or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Adding interlining to a buttondown collar made from softer cloth
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Adding interlining to a buttondown collar made from softer cloth

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I have a very specific question about the construction of buttondown collars.

I patronized a tailor in Singapore on a visit and I am trying to tell them that they constructed a buttondown collar incorrectly. The shirt in question is made out of Thomas Mason silverline, a much softer fabric compared to the usual oxford fabric one might use. The tailor, first, put zero tie space on the BD collar. When the shirt is worn with a tie, the tie pinches the fabric where the collar's two points meet at one's neck, destroying the line created by the points and throwing off the rest of the collar. This is prominent when one ties a Windsor knot.

Second, there is not enough extra length in the collar points to allow the collar to roll. The collar points are pulled more taut than they ought to be from the button to the tie knot. The fact that the points of the collar are not rolling softly and loosely also means that the rest of the collar is stretched over the tie around one's neck, which is visibly bulging from underneath the soft collar. I know for a fact that there is not enough extra length because the person I was communicating with said she measured the BD collar points flat on a table with a ruler and claimed they were exactly the specified length.

I instructed the tailor to do two seemingly obvious things. First, add a half inch of tie space (is this the right length?). Second, keep the buttons on the collar points where they are, but make the points longer to allow for roll.

The tailor's staff claims that neither of the above is the problem. Rather, the fabric is much too soft for a buttondown collar, and the problem will be solved simply by adding interlining underneath the collar to allow it to maintain some shape over the tie and to allow the points to roll. They insisted that they have been making buttondown collars with no tie space for years and ignored my comment to please check the nearest Brooks Brothers or Ralph Lauren display.

I am scratching my head as I have never heard of a buttondown collar being too soft. At the risk of belaboring what seems obvious to me, may I confirm that the tailor's staff have no idea what they are talking about and that my instructions are correct?

Again, my apologies and do bear with me. They actually came up with a good pattern and stocked a limited supply of some nice fabric so I am still considering working with them. This is after they suggested (and I foolishly allowed them to) that they should decrease the collar measurement by a quarter inch to allow ties to stand better on the collars and tried to increase their price by 40% on my next order. At worst, I am hoping to come to a compromise where they will remake the collars for shirts where they still have fabric in stock, even at a small cost to me.
post #2 of 9
Interfacing interschmacing.

Could you just bring them a Brooks Brothers shirt to copy?
post #3 of 9
the shirt needs a new collar.
make sure that there is 1/2" tie space. no big deal
have the points lengthened 1/2" just make sure the buttons on the front of the shirt stay in the same place so that you get the roll. or just move them in and up a bit.

silverline broadcloth is a little limp for no lining. maybe a third layer of fabric or some pinpoint oxford inside.
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks very much Carl. May I follow up: 1) So, should buttondown collars always have half an inch of tie space? 2) I didn't want to simply move the buttons up because my dress shirts have point collars with slightly longer points, and I wanted the same length on buttondown collars. 3) To clarify, additional fabric but not lining is what is needed here (I am wary and want to clarify what exactly they mean by lining). And could you explain "too limp" a bit more? (In other words, I guess there is such a thing as too soft a BD collar?) Thanks again.
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by josepidal View Post
Thanks very much Carl. May I follow up: 1) So, should buttondown collars always have half an inch of tie space? 1/2" is normal for a traditional button down 2) I didn't want to simply move the buttons up because my dress shirts have point collars with slightly longer points, and I wanted the same length on buttondown collars. new collar is just 1/2" longer 1/4"+ might also work 3) To clarify, additional fabric but not lining is what is needed here (I am wary and want to clarify what exactly they mean by lining). And could you explain "too limp" a bit more? (In other words, I guess there is such a thing as too soft a BD collar?) silverline b/c is nice but not enough body to give the collar support. it will crease in the back and sides. they can just cut one ply of pinpoint oxford to give it a little more body, but it will still stay soft. Thanks again.
does this answer your questions
post #6 of 9
Maybe the shirt maker is telling you he doesn't believe in wearing a tie with a button down collar.
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicola View Post
Maybe the shirt maker is telling you he doesn't believe in wearing a tie with a button down collar.

A full windsor in particular seems an odd choice to wear with a button-down. But different strokes and all that.
post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks very much Carl. Last question: Does the extra layer of fabric for additional body affect the roll of the collar points as well, or is it just to avoid creasing/bunching at the back and sides of the collar?

Lawyerdad: I guess I never thought of that and will try a thinner knot.
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by josepidal View Post
Thanks very much Carl. Last question: Does the extra layer of fabric for additional body affect the roll of the collar points as well, or is it just to avoid creasing/bunching at the back and sides of the collar?

Lawyerdad: I guess I never thought of that and will try a thinner knot.

Good luck. But obviously my comment reflects only my opinion; go with whatever floats your boat.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Adding interlining to a buttondown collar made from softer cloth