White Shirt Show-down (lots of pics)

For a while now, I've been watching for the perfect white button down shirt.  It just seemed like a good thing to have.  Never mind that I so rarely wear one (mostly under sweaters?).

It seems that someone who donates where I pick up clothes recently did a white shirt purge... now I have six white shirts.

They all seem (to me) to fit, and they're all different.  So I'm going to show you all of them.  Please let me know which one(s) are worth keeping.  They came to a whopping total of about $5 (for all six, not each), so I can keep or toss any of these without worrying about it.

All are shown with a nude bra.  Some of them need more than that - I know.

#1-2 has a subtle box pattern.  I like the length and the cool vibe.  The sleeves are a bit short, and it's a bit sheer. It's linen, and could be super cool in the summer.  It's very soft and feels to me like the perfect 'boyfriend' summer shirt.  I also like the length.  I may need to replace the buttons (which are mother-of-pearl)

#3,4,5 is crisp, and needing ironed.  The sleeves are perfect length, and the top is opaque.  It's cotton and seems good quality to me.

#6-7 is more formal, it has a cummerbund type waist and french cuffs that require cuff links (I'm wearing gold cuff links with it).  It's also crisp, but in a different way than the first crisp one.  And the fabric is less breathable.  It's a bit shorter than #1-2 and #3-5.

#8-9 is medium - not really crisp, but not not super soft either.  I like the shorter sleeves, but the body is also short - at least for pants.  It's probably a good skirt length (but I didn't try it on with skirts).

#10 is my knit white shirt that I wore last weekend (which led to the realization that I have so many of these now.  I like it's softness and relaxed vibe, but the collar is a little sloppy, and I wonder if the first one (#1-2) fills the same spot.

#11-12 is sleeveless with a mandarin collar and very very sheer (see the grinning?)  I like the length and the almost-nothing-there feel of it.  It's polyester, so wouldn't be breathable if it weren't so light, and it's really only useful under or over something else.

What do you think?  

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • Missey replied 6 years ago

    I really like 1/2 and 3/4/5 on you... both very nice and fit you well.  6/7 would look lovely with a knee length pencil skirt.  8/9 is ill fitting.  What a steal for $5!  Nice buy :)

  • Sarah replied 6 years ago

    I like #1 too, I agree it fills a similar role to the shirt you already own. Do you have certain sweaters or pants/skirts you would want to wear with this shirt? That may give you the answer about length and layerability of the other shirts.

  • Liz replied 6 years ago

    I like 1 and maybe 3/4. The fussiness of 6/7 would drive me bonkers, but maybe you have a different threshhold for that. 8/9 seems too short. 11/12 needs an underlayer, which for me is a deal-killer in a sleeveless shirt. 

  • dustt replied 6 years ago

    love 1 and 6!!  not a fan of 3/4 sleeve blouses in 8/9 - 11/12 might be fun unbuttoned with a tank underneath with shorts come summer.  I don't care for it buttoned and untucked - but even if you only keep one or two - it was a steal of a deal -

  • Laura (rhubarbgirl) replied 6 years ago

    To me, the first and the last are both sheer enough to need a camisole. Don't know if that would annoy you. I don't think the one with the empire seaming is really your style, from what I've seen from your WIWs - you're more simple and androgynous and it's a bit fussy and not very current. The others look Ike they could be good basics.

  • carter replied 6 years ago

    I like 1-7 and 10.I think they fill different roles. The first is long enough to look tunic-y with skinnies or maybe leggings. The second is nice to tuck in jeans. The cumberbund one is great for dress up with a pair of black slacks or a slim black skirt. The knit one is just comfy cool. Sorry...I'm an enabler, but I really do like these.

  • tricia w. replied 6 years ago

    #6 is my fave. It emphasizes your small waist.

  • Emily replied 6 years ago

    I really like the sheer patterned linen (#1-2), the classic crisp shirt (#3-5) and the knit version (#10).   

    #6-7 I'm on the fence about - any ideas about styling?  
    #8-9 can go, in my opinion.  It seems like an inferior version of #3-5.
    #11-12 is very sheer... but it does look nice and airy for spring and would be nice with a white cami underneath or as a coverup over a swimsuit. 

