You can tie them, tuck them, cuff them and cover them with a sweater. I love classic button down shirts, whether it is a classic white shirt or a chambray, and everything in between. They are also a staple to most women’s corporate wardrobes and for a good reason!

This lovely wardrobe staple has a multitude of ways in which it can be styled, from formal meetings to causal Friday. I have detailed my top four styles below along with a few tips and tricks along the way. :-) Just remember that your button down doesn’t have to be white, it could be navy, charcoal grey or even with a subtle pattern such as pinstripes or checks!

Please note that I have a few styles below which involve the shirt being tucked in. If this is something that doesn’t float your boat – remember that you don’t have to tuck the entire shirt in to get this look, you can tuck the front loosely, or even just one of the front parts of your shirt and leave the rest untucked.

Here are my top four styles for how to wear a classic shirt to work.

Style One: Tucked in with a skirt

There are two main skirt shapes which look fantastic with a tucked in shirt.

One is the 50’s style skirt – big amounts of voluminous fabric, typically box pleated, feminine and very elegant. Great for spring and summer (believe it or not spring and summer fashion is starting to filter into the shops now!).

Tip: You must wear heels with this look because the additional height will provide much needed balance. Also make sure that the skirt length is to the knee or just below. Anything above the knee is sending the wrong message.

Also this style looks great with pearl earrings and necklace – channel Coco Chanel and old school glamour. :-)

The second style is completely polarising to the one above, however equally fun to wear. It involves a pencil skirt and a shirt.

We all know that we can tuck in a classic shirt with a black pencil skirt, but I want to bring something different to this look. Change out your black pencil skirt for one with a beautiful floral, graphic print or metallic pattern. This will bring an little bit more pop to the outfit!

Also, by incorporating a necklace (either short or long – this outfit can handle both styles) and shoes in the main colour of your print you will have a winning outfit. :-)

Style Two: Let your inner biker chick be free

A button down shirt looks great with leather, which is a very fun look and can be tailored for the office!

We are seeing leather in the market in many different ways at the moment, from amazing leather jackets to blazers, pencil skirts and pants! My favourite at the moment is leather jacket, button down shirt, long silver necklace, slim work pants and ballet flats. :-) Whatever you choose, just remember to try and avoid double ‘leathering’ such as a leather jacket and leather pants. It makes the outfit look very heavy and clunky – instead we always want to look effortlessly polished!

Tip: If you work in a corporate office ensure that your outfit remains sleek, stylish and simple. So keep your accessories nice and simple – I find that metallics work very well for this style. Also in this outfit you don’t have to wear heels. Instead nice ballet flats can provide you a well needed break!

Also don’t overdo the makeup as heavy makeup can make this outfit go from corporate chic to Saturday night pub very quickly!

Style Three: Jacket time

The amazing thing about your button down shirt is that is only gets better when you add jacket or blazer or coat. The button down loves structure which is what these jackets provide. :-)

So team your button down shirt with a classic longline jacket and slim pants or jeans for work, and you’ll have a winner!

Tip: Think longer line jackets when wearing pants so your shirt can remain untucked. If you are teaming a button down shirt with a suit jacket and skirt combo – think about where your widest part is and make sure that the jacket doesn’t finish here as it draws the eye to this area. If in doubt, head for a jacket which finishes closer to your waist. Also a tucked in shirt generally looks best when paired with a suit jacket, creating the idea of an hourglass figure. :-)

Style Four: Denim

Button down shirts and denim are a match made in heaven! For casual Friday keep your denim on the darker side in winter, but in summer you can go a little paler (though this all depends on your office rules and requirements).

However, remember that denim isn’t just limited to jeans, you can add denim into your corporate wardrobe by a denim jacket or shirt as an alternative. All of which look great with a button down shirt.

My favourite way of wearing denim and a button down shirt is dark denim jeans, blue and white check shirt and navy sweater. :-) For the weekend you can wear sneakers but for casual Friday team with ballet flats and a intricate statement necklace, such as a cluster of pearls or long silver chains over the sweater.

My second favourite look (I couldn’t stop at one!) is a white shirt, denim jacket, navy cropped pants and ballet flats. The fun with this outfit is that is a blank canvas – add a coloured scarf and necklace and you can create so many outfits. :-) For a bit of fun, swap out the cropped pants for pants with a pattern and you’ve got another outfit already!

What is your favourite way to wear a classic shirt to work?