When I bought my very first denim top, it made me feel like the coolest girl on the planet. That was about five years ago, and the fashion world had just discovered the Canadian tuxedo look; no one wore it but indie magazine models, French editors (because they are like magical style unicorns who always know the next big thing before the rest of us) and Jenna Lyons. I relished—admittedly, in a somewhat snobby way—that most people didn’t get it. Standing out was the point.
My, how things have changed since back then! Not that a jean shirt has become any less stylish; rather, it’s gone from a insider-y trend to a wardrobe staple for everyone. It pops up several times each morning on my morning style blog check, and dominates every shopping feed I scan. I’m just as likely to spot one on the businesswoman with a briefcase sitting next to me on the subway as on the hip barista with a nose ring taking my morning tea order—even my mother owns one! And while this complete and utter ubiquity doesn’t deter me from still wearing the style myself (since that would be like swearing off white T-shirts, dark wash jeans and navy pullovers), some days I just want something a little more special.
That’s where the breezy sky blue button-front blouse—seen unbuttoned down to there at Altuzarra, exposing navels at Alexander Wang and neatly cropped at Peter Som—comes in. Following several seasons of rumpled chambray mania, the clean-cut classic style is a refreshing palate cleanser, the ultimate minimalist staple. But that doesn’t mean you need to be a minimalist kind of