We at UrbanEye.in are all about the finer details of menswear. As you might have already guessed, we love to take one small element of clothing, or accessories, and dissect it in order to give you a better understanding. Our element du jour is the shirt collar, and we get our guest editor, Rajesh Goradia, founder of bespoke shirting brand Vitruvien.com to share some insights on this. Enjoy the read..
A Lesson in Shirt Collars
Short-spread, Tall-spread, Mandarin….lend me your ears! Let’s demystify the COLLAR not complicate it!
Yes, collars are exquisite, they tell a story, are indicative of a man’s economic standing, and above all transform a man’s appearance. And they are complex only if you want them to be.
Like everything else, these ‘boys’ have also seen much transition through the years, from the classic blue-collar white-collar divide, to the basic cuts and styles to an entirely eclectic collection of collars that walk the jet-setting-business & dressing-it-down-casual ramp today.
And while the world is yours for experimenting, it is important to understand, that the shape of your face and physique play an integral role in determining the collar style you must choose.
Just like the right cut can complement one’s physique so also the right collar style goes a long way in balancing a man’s facial structure thus creating an indelible impression. It becomes the very job of the collar to accentuate a man’s strengths and downplay his weaknesses.
Before we delve into tips on how to arrive at that perfect Face-Collar combination, there are some basic collar terms every man must know:
The Spread: Distance between the collar points
The Point: Refers to the tip of the collar
The Length of the Point: Distance between the points of the collars and the band
The Height: Height of the collar when worn
Now that we know our basics, let’s move to what works best for you,
For a narrow or long face: Opt for a tailor-made shirt with a wider spread collar to give a broadening effect to the face. If you’re aiming for the very classic look, try the regular or wide spread, a bespoke choice for Royalty for close to a century now. If you want to go contemporary, experiment with an extreme cutaway, with points that spread almost parallel to the floor. Avoid point collars as they tend to narrow the appearance of the face instead of balancing it.
For an Oval or Round face: Go for a point / classic collared shirt which will give the impression of length to your facial features.
If you’re someone that falls in the range of narrow to rounded, a safe option to go for is the regular spread collar.
While choosing the height of the collar – it’s all about proportion. Taller collared shirts with longer points look best on tall men and men with longer necks. Tall collars must be avoided by short necked men since it will only draw attention to the short neck.
Short men or men with short necks must opt for shorter collars. These not only make their neck look longer, but have the added advantage of being more comfortable to wear as well.
While the range of collars is endless: spread, pointed, cutaway, club, mandarin, tab, button-down etc. with their many variations, our advice to those who don’t dare to experiment – stick to the basic pointers stated above when opting for a tailored shirt, experiment a little and discover your collar style.
By Rajesh Goradia, Co-founder, Vitruvien