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How to Wear Chambray


How to Wear Chambray

It looks like denim, feels like cotton, and hangs like linen. It’s soft, cozy, and refreshing. And it comes in a dreamy palette of blues and grays. Chambray — what’s not to love?

As far as campus style goes, this is probably one of the hottest trends I’ve seen this spring, and I’m starting to think that everyone should have a little something chambray in their wardrobe. Check out these outfits below to see the many different ways you can wear this charming fabric in the warmer weather.

Classic: Chambray Shirt

Chambray Shirt

Loose Shirt – Gap, Fitted Shirt – Forever 21, Earrings – Monsoon, Jeans – American Eagle, Shorts – Old Navy, Flats – Urban Outfitters, Bag – Forever 21

This is by far the most common way I’ve seen the fabric worn around campus, probably because it easily replaces plaid boyfriend shirts and preppy oxford shirts. Loose-fitting styles like the one on the left look great paired with skinny jeans, while fitted shirts like the one on the right are adorable over white shorts or cropped pants.

To stand out from the crowd, wear this outfit with a whimsical flat in a romantic hue and subtle but unique accessories, like the fun dangle earrings shown above.

Flirty: Chambray Skirt

Chambray Skirt

Cardigan – Uniqlo, Tank Top – Forever 21, Earrings – Monsoon, Skirt – Aeropostale, Bag – Miss Selfridge, Shoes – Ruche

Try the chambray trend on the bottom of your outfit rather than the top for a fun twist. There are tons of skirt options available, but a simple one with a tucked waist and a sweet silhouette will be the most versatile. Play up the feminine skirt with a cheerful floral top, but then switch to a neutral cardigan to add balance. The oxford pumps, crossbody bag, and fun earrings bring together contrast between flirty and demure for an overall sweet look.

Versatile: Chambray Dress

Chambray Dress

Dress – Urban Outfitters, Headband – J.Crew, Earrings – ASOS | Amrita Singh, Scarves – Piperlime, Belts – New LookTopshop | ASOS, Shoes – Delia’s | Target

Chambray dresses are also very popular this spring, and while the shirtdress is the most popular silhouette, consider making a fashion statement with an unconventional shape, such as this simple A-line style.

The great thing about chambray dresses is that because their shape and texture are so neutral, you can accessorize them a million different ways, most likely with items that are already in your closet. Here, I’ve suggested a couple of different types of accessories that you can try with chambray dresses, to give you an idea of where you can take this versatile basic.

Trend Testing: Chambray Accessories

Chambray Accessories

Blazer – Urban Outfitters, Scarf – Gap (currently out of stock), Fedora – Urban Outfitters, Flats – Gap

If you’re unsure about the chambray trend, or if you want to try it in a way that’s really different from how everyone else will be wearing it, consider a chambray accessory or non-basic item such as a statement blazer. You’ll immediately score fashionista status by being both on-trend and unconventional.

What do you think?

Have you gotten in on this trend yet, and if not, are you thinking about it? Where in your outfit would you be most likely to incorporate something chambray? I’d also be curious to get everyone’s opinions on whether this trend will last — can you see it going for more than one season, or at least showing up again next spring? Tell me with a comment!

Posted on on March 19, 2010 / Filed Under: Fashion Tips / Tags: , , , , , ,

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17 Responses to “How to Wear Chambray”

  1. 1
    March 19th, 2010 at 2:10 pm

    I have a chambray skirt from American Apparel that has been my favorite piece of clothing for the past 9 or so months. I would never wear a denim skirt, but chambray just looks and feels different. It’s so light and doesn’t make me feel like a middle schooler (unlike a denim skirt). I wear the skirt high waisted, and it goes with most of my tops (ranging from black, to AA v necks, to floral print tank tops).

    I don’t know how I feel about wearing a chambray top, though. If I’m not wearing a skirt, I’m wearing jeans, and denim on faux-denim seems like it might be too much.

  2. 2
    March 19th, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    I love this trend so far. I have two longer chambray tops that I’ve been wearing with light brown leggings and pastel pink flats – very cute for spring. I also have a chambray skirt, which I can see as being versatile with many of my tops (and I love your outfit suggestions!)

    I agree though that I am unsure if I would pair it with denim – especially not denim of the same wash. It could look like an overload.

  3. 3
    March 19th, 2010 at 4:32 pm

    I really like chambray shirts worn open, like a lot of people have done with the plaid shirts that have been popular. One of my favorite outfits at the moment is an open, boyfriend-ish chambray shirt over a basic black dress and black floral crocheted tights.. I think it’s really interesting to contrast preppier trends such as this one with elements that have a slightly edgy vibe.

  4. 4
    March 19th, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    I love this trend, it’s so easy and laidback for class, but with a few extra accessories it’s easy to dress up as well. I recently bought a chambray dress of the clearance rack at charlotte russe and the dress is quickly becoming one of my new favorites. I actually wrote a post about it a few days ago, so I love seeing the different outfits on here as well : )

  5. 5
    March 20th, 2010 at 1:42 am

    I have a oversized chambray button-up that I love because it’s so versatile, but I would never pair it with denim – same wash or not!

  6. 6
    March 20th, 2010 at 6:38 am

    I would wear the dress and fitted top more than any of the other versions :)

    Not sure if this trend will last throughout the year. I’m guessing not but it may come back as a small trend next spring/summer but not as a main one.

  7. 7
    March 20th, 2010 at 4:50 pm

    If chambray tops were a drug, I would be a drug addict. My obsession with them is slightly ridiculous. Gap has a whole collection of chambray-esque tops and I’ve made plans to buy them all. They have a very loose, relaxed Alexander-Wang feel to them. Very, very me.

  8. 8
    April 18th, 2010 at 4:38 pm

    I just bought these wonderful chambray drawstring shorts from H&M, and I absolutely love them, along with this article.

  9. 9
    June 10th, 2010 at 9:29 pm

    guys , do you have the habit to buy the clothes through the internet ?

    we are a team from China , and we sales the clothes on internet . if you want to buy the clothes cheap and beautiful . come to our website to have a look .

    I am sure you will find your style !

  10. 10
    May 17th, 2013 at 3:06 am

    Loooove the way you styled these! I also saw a post on accessorizing the chambray shirt which I liked:

    Love, love, love that you included all kinds of chambray pieces – awesome post.

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