The Chambray Shirt: A Man’s Spring Staple

We’re obsessed with chambray. It’s capable of tackling Saturdays at the dive bar just as well as Monday-afternoon meetings. It’s lightweight, which makes wearing long sleeves in the summer bearable. And it looks good – plain and simple.

But before we get all sappy, a little lesson: What is chambray?

How to Wear Chambray for Men

Contrary to popular belief, chambray does not mean denim. In actuality, it’s simply a lightweight fabric (usually cotton) that uses a colored weaving down and a white weaving across. Typically, the colored weaving is blue – which is why we think of denim – but it doesn’t have to be. Chambray can be allover grey or punched up with checks and stripes. Which drives home the point: it’s versatile. Incredibly so.

Here are three of our favorite ways to wear it:

At the office: Pair grey chambray with a black tie. Undo that top button and throw on a jacket for a lunch meeting.

At the bar: Try chambray on denim. To keep it from straying toward Canadian tuxedo, look for variations with checks or stripes, then cuff those jeans.

On the weekends: With shorts or chinos, style a chambray shirt over a white tee. Keep it untucked, roll up your sleeves, and add Converse.

Ready to stock up? Our The Essential Chambray Shirt for Men Boutique opens Monday, April 7, at 11AM ET.

By Joanna Berliner, Editor 

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April 7, 2014