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The DBag Neck Revisited

I’m confused. I went clubbing over the weekend with some new friends in West Hollywood. No, not that kind of confused. But it is well established here at the Steel Closet that you are not supposed to rock a deep v-neck t-shirt, affectionately dubbed the “douchebag” neck, for various reasons. However, and I’m trying not to generalize here, but the WeHo club community seems to embrace it. Now, I did see many offenders (example below). But I also saw some flawless, tasteful executions. I’ve been trying to rationalize them for days. Here’s what I came up with:

My philosophy of calculated expression stems from what I believe are three basic elements of style: practicality, individuality, and comfort [more on this in later posts]. We have rules of style based on the element of practicality–how an article of clothing affects the world around you. Some places have expectations, and the rules ensure you meet them. I did not know what to expect in WeHo, so I donned my standard: slim dress shirt, skinny tie (clipped but unstaggered), slim black jeans, belt and laceless Chucks. I can look good and feel good in this anywhere, day or night.

“You look really nice. It’s going to be hot in there.” Says my new friend before we leave. I appreciate the compliment, but brushed it off because he was rocking the DBag neck. Once inside, I learned the error of my judgment. Rage, West Hollywood, is sweltering. The patrons just do not stop dancing. My date almost passed out from heat exhaustion. And I, in my standby, was drenched.

Enter the Deep V-Neck. My new friend showed no sign of stress, just pure enjoyment. Undoubtedly, the DV-Neck provided much needed ventilation, but was also accepted within the community. I finally understood its purpose when I wished I wore one. From a practicality standpoint, the DV-Neck is a winner in this WeHo club culture. But I was much more impressed with his execution. There are definitely classy ways to wear it, and times when you absolutely should not.

The DV-Neck, at its core, is an undershirt–designed to wick sweat away from the body and keep your other clothes clean. Wearing an undershirt alone is unacceptable, and I’m sticking by that. Unlike a crew or regular v-neck t-shirt, the material is usually more sheer and, as designed, exposes more than needed. That’s simply not tasteful. And sorry, the better quality designer models are no substitute for a regular tee. If you need ventilation during your hot casual summer day, rock a tank top.

Your classy application is just as intended, an undershirt. Wear something over it. Unbutton what you wear for ventilation. If it gets too hot in the club, take it off, it’s okay. The beauty of wearing many articles of clothing is that you can take it off, and replace when needed for practicality’s sake. My friend rocked a purple one underneath an H&M short sleeve with slim grey jeans and white hi-top chucks. It was simple, practical, and tasteful. I was impressed. A colored DV-Neck adds a subtle touch of style and individuality when layered, with the added benefit of being tasteful and able to breathe. This is something I would imitate. I wish I had a picture, but I was too embarrassed to ask.

There you have it. The DV-Neck, broken down. Party hard, West Hollywood.



  1. Posted July 23, 2008 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

    i dunno. i just cant handle the deep v. i understand that it can be covered up. but why wear ir in the first place.

  2. Nate Quesadilla
    Posted July 23, 2008 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

    That picture is infamous. One of the first image pop ups when I searched for a deep-vee. You’re right in that it’s infamous in WeHo. I guess the atmosphere just brings it out. When I do wear the one normal v-neck I have, I usually wear a colored, printless shirt underneath.

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