reason for the added length.
Variations: Like most German uniforms, the service shirts exhibited numerous variations. The color varies widely from stone gray, to pea green to field gray. The cloth can be knit, aertex (looks like a waffle pattern) or cotton poplin. Some shirts have pockets, most do not.
We have had some trouble equating these shirts to chest sizes or "S" "M", "L" etc.. Chest sizes do not work. I'm a 17 x 34, 44 chest; my friend is a 48 chest but also wears a 17 x 34 shirt. Many guys who wear are a 44 will wear a 16 neck instead, while a few have an 18. If you have never bought a dress shirt, you will need to learn how to in order to size these correctly. Measure your neck and sleeve length to be safe. If this is a mystery to you, the best bet is to go to any department store (Dillards, JC Penny, Sears, etc) and have them measure you off. It's very, very easy.
The sizes run as follows:
Size I = 16" neck
Size II = 17" neck
Size III = 18" neck
Size IV = 20" neck
Larger sizes will not be made.
I want collar tabs and tank destruction badges sewn on my shirt!
No, no, no. In 90% of photos, the Germans wore exactly nothing on their shirts. Nothing! In rare cases, shoulder boards appear. In still rarer cases sleeve or breast eagles are seen. Insignia was a rarity on the shirts. Insignia was seen more often in hot climates where the shirt was more likely to be worn without the tunic, but for most re-enactment concerns (Normandy, Normandy or Normandy) a "plain" shirt is the norm. Once in a blue moon, one will see a single (probably the highest awarded to the wearer) badge on the pocket. (Assault badge of some sort or an EKI)
This yo-yo business of collar tabs, 5 TD badges, Knight's Crosses and subdued rank on every sleeve is beyond farb.
Authentic, wear nothing on them but your sweat.
Farb, pile it on!
HAND WASH ONLY!
HAND WASH ONLY! And hang dry. No machines!
Why? This knit does not like the agitator in washing machines. If you wash these in a machine, small pin holes will appear. I asked the manufacturer (and SM who has made similar shirts) and this is apparently the nature of the fabric. Not a flaw. My original shirt looks like a sieve (or it was hit with birdshot) so they had the same issues. I have hand washed my sample shirt 6 times and no holes appeared. We will not accept any washed shirts for return or exchange.