The Affordable Grid Dress Shirt
Why should you buy a windowpane, grid, or light plaid dress shirt? Because sometimes the rotation of bright white and light blue oxfords can get a little boring. It’s also the one extra bit of pattern you need to take a solid suit and tie combination from forgettable, to noteworthy.
Details magazine might be touting dark & heavy plaid dress shirts for the fall, but if you want to avoid looking like an extra from Gangs of New York, stick with the lighter versions. Here’s a few that get the checkerboard pattern right, and cost less than $40.
Regular Fit: Michael Kors Classic Check – $34.99 | Tommy Hilfiger Button Down – $39.99
Yes these are roomy, but with tailoring they should be worth it. The Michael Kors dress shirt has a modern spread collar and a lighter, almost faded blue pattern. Even though it’s more regular fit than trim, the construction is solid (I have one myself) and it’ll feel bulletproof after tailoring. Thanks to the precise dark lines, the Hilfiger pattern is as classic as it gets. The button down collar should appeal to the more conservative dresser.
Slim Fit: Charles Tyrwhitt Royal Grid – $35.00 | Geoffrey Beene Pink Check Fitted – $22.49
Charles Tyrwhitt is based in London. And the style of this shirt bleeds fashion forward Brit. The slim fit and cutaway collar are 21st century, but the bold Royal Grid pattern is a throwback. Add in a french cuff and you get a dress shirt that’ll never be confused for being casual. As far as the Geoffrey Beene shirt, don’t be scared off by the word “Pink.” It looks like (again, “looks” like) the pink is worked in through alternating columns. Just enough color without making you look like an Easter Egg.
The Best of the Best: Kenneth Cole Power Grid Plaid – $27.98 (reg. $79.50)
Less of a check and more of a plaid, the pattern is busy but under control all at the same time. Multiple thin lines form larger thicker stripes, which in turn end up forming a sizable windowpane pattern. Dirt cheap for Kenneth Cole at under $30.00.