Formal, Yet Elegant-The Dress Shirt
Men have been wearing shirts probably since the beginning of time, so why should a piece be written on the dress shirt?
This is because whenever we step out, our appearance represents us in non-verbal communication. At first glance, others form a subconscious opinion and we should be careful what that impression is. If the jacket is not worn, then it is the shirt that is speaking for us and without our realising it, our inner self and personality is revealed to the onlooker.
There can be no doubt about the fact that shirt are an indispensable component of an ensemble, unlike jackets or suits which are optional. This is regardless of season or occasion. The only article of clothing which can take the place of a shirt is a T-shirt or some item of ethnic clothing.
Since time immemorial, a dress shirt is the preferred garment for formal occasions. Actually, nothing is smarter than a crisp, fresh, immaculate shirt with a matching tie and cuff links to complete the elegant image of a debonair man about town.
It may come as a surprise, but an expensive shirt may not always give the overall impression one hopes for. Sometimes, a lesser priced shirt delivers the required image.
So, how can one judge if a shirt is good?
There are various criteria for evaluating a shirt.
Firstly, let us take into consideration the material of the shirt. Cotton and linen are the most preferred materials for dress shirts. Both are natural fibres which can absorb water and allow the skin to breathe. Cotton is the first choice for formal meetings and can be worn all the year round. Linen is more appropriate for cooler weather and is worn for more informal occasions. Manmade fibres need less maintenance but may not be as friendly to the skin as sometimes there can be allergic reactions.
Secondly, the color of the shirt plays and important in presenting the image of the individual. Color can be seen from a far distance and thus reveals a lot about the individual. A person who understands color can use it to his advantage.
White is the all-time favorite. There is nothing smarter than a crisp, sparkling white, well-fitted shirt. Historically, too, it was the choice of a gentleman as it was a symbol of an upper class lifestyle with the collar and cuffs free of stains and dirt. In formal attire, today, it is the foremost preference. It can be safely assumed in all circumstances that white will never be out of place.
Blue is the next in line. It became popular as it complimented the complexion of most people and the markets exploded with blue shirts. Unfortunately, the world of men’s shirts is dominated by these two colors.
Other colors such as lavender, beige, gold, pink even red can be worn by an individual whose personality can carry it off. Such people set themselves apart by walking on a different path, away from the usual, creating an unforgettable impression on the world around.
Thirdly, the texture and appearance of the fabric are to be considered. Shirts may be plain or patterned. An extremely popular design is a white shirt with blue pin stripes. Probably this can be found in every individual’s wardrobe as it is ideal for formal and casual occasions. A classic shirt appears formal when worn with a suit and when worn over jeans, it becomes perfect for informal gatherings. Checks may be small or slightly larger and bolder. Checks worn over jeans are ideal for parties and informal gatherings.
The next factor is the design of the shirt. Shirt collars can be of mainly two types, a standard point collar which is the most common and a spread collar. In the former, the collar edges point downwards at an angle of sixty degrees and there is a little bit of space between the sections where the collar meets. This style draws the eyes of the viewer downwards and helps elongate the face of the individual. The latter is considered more modern and youthful. Here the points of the collar have been ‘cut away’ and point downward at an angle of ninety degrees. Here the eyes of the viewer are focused on the face of the individual. The shirt may or may not have pockets as part of the design.
However, the most important factor for the individual is the fitting. A good fit, which is comfortable at the same time, majorly adds to the image of the individual.
The three major types of fit for dress shirts are slim, athletic and broad.
A slim fit, as the name implies, is a snug fit. It is tailored to fit the individual in such a way that there is no extra fabric at the sides or the back. This suits skinny people or those who want to go in for a modern look.
An athletic fit is for those who work on their bodies and have muscular arms and chest. These shirts are full in the chest but tapered at the waist.
Broad shirts have the traditional amount of fabric. These afford the wearer a comfortable fit with enough space to walk and move at ease.
The quality of tailoring is visible in the stitching of the shirt, buttons and the yoke at the back. A split yoke is better as it gives more space for comfort. Good tailoring will ensure a quality product which will last longer.
In the age of mass production, off the rack shirts are tailored to fit many and end up fitting none perfectly. Thus for the conscious and discerning individual, a custom made shirt is the best alternative. Here, a perfect fit is complemented by choice of material and color, so that the final appearance is stamped by the unique individuality of the consumer.
Moreover, custom made shirts offer unique advantages to the consumer.
The initials of the individual are monogrammed in delicate embroidery either at the cuffs or on the breast pocket. This is a distinctive feature which is customised and reflects a lifestyle in the upper strata of society.
The material and design of the consumer’s choice is teamed with sparkling white collar and cuffs. This presents a classy and exclusive appearance, setting the individual apart from the crowd.
With a customised shirt, the consumer will fulfil all his requirements perfectly. Such an article of clothing will not only be used frequently, but will also impart confidence and satisfaction to the owner and become indispensable with passage of time.
We at TailoredMan take great pride in focusing on all the finer details regarding the custom shirts. Please visit our Online Ordering System or Book an Appointment at our shop to get measured and stitched for you.