Menswear Glossary: Tuxedos & Suits

Menswear Glossary: Tuxedos & Suits

When you are searching for your suits and tuxedos, it can be overwhelming. To get you started we've put together the most frequently used terms.


Jacket Terms

Top Collar – The part of the collar that runs along the back of the neck. The top collar meets the lapel at the gorge. Most top collars are “self” – the same material as the coat.


Notch Lapel A notch is cut out between the top collar and the lapel.


Peak Lapel – The top of the lapel is pointed sharply upward and outward.


Shawl Lapel– There is no change from the collar to the lapel, it is a rounding continuation of the collar.


Gorge – Where the lapels start and the collar ends. A very low gorge is down the middle of the chest.


Button Stance – Position where the coat first buttons on the chest. Usually defined as a normal, low or high button stance. 


V-Zone  – The area between the jacket and the shirt. It showcases the balance between the shirt, tie and the jacket in a "v" shape.


Vents – Various styles: opening in the lower part of a seam; a slit in the garment; tuxedo types: center vent, non-vented, side vented.


Single Breasted – As the fashion moves and changes quickly there are many variations to the single breasted jackets. Commonly they will be between 1 to 3 buttons while keeping the bottom button always worn undone.


Double Breasted As a fashion enhancement, many modern styles have 4 or 6 buttons on the front of the coat. Double Breasted jackets feature a section of the front overlapping creating a tighter v-zone 

Shirt Terms

Wing-Tip Collar – Also known as stand up collar. A formal shirt, usually with a pleated front that has wing-like pointed appendages.


Laydown Collar  Similar to most men’s dress shirts, a regular fold over style collar, usually with a pleated front.


Mandarin Collar A shirt with banded collar


Pant Terms

Rise – the distance from the crotch to the waist. Usually a rise corresponds to the length of the jacket.


Side Tabs – a buckle and clasp adjustment that allows the waistband to expand and adjust the waist. Sometimes used instead of belt loops 


Pleats – Pants with single or double pleat to offer the wearer more movements and comfort. 


Accessory Terms


Studs – A small ornamental button mounted on a short post for insertion through an eyelet designated for studs.


Cuff Links – Ornamental device of two parts joined by a shank, chain or bar for passing through button-holes to fasten shirt cuffs.