Searching for the perfect neckline? Learn how to distinguish between 24 types of necklines in this visual guide. This post has details and characteristics of different necklines available for various tops and dresses.
What is a Neckline?
A neckline is the shape of the front neck opening of a clothing garment. It is an important design element for tops and dresses.
Different necklines are often categorized by shape and how they frame the neck and upper body.
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The Importance of Types of Necklines
When you your personal style, there are a lot of things to think about: color, fit, and shape are just a few.
All of these factors can be overwhelming. However, if you really want to optimize a wardrobe and style that you love, it is essential to take all the various elements into account.
You must consider not just how a garment looks but how it looks on you. That includes considering the neckline – an element of clothing design that is often overlooked.
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24 Types of Necklines
Whether you are shopping for a new top, dress, or special occasion outfit, knowing the neckline most suitable for your personal style and body type will make your shopping so much easier.
Necklines are also an important consideration for jewelry! The type of neckline can impact what type of necklace and earrings you wear with an outfit.
This list (provided alphabetically) is an overview of the different types of necklines. These are some of the most popular necklines seen in fashion today. It is also common for necklines to include a mix of two styles below to create a unique style.
Asymmetry is when something contains two parts that are not equal. An asymmetrical neckline has two different sides where the neckline is typically higher on one side and lower on the other. If you were to fold the top or dress in half the two sides would not line up and be different.
An asymmetrical neckline is common for tank tops, blouses, and t-shirts. This is an eye-catching and fashion forward neckline style that draws attention upwards to the face.
A boatneck neckline is a wide, high cut that exposes the collarbone. This is also known as a bateau neckline.
Boatnecks are popular because they are very flattering yet modest, making it suitable for several body types. Formalwear and dressier garments often contain boatneck style as it is a an elegant design element. You may recall this neckline was often seen on the infamous Audrey Hepburn, a legendary style icon.
3. Collar Necklines
A collar neckline is exactly what the name implies, it is a neckline with a collar attached. A collar is fabric that is downturned and rests on top of the fabric underneath.
Collars come in all shapes and sizes, including classic collar, club collar, button down collar, and long line collars.
Menswear and professional attire are two of the most popular types of collared clothing types. most button-down shirts contain some variation of a collar neckline.
4. Cowl neck
A cowl neckline contains loosely draped fabric at the neck opening. Depending on the cut of the neckline, the draping can be either slightly curved or elongated into a v shape. Either way, these types of necklines are very flattering and elegant.
While you will often see cowl necks emerge in the Fall on beautiful knit sweaters, it is not uncommon to see this neckline in silky blouses and tank tops during Summer months.
5. Crew Types of Necklines
A crew neckline is a simple rounded shape that sits high, usually hitting around the collarbone or base of the neck. This is the most common neckline for casual t-shirts.
Dressier garments with a crew neck look great with longer chain necklaces that lay flat against the top.
This is a great neckline for modest attire, casual outfits, and even for layering. It is an extremely versatile neckline!
6. Halter Necklines
Halter types of necklines are found on sleeveless garments and are secured behind the neck with a tie, snap, or button closure. The design of the chest area can vary from a deep plunging v, to a full coverage high neck. Either way, a halter neckline is most flattering on broad shoulders.
It is also important to note that halter styles often leave your back exposed. This is a very popular style for formal dresses.
7. Illusion Types of Necklines
Illusion necklines utilize both solid and sheer fabrics to create an illusion of a full coverage top. The solid fabric covers the bust area in one type of neckline, while the sheer fabric usually extends up to the collar bone in the same, or different, neckline type.
This is another popular option for bridal and formal dresses. The mixture of textures creates an elevated look, while offering also coverage.
8. Jewel Necklines
A jewel neckline is a rounded hem that sits slightly above the collar bone, covering the base of the neck. This uncommon neckline allows for wearer to showcase necklaces that fit tighter around the neck.
9. Keyhole Necklines
Keyhole necklines have an oval shaped hole in the front center of a garment, just beneath the neckline hem. This creates a peek-a-boo opening, revealing skin behind the hole. The hole shape can vary, so be mindful of cleavage and keyhole location when shopping keyhole types of necklines.
10. Mock Neck
A mock neckline is similar to a turtleneck, but sits much lower on the neck. The mock neck style usually sits and inch or two above the collar bone. The fabric of this neckline is not intended to be folded over, rather it sits flats against the skin.
11. Notched Types of Necklines
Notched necklines contain a slit, or a slight v-shape, in the center of the neckline. This is usually seen in necklines that are rounded and sit closer to the neck.
A notched neckline is a great alternative to v-neck, especially if you are looking for more coverage in the chest area.
Off-the-shoulder garments have sleeves and a very wide neck opening, leaving the collar bone and shoulders completely exposed. The top hem of the sleeves rests at the widest point of the shoulder and the neckline extends across the chest to the other shoulder.
Off-the-shoulders are common in bohemian style and also in formal dresses.
13. One shoulder
As the name suggests, one shoulder necklines have one side of the garment secured over one shoulder, leaving the other shoulder exposed. One shoulder garments can be long sleeve, short sleeve, or tank top.
14. Plunging Types of Necklines
The plunging neckline is an exaggerated version of the v-neck and extends deep, leaving the center chest to be completely open.
Plunging necklines are very sexy and revealing, most garments require some type of fashion tape to secure the fabric to the skin in order to avoid unwanted exposure.
15. Queen Anne
A regal neckline, full of intricate details is the queen anne. The queen anne neckline is essentially a sweetheart neckline with curved straps.
This elegant neckline is common in bridal attire and formal gowns.
16. Scalloped Types of Necklines
Scalloped necklines have a decorative edging at the top, featuring semi-circles around the entire neck opening. This is a feminine and dainty neckline.
17. Scoop Types Necklines
A scoop neck garment has a wide U-shape neck opening. A scoop neck leaves the collar bone and mid upper chest area exposed. This is a timeless neckline and is popular for various garment types.
Square necklines are exactly what the name suggests, a square shape! This neckline comes in all different sizes, from wide to narrow. It is also seen is various garments including dresses, sweaters, blouses, tank tops, and more!
19. Straight Types of Necklines
The straight-across neckline is entirely straight across from one shoulder, across the chest, and to the other shoulder. A straight across neckline may have sleeves or it can also have a sleeveless look.
A straight neckline is versatile so you will see this in both casual wear and formalwear.
20. Strapless Necklines
As you know, strapless necklines, have no sleeves or straps. The garment is free standing.
Strapless necklines often incorporate other neckline designs such as sweetheart, notch, scalloped, or straight.
The surplice neckline gives the illusion of a wrap top, but unlike a true wrap, the overlapping fabric pieces are sewn together. The surplice gives a crossover effect, and exposes the skin in a v-shape.
22. Sweetheart Necklines
Sweetheart necklines feature a hemline that is shaped like the top of a heart. Many people believe that only curvy body types can wear this neckline, however it is flattering on all shapes and sizes!
The sweetheart neckline is widely popular in bridal gowns and other formal dresses.
A turtle neck sits several inches above the base of the neck and usually is snug against the neck. Excess fabric is folded down or inward.
This neckline is great if your are want maximum coverage or extra warmth against cold temperatures. Turtlenecks are extremely popular throughout the Fall and Winter months!
V-neck necklines form a “V” shape in the center. This neckline can be shallow or deep. This is another neckline that is versatile, seen in casual t-shirts and also in formalwear.
Here is a List of 24 Types of Necklines
Round neck or Crew neck
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