Glossary of Menswear Terms

Baffled by blazers? Perplexed by plackets? No fear! We have a glossary of key menswear terms we think are handy to know.


A multi-coloured diamond pattern, usually in wool. Usually found on socks and sweaters.

Bengal Stripe:

Alternating stripes of equal width, usually white and a colour. They were originally shipped to world markets from Bengal, India and are usually found on shirts.


A lightweight jacket, usually solid-coloured, often woven as part of a uniform by members of a club or sports team.

Brushed Cotton:

Traditionally used for casual shirts and many Tattersall check shirts. It has a slightly napped surface and is very soft to the touch.

Button-Down Collar:

A shirt where the collar ends are fastened to the shirt with buttons.


A durable, cotton twill fabric.

Crew Neck:

A jumper with a round neck.


A small check pattern with notched corners, which looks like a tooth of a dog.

Donegal Tweed:

A hard-scoured, homespun Tweed originally hand woven in County Donegal, Ireland. It is a plain-weave cloth of differently-coloured warp and weft, with small pieces of yarn in various colours woven in at irregular intervals to produce a heathered effect.


A double-chested jacket is cut to allow over-lapping at the front closing with 2 vertical rows of buttons and a single row of button-holes. It usually has a single button on the underside to secure the fabric on the other side.


This is a type of closely woven, plain weave cloth created using one darker and one lighter (usually white) thread, resulting in a unique heathered appearance.

Fair Isle:

A colourful knitting pattern with cross bands of colour in a jigsaw type of configuration against a sandy background.

Flat Front:

Trousers without pleats. A sleek, clean look.

Full Grain Oiled Leather:

A type of leather that has not been buffed or sanded which means it displays the more natural characteristics of leather.


The thickness of a garment. The higher the number the finer the knit (thinner the jumper). e.g. 12 gauge is fine knit merino wool, 5 gauge is chunky lambswool.


A dyed-in-the-yarn fabric, an exact replica of the madras fabric. A checked design, usually white with another colour.

Harris Tweed:

The trademark of woollen material spun, dyed and woven by hand.


Herringbone weaves are in fact a type of twill and take their name from their distinctive v-weaved weave pattern similar to the bones of a herring.


Jersey was first made off the English Coast and used for fishermen’s clothing. It is commonly found in t-shirts and is very resilient with fine draping qualities and crease resistance. Jersey wears and washes well.


The turned-back front section of a jacket or coat that connects to the collar and forms a ‘V’ where the jacket or coat closes.


A bold plain-weave fabric. This lightweight fabric was originally hand woven in Madras, India from cotton yarns dyed with native vegetable colourings.


This refers to two different coloured threads twisted together, creating a heather effect.


A heavy cotton fabric, woven and then sheared to create a short soft pile on one side. Well-known for it’s almost suede like feel. It is long wearing and substantial.


A type of buffed leather which allows the surface to have fibres stimulating the look and feel of suede.


The term placket often refers to the double layers of fabric that hold the buttons and buttonholes in a shirt. Plackets can also be found at the neckline of a shirt, the cuff of a sleeve, or at the waist of a skirt or pair of trousers.


This is the quintessential shirt fabric and uses fine yarns with a simple under/over weave pattern that creates a variety of shirting fabrics, each with their own unique look and handle.

Pull-Up Leather:

A leather with a natural appearance which lightens in colour when stretched during wear to produce a unique worn in effect with time.


This fabric has a weft thread that runs over and under multiple warp threads, creating a diagonal weave.


This is the lengthwise yarn that is held in tension on a frame or loom to create cloth.


This is the yarn which is drawn over and under the warp.






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