Open your wardrobe and take a good look. Try arranging your shirts according to colour — do you notice a pattern? Are most of your shirts in the same basic cut with no prints, and varying shades of blue? You are in fact, part of the statistic of working men who stick to the safe plain blue shirts throughout your working life. When the clock strikes six and you head out for post-work drinks, you set loose the top most button on your shirt and roll up your sleeves. You remove your tie and toss it into your man bag. That, is your idea of work-to-play outfit transition.
We’re here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be that way. You too, can rock printed men’s shirts at work to make you the life of the party. Don’t shun the printed shirt any longer, because we have several tips for you to pull these off without risking disciplinary action from the HR department.
One aspect of a full-on printed shirt that’s suitable for the office lies in the size of the prints. Smaller and more closely-knit prints are less distracting on the eyes and are not as loud as other prints, which makes them more appropriate for the workplace.
Another way to incorporate prints into your button-up shirts is by getting the basic white shirt — but with a twist. It could be as loud as the white shirt with the Kenzo logo emblazoned on the chest, or as subtle as a photo print on the pocket of this Helmut Lang shirt. It’s also a good idea to pick a printed shirt with a dark coloured base — it’s just a little more formal than one with say, a yellow base. Finally, if you really need to hide that obscenely loud print you have on your shirt, cover up with a suit. It’s trendy, and any outfit with a blazer instantly looks more formal.
But you don’t have to rack your brains the next time you go shopping. Just pick one or several of these printed men’s shirts we’ve listed for you.
This peacock feather print shirt is a little out there, but the black-and-white tone helps keep you looking professional despite the unusual print.
Hypnotise potential clients into signing your deal, because they would be too distracted (maybe even captivated) with the face on your shirt. Bonus: it’s technically a white shirt.
Pack on the floral prints without making anyone else dizzy, especially when they’re this tiny and packed tightly together. It also has a dark base, which looks more formal.
Gucci’s iconic bee print makes it onto a navy shirt. The best part is that the contrast of the red print on navy base makes the print look subtle. It’s millennial meets corporate wear with this Gucci shirt.
Price unavailable, Gucci
This is how you subtly incorporate print onto a basic white shirt — by putting it on the pocket. Style points increase, along with brownie points from shareholders.
Invite others to feel your chest, but not in a bad way with this Kenzo logo embroidered shirt. Slip a blazer over for maximum impact.
Price unavailable, Kenzo
Wearing prints against a lighter base invites eyes to it, simply because the design will be striking. Pull this trick off carefully in the office by pairing your shirt with a solid, dark-coloured tie to offset the psychedelic prints on this shirt.
RM1,998.45, Club 21
On casual Fridays, put on your most fun-looking shirt — like this paisley monkey print one from Paul Smith. It’s equal parts cool and equal parts fun, which everyone appreciates.
RM1,292.63, Club 21
If you’re a beginner at printed shirts, test the waters with this safe, small-print shirt. From afar it looks like tiny polka dots, but upon closer inspection, it’s actually heart-shaped prints. Talk about wearing your heart on your sleeve.
RM1.210.56, Club 21
Graffiti has never looked so good (or high fashion) than when scribbled on this printed shirt. Despite the extravagant print on this one, we say it’s safe to wear on its own at the workplace.
Price unavailable, Versace