Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Faux Pas: The Gauntlet Button

I love everything about French cuffs (except their tendency to get filthy and in the way of typing).  I also like barrel cuffs, but not as much.  However, with either, pay attention to the button placket on the sleeve, known as the "gauntlet".  Some dress shirts do not have a gauntlet button.  A shirt with no gauntlet button, or worn with the gauntlet button undone, has only two possible outcomes:

1. The shirt is so well-constructed out of such splendid material, and so well-tailored to your body, that the gauntlet stays closed gently but resolutely around your arm, as though it were a woman unaccustomed to feeling anything so intense as the newfound love she feels for you.
2. You bought the shirt off the rack, and when the cuffs slide up your arm (toward the shoulder) during everyday wear, the gauntlet opens like a split melon, revealing a ghastly glimpse of pale, hairless under-forearm.

Avoid shirts with no gauntlet button.  And always button your gauntlet button unless you are absolutely confident in the quality and fit of your shirt.  Even then, check it from time to time to make sure your confidence is well-placed.  Aspire to own shirts of the sort found in hypothetical No. 1 above.


  1. I'm also an attorney. I tweeted this as a joke last Friday:

    The gauntlet button on my dress shirt fell off and was lost, so I went home early to drink. :(

  2. There's a lot of potential material there...

    I won my trial, so I went home early to drink!

    I lost my trial, so I went home early to drink.

    I couldn't get the tabs to line up properly on the Table of Authorities in my Virginia Court of Appeals brief, so I went home early to drink, then tried again later and was successful.


Questions, comments, and style ideas welcome, provided they are expressed respectfully.