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6 Tips to Nailing the Short-Sleeve-Button-Down

  • 3 min read

Some passionately love the sweet embrace of the shirt which keeps you cool, both figuratively and literally. 

However, more than any other garment, it’s the short sleeve button-down that has lived on as the hit or miss style of our time.

Don’t sweat. A few pearls of wisdom are all you need to consistently pull off this versatile gem. 

1. Get the sleeves right...

Because getting them wrong is a really good way to ruin an excellent look.

YES: Make sure you can move with the right kind of ease and nonchalance. Whether the sleeve softly snugs the arm, or hangs off gracefully, always remember: don’t be afraid to fold up and optimise. If necessary, decide between one roll up and two, based on whether you’re reaching for 50s cool, or just a sneaky tweak.

NO: You’re not a child in a Hawaiian shirt. At the same time the juiced-up- hulk-sleeve-ripper look says “I displayed perseverance, hard work, and commitment – but all I got was this tiny shirt”.

2. Collars 

The foundation of your beautiful head.

Approach features and other matters of the neck and head with appropriate care  as if you were a warrior on a medieval battlefield.

YES: Button down those collars if there’s an option, as this will generally sharpen the look while broadening the shoulders.

Buttoning the shirt through the middle all the way to the top middle works better for smaller detailed prints or basics. But hey, if your mission is chill, then why not let it flow.

NO:Big collars only seem to work on Charlie Sheen – and even that’s debatable.

3. Length

"Is that a dress?" VS "I can see your belly button"

A shirt that’s too long or short can really demolish an entire look.

YES: Keep the right hem balance so that the shirt hits the mid-point between your waste and crotch. If you’re tucking the shirt in, try to avoid the baggy and saggy where excess fabric flows out of your waist.

NO: Too long and you might be mistaken for wearing a oversized gangsta dress. Too short, and well…just no”

4. Friends of Button-Ups

The shirt itself is a critical element, but only one piece of your personal Picasso.  

YES: Blazers go well with a tucked in shirt, whereas bomber’s work when they’re untucked. Slim fit chinos go well with a slim fit shirt.

Mix up your shoes, accessories with sweet sunnies or wrist items - just make sure each colour speaks to your ensemble mission.

NO: A tie on a short-sleeve button up just never works. It could and it might, but it doesn’t. 

On the other hand a bow tie could work with the right tude’.

5. Style needs flavour

You don’t just boil a carrot. You salt and pepper that sucka. Slop some butter on it, dose it up with paprika, put some honey mustard glaze on it like a madman. This barely-relevant metaphor applies to shirts too. It’s all in the seasonings baby.

YES: Make sure your choice of print speaks to your personality & creativity. Being stylish while staying authentic eats boring for breakfast. 

NO: Blacks and white T’s might work as your basic – but don’t rely on these puppies. 

Your clothing doesn’t need express your charming personality – but it could.


6. The Socials

YES:Boat shindigs, the races, illuminati sex parties, riding jaguars. Your surroundings will speak well to how you rock the shirt.

Exec work option? Not if your HR team comes from the age of the industrial revolution. Otherwise, feel free to enhance your workplace style productivity by 300% with the get up.

NO:Don’t wear at locations where good times might be frowned upon. 

Versatility and creativity is really the beauty behind a button up shirt. Remembering these pointers will help you keep cool, charming & with your dignity intact.

Let the good times flow…