Style Defined: Cutaway Collar

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A cutaway collar is a bold, modern and sartorially-advanced style choice.

A cutaway collar is a bold, modern and sartorially-advanced style choice

Following the rigid, longer and narrower collars of the 1920s, the cutaway collar dress shirt emerged in the 1930s. This collar style is sometimes referred to as a Windsor collar, alluding to it’s origin as a means to fit Windsor tie knots.

Whereas a forward point collar is usually the narrowest of point widths, the cutaway collar would be the widest. Its points are directed back almost towards the shoulders. This shape has a few notable characteristics worth considering.

cutaway collar dress shirts

First, a skinnier tie or knot will end up showing the collar band on either side, rather than it being hidden by the collar points. It takes a truly wide knot – like a Windsor knot – to keep everything under wraps. (N.B. This is a style choice that is completely up to the wearer.)

A wide knot is likely more business appropriate, but risks a decent dose of Ari Gold-esque salesman sleaze. A skinny knot may stand out in a more conservative setting, but brings a more elevated sense of sartorial panache.

cutaway collar dress shirts

| BRIAN WEARS | Al Bazar blazer, Suitsupply shirt, PT01 pants, Brooks Brothers tie, Rolex Datejust watch, Loafers c/o Allen Edmonds | PHOTOGRAPHY | by Rob McIver Photo

Second, in comparison to a forward point collar, where the collar points remain exposed even when wearing a jacket, many feel that a cutaway collar has a more elegant transition into a blazer or suit coat’s lapels, as the points end up hidden beneath them.

Third, the wider collar stance frames the face in a much more particular way than most other collar styles. This looks better on folks with skinnier or longer faces as the width of the cutaway collar will only further accentuate a rounder profile.

cutaway collar dress shirts

Today, while runway designers and cutting-edge fashion might be moving back towards forward point collars, among the general population, the cutaway collar is still seen as the more modern and bold collar choice.

In a sea of standard business attire, a cutaway collar definitely adds a level of sprezzatura. While it does take a bit of style-bravado to pull off, suggesting a distinctly European or British sensibility, the style is a great fit for softer Neopolitan tailoring.

Look no further than a cutaway collar dress shirt to pair with a classic ancient madder tie and an unconstructed blazer to perfectly exude the suave, impeccably dressed Italian gent.

cutaway collar dress shirts

Thanks for reading.

Stylishly Yours,

Adam Lehman
He Spoke Style

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