If you take notice of the shirt collars that are worn with suits and sport coats that impress you the most, chances are that:
* The shirt collar is tucked slightly under the lapel of the suit jacket (or waistcoat).
* If the shirt collar doesn't make contact with the lapel, the collar has either been hot ironed flat against the shirt with collar stays in place, or the collar has been pinned down with a collar pin or a tab.
* A little sprezzatura occurs, with button-down collars left unbuttoned. This style preference walks the fence between the tamed and untamed, but is an intriguing personal choice by those who want a more relaxed look (see our friend G. Bruce Boyer below).
The jury is out on the collar tip turn-up. Is there a point when Italian excess becomes too excessive? You be the judge.
And then there is the cult following of those who love to show the "S-shaped collar roll" on a button down. Here is an excerpt from a 1983 Esquire article by John Berendt:
The roll is everything when it comes to buttondown shirts, the roll being that parabolic curve, described by the forward edges of the collar. The whole idea of the buttondown, historically, has been that it was a soft, unlined collar with long points that would flap in the breeze if they were not tethered.
With the shirt collar being the part of clothing that is closest to your face, it makes sense to give the collar a little extra attention to top off an overall good look.
As written about in Choosing the Right Shirt Collar, the collar shape and style should also compliment the shape of the face.
The effort to make sure the shirt collar is either tucked under the coat lapel or hot-pressed/pinned close to the shirt fabric are small details that yield high dividends considering the investment many of us make in our wardrobe.
Related Article : Q & A WITH PG EDITORS : WHAT TYPE OF SHIRT COLLAR SHOULD I BUY?