  • Jenava replied 6 years ago

    OK, my FAV is 11/12. It just looks so pretty and light.  I like how the pockets look, and I like it with the denim, too!.
    I also like the first one.  Agree this would be a great summer shirt, and I like the pattern.  I could see this worn unbuttoned over a colored tank.
    I do NOT like the cummerbund waist one.  I think it's dated and doesn't do much for you.  I vote toss on that one.
    of 3/4/5 vs. 8/9, I prever 8/9 because of the darting - I think it flatters your waist more.  Might be better under sweaters, too; less bulky fabric.  but, I think I'll leave that up to you, since it sounds like 3/4/5 is better quality and more comfy (and better for tucking).

  • Janet replied 6 years ago

    My favorite is 3-4-5. It seems to have the best fit and is the most classic and versatile. 8/9 seems too short, and 10 is really casual. 1 is a nice casual alternative. 6/7 fits you well but is definitely a more formal, office-y look to my eye.

    1 and 11/12 do seem to need camis or tanks underneath. Would that annoy you, or is that acceptable? I'm not wild about having to wear another layer under a sleeveless shirt in the summer, but I'm not sure if your summers are as hot and sticky as ours are.

  • shevia replied 6 years ago

    Ok, the first one looks good to me. Oversized bf fit but I think it works with the soft material. With crisper shirts I think it is good to have excellent shoulder fit. Hard for me to see #3,4 seems good. Not crazy about the elastic waist style. I would wear the sleeveless by itself (but with a cami) in the summer, but I have a lot of tolerance for heat and love sleeveless white tops.

  • Aubergine replied 6 years ago

    I think #1-2 is great on you and definitely looks different enough from the knit one because of the material and texture. And, since casual white shirts are probably doomed to get stained eventually, you'll still have one if something happens to the other.

    #3-5 also looks good, especially tucked in. I like #6-7, but it does look more dressy. I could see keeping it to wear for special events/occasions if you'd have use for something like that, especially if you have something not-so-basic on the bottom. #8-9 seems very similar to #3-5, and kind of less versatile since it's shorter. #11-12 is cute, but I'm another one who'd be annoyed by a really lightweight, summery shirt that I could only wear layered. You may not be, though.

  • deb replied 6 years ago

    I say 8 and 11 can go. The others you picked up look good to me.

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    I really like the first two (1-2 and 3-5). I bought a Gap shirt like that second one this week! 

    The two with more shaping (pintucked front, and 3/4 sleeves) aren't speaking as strongly to me. That sleeve length is challenging, and in this case I think the sleeve length is too similar to the length of the torso. But, it looks like it fits you well and it's flattering.

    I like the look of the sleeveless one. I've been wearing a lot of sleeveless button downs recently. They're really versatile, at least in my climate.

  • Sveta replied 6 years ago

    I like the first 2 shirts. #3 feels less current to me in style and #4 is indeed too short. I think #1 is a good replacement for your old shirt which looks a bit tired now.

  • amiable replied 6 years ago

    Thank you Ladies!  I knew I could count on you for wisdom and honesty.

    After reading your comments, here's what I think I'll do:  Keep the first two. The third is likely to go, since I've had it for at least a year and never worn it except layered under something.  It seems that I reach for other things when I want something dressy.  The one in 8/9 can go - it's too short for layering, which would be it's most likely use.  I'm still on the fence with the knit one.  The super sheer one in 11/12  will stay for the summer to see whether I actually wear it.  I often do wear camisoles under everything.

  • Sveta replied 6 years ago

    Wise decision, Amy :-)

  • Caro in Oz replied 6 years ago

    #3 to 5 for me - I'd like to see  the sleeves a little shorter.

  • Golden replied 6 years ago

    6 is my personal favorite of the group. It has a bit of a twist on a classic.

  • texstyle replied 6 years ago

    Great find and how fun to try them all l like this.

    #3-5 is more of the "perfect" white shirt in that it's crisp, not sheer and seems to fit you well. #1 maybe if you like to wear a cami underneath. Not so much on the others for me.

  • retailgirl replied 6 years ago

    Late to this party but I like 1/2 and 6/7. You might need a layer under 1, and it seems counter intuitive with a summer top, but it looks very breezy. And I am a sucker for French cuffs and I love the waist on 6.

  • Joy replied 6 years ago

    I like the shirt pictured in 3/4/5 best and like the fluidity of 10. Don't forget to wear a white cami or tank under any white shirt, something I learned from Angie.

  • Isis replied 6 years ago

    Looks like you have decided and it is exactly what I think too!

    I really like the last one.  I have a blouse like that and it is cool in the summer because of the lack of sleeves, even with a cami.  Wanted to chime into say that the last blouse would look great over a pencil skirt too!

You need to be logged in to comment