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The Secret of the Spread Collar

The spread collar has been gaining prominence for quite a while now among the business-suit crowd—and for good reason. It’s not just trendiness. It actually solves one of the most lingering problems well-suited gentlemen encounter: the scourge known as collar gap...

First, a little background. As you’ve probably noticed, any well-fitted suit jacket will fit snug against your shirt collar. If your jacket wasn’t fitted correctly, you’ll notice a bit of weird-looking shoulder-shirt peeking through next to the lapel. (Here’s a more involved explanation, if you’re so inclined.) The net effect is making you look a bit goofy, and distracting from your (presumably) spectacular suit.

The first solution is to buy a suit that fits. But even a well-tailored jacket can shift around if you’re in an awkward pose—and if you’re wearing a particularly prominent point collar (like the one above), your central collar points will be calling attention to it.

That’s where the spread collar comes in. This snap of Sid Mashburn catches it in perfect form. The points reach all the way out to the lapel—and if the lapel happens to shift a little bit to the left, the collar has room to shift with it. There’s more collar, and less chance for gap.

Granted, it’s a minor problem, but it’s enough of a reason to get us to switch sides in the point/spread collar debate—and if you’re building a wardrobe, it’s a reason to keep your shirt collars on the wider side.