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Detachable Collar Shirts

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by FlyingMonkey, Jan 29, 2012.

  1. FlyingMonkey

    FlyingMonkey Senior member

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    I have been looking for something which may not exist in RTW / OTR. What I would like to find is a not-too-expensive detachable collar shirt. I know one can buy these from reproduction companies, and formal 'tuxedo-fronted' or plaque-fronted shirts of course. However, I would also like such a shirt in a fairly slim, modern fit, and in a variety of colours and patterns - i.e. high quality conventional dress shirts to which one can fit collars. The only think I have found so far is a simple white one from Thomas Pink. Most of the usual online shirtmakers do not seem to produce them and even the MTM options do not seem to offer them. A search on this site produced nothing useful.

    So, does anyone here have a recommendation, or am I just going to have to go fully bespoke to get the collar / shirt combinations I want?
     
  2. St Vincent

    St Vincent New Member

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    After lurking for a few years, this post has finally made me create an account.

    As I also reside in Ontario, I can highly recommend Trend Custom Tailors in Toronto. They have experience making
    detachable collars, I've ordered from them and was very impressed with the result. The shirts are cut and sewn on the premises. There's a minimum order for 3 shirts. You should check out their website for more details.
     
  3. Axel Ferguson

    Axel Ferguson Senior member

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  4. Ich_Dien

    Ich_Dien Senior member

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    TM Lewin does one now.
     
  5. Master-Classter

    Master-Classter Senior member

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    budget in mind...?

    some ideas though I'm not sure they all could do this for you:
    Could by anyone from Trend (Don Lee, made locally) to guys like Xavier (MDavie on the forum here) or 5th on King/Sprezzatura (now 26 Wellington, called Garrison Bespoke - made in Honk Kong), and I think Green Shag on Queen West...
     
  6. Anthony Jordan

    Anthony Jordan Senior member

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    You might find it problematic to find a ready to wear tunic shirt in a slimmish fit, depending upon how strictly you interpret it. In addition to Stanley Ley and T.M. Lewin, both linked to above, the following are possibilities for regular tunic shirts:

    Bromley's/Classic Wardrobe:

    http://www.classicwardrobe.co.uk/Collarless-Shirts.aspx

    http://www.classicwardrobe.co.uk/Detachable-Collars.aspx (collars, stiff and soft)


    Ede & Ravenscroft:

    https://legal.edeandravenscroft.co.uk/BuyAccessories.aspx (a poor selection of shirts and a better selection of collars of various types, under different tabs: the in-store selection is much better)

    Pakeman Catto and Carter:

    http://www.pakeman.co.uk/category/96/Collarless_Shirts (white and blue only)


    Darcy Clothing:

    http://www.darcyclothing.com/shop/s...-tunic-shirt-with-separate-collars-sh183.html (I get the impression that you are not keen on reproduction clothing stores but these may be worth a look)

    http://www.darcyclothing.com/shop/collars.html (stiff and soft collars)

    I struggle to think of any others.
     
  7. adagio

    adagio Senior member

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    I have had detachable collar shirts made by both Jantzen and Nialma.
     
  8. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I think the collars are as important, or more so, than the shirt. My wife makes all my tunics from a pattern that a custom shirtmaker developed for my unusual posture (a result of forty years of making shoes)

    I have ordered collars from both Darcy and Bromley's. Contemporary collars such as Bromley offers are fine. Better than fine. If, however, you want that classic fin de seicle look of high society, none of the wing collars except the high stiff collar offered by Darcy are right. Shaping a wing collar such that it actually has a pronounced wing only makes it look "off"...like a "costume"...and a shallow wing collar is even worse.

    FWIW.
     
  9. FlyingMonkey

    FlyingMonkey Senior member

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    Agreed. I already have both collars and shirts from Darcy's. Their collars are excellent (and some are actually original NOS not reproduction), but I have found that the shirts are very much for theatrical use only and they don't tend to make them small enough for me anyway.

    My wife is a actually a pretty good seamstress and makes quite a lot of stuff for herself and our son, but she's nowhere near as practiced in the art of shirtmaking as yours. And I don't think she'd want to make my shirts - she gets fed up enough with my clothes as it is!

