Saturday, July 9, 2016

FASHION | How to style the 'Duterte shirt'

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Photo by AP.

Oh, THAT shirt. Checkered, plaid, or whatever it is that you call it, has been observed as a favorite of new Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte, so much so that it's been dubbed by some as the "Duterte shirt." It's also often unfairly called your dad's or granfather's shirt, dismissed outright as something totally unfashionable.

However, we can always put a fresh spin to this much-maligned checkered shirt. Of course having the right fit already addresses much of the problem while styling takes care of the rest. I went through some of my look book posts from the last 5 years and hopefully offer some inspiration on how to wear your "Duterte shirt" with pride.

Wear it with jogger-style pants.
Given the fact that joggers and pants patterned after joggers are everywhere right now, I'm sure there's something out there that can complement your checkered shirt perfectly. Here I experimented with a red and olive combo without looking like Christmas (thankfully!). You can wear sneakers but if you're feeling it, go for something that looks more formal, like these two-toned lace-ups I got here.

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Long-sleeved checkered shirt with jogger-style pants.

Go for color.
Never be afraid of color. There's nothing that can give a simple short-sleeved checkered shirt some oomph than color. Embrace your inner peacock and try on some colored pants with your plaid shirt. You can be a little less adventurous with blue on blue or you can let it all out in brown and mustard.

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Short-sleeved checkered shirt with mustard-colored pants.

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A blue on blue take on the checkered shirt.

Wear a tie with it.
But of course I'm talking about the long-sleeved kind here. And yes, the checkered shirt can be a business shirt, much better with a suit on. As for what tie to wear, anything in a solid color is your safest and best bet, as long as the color complements the shirt.

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Green/white and black: simple and understated.

However, the more courageous can always try some print on print, or pattern on pattern if you may. The key here is choosing a tie with patterns that are opposite in size to the shirt's. Because plaid patterns are usually loud, go for neckties with much smaller patterns. You can also apply the same principle with lines, like straight vs diagonal. In my case below, I contrasted the shirt's boxed patterns with the tie's diagonal design.

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Playing with lines here: boxed vs diagonal.

With a bow tie.
While wearing neckties with short-sleeved shirts may look weird, a bow tie with a plaid shirt looks just fine. It lends a little preppy, even nerdy, vibe to the whole look. You can also dress it up a little further by throwing on a blazer.

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And we're ready for business!

Put a jacket on.
Not just suits and blazers, but in general any jacket can dress up your short-sleeved checkered shirt but still keep it casual. Oh, maybe except for hoodies.

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Yellow and brown is always a good combo.

Or just wear it as it is with your favorite pants or jeans.
As long as the fit's right, you're good. In the first photo below I went for a business casual look, shirt untucked. In the second one, the shirt is admittedly a size too big for me but I found my way around it by going for an 80s vibe: loose checkered shirt and skinny jeans.

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80s-inspired.

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There are definitely loads of other ways to style the "Duterte shirt." Just be creative and show 'em it ain't your grandpa's shirt.

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