The Hunt: Fake Collars for Layered Workoutfits (aka, Dickies) –

Yes, we all know what wardrobe essentials for work professional women must have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn down, finding just the right incarnation in stores can be a pain. in “the hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

If you’re trying to look more polished, one of the classic looks is the layered sweater look. It seems like a simple idea in theory – button front shirt + sweater, BOOM, right? But then you run into problems with static cling and bulk.

One of the classic ways to solve this problem is with the humble fake collar, aka dickie. (Sometimes also spelled dickey!) Every generation seems to rediscover these, so I thought I’d round up a few that are out there right now.

What is Dickies?

If you’re not familiar with dickies, these are what can best be described as fake collars – they’re more than a clip-on collar, but not the entire shirt. Generally they have a partial shoulder and usually some kind of elastic strap “sleeve” to keep it all anchored to your chest and lying nicely.

(Since we’re in the age of crop tops, don’t get confused—these are does not crop tops. Do not carry them alone. Especially not for work, but really, I would recommend it anywhere; a dickie is never going to look as cool as a real backless shirt.)

What are the advantages of wearing Dickies instead of shirts?

There are actually a number of benefits to wearing dickies or fake collars with work clothes. They are much less bulky than blouses, for example, and they are much easier to get things to lie properly. Because you’re unlikely to spill food on the fake collar or sweat on it (although it depends on the specific dickie), you can get away with cleaning them less.

Cost is another big plus – everything in this hunt is under $100.

They also fit whatever size you are in general – and you can even keep them in the office if you want to instantly make your outfit feel more polished.

One final note about finding Dickies for work wear

I will note that this was quite a hunt because, haha, everyone hates the term dickie. Which, hey, 1000%. But hunting for “collar” on websites is… less than helpful. (If you try to go this route, make sure you don’t end up buying an actual dog collar. Sigh.)

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The image on the website, but not below: this frilly fake collar from Etsy (with matching cuffs!).

Some great faux collars for layered work wear

woman wears fake collar, aka dickey, undershirt for a layered work outfit -- this dickey is a classic crisp white

If you’re looking for a crisp collar, Amazon is one of the easiest places to find one — there are tons of sellers with shirts in basic whites and pastels, as well plaid options, options with faux jewelsand more.

(You can also find faux turtleneck!)

The one in the picture is from the seller Tattoo; you can get a two-pair in either size medium or large for under $16.

woman wears fake collar, aka dickey, under sweater for a layered work outfit -- this dickey is a lace option with sleeves

I’m sure you’ll be shocked to learn that Etsy has a ton of great options for fake collars, all at really affordable prices.

I paint this lace with sleeves just to show that sometimes they come with sleeves – this one notes in the description that it could be worn under a dress; I also like the look of the collar to match the cuffs. (Such as. this frilly collar with matching cuffs (picture on our website), although you have to hunt a bit to find it matching cuffs.) (Etsy seller here, blooming blondeseems to specialize in that kind of necklace – oh, and she has cuffs available separately.)

I’m in love with this crisp multi-collar look, this flirtedand this artistic, all under $20. The one pictured above costs $15.99.

woman wears fake collar, aka dickey, under sweater for a layered work outfit -- this dickey is a light clean black and white option with a high, almost tangerine-like collar

They don’t really sell this one with the picture, do they? Still: Anthropologie has a pair of “collar bib,” as they call them, and they’re all on sale for $30 right now.

I’m in love with this black and white option — although here she’s wearing it on top of a shirt (?), if it was tucked under a sweater like it should be, I think it would be really cool.

woman wears fake collar, aka dickey, under sweater for a layered work outfit -- this dickey is a beige ruffled Victorian-inspired turtleneck look

The Victorian-inspired lace collar above is from Lele Sadoughi—she has a lot of cute, ultra-twee collars with lace and pearls and gems, most of them under $100. You can find them in stores like Bloomingdale’s, Neiman Marcusand of course her own website.

woman wears fake collar, aka dickey, under sweater for a layered work outfit -- this dickey is a knit pale green

Granted, everything else in the roundup is a bit buttoned up and a bit girly – so I thought I’d include this interesting cashmere dickey in fun colors from Guest in Residence. I think the colors are really fun, although I think I might be bothered if the knit of the beanie contrasted with the knit of the sweater I paired it with. But maybe that’s just me.

(If, like me, you weren’t familiar with Guest in Residence: it’s a “direct-to-consumer cashmere brand founded in New York by Gigi Hadid, who serves as creative director.”)

That pictured dickie is $95, and also comes in a taupe/lime combo.

Readers, do you like faux collars if you’re going for a layered look for sweaters? Where have you found some good ones?

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Social media images (woman with ponytail wearing plaid blazer, beige sweater and white collar) via 123rf / serezniy.

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