Other people are talking about clerical collars

Provoke me, will ya’ fellas? Actually, I’m not-so-secretly pleased that seminarians Joseph Lyons-Santos and John Cullinan are considering their merits.

Readers should do a search of this blog of the extensive discussion that’s gone on here before.

Just a couple of comments. But I’m afraid I don’t have much to offer women in the ministry since the tailoring demands are so different. (Would someone comment?)

There is something of a code of churchmanship among collar wearers. I go as low church as possible by wearing “a Moravian”, the all-the-way-around collar marketed as a “neckband collar.” A taller collar reads “lower church” and mine are 4 cm high, the highest available. If you want to wear a shirt with a “notched collar” get the widest notch you can for the same reason; they’re usually marketed to Episcopalians.

Shorter, heavier men should get their shirts from Friar Tuck or R. J. Toomey, a.k.a. “Roomy Toomey.”

While I’m not particularly thin, I am tall and so my favorite shirts are from Barbiconi. They might mail order, but if you’re in Rome they’re worth the visit. I have the PS-N worn without the collarette.

Their cloth-covered collars are a dream, but if you can’t get them avoid the acetate devils sold by C. E. Buckley, especially if you have sensitive skin. They’re beautiful, especially if you fancy yourself an Edwardian country vicar. You want the plastic ones with the corny marketing that feel like they’re made of milk bottles. Sad but true.

There are fine leather boxes one can get — more than $50! ordination gifts? — to keep one’s collars and buttons safe, but I’ve used a Rubbermaid Servin’ Saver #2 circular container for years quite nicely, thank you.

Categorized as Vestments

By Scott Wells

Scott Wells, 46, is a Universalist Christian minister doing Universalist theology and church administration hacks in Washington, D.C.


  1. Oh, PB, you’re exempt and you were exactly the one I was thinking of when I wrote that men’s and women’s tailoring was different!

    In other news, you were remembered with great love and fondness at Chez Bands last night. You know why.

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