You might think that by being a man and knowing the basics you know almost everything about styling and men’s clothing. Well I can assure you that the world of shirts, suits and accessories are so much wider than most of us will ever know (unless you’re one of the stars of Pitti Uomo, of course.) Our blog is here to introduce the world of stylish men (and women) to everyone. So even if you are not into the fashion world, it’s good to know more than matching your brown briefcase with brown shoes (you knew that, right?)
This article will focus on men’s shirts. And to be more precise – the collars of the shirt. Everyone have seen different collars but do you know what they’re called and why they are different from each other? What are the occasions for which they are best suited? Read on…
1. The forward point collar
The “point collar” dress shirt is the most traditional of them all. So you probably have one or more in the wardrobe. The collar points have narrow distance and they are often covered by a jacket’s lapels. This is a traditional shirt and it tells that your style is classic. This is your everyday basic shirt.
2. The button down collar
The button down collar was innovated for just being practical. They were introduced to the world by polo players and the buttons were a way to keep the collars from flapping up and down while they were riding. It has been a staple of classic, preppy style ever since. If you are not the one who wears a tie every day (it looks good with or without tie) then this relaxed style is for you. General dress acumen dictates that you not wear a tie with a button-down collar.
3. The spread collar
This style is pretty much the middle ground of dress shirt collars. The one who prefers collars like that is someone in the middle of strict traditionalist and modern trendsetter. The way the collar points end and disappear right where they meet the jacket is very elegant and symmetrical. It’s a good option when you work in a corporate environment but would still like to stand out. But not too much, not the Italian way. This is the practical shirt type because it really works in just about every situation imaginable. And it just looks so good with or without a tie.
4. The tab collar
The tab collar has been around for ages. I mean these were worn a really long time ago – when the collars were removable and not attached to the rest of the shirt. These days this style is hard to find. But if you want to earn some style points – it’s worth the hunt. You can recognize the shirt by the tab that is fastened by a button hidden underneath the tie knot.
5. The cutaway collar
This is one bold, modern and sartorially-advanced style choice we are talking about. The cutaway collar dress shirt emerged in the 1930’s following the longer and narrower collars of the 1920s. This style can also be referred to as a Windsor collar because its origin means to fit Windsor tie knots. Men who prefer that collar type are bold and confident (and possibly Italian-speaking). This means the collar is not for everyone. But if you feel that this style suits you and you like it then feel free to wear it for different occasions – from office to a wedding.
6. The band collar
A band collar shirt is easy to recognize because it’s simply a shirt with a band for the collar – meaning there is no actual collar at all. If you prefer that collar type it says you are easy going and your motto is that rules were made for breaking. If you feel like experimenting, taking risks and you feel confident then go ahead! The best styling advice for that kind of shirt is to stay more casual. This way it works the best. It’s the perfect option to travel and summer vacations.
7. The club collar
This used to be a style of the students at Eton college who wanted to “distinguish” themselves and their uniforms from other schools. They took the standard collar points and merely rounded them off. And the new collar style was born! It became known as the club collar. If you feel like style is about having a little fun every now and then and when it’s the right time to do so, then this style is a good option for experimenting.
8. The pin collar
Functionally the pin collar shirt is right in line with a tab collar. While tab collar has an extended tab of fabric that buttons under the tie, a pin collar shirt replaces the tab with a bar. The bar elegantly lifts the tie knot, creating a luxurious arch below the tie knot while also holding the knot itself firmly in place. The eyelets on each collar point are fastened together with either a collar bar or a collar pin. This style is for someone who knows a lot about classic tailored menswear. If you prefer this style, you are probably working in the fashion business or you have a well educated stylist. You really need a right occasion for pin collar shirt. If it’s a less formal event then substitute the collar pin for the bar to tone down the formality. See – it can be versatile style after all.