Sartorial details of the shirt: what’s the placket

One of the most important components of a dress shirt, the placket keeps your shirt looking smart and functioning well. There are four types of plackets for the modern man, which serves different roles in making a shirt: buttoning with no front placket, buttoning with placket, hidden buttons and popover. Each of these laces serves to adapt the dress shirt to different occasions of use. Let’s see the details.

What’s the placket

The shirt placket refers to the part of your shirt where the buttonholes are placed. Located at the centre front, plackets are almost always made with more than one layer of fabric. In the past, plackets were entirely separate pieces of cloth that were sewn to the front; today, the edges are simply folded.

Read on the types plackets and get to know which one is best for you.

Standard placket

Detail of a custom shirt with standard placket
Detail of a custom shirt with standard placket

It is a visible placket, also known as American placket. Found most often on everyday dress shirts and casual shirts, the shirt fabric is folded back over the front and stitched to create a visible strip of raised fabric (sometimes an extra strip of fabric is attached instead of just folding).

It is a great choice for a business wardrobe, and also looks very good with a tie.

No front placket (French placket)

Detail of a custom shirt with a French placket
Detail of a custom shirt with a French placket

The French front is a popular placket, the material of the shirt folded towards the underside. No stitches show towards the front as they are present on the underside. This cleaner, plain front gives shirts a very neat look that fits perfectly with the modern man’s needs.

The shirt with this placket can easily be worn in both business and casual contexts.

Concealed placket (hidden buttons)

Detail of a custom shirt with a concealed placket
Detail of a custom shirt with a concealed placket

As the name suggests, this refers to a placket where the buttons are hidden behind the front center of the shirt. An extra layer is folded and stitched like a flap to hide the front buttons completely. A concealed placket gives you a sleek and sophisticated appearance, which is the reason it is usually reserved for shirts worn during special occasions.

It is used for the shirt worn with the tuxedos alongside a silk bow tie for the most formal events.

Popover buttoning

Popover cannon on white and red striped shirt
The popover placket

The popover placket is certainly the most casual and sporty among the various options available. As with the traditional placket, the fabric is folded on the front and sewn to create a visible strip of fabric in relief, but the lacing is shorter, it stops after 17 cm of opening (+ 3 cm of “bottom”) and includes only three buttons.

The popover shirt therefore becomes very similar in look to a polo shirt (although the fabric and workmanship are always those typical of a dress shirt), perfect for leisure and to show off a sporty and disengaged style.

Placket or no placket?

A man wearing a custom light blue shirt with standard placket
A placket is a great way to make your custom shirt exactly the way you want it to be.

Adding a suitable placket is a great way to make your made to measure shirt exactly the way you want it to be, considering where you will be wearing the shirt. Do you ever wonder which one is the best option? As always, it depends only on your personal style and occasion.

For a modern man who wears suits to the office and attends more formal events and meetings it is suggested to wear a shirt with a no-placket (french placket) accompanied with or without a tie.

For men who are like the smart casual way of dressing or shirt and tie sets, for them, it is wise to go for a standard placket. This placket goes with suits, trendy trousers, jeans and easily paired with blazers.

If you want to opt for a sports solution, perhaps as an alternative to polo shirt, the popover shirt is a must: perfect in spring and summer, to be combined to a pair of chino pants to complete a broken suit look for free time.

There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to no placket or standard placket, but the only rule to follow is the one for the concealed placket. If you are getting a tuxedo or a groom suit, always go for the concealed placket for the shirt to get that polished black tie look.

All Lanieri made to measure shirts can be customized by choosing between hidden, standard, popover or without a placket. Click the button below to choose the fabric and start creating your shirt.