The button-down collar is a classic, Americana-based style that has been used by men for years. It’s a great way to dress down a suit, or dress up a shirt and jeans.
Similar to other styling details like hacking pockets and jacket vents, the button-down collar has its origin rooted in men’s sportswear. More specifically, the button-down collar was invented by Ivy League Polo players as a way to keep their collars from flaring up into their faces during a match. Because of its sporting origination, it is a more casual shirt collar and falls securely in the Play category.
The beauty of a button-down collar is its versatility. It is equally at home on the beach as it is in the office. The soft roll of the collar and the position maintained by the buttons mean it will always stay in place – with or without a tie. This is ideal because other collars have a tendency to either fly away or pancake beneath a jacket lapel.
While you’ll want to avoid them when attending a black-tie gala or when tinkering out in the garage, the button-down collar is at home almost everywhere else. Grab a few, wear them well, and use them to replace the default T-shirt you throw on with your jeans.