In this hands-on Mott & Bow review, I’ll share my thoughts about this direct-to-consumer apparel brand to help you decide if it’s worth your money.
So, you’re thinking about buying some jeans – and maybe even some shirts – from Mott & Bow, but you’re not sure if the clothes are worth their price tag.
In this unsponsored review, I’ll show you how their jeans, chinos and shirts fit on my 5’6″ frame. I’ll also talk about the style, quality, and overall pros and cons of Mott & Bow clothing.
Note: We don’t publish sponsored reviews. I haven’t been paid to write this review and am no obligation to to publish it.
Okay, let’s get into it…
Short on time? Here are my thoughts about this brand:
Mott & Bow jeans are comfortable, and they’re available in a wide variety of washes and fits.
But it’s hard to find the right pair due to confusing product naming, inconsistent fit and limited inventory. Shorter inseams aren’t available.
At over $100 per pair, the value proposition is decent but not great.
Mott & Bow chinos run very large. Their shirts run large too and are too long for shorter guys.
The Mott & Bow website isn’t the easiest to navigate. I found it to be slow and somewhat glitchy, and the product naming convention is confusing.
Bottom Line: If you’re curious about this brand, give them a shot. But in my opinion, there are better places to buy men’s jeans, chinos, t-shirts and sweaters.
About Mott & Bow
Mott & Bow was founded in 2014 by Alejandra Chahin, who grew up around his family’s denim manufacturing business in Honduras before moving to New York City.
Like many digital first brands, Mott and Bow sought to eliminate the middle man through vertical integration.
Today, Mott & Bow sells a range of men’s and women’s jeans, as well as knit tops, loungewear and accessories.
What I Tried
Here’s what I ordered for this review:
- Skinny Mercer Jeans (Olive, 28×32)
- Skinny Laight Jeans (Light Blue, 28×32)
- Slim Staple Jeans (Medium Blue, 28×32)
- Twill Chinos (Khaki, 30×30)
- Classic Crew Driggs T-Shirt (Gray, XS)
- Cotton/Wool Liam Sweater (Slate Gray, XS)
Keep reading for a detailed look at each item…
To give you an idea of how Mott & Bow clothes will fit on you, here are my stats:
I’m 5’6″ with shoes one and about 120 lbs after dinner. I usually wear 28×28 pants (actual waist is about 29″).
My chest is about 34″ around, and I usually wear XS tops. If there’s a “short” option available (e.g., 34S), I take it.
Mott & Bow Jeans
I’ve tried on several pair of jeans from Mott & Bow, including one that I wore for a couple of years. Let’s take look at how these jeans fit on me:
Skinny Mercer (Olive, 28×32)
The Mercer style is Mott & Bow’s line of died twill denim (i.e., jeans in non-blue colors).
Compared to other brands, this “skinny” fit isn’t very tight. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s something to keep in mind.
These lightweight 10 oz jeans have 2% Elastane for stretch, and they’re pretty soft right out of the box.
I found these to be pretty snug round the hips and in the seat but more of a slim fit through the leg.
Since these are only available with a 32″ inseam, I’d have to get them hemmed.
Skinny Laight (Light Blue, 28×32)
The Laight style is a mid-weight denim with 2% stretch.
I tried a pair in light blue, but at the time of writing, only a medium blue is available.
Even though they’re the same size and cut, these felt a bit roomier than the Mercers I tried on.
I like the higher rise and inky light blue wash, but I wish they came in shorter inseams.
I usually wear a 28″ inseam. Lopping 4″ off is doable but might require also tapering the leg opening.
Slim Staple (Medium Blue, 28×32)
The Staple style is an “Italian denim with Dynamic Stretch”. It has 6% Polyester and 2% Elastane (i.e., lots of stretch).
In terms of fit, these are almost identical to Mott & Bow’s skinny jeans in the same size.
Since my size was only available with a 32″ inseam, I’d have to get these hemmed as well.
I don’t mind paying for alterations, but at this price point, I’d rather not spend the extra money, especially since there are plenty of places to buy shorter inseam jeans.
Mott & Bow Chinos
At the time of writing, Mott & Bow sells one men’s chinos style: The Everyday Chino. It’s a medium weight chino that’s supposed to have a “classic slim fit that’s not too tight or too loose.”
On me, the 30×30 (smallest size they have) is way too loose. It feels like a classic fit pair of Dockers:
I could probably get these altered for a better fit, but it would require tapering, hemming and taking in the leg (which adds up).
The fabric feels nice, but given the fact that there are so many great chino options out there, these Mott & Bow chinos will be returned.
Mott & Bow Shirts
While Mott & Bow started out as a denim brand, they’ve expanded into shirts, sweaters and even loungewear.
I tried on a couple of their shirt styles to see how they fit, felt and looked.
