Plain silk shirts from Zara.

Shirts are essential for the working wardrobe. They’re appropriate and practical for many occasions! Though I’ve a couple of shirts and blouses already, they’re not exactly basic pieces (either prints or come with attention-seeking embellishments, also my casual wear), so as part of this new wardrobe plan, I intend to get a few plain shirts for my working wardrobe, while letting go of a couple.

She inspired the preppy look. I still can’t find that Valentino headband she’s wearing.

Little bit of trivia – I’ve been seriously buying shirts since college. Back then I wanted to look preppy, so I wore cotton short-sleeved shirts in different styles – with ruffles, pussy bow, embroidery to name a few – under a blazer or cardigan, with a headband and a pair of flats.

Over the years though, my preference changed. I’ve grown to learn how I’d like to look and at the same time consider what works for me and what doesn’t.

Source: Bless My Bag. My source of inspiration when it comes to shopping for shirts was this white shirt – plain but with metal tips on the collar, seen first on Rumi of Fashion Toast. This particular Zara Studio shirt sold out within a while in stores here.
My preference now? White or cream shirts, preferably long-sleeved and in terms of material, either silk or polyester. The rationale basically stems from size issues, too (same case with suits). White makes me appear healthier. I like long-sleeved shirts better just because they hide my small arms. Unlike cotton, I think it’s easier to get away with larger-sized silk and polyester shirts since they still look great when worn loose (explaining why I’m letting go of a few cotton shirts right now).
The downside of silk is the fact that it’s delicate – it needs either dry cleaning or a specific silk detergent. Meanwhile, shirts made of polyester might just expand if it’s soaked for too long! But taking care of them shouldn’t be an issue once you’ve gotten the hang of it.

The shirts I’ve been looking for are minimalist silk shirts that I can grab and wear in the morning, without putting much thought into them. I managed to find some good pieces, but none as plain as the Zara shirts I’ve been admiring and trying. Recently, the shirts (the PERFECT plain shirts!) I ordered arrived directly from the UK. Felt good trying them on and I know I’d wear them over and over again. As I hung them on the rail, I just felt like the search is complete – I have enough basic shirts for my working wardrobe now!

So yeah, basically, the search for plain shirts for work… is over. I think I’ve always had enough tops for the weekends anyway, so I can stop thinking about shirts or blouses for a long time :)