After your favorite pair of worked-in jeans, there’s no single piece of tall menswear you’ll get more mileage out of than a quality dress shirt.
Have a big interview tomorrow? Better iron my dress shirt. Got a date tonight? I hope my dress shirt’s clean. Wedding? It’s dress shirt time. Another event where you need to look gainfully employed? A well-fitting tall dress shirt can pull it off.
But not all dress shirts are created equal, and this is especially true if you’re a taller guy. There are certain features that tall dudes just shouldn’t compromise on when choosing the best tall dress shirt for them. Here’s what we think you should look for in your next tall dress shirt investment.
A crisp, clean collar
Nothing ruins the potential of a tall dress shirt more than a wimpy collar.
At American Tall, we practice and preach either a fused or unfused collar construction, with each having a home in different social settings. For more formal settings, you’ll want that crisp, clean appearance only a stiff, fused spread collar can provide. They’re made to go with ties, but stand alone with a tall sports coat just as well.
For more casual settings or relaxed office spaces, you can let loose with an unfused collar.
Premium cotton construction
We could write an entire blog on fabric theory and construction, breaking tall dress shirts down by their thread count, ply, mill, weave, materials, yarn treatment…you get the idea.
Instead, all you need to worry about is finding something that’s comfortable – and it’s hard to beat a premium cotton fabric.
Many of our dress shirts for tall guys are 100% cotton for unmatched breathability and feel. We do add a touch of spandex (about 3% on some shirts) for those tall guys who like a slimmer, tapered feel to their shirts. We believe we’ve found that perfect cotton/stretch hybrid without compromising the bold cuts and sharp lines of a quality tall men’s dress shirt.
Strong side seam gussets
You don’t want your shirt unraveling because of one rogue thread – this is where reinforced side seam gussets are invaluable.
It’s common for tall dress shirts (or any dress shirt, really) to tear at the bottom of the side seam, so an added touch like side seam gussets go a long way in extending the life span of your shirt. They add a bit of visual flair to the dress shirt too.
A well-fitting tall dress shirt comprised of quality fabrics can still be let down by shoddy buttons.
American Tall’s tall dress shirts feature unbreakable buttons that are, well, hard to break, and add a depth and shine only higher-quality shirt buttons can offer.
All the length, without the width
First, if you’re tall and have a slimmer, leaner, or more athletic build, you’ll want to shy away from traditional ‘big and tall’ men’s clothing, otherwise you’ll just end up looking like some sort of formal tent.
Instead, find a tall men’s clothing retailer that specializes in true tall men’s clothing that fits your frame.
Once you’ve found a retailer that sells dress shirts in tall sizes, you’ll next need to consider how you’ll be wearing your shirt. For example, if your dress shirts won’t be seen without a suit overtop, consider a shirt on the longer side so you’ll never fear the dreaded untucked shirt. If you’re wearing it to work then heading straight to the bar with the boys, you’ll need to find that sweet spot, staying tucked during the day, while going comfortably untucked after hours.
Always prioritize finding the perfect length for your frame. You’ll be surprised at just how much the length determines the frequency with which you’ll be wearing that tall dress shirt!
Find your perfect tall dress shirt at American Tall. We’ve thought of everything when it comes to the construction of our dress shirts collection – you’ll love what we’ve put together.