Allow the Turtleneck to Deck Your Neck!

Today is September 6, 2013 and I just passed a building sign in Yorba Linda, California (Orange County) that displays the time and the current outside temperature. The time showed 2:10 pm and the temperature was 102 degrees Fahrenheit. Hot! Sizzling Hot! I love heat, I love this weather!

So why am I posting a fashion blog on turtleneck sweaters and garments on a scorching day like today? Because somewhere in the world someone is reading this blog post who is wearing a turtleneck, as they are far away from Southern California. Also, it won’t stay 102 degrees forever, and very soon we will certainly have some cold, blustery days where dressing in a turtleneck garment feels as cozy and comfortable as drinking a hot cup of coffee or tea or hot chocolate! Yum, hot chocolate!

A turtleneck is a garment, often a sweater, with a close-fitting, round, and high collar that folds over and covers the neck.  The collar of a turtleneck can be worn either unfolded and high, or folded down.

Here is a picture of me wearing a turtleneck dress, and I have chosen to fold the neck down, however, if preferred, I can choose to have the collar cover my entire neck.


Turtleneck Fun Fact: Turtlenecks are also referred to as polo necks, roll-necks or skivvys.


Since most turtleneck clothing is made from knits and have long sleeves, turtlenecks are most often considered garments ideal for winter and fall, and cold weather.

A simpler variant of the turtleneck is the mock turtleneck, that resembles the turtleneck with the soft folds that stand up around the neck, but both ends of the tube forming the collar are sewn to the neckline. This collar gives the appearance of a turtleneck, yet the fabric doesn’t fray, roll or slink down.

One thing about turtlenecks, the garment itself decorates your neck!



Turtleneck garments have been worn for hundreds of years, dating back to at least the 15th century. From the late 19th century on, turtlenecks were commonly worn by athletes, sailors and naval officers.

Turtlenecks are a unisex garment, with men looking just as stylish and hot in a turtleneck as women do. Vladimir Putin of Russia and Andreas Papandreou of Greece are two examples of European men who are fond of wearing turtleneck sweaters.



Turtleneck Fun Fact: Turtlenecks have historically acted as substitutes of the traditional and dominant shirt and tie look.

A great way to wear a turtleneck on a blistery day is underneath a jacket. The turtleneck collar covering the neck prevents one from needing to wear a neck scarf!



I’ve always enjoyed wearing turtlenecks in cold weather. I don’t do well with cold, and I find turtlenecks to be both attractive and versatile. Most turtlenecks are made from materials that cling to, and move freely, with the body.

Elegant turtlenecks of silk and nylon silk, especially made with French cuffs for formal dress affairs, are popular in American fashion.

Turtleneck Fun Fact: By the late 1950s, the “tight turtleneck” had been adopted as part of the preppy style among students, a style that emphasized neatness, tidiness and grooming. This became an important aspect of the turtleneck’s image in the United States, and this look would filter through to Britain and other parts of Europe.

Turtlenecks are flattering, comfortable and the unique collar highlights the face!


Turtlenecks (along with V-necks) rank at the top of the image known as the “sweater girl look”.


I think that unfolded turtleneck sweaters look best when worn without any neck jewelry. However, if you do want some type of necklace to accent your sweater, a long, dangling chain or a long strand of thin pearls looks classy and elegant. Chokers are not a good fit for a turtleneck collar.

Allow the turtleneck to deck your neck!

I particularly love large, hoop earrings or long, flowing earrings with turtleneck garments!

Accessorize yourself to your own turtleneck signature style!


Celebrities’ Influence on Fashion: Turtlenecks became big fashion for wealthy young men after the iconic shirt was worn by European film stars Marcello Mastroianni and Yves Montand.

Turtle Fun Fact: I have a Russian Box Tortoise (Bowser) who lives in the atrium of my house. When Bowser’s head comes out of his shell, rarely does Bowser expose his neck. Therefore, I understand why the turtleneck collar has been christened with the term “turtleneck”! Hence, the neck is generally hidden from view! However, when I hold Bowser and he wants down, his neck stretches to super long proportions as he tries to get away!

Turtleneck garments are known to cling to the neck smoothly, are easy to wear both casually and dressy, are fashionable to look at, and maneuver easily with the body!

So the next time that you want to decorate yourself with trendy garments and also deck your neck, I suggest the turtleneck!

What the heck, try the turtleneck!

Author Nancy Mangano is the author of two novels, A Passion for Prying and Murder Can Be Messy. Nancy has woven her love of detective work along with her passion for fashion into her books. Visit Nancy on her author website, her author/fashion/style blog, Twitter @nancymangano and her author “like” Facebook fan page Nancy Mangano.


About authornancymangano

Nancy Mangano resides in Orange County, CA. She has blended her love of detective work and style in her novels, A Passion for Prying and Murder Can Be Messy.
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4 Responses to Allow the Turtleneck to Deck Your Neck!

  1. Kathy c says:

    Hi Nancy,
    Odd you should mention the heat as I thought of you this week knowing you would be the only one i know enjoying the heat with a smile.
    Kathy C.


  2. m1ke1970 says:

    I LOVE seeing women wearing high/tight turtlenecks, especially librarians and teachers, who wear them with blazers, eyeglasses, and pencil skirts; and they look so sexy and serious!



  3. Hi Mike,

    I agree, that’s a great look. Sweet and sassy. I’m glad you’re enjoying my style posts!



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