Thomas Crampton

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Cut Ties: Join The Mandarin Collar Society

Apr 10, 2007

At last, a cause I can fully believe in!

The CEO of Hong Kong clothing retailer Shanghai Tang, Raphael le Masne de Chermont, is launching the Mandarin Collar Society.

In addition to the Society’s presumed dedication to selling Shanghai Tang clothes, they also advocate a fight against wearing ties.

As a longtime mandarin collar wearer (not Shanghai Tang), this is something I fully agree with.

I have worn a mandarin collar in many situations where a normal tie (or even black tie) is required. The best: Walking up the red carpet at the Cannes film festival where angry bouncers normally stop any man wearing less than a dinner jacket or any woman in more than decollete dress.

Membership to the club opened in London, New York and soon Hong Kong, it remains to be seen if they will have a branch here in Paris.

The London Times already reports a backlash against the movement in Britain.

The Mandarin Collar Society credo:

  • Neckties are often discarded when men reach a certain level of success and achievement.
  • Neckties are the bearers of bad news: They show and tell the wearer when he has gained weight.
  • Neckties have no obvious function other than as soup bibs, and something for adversaries to grab in a fight.
  • Neckties waste time, encourage tardiness, and contribute to trillions of lost work hours.
  • Neckties are increasingly uncomfortable as the Earth’s temperature rises because of global warming.
  • Neckties are just fancy choke collars to impose conformity, invite enslavement, and remind the wearer that his superiors have him by the neck.
  • Neckties present health risks, choke off the oxygen supply, contribute to glaucoma, and are immediately removed in medical emergencies.
  • Neckties require expensive dry cleaning and waste money that could be spent on necessities, such as golf clubs.
  • Neckties cannot be worn with today’s ultimate style statement, the mandarin collar.

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View Comments for “Cut Ties: Join The Mandarin Collar Society”

  • iwillnotbehanged

    Neckties sure have a function: they were traditionally attached to the necks of the Croat mercenaries by their wivesk, as a memento.

    They thus have the same exact function as the leash on a dog's neck.

    Which is why I don't wear one (though I always and ever wear a handkerchief, that which most tie wearers sadly don't even bother to do).

  • Toye

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  • Ru4change

    I never liked ties...I always had issues...

  • Hi... that was great stuff.. I really like reading on this subject Could you tell me more on that... I love to explore

  • Olivia

    Absolutely awesome credo! I'm a woman and I do not like ties on men. They are reminiscent of a noose.

  • I'll help open a branch here in New Delhi but they'll likely have to call it the Nehru Collar Society.

  • I agree with your above information.Besides, a attractive suit or shirt can be worn without a tie; try wearing good looking suit with a horrible tie.Then U will find perfect result with new fashion. Generally it may grateful for businessmen.

  • Fox

    Where does one purchase a Mandarin Collar shirt? Mandarin Suits in abundance but no shirts.

  • LittleCrow, Che'

    i agree with all above, now please tell me where i can get or have this type of shirt made (for a reasonable price) thanksm Che'
    P>D> i live in the houston, tx area

  • As a woman, I really don't see the importance as a requirement. They're a nice fashion accessory, allowing for men to exhibit their personality––although unfortunately, not in certain occupations. I also don't find them sexy.

    I prefer an open neck, especially when I can see a glimpse of chest hair. And for asian men, neckties, to me, seem like a cultural imposition. Tailoring in Hong Kong is fabulous, what do you need a tie for?

    Besides, a nice suit can be worn without a tie; try wearing a nice suit with a horrible tie––the result is not the same. Eyes, especially a woman's, will focus right on the tie, and your suit will be forgotten about, trust me.

  • Anonymous Reader

    I clicked the link to your blog for the first time... since you have seen the light, a bit like st. ignatius of antioch and his conversion, i suggest that as a public service you make annother blog entry about the PROPER way to the mandarin suit look -- we cannot have a whole generation of straight men wearing button down/collar shirts... a bit like in iraq, the concept may have been well-meaning, but the execution of the plan a disaster...

    and tom, to add to the above, it must also be noted for the record, that you have been doing the nehru jacket look, not the mandarin collar look.
    yes, there is a difference. but neither should ever in any circumstance, on pain of death, be worn with a collared shirt.

  • I like ties, but I love the variety of formal dress code. It's not about one being better than the other, it all lies in the right mixture: Saudi, Indian, Mandarin combined with Western, that's what I like to see!

  • Jaffee Yee

    Yes, agree absolutely. Neckties make everyman dress the same. Why can't we Asian dress our own style for business or pleasure and be accepted everywhere?

  • Anthony


    I fully agree with the Thomas's idea to create a branch of this club in Paris.

    Like him I don't wear Shanghai Tang clothes (never heard about it before), but I'am a longtime mandarin collar wearer. Even if lately, unfortunately, I've to wear ties sometimes for my job.

    Let's create this club in Paris!!!

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