The button-down shirt is one of those wardrobe staples you simply cannot do without. A casual spin on the button-front shirt with a few extra details, this is one of those types of women’s shirts that are essential but often considered basic in the fashion landscape — you too will have plenty of them lying around in the closet.
Well, if it’s as common as it is a popular piece of apparel, you’d better enlighten yourself on the many ways to wear a button-down shirt. Also, have some styling tips up your sleeve to ensure yours are not only put into use but also look on fleek.
We’re here to help you discover new ways to wear this classic shirt in a fresh way. From weekend outfits to workwear looks to laid-back oversized long shirt outfits here are some outfit inspirations that will make you want to get in your closet and throw on a button-down ASAP.
What To Expect In This Article?
Button-Down vs. Button Up — What’s The Difference?
Most women on a shopping spree for buttoned shirts, hardly care whether the shirt is a button-up or button-down. They like the print, the fabric, or the cut, they take it. But when you bring adhering to a certain dress code into this scenario, knowing how they are different from each other makes all the difference.
What exactly is the difference between a button-down shirt and a button-up shirt? It all comes down to the buttons on the collar.
Button-up shirts refer to the most popular style of shirt that has buttons running all the way up to the neckline. Also called dress shirts or button-front shirts they are a classic option for any formal event you’re attending or even for curating a semi-formal outfit for women.
A button-down shirt is a casual interpretation of a button-up shirt with two extra buttons on the collar, fastened to keep the collar in place. Originally these buttons were introduced in polo shirts for professional polo players to prevent the collars from flapping up, potentially causing an accident & maintaining a neat appearance.
Later they met button-up shirts and the button-down iteration came out — casual, cool with an easy-going vibe. However, they’re also a chic outfit option for work too. All you need to do is throw on a blazer in white or any other conservative color and voila. You’re ready to get down to business — or at least look like it.
How To Style A Button-Down Shirt? — 7 Amazing Ideas!
Ladies, now that you are up to speed on the difference between the button-up & button-down, let’s get back to how to style a button-down shirt in ways you have never before. Without further ado, let’s begin.
Drip Elegance & Style- Button-Down Shirts With Leather Jackets
Think of outerwear and what do you see? If you are anything like us, it would be leather jackets. A good quality leather jacket is a key clothing item in every girl’s closet. Coming in different styles, finishes and cuts, from biker to bombers to suede, you can choose your favorite. But, one thing is for sure, they are always cool and you can wear a leather jacket in endless ways.
To up your style game with a leather jacket and mix it up, look at a simple, classic piece like a button-down shirt. It’s a seasonless combo and there are endless ways to wear it. Pair a white shirt with black straight jeans and a black leather biker jacket for a super easy black and white outfit that’s perfect for casual outings.
Switch the straight leg jeans with boot cut jeans, wear stilettos with the same leather jacket and button-down shirt—you are ready for a dinner date night with your sweetie. For office attire, keep the leather jacket simple, the button-down in neutral shades, and shoes formal.
Boardroom To The Bar- Button-Down Shirts With Pencil Skirts
Pencil skirts with button-down shirts are a match made in fashion heaven. These slim-fitting, narrow skirts inject an instant feminine glamor to your outfit and help you flaunt your silhouette in a classy way.
When paired with classic button-down shirts & blouses they offer a polished look ready for the office, a dinner party, or even a night out on the town. We recommend wearing a pencil skirt in longer lengths with button-downs in neutral colors for work attire.
For an unexpected fashionable twist on this combo, perfect for after-hours, pick floral pencil skirts, one with a fancy frill hem, or leather skirts. If your skirt is patterned or printed or funky, pick a button-down that is relatively simple– solid shirts preferred, to create a striking balance.
Ace The Trendy Corporate Look- Button-Down Shirts With Long Coats
Button-downs are a wardrobe staple for the modern trendy corporate set. In fact, we bet there are more button-downs than dress shirts available at your favorite retailers—not to blame them, there is little to no room for experimentation when it comes to formal dress shirt outfits for women.
Think of button-down shirts in the fit to be the bread of any corporate trendy outfit, the base. Then there’s a variety of other creative things to put on top. Long coats are one of the best outerwear choices for it.
When paired with a long coat like a trench, a duffel or duster, you’re given a powerful trendy look for a professional appearance. A little more formal than you can achieve with a button-down with a leather jacket outfit and a little less than one with a blazer.
Be A Style Queen- Oversize Button-Down Shirts With Jeans
Oversized shirts are a trendy piece of casual wear that has been in style for quite some time now. The trend is not fading anytime soon with the celebs giving us a healthy dose of street style oversized button-down shirt outfit ideas every now and then.
That is why we are turning up the volume on this top trend for all the cheerful lively girls out there. An oversized shirt is already comfortable on its own but when paired with jeans it takes them to a whole new level of coolness and comfort.
