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Button-Ups and Button-Downs at Every Size

Sometimes I have a hard time styling a plain T-shirt for work or for drinks-dinner-evening occasions. But button-front blouses? Those are easier. They just feel fancier, like what more adult people wear. Adult people take the time to use buttons!

For that reason, button-ups and button-downs—the difference, according to my extensive research (Wikipedia & scattered fashion blogs) is that button-downs have buttons on the tips of the collar to keep the collar down, button-ups don't—occupy a large section of my closet. I gravitate towards their innately polished quality on mornings when I just can't deal. I need them, and I can't really ever have enough. So to complete my open love letter, I thought I'd round up a few of my favorites on the market, in every size from 0 to 24. From office-friendly solids to more brunch-ready patterns, there should be something in there for you. (Unless you hate buttons, in which case I can't help you.)

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Size 0

Nautical stripes always look good.
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Size 2

Add black pants and a swipe of red lipstick and you're ready for dinner in under two minutes.
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Size 4

Contrasts nicely with utilitarian pieces, like army green anoraks and stiff denim jackets.
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Size 6

Memorable, but not crazy loud. Perfect for looking put-together at work without overdoing it.


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Size 8

The slightly flared sleeves make it even more Sienna-Miller-in-her-bohemian-phase cool.
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Size 10

Puffy sleeves are so 1960s, Audrey Hepburn-style classic.
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Size 12

Collarless button-ups create the illusion of a long, lean neck.
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Size 14

Leather trim makes it a little cooler, but it's still office-friendly.
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Size 16

The black and white palette keeps the rabbit print from being too cutesy.
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Size 18

Lavender. Yeah, we love lavender, and it's going to be major for Spring 2013.


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Size 20

Such a wardrobe necessity.
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Size 22

Thanks to the neutral palette, the color-blocked design is eye-catching but still super-versatile.
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Size 24

It's impossible to overstate the power of a crisp white shirt like this.

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