It is no revelation that the classic white button-down shirt is a powerful and necessary wardrobe staple. One of my idols in the fashion industry, the iconic and elegant Carolina Herrera, has made this staple part of her “uniform.” Add to this list unforgettable women like Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Princess Diana, and Jane Birkin. And who could forget Sharon Stone, who turned heads when she showed up at the Oscars in a Gap men’s white button-down?
The white button-down shirt is a gender-neutral option, ensuring an elevated and polished look for anyone who wears it. In the past, the crisp button-down was worn underneath the power suits of men in corporate environments; it projected ambition, dominance, and no-nonsense leadership (think Mad Men). In today’s world, the white shirt has become a “staple” piece for anyone, a style proclamation for some. Designers are offering alternatives that break with the conventional “male” version of the garment, making a once limited look one that any of us can play around with through varieties of silhouettes, embellishments, embroideries, exaggerated sleeves, and fabrics.
Here are some of my favorite current ways to wear the timeless white button-down. Don’t limit it to the office!
Paired With Denim
This is current, chic and never out-of-style. It will immediately refine a casual look to a stylish, modern, and clean look.