Light blue denim is a timeless classic and ideal color for this combo. As far as the fit is concerned, you can for any– boyfriend, parallel, skinny, baggy, or any other in-style jeans that will flatter your figure.
Pair it with a crisp white oversize shirt for a breezy summer outfit or solid black that is already sitting in your closet ready for action. Conclude this outfit with your go-to boots, sneakers or heels.
Craft A Dreamy Summer Outfit- Button-Down Shirts With Denim Shorts
Denim is one of those trends that you’ll never get rid of, so you might as well make the investment for the summers too! Get yourself a pair of denim shorts ( or maybe ten), frayed hem ripped, and more!
Because what says summer more than a short? Yep, denim shorts. While t-shirts and crop tops are a top pick to pair with these shorts, there’s a lot that can be done with this cute denim bottom. One stylish fashion trend that goes hand in hand with this popular bottom is matching it with a fun button-down.
This is one of the many cute ways to wear a button-down shirt. We’ll show you how to do it! Pick a solid white button-down shirt and wear it with high-waisted light blue denim shorts and a pair of sandals– this is a classic! For preppy beachwear with a pop of color, a purple color button-down shirt in tie-dye print will look amazing with denim shorts too.
Thinking about how to wear a button-down shirt open? Wear a bandeau bra in a contrasting color under a button-down shirt and keep the shirt open. This summer outfit will be equal parts comfortable and sexy.
Eastern Meets Western- Button-down Shirts With Sari
Okay, for those of you who are unfamiliar with a sari it is a women’s garment hailing from the Indian subcontinent. It is a symbol of elegance and sophistication. Any girl who has ever been to a wedding, an engagement party of someone from this region, or even to a Bollywood movie will have seen women in beautiful saris that flow as they walk.
Sari is most commonly worn with a stitched matching blouse but if you’re looking to refresh your saree style with a new contemporary spin on it in 2023, wear it with a button-down shirt. This eastern western fusion has already made its way to the runways and many women are giving up the traditional matching blouses for a button-down shirt– it’s convenient, fresh & stylish at the same time.
Stay Comfy On Chilly Days- Button-Down Shirts With Camel Coats
When the summer ends and the pumpkin spice latte kind of weather begins we all want to break into our cozy sweatshirts and wear our leather jackets. But it also means that now is the time to check out some new winter-friendly outerwear options to be prepared for the freezing temperature ahead.
Fashion-forward women have a well-documented love for camel coats, so why not introduce one into your winter-capsule wardrobe. Once you do, you can’t get enough of this neutral piece. Its snuggling warmth, luxurious feel, and high versatility to pair it with your basics will be some of the reasons.
For a no-fuss easy-going outfit, wear your rich, dusty hue camel coat with button-down shirts. Button-down shirts come in handy when layering up for the fall and early winter days. Simply pair up your camel coat with a denim button-down; an all-time favorite basic and blue skinny jeans for a stunning casual camel coat outfit. Finish this ensemble with beige kitten heels & carpe diem!
Button-downs are everywhere but they are still associated with men more so than women. When wearing a button-down shirt, if you feel you’re wearing a man’s shirt (even though you’re not) it’s better to pick delicate feminine fabrics like silk or linen, opt for narrow cuts and wear accessories like scarves and go for pretty jewelry and handbags.
Well, it would not be wrong to say, pretty much every clothing item you own right now – from formal pants to denim, to blazers to leather jackets to even wearing over a swimsuit, a button-down shirt is versatile to its core.
Boyfriend shirts are mostly oversized and there are many ways you can wear them. Keep it simple, untucked with the first two buttons open for a standard casual look or you can wear it like a fashion diva in a slouchy style or keep it all tucked in a high-waisted denim or short. Another great way is to tie it in a way that looks like a crop top.
No, not at all! Women can even tuck in polo shirts and nobody will bat an eye which is a big no-no for men. You can try different tucking styles, like the french tuck, the evergreen full tuck, one-sided tuck, or try any other tucking hack from the internet without worrying about looking weird. Trust us it’s okay!
You can wear and style the short-sleeve button-down shirt pretty much the same way you do with a full-sleeve shirt. Just make sure you put on these short sleeve shirts in summer unless you are pairing them with some cozy outerwear. Also, ensure that the sleeves are not so loose to avoid looking sloppy.
Simply put, a button-down shirt is the ultimate classic for both women and men. Whether you’re wearing it with a pencil skirt or jeans, a button-down can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. While we’ve all got our own personal style, today we gave you diverse ideas on how to style a button-down shirt to get the most out of this wardrobe staple and impress everyone around you with your stylish finesse. Let us know in the comments which one of these ideas you are trying soon?