Notes: Button Down and Club Collars

The button down collar is the Ivy League staple. Introduced by Brooks Brothers in 1896 for polo players to stop their collars flapping in their faces, they were taken off the sports field and popularised by the Ivy Leaguers in 1950s America. It is still considered a more sporting or informal style of shirt collar and can look out of place with a formal suit and tie. Although there are no strict rules; one of the button down collar’s greatest virtues is the way it can dress up a casual outfit and dress down a formal one. 


Button down collars are almost always pointed, with the buttons at the points. The collars are floppy; without the structure or collar stiffeners of a formal dress shirt. And if the collar is not ironed flat, it will usually roll characteristically from the collar fold to the button when worn with the top button undone. If the collar buttons are left undone, the wearer can emphasise the shirt’s informal style and exude a careless nonchalance. Or just look like they have forgotten to get dressed properly that morning. Wearer beware.

Club collars have rounded corners and were popular at the start of the 20th century. They are not usually buttoned down. At Mamnick our starting point is not what is usual. It’s what we think looks good. Our Clough shirt has a buttoned down club collar; unusual and different. We think it looks ‘bob on’ and hope you agree.

By Antoine Ventouse

Leave a comment