December 29, 2005

Question about shirt collars.

How should a man decide whether or not the collar of his shirt belongs inside or outside the lapels of his jacket? Obviously, if he's wearing a tie, the collar goes inside, and a big crazy disco collar goes outside. But other than that, what is the significance of inside or outside?

28 comments:

JohnF said...

You ALWAYS wear your collar inside your jacket.

And you DON'T wear beagle-ear shirt collars.

Period.

SWBarns said...

Always. Any shirt that you might contemplate wearing the collar over the lapels of your jacket should be immediately discarded.

Stiles said...

Exactly. Collar should always be inside the jacket.

Jake said...

John and SWbarnes are correct.

The only exception is when you are stuck in a time machine and the dial says 1975, then the collar goes outside of the lapels.

ShadyCharacter said...

"The only exception is when you are stuck in a time machine and the dial says 1975, then the collar goes outside of the lapels."

Though it is well established that if the option exists to repair the time machine and exit the 70s, that is the only proper course.

The Drill SGT said...

shirt collars can go outside of some sweaters however.

Simon Kenton said...

Dorothy Sayers, contemplating male fashion, invented a female novelist named Harriet Vane who in turn invented a detective named Reginald Templeton who dressed in loud plus-fours. By this means neither of the two women, the real and the invented, had to risk disfiguring their books by blowing the fiendish subtleties of upper-class male dress.

xljdhmwl - a dove=gray sportcoat with 2 vents and sleeve buttons that actually work.

Robert said...

what is the significance of inside or outside?

Whatever the man's wife tells him the significance is, that's what!

EricP said...

At 31 I don't own a suit and never have - I keep meaning to but never get around to it. As for where the collar goes, or any other fashion tip, it goes where my girlfriend tells me it should (including out the window). That is what GFs and wives are for! They keep you out of trouble, at least when it comes to clothes.

girlfriday said...

It is the difference between "Thirty Something" and "Desperate Housewives."

s1c said...

Inside, always inside unless you are going to a costume party and plan to go as Disco fever Johnny.

Paul said...

The collar goes where I want it to go.
So far, it's always gone inside the jacket. Poossibly once or twice while intoxicated, I wore it outside but I can't remember.(Younger days)

Bruce Hayden said...

If you are out with your wife or girlfriend, then, by all means, listen to her.

But if you are going to work, it goes inside, and if it is too big for that, you need to get a shirt with a collar that will fit inside your coat.

This of course presupposes that you are working for a reasonably conservative company, a law firm, or the like. When I was at Motorola, we had joint meetings with Apple and IBM (the AIM alliance), and we dressed in dark suits, the IBMers wore polo shirts, and none of the Apple employees had collars, even when they actually did wear suits.

DEC said...

Every top dog I have seen in a sports jacket wears his collar on the inside.

Macon said...

wait! What about when your collar is "popped," ie sticking straight up? It's what all the cool kids are doing these days.

But the cool kids are probably not wearing suit coats, so it probably doesn't matter.

SWBarns said...

The Drill SGT has identified one exception to the rle on collars inside. If you collar includes rank insignia then the collar is worn out side the sweater. Evn with birds or stars the collar goes inside a jacket.

Dale B said...

Of course the collar goes on the inside.

I wonder what prompted the question.

Theo Boehm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chuck b. said...

Presumably, if the shirt collar is outside the coat collar, then the top shirt button is also open. The effect draws the eye to that sublimely sexy anatomical feature we call the neck.

Some men have what it takes to pull this off, but alas many do not.

Finn Kristiansen said...

A most sensible group of comments. Indeed the collar always goes inside, unless you are wealthy enough to look goofy and phony without suffering any blowback (and even then, collar inside).

Two other things men should not do:

-Do not wear sunglasses purched atop your head. Either put them on, or put them away. Otherwise you just look like a really "handsome" chick.

-Do not wear collars on polo (or any)shirts "up". It does not look cool, ever. It shouts, "look at me, I have extra time in my day to turn my collar staight up so I can feel cool." It's not the '50's and you are not the Fonz. (And doesn't he look stupid in Happy Days now, what with his cameltoe or balltoe in those tight pants?)The guy beating your ass for your upturned collar,...he's cool.

Balfegor said...

Collar goes under the jacket. Over is kind of effeminate looking, no? Women do the collar-over-jacket thing all the time, after all.

The only exception is if you are rich and skinny and appearing in an East Asian soap opera, in which case the collar over the suit is de rigeur.

katiebakes said...

Isn't the origin of the collar-up that people playing golf or tennis wanted to avoid getting a sunburn on the back of their neck? Seems sensible to me.

I think collar up (not so much on a starched button-down, but on a polo shirt) is fine and people make way too big a deal of it.

Finn Kristiansen said...

Yes, I am sure... it's merely fighting sunburn on the neck that causes collars to get erect on men's polo shirts...yah. Katie Baker you are INSANE! (kidding).

I am not saying women can't do it- it's fine for them. Just saying it looks rather calculated and foolish on men. The same with raising a collar on one's leather jacket.

Was Fonzie fighting sunburn? Was James Dean? How many men are fighting sunburn (and, uh, indoors) and how many are thinking themselves some sort of moneyed polo wearing rebel?

Then too, under the logic of battling the sun, does that mean blacks can't put their polos up?

katiebakes said...

Oh Finn. Surely you jest. The sun can have hidden damage to even the most melanin-laden skin.

I'm not trying to be insane, although that is an apt description. I have always thought that's how the "popped collar" became associated with the preppy class.

My bigger point though is that it always amazes me how much rage has been directed toward popped collars over the years. People get so fired up about it! Who cares?

It could be worse...they could be wearing ponchos. OR UGGS!! :)

knoxgirl said...

I would add to Finn's sunglasses rule: don't hang your sunglasses from your neck like a necklace. I see lots of guys doing this with those "Oakley" sunglasses with those like, molded straps, and it looks really affected.

Nothing any man wears, ever, should look affected. It's patently un-masculine. (IMHO).

And other than the occasional hipster, I can't really picture a man wearing a collar outside his jacket. Hugh Hefner wears his PJ top outside of his robe sometimes I think. Yuck, how do I know that?!

Kyle said...

While I can agree that its probably a bad idea if you can pull it off why not, exibit a, Brad Pitt in Ocean's Eleven.

Maria said...

Try trousers for your husband instead of shirt that have collars.

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