Formal wear looks great on everyone. Especially a suit with a crisp white shirt neatly tucked in and, of course, a collar. 

Look how great David Burtka and Neil Patrick Harris look in their bow-tie collars! 

Not just men, women too adore collars. But they are so much more than just an extra piece of cloth to hold our ties or make us look cool. Once upon a time, they served an important purpose! 

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In mid-19th century Europe and America, there were detachable collars which saved people from the humdrum routine of washing clothes. How awesome is that?

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Wait, there's more. 

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There were collar dresses for women too. They, too, were detachable. Two reasons: fashionable accessories and to avoid laundry. 

Back then, most dresses weren't as regularly washed as they are now and laundry was way more expensive and exhausting.

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This one might remind you of a costume party, but back then, even this was pretty normal.

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But how did detachable collars help in decreasing the workload?

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Back in the day, men had their shirts hidden under, say, a waistcoat, å jacket or a sweater, and the only exposed part was the collar and the cuff. They would easily get dirty after a hard day's work. Now, obviously a waistcoat couldn't hide that from prying eyes. Therefore, to combat long-washing days, garments came along with detachable collars and cuffs to make laundry much, much easier. 

Genius, ain't it?

It's interesting to note that collars and cuffs were both usually white and were made of sturdy material which could easily be washed or bleached. 

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Today, shirts and collars are inseparable. They are conventional and expected. 

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Well... also because they're incredibly hot!

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