When Plain Shirts Go Above & Beyond

Photographed by Christian Vierig.
Taking a thing and then messing with it — deconstructing — is a move that's the starting point for lots of fashion novices as well as some of the most established, well-respected designers in the industry. For every shlocky DIY project involving a hot glue gun and a pair of jeans is an article of clothing that's as witty as it is flattering — it's a concept that's propelled the careers of Rei Kawakubo, Demna Gvasalia, Martin Margiela, and Helmut Lang. When it's bad, it's very, very bad. And when it's good, it's art. And, I posit, when it's very, very good, it's art that you can wear out to lunch on the weekend.
The deconstructed, advanced button-up shirt is one of the biggest trends of the year that plays off this notion, and is one of my personal favorites because it easily walks the line between being avant garde and being totally wearable. This is a piece that your art-school friends will appreciate, but also won't freak out your family if you wear it to dinner.
One of the best parts about this trend is that there are infinite riffs on the shape, and it can be remade to show off your favorite body parts. From sexy minidresses to aggressively cool blouses, the deconstructed shirt has been redone in a thousand ways. Here are five of my favorites.