Archive for November 13th, 2008

Q&A: How to Dress Up a Plain Button Down Shirt

Q: How do you dress up a plain black or white button-down shirt?

Feeling the love for this set?  Here’s more information about it.

Clemence Poesyby Colleen Geary, fashion stylist and image consultant

A: While I appreciate the idea of dressing up a plain button-down shirt, the expression "you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear" comes to mind.  A plain cotton button down shirt is a workhouse garment; it’s not really meant for dressing up for going out at night.

For casual wear, however, I recommend emphasizing the sleek simplicity of the shirt by pairing it with a dark rinse jean and a pair of heeled boots.  Layer on a great looking jacket to keep the look long, lean, and simple.  Bonus points for topping off the outfit with a long scarf, like Clemence Poesy (pictured, left).

To make a plain button down shirt a little more dressed up for daytime, here’s a few ideas for standout accessories:
Necklace: Layer on a bold necklace—or two, or three.  Don’t hold back.  The bigger and bolder, the better!
Scarf: It’s amazing how a scarf can turn a simple outfit into one that’s simply stunning.  Give your plain shirt some personality with a patterned scarf.
Belt: To jazz up a plain shirt, take your belt to the extremes.  Either wear a belt that’s wide or one that’s super narrow.  If you go for the narrow option, consider wearing a two or three belts for a very downtown cool look.
Necktie: Do as men do and don a necktie.  Wear it loosely knotted for a casual menswear-as-womenswear look.

Last words?  However you choose to wear your shirt, do as Clemence Poesy does, and let your own individual beauty shine through.

Have a great tip about how to dress up a plain button down shirt? Share it with us in the comments!

2 comments November 13th, 2008

Lela Rose Finch Pump

Lela Rose Finch Pump

You’ll be able to stroll into any room in style with these stately, sophisticated pumps. Don’t you love the bow detailing?

$24.99 (sale) at Payless.

2 comments November 13th, 2008


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