How should a dress shirt fit? Most men are wearing dress shirts for business that are too big around the neck, too small around the waist or just not comfortable. Sounds familiar? Then you are another man being forced to fit under the category of an “ideal fit”.
The fit of the dress shirt
Dress Shirt Torso Fit
The buttons should close easily and inside of the dress shirt should rests lightly against the sternum (the breastbone). The shirt tucks in with no billowing at the sides.
Dress Shirt Sleeve Length
The sleeve should be no longer than the large wrist bone. If a jacket is worn, about half an inch of shirt cuff should show.
Dress Shirt Back Length
The dress shirt should be long enough at all points. The sides should tuck in at least an inch into worn trousers.
The fabric of the dress shirt
The material a quality business dress shirt is made of may not seem as important as the look or style of the shirt but it definitely is. The fabric used determines how long the shirt will last, if it’s comfortable, doesn’t rub against or irritate your skin and so on.
The most common fabric used in shirt production is Cotton. It’s absorbent, it’s breathable, doesn’t stain easily, feels soft and it can withstand high heat.
Thread count is often referred to with a number like 50s, 100s and can go up to 200s. The higher the thread count is, the smoother, silkier and more expensive the fabric is.
Two Ply versus Single Ply
Two-ply is where two yarns are twisted together to make a single thread which is then woven into the fabric. Because of this, Two-ply fabrics are generally superior to single-ply fabrics.
If you are not sure about all of these options, you could just touch the material for yourself and compare it to other business dress shirts.
The cuffs and the collar of the dress shirt
Cuffs and collars endure a lot while the shirt is being worn as you are almost constantly moving around. The right collar fit touches your skin all the way around your neck, but doesn’t press against it. To check, you should be able to place your finger in between the shirt and your neck without having to force it or struggle. Thick cuffs and collars are not to everyone’s taste. Some men prefer to have medium or soft fused collars as they are more stylish or comfortable to wear. Collar stays can be used in medium or soft fusing to help the collar stay upright.
The shirt placket
The shirt placket is located at centre-front of the dress shirt. A thick Placket is ideal for extra buttoning strength, meaning the buttons will last much longer, although you may choose not to have thick placket in order to maintain style preferences while on the job.
The shoulder yoke of business dress shirts
The average business suit is made with a single piece of material at the back of the shoulders. However, quality business dress shirts have a split shoulder yoke (a split down the middle). Having a split Yoke makes it possible to match the pattern of the shirt between the sleeves and shoulders/upper back, which creates a cleaner look to the shirt. The split yoke also provides a better fit, as it allows the shirt to move and conform to your body.