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Problem with Spread Collar (no tie no jacket) top-button unfastened


May 16, 2021
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My office environment is technically business formal but since no one was reinforcing it, most people just wear button down shirts. I have several spread collar dress shirts (Brooks Brothers Ainsley Collar, so semi-spread?) for wearing with tie and blazer but if I do it I would be the only few people with blazer in the office (There are people from other departments wear suits in this 100F building, but on our floor it's just not the case. So I would look out of place in my office but no necessarily in the lobby).

So I decided to wear these spread collars without tie or blazer while my button-downs were in the laundry. The problem came when I unbutton the top-button, the collars spread out so much that it doesn't look so pleasing. I tried to remove the collar stay but tbh it doesn't make a difference.

My question is can Spread Collar be wore (top button unfasten) without a jacket? Does it only fits some people because I've seen picture of people wearing spread collars unbuttoned but they generally have wide shoulder and stronger body type. As someone slim, a wide-spread collar occupies a large portion of my shoulder width and it doesn't feel right. But if I button the top-button, not only it feels uncomfortable, but also I think I must need a tie or blazer to complete the look.

An Acute Style

Distinguished Member
Aug 2, 2011
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Some pictures would be helpful. The amount of spread has a lot to do with how the shirt is ironed and how the collar is constructed.

I sometimes wear the shirt for a while with the top button done up so the collar hugs my neck more when I undo the top button.

I also sometimes iron the collar down near the top button and button hole so the collar doesn’t spread as much.

I also pinch the collar around the collar bone area to again try to shape the collar to hung my neck more when the button is undone.

This will help with many shirts, but some will always have issues due to their construction. Again, add pictures if possible.

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