    Strangely, size also seems to be a problem in Harvie and Hudson's, Bromley's, Stanley Ley's (particular shame here because they have a good range of colours and patterns) and New and Lingwood's collarless shirts, at least in their RTW versions available on their websites. I have a 14.5" neck at maximum, and they start at 15" (or 15.5" in the case of the first one...). They are also not particularly slim fitting, which is what I want (I have a 36" chest and a 31" waist and am generally pretty trim).

    So I think the best solution for me so far has come from St Vincent and Master-Classter - I think I will check out Trend and my other local(ish) shirtmakers. I guess I should be supporting them in the first instance anyway...

    Thank-you for all your helpful suggestions, and if any further options come up, do keep posting them here - I am sure a few other members may also be interested.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2012
  10. jamesny

    jamesny Senior member

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    nice links on the detachable collar shirts.
     
  11. Shirtmaven

    Shirtmaven Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    a good tailor could separate the band from the leaf of the collar and then add the extra buttonholes.

    or just remove the collar and add a white band to the collar.
     
  12. tinsel

    tinsel Well-Known Member

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    New & Lingwood, Welsh and Jefferies and Billings and Edmonds and Tom Brown all make very affordable detachable collar shirts RTW
     
  13. Anthony Jordan

    Anthony Jordan Senior member

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    Yes, I have had this done a few times with good results, although I found that for the best appearance/comfort it is important to ensure that the band is shortened.
     
  14. razl

    razl Senior member

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    Not to thread jack, but can someone explain to me the pros for detachable collars? I can only think of 2 reasons and neither add up:

    1. So you can keep the shirt and just replace the collar. I have had shirts I loved where the collar points became worn - while the rest of the shirt was serviceable - and I donated them. I suppose if I had "extra" collars, I could have just swapped and kept them. However, the only detachables I see are for standard white/blue shirts, ones that are easily replaced - not like the ones I discarded where the material was unique. Though, now that I think about it, I could have probably salvaged them both with a white "contrast" collar.

    2. So you can mix/match collars with different shirts. This sounds odd - I mean, are you really going to pop a blue/white bengal stripe collar on a white shirt?

    Are there other reasons that I am missing? Maybe just the old-world novelty of it?
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2012
  15. Ich_Dien

    Ich_Dien Senior member

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    2. is a lot more variable. You can put a cutaway white collar on a bengal stripe for day formal, a bengal stripe collar for the office, a stiff white collar on a white shirt for formal. For the cost of £15 or so extra you can really get a lot out of a shirt.

    However, they strike me as a real pain, and it would probably be cheaper in the long run to buy all these shirts separately rather than buying collars again and again. They are a huge anachronism, only really worn at Ascot and by Army Officers on parade when not in uniform.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2012
  16. Anthony Jordan

    Anthony Jordan Senior member

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    1. Yes, this is one benefit, and is one reason why I have my favourite attached collar shirts converted when the collars go. Obviously it presupposes that you don't mind wearing the shirt with a white collar (although I'm sure someone out there would craft you a detachable collar from a piece of your shirt tail if you really wanted them, much as Mike Maldonado used to do new attached collars); fortunately most of my shirts look fine with a white collar.

    2. Although you could of course mix and match different colours of collar, as said above, the real benefit would be in the ability to use different shapes and types of collar, so that with one shirt you could conceivably sport a number of collars - a soft long point collar held with a safety pin one week, a stiff double-round collar the next, a regular soft turndown the next, and so on.

    3. There is of course an old-world novelty factor also, though not quite so prevalent in Britain where they are still worn professionally by barristers, hence their being relatively easier to source here.

    As to cost, fortunately I get a lot of my collars vintage, where they can be had a a couple of pounds each if you know where to look, apart from the soft ones which I buy from legal outfitters and theatrical costumiers for about £7-10 each. Once you have a good rotation going they actually last quite well (at least I have not had to dispose of one for being worn-out yet).
     
  17. FlyingMonkey

    FlyingMonkey Senior member

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    Agreed with all of this, except that I don't see it as 'old world novelty', rather as classic style.
     
  18. caxt

    caxt Well-Known Member

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    I’ve been interested for a while in trying out Darcy’s Stiff front shirts and detachable collars for black tie events.

    I had thought of trying both sizes of their wing collar. Should I not bother and just go with the higher one?

    Also does anyone have recommendations for a starched turndown collar for black tie? The Ede and Ravenscroft one looks OK, but I’m unsure how the bow tie knot would look.
     

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