Robin's Nest Columns

Robin's columns appear in five newspapers across the metro Atlanta area: Sandy Springs Reporter, Dunwoody Reporter, Brookhaven Reporter,
Buckhead Reporter, and Atlanta Senior Life.



By Robin Conte

I’m not exactly fashion-forward.  My wardrobe is basically dictated by what I can find that fits me and is on sale, so it’s a limited collection.  But there’s a trend I’ve noticed while Windows shopping during lunchtime, and in fact it’s been around and persistently gaining momentum for the last few years.  It’s the half-tuck. You might know it by another name, as it’s the style formally known as the front-tuck.

You see, once upon a time, there were two ways to wear a shirt: 1. Tucked-in, or 2. Not.  

Then a new fashion crept upon the scene, persistently gaining momentum, until it earned its own name, i.e., the front tuck.  The front tuck is a somewhat self-explanatory style that involves wearing a loose shirt and tucking-in only the front of it. The front tuck has a sister called the side-tuck, which is what happens when only one-half of a buttoned-down shirt is tucked-in.  Then the Tuck family grew and all kinds of tucks were born: the side-tuck, the back-tuck, the casual-tuck, the tight-tuck, the loose-tuck, the twist-n-tuck, the wrap-n-tuck, and, as often happens in large families, people started calling these tucklings by the same name.  So the front-tuck is also called the half-tuck or the casual-tuck, which leaves the half-tuck with nothing to be called but the half-half-tuck, or the full gainer.

It took me a while to catch-on.  For the longest time, I noticed the J. Crew catalogue models wearing their tops only partly tucked, and I actually thought they were advertising their belts.  

But let’s get back to the front-tuck/half-tuck, remembering all the while of course, that I am not a stylist--I only watch them on Youtube--so I am not doling out fashion advice, I am merely passing along what I have gleaned.  My understanding is that this sassy, part-in, part-out, non-comital tuck is designed to give your shirt a split personality (kind of like Superman when he takes off his glasses) by making it look professional in the front and all crazy in the back,  and if you do it right, you have a neatly tucked bit of shirt somewhere along the front of your jeans and a free-flowing fiesta of fabric elsewhere, which announces to everyone that you are NOT a geek, but a slave to fashion.

You might be wondering, how much tuck does a person tuck if a person could half-tuck?  Rest assured that you can google “mastering the half-tuck” and find a plethora of internet tutorials on how to achieve this casual, carefree look.

If, however, you google “back-tuck,” you will find videos of a gymnastic move.

It doesn’t work on me.  I’m either all in or all out.  Oh, I tried. I watched the tutorials and worked with my forefinger and my cotton-blend fabric, spending way more time dressing myself than truly necessary, in an attempt to make my shirt display just the right amount of attitude.  But I never arrived at “jaunty,” I only accomplished “disheveled.” I might make a belt-wink with my shirt, but that ends up sloppy, too.

So I’ve concluded that until this fashion trend plays out, I’ll just stick with dresses.