Reinvention of the white shirt

Thursday, 20 February 2014 - 6:00am IST Updated: Wednesday, 19 February 2014 - 6:45pm IST | Agency: DNA
What is it about the classic that makes it the ultimate inspiration?

Pure, versatile and chic — the white shirt becomes the ultimate go-to piece season after season with an unfailing regularity. In India, designers like Nimish Shah of Shift, Nishka Lulla and Sanchita Ajjampur have given it their own twist, while internationally brands like Celine and Alexander Wang have reimagined the classic in the currently en vogue sporty avatars. What is it about the white shirt that makes it the ultimate inspiration for most designers?

It’s timeless  
Designer Aniket Satam, who has reinterpreted the classic this season says, “A crisp, white shirt is a unisex essential in anyone’s wardrobe across cultures and territories. Its timeless appeal transcends trend cycles and seasonal styles as it always stays modern in every fashion context. It magically oscillates from being minimally formal, boho crop top, and oversized boyfriend shirt to gypsy blouson styles. Like plain canvas, it adapts to varied looks, instantly with minimal surface enhancements, sleeve and collar variations and accessorising.”

He adds, “I have translated this classic summer staple with interesting pattern innovation of eliminating the side seams and have incorporated mullet design detail in form of attached high-low cape. Further I’ve punctuated it with hand-painted accents of dry paint strokes and artsy botanical rapid sketches. Essentially, an upgraded day design, which can be dressed up as tunic with slim trousers or pair of linen shorts for a relaxed brunch look.”

Strongest piece
Designer Varun Bahl says, “The white shirt is a forever classic and never goes out of style. It only makes a comeback in fashionable variations over the seasons. For spring 2014, the white shirt is a must have. It has emerged as THE strongest piece across the globe, and can be worn casually and formally, creating ensembles which are elegant and fashionable always.”

Classic and contemporary
Designer Archana Rao of label Frou Frou says, “The white shirt is one of those wardrobe staples that can be as classic or contemporary as the person wearing it. It has the potential to be adapted to limitless options hence makes its way season after season. I see a lot of boxy silhouettes which look fresh with oversized pockets and sheer panelling or sculptural sleeves giving a modern edge to the limitless button front.”

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