Shirt pleats: box, side, none, etc..

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Ligament, Sep 27, 2004.

  1. Matt S

    Matt S Senior member

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    Functionally, nothing beats the center box pleat. It adds a lot more fullness to the back. The downside is that it also adds fullness to the waist in the back. 'Course more fullness there will help with movement as well.

    In my experience at least, shoulder pleats are next to useless--the extra fabric you'd need for movement needs to come from lower down the back where they don't give you much extra. But if the shirt is cut right, they can look a lot cleaner. It also might depend on how your back is shaped. For me at least, a center pleat falls between the blades naturally, but side pleats sit on my shoulder blades and kind of stick out oddly.


    Centre box pleats don't really do anything other than balloon out at the middle of the back. They add fullness is the wrong place. They just look messy. And they're even worse if you're wearing braces.

    Side pleats look cleaner, and I find them more effective because they are over the shoulder. Your shoulders move more than the middle of your back, which is why it's more effective to have the pleats there. They way your body is shaped makes more sense to put the pleats at the side.
     
  2. raybert

    raybert Well-Known Member

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    I like none/plain back as I'm normally wearing slim fit shirts and with MTM can get the size correct. With OTR classic/regular fits I'm swimming in fabric so pleats is of no use. For OTR slim fit shirts I prefer side over box if that was an option but to date all have been side.
     
  3. SpallaCamiccia

    SpallaCamiccia Senior member

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    I am very slim so pleats make the shirt look blousy and like the notredame monster.
     
  4. landshark

    landshark Senior member

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    I hate pleats. Hate them on pants, hate them on shirts. I don't have any constriction with a flat back, and I prefer the way it looks so long as there is no material spilling over the waistband.
     
  5. Douglas

    Douglas Stupid ass member

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    After ordering side pleats for some time, I have all my shirts made today without pleats. I do not miss them.
     
  6. Made in California

    Made in California Senior member

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    Why has no one mentioned darts? A lot of people are talking about either a box pleat, side pleats or nothing at all, but aren't darts a fourth option?
     
  7. awxg

    awxg Senior member

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    Darts take fabric in. Pleats let fabric out.
     
  8. landshark

    landshark Senior member

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    Oddly enough I have a shirt with darts in the back and a box pleat in the middle. Perhaps the perfect combination?
     
  9. Douglas

    Douglas Stupid ass member

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    Why has no one mentioned darts? A lot of people are talking about either a box pleat, side pleats or nothing at all, but aren't darts a fourth option?
    Darts are not so much a fourth option as an unrelated option. Pleats add material for mobility at the yoke and shoulders. Darts remove material through the waist and hips. They are not mutually exclusive to the pleat choice - you can have no pleats and darts, or even pleats and darts, though the latter might look a bit schizophrenic.
     
  10. Made in California

    Made in California Senior member

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    Schizophrenia?

    I had been thinking of getting this shirt, but I am scared of the box pleat. I was worried it would keep the shirt from achieving it's ideal, form-fitting look. [​IMG]
     
  11. Douglas

    Douglas Stupid ass member

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    I am scared of that shirt for a variety of different reasons.
     
  12. Made in California

    Made in California Senior member

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    I am scared of that shirt for a variety of different reasons.

    Like it has rabies?
     
  13. Ataturk

    Ataturk Senior member

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    Centre box pleats don't really do anything other than balloon out at the middle of the back. They add fullness is the wrong place. They just look messy. And they're even worse if you're wearing braces.

    Side pleats look cleaner, and I find them more effective because they are over the shoulder. Your shoulders move more than the middle of your back, which is why it's more effective to have the pleats there. They way your body is shaped makes more sense to put the pleats at the side.


    This is nonsensical. If you look at how the shirt is cut, the center pleat adds 2.5"-3" of ease to the center back from the yoke to the hem. The key dimension for back ease is where it's added in the back, VERTICALLY. It makes no difference whether it's in the middle or on the sides.

    It's not the upper shoulders directly below the yoke that really need ease; the armholes and sleeves help with that. You need extra fabric lower, where the side seam starts under the armhole. Move around and look at your back in the mirror. Try holding your hands out or extending them like you would if you were typing at a computer. You'll see what I mean.

    I know that the center pleat adds fullness all the way down to the hem [even if it's usually not pressed all the way down], but I'm pretty sure that side pleats add mostly to the upper shoulders. In my experience that's not very useful. And, at any rate, it's much less than the 2.5-3" center pleats give.

    I'm sure a shirtmaker could explain this better. And I'm curious--do side pleats go the way down like a box pleat or does the extra fabric end where the armhole does?
     
  14. Douglas

    Douglas Stupid ass member

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    This is nonsensical. If you look at how the shirt is cut, the center pleat adds 2.5"-3" of ease to the center back from the yoke to the hem. The key dimension for back ease is where it's added in the back, VERTICALLY. It makes no difference whether it's in the middle or on the sides.

    It's not the upper shoulders directly below the yoke that really need ease; the armholes and sleeves help with that. You need extra fabric lower, where the side seam starts under the armhole. Move around and look at your back in the mirror. Try holding your hands out or extending them like you would if you were typing at a computer. You'll see what I mean.

    I know that the center pleat adds fullness all the way down to the hem [even if it's usually not pressed all the way down], but I'm pretty sure that side pleats add mostly to the upper shoulders. In my experience that's not very useful. And, at any rate, it's much less than the 2.5-3" center pleats give.

    I'm sure a shirtmaker could explain this better. And I'm curious--do side pleats go the way down like a box pleat or does the extra fabric end where the armhole does?


    I'm not sure about most of what you're talking about, but I have no idea why a box pleat would be any different, functionally speaking, than a side pleat. Side pleats are basically just a box pleat with a really big box; eg the pleats are spaced further apart.
     
  15. TheTukker

    TheTukker Senior member

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    Oddly enough I have a shirt with darts in the back and a box pleat in the middle. Perhaps the perfect combination?

    I would have thought that the following quote means that you could have done without both and get a cleaner shirt:

    Darts take fabric in. Pleats let fabric out.
     

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