Classic Crew Driggs
This is Mott & Bow’s crew neck t-shirts. It’s made from 100% Peruvian combed cotton, and it feels really soft. The tagless collar is a nice touch (why can’t all brands do this?).
Unfortunately, the XS size was still too big on me. I’d try to shrink it down in the wash, but it’s preshrunk and won’t shrink much, if at all.
This tee is substantially longer than an XS from Uniqlo, which is my go to brand for basic t-shirts.
There are also plenty of t-shirts that are great for shorter guys, so I can’t really recommend Mott & Bow unless you’re a taller person.
Crew Liam Sweater
This is a 70% cotton / 30% wool crew neck sweater in faded blue. It’s pretty light for a sweater. It would work well on its own or layered over a button up.
Like the t-shirt, this XS sweater is a big large on me. It’s slim enough, but it’s too long in the body and sleeves.
I liked the style and feel of this sweater, so I put it through a laundry cycle to see if it would shrink up a bit.
It does fit better after some shrinkage (not perfect, but definitely good enough). Of course, shrinking wool is a risky procedure, so your mileage may vary.
Mott & Bow Pros & Cons
Let’s look at the overall pros and cons of this brand:
Pro: Nice Style
Mott & Bow clothes look good. They offer a variety of denim washes, all of which work well in a contemporary man’s wardrobe
Their shirts are nice too. In general, I’m a fan of their fabrics, color palettes and styles.
Mott & Bow sizing is all over the place. I can’t tell the difference between some of their slim jeans and skinny fit jeans in the same size.
Meanwhile, they’re “slim” chinos are way bigger than their slim jeans, and all of their shirts run long.
They also don’t offer shorter inseams, which means shorter guys will need to pay for hemming.
If you like plenty of stretch in your jeans, Mott & Bow has a lot of options for you. They’ve really leaned into the stretchy denim movement, and some of their jeans have an extreme amount of 4-way stretch.
Con: No Selvedge
At the time of writing, Mott & Bow doesn’t sell selvedge jeans. This would be nice to see, considering the fact that you can get selvedge denim from Uniqlo for $50.
Pro: No Break-In Period
Given the stretch factor in most of Mott & Bow’s denim, their jeans won’t require much break in, if any.
Con: Limited Inventory
Mott & Bow offers many styles of men’s jeans, but when I filter for my size, the options become pretty limited.
Back when Mott & Bow first launched, their jeans were closer to $85, a very competitive price, given the quality and styling of their denim.
Nowadays, most of their jeans cost between $108 and $128. At this price, you can start considering brands like Nudie (on sale), Naked & Famous, Unbranded, Todd Snyder, Madewell, etc.
Overall Thoughts on Mott & Bow
Should you buy Mott & Bow clothes? Here’s my opinion:
There are so many denim brands out there. If you’re willing to spend over $100 on a pair of jeans, you have lots of great options, including raw selvedge jeans.
If you like the way Mott & Bow jeans look, you don’t need a shorter inseam, you don’t want raw selvedge, and you like stretchy denim, you should definitely try on a pair (or three).
Otherwise, I think there are other brands that offer a better shopping experience and will get you more bang for your buck.
If you’re a shorter guy, Mott & Bow probably isn’t the best brand for you.
Questions About Mott & Bow
Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about Mott & Bow:
Where are Mott & Bow jeans manufactured?
Mott & Bow jeans are made in Honduras. Their cotton t-shirts are made in Peru. Other items, like their sweaters and chinos, are made in China.
Who owns Mott & Bow?
Alejandro Chahin is the founder and CEO of Mott & Bow. You can get more info about their employees and leadership team right here.
How long does Mott & Bow take to ship?
If you select standard shipping, your Mott & Bow order should arrive in 3-7 business days.
Is Mott & Bow American?
Mott & Bow is based in the United States (New York) and Honduras. Their products are manufactured in Central America, South America and China.
Does Mott & Bow have sales?
Yes, Mott & Bow has seasonal sales and a perennial Sale Section on their website.
Michael Renshaw says
Good review – very descriptive.
I am looking for jeans and find it hard not being in a store where you can try before you buy.
I like a high waist and leg length is very important.
Hey there Brock,
I’m not in market for jeans but decided to read anyway. It’s a very good review, btw.
You mentioned liking the one style because of a higher rise. That’s something I find is lacking in most clothing manufacturers sizing kit these days. Being an older gentleman (70) I’m now a bit puggy around the midsection. It measures 40.5″ but buying 40″ waist usually means I have to get altered or return for 38″ which sometimes means the pants are a little tight.
Anyway I digress. I would really like it and consider it a personal favor, if you would do a review on pants made for guys that prefer a higher rise fit in pants. Just to give you an example I wear lots of Docker chinos because I find their D3 classic fit Weekend style fits me around my upper waist instead of below my stomach just above curve of hip bone which I think is considered the natural waist line.