The Popover: History, Style, and Sizing Tips


Flash back to the 1960s, the New Haven-based brand Gant took the standard sport shirt and made some interesting tweaks. Ending the placket at the bottom of the chest was a bold move and ended up becoming the popover we know and love today (deriving its name from “popping” it on over your head).


The popover is decidedly a casual style, but one that is versatile enough to pair with an unstructured sport coat. Similar to the soft front placket, but with only 4 buttons at the top. This style cannot be unbuttoned fully, so be sure it’s not too tight to put on or take off!

Widen the Chest and Midsection

To ensure that your popover shirt will be reasonably easy enough to put on or take off, we suggest making a few adjustments to your shirt size. Since the shirt goes on over your head, you’ll need some increased ease in the chest and midsection. Adding 0.5” to the chest width and the midsection width will make the overhead experience much easier. Those who favor the Tailored Armpit fit and a trimmer bicep (sleeve width) may also want to opt for the Full Armpit fit when creating a popover size.

Shorten the Shirt Length for an Untucked Fit

Last, like any casual shirt, you’ll want to widen the midsection and shorten the shirt length with respect to your tucked-in dress shirt size. If you already have a casual, untucked shirt size you may not need to make any adjustments at all. For an untucked shirt fit, we recommend shortening the shirt length 1.0” to 2.5”. Remember, you’ll have to fit this shirt over your head without unbuttoning the bottom half of the shirt, so extra space in the torso is necessary.