In the world of high quality clothing, bespoke or american custom shirts are usually only reserved for formal wear, like suits and tuxedos, but this type of thinking is what keeps lots of guys from looking their best off the clock. Bringing the same perspective to your polo shirts as you do your suits and dress shirts can have a huge impact on your look when you're at the bar or hanging out on the weekend. Here are three things to consider customizing when looking for your next polo shirt.
The super limp, flimsy collars that are found on most low and mid-quality polos will pancake and make your face look wider by not framing your jawline like a collared shirt should. To remedy this problem, try going with a polo shirt that offers a collar that is constructed like a dress shirt's collar (two pieces of fabric plus an interlining) so that it will stand up on its own. Another option is to go for a button down collar like the ones found on casual button downs, and this option is often less expensive than the previous choice.
Those little plastic discs on department store polos are a hollow shell of what real vintage dress shirts sported back in the day. Mother of pearl is what fastens most high-end dress shirts because it reflects light just the right amount and is less prone to breaking than cheap plastic buttons. Also, buttons made from "MOP" are harder than plastic, so you can get away with thinner buttons, which sounds like a minor detail but, after a while, can make you think why you ever wore a shirt with plastic buttons.
A Little Bit of Contrast
Contrast is key when it comes to polo shirt styling, as too much can be dizzying, but none at all can make your shirt look bland. The collar is a common place for some contrast, as well as the placket, which can draw the eye to your chest and neck, making them look beefier. Another place that can provide good contrast is the cuff of the sleeve, which can rock some piping for a vintage look reminiscent of summers in the Hamptons in the 1960s. Playing around with this slight detail can be the best way to customize your shirt, since it's the most noticeable of these three options for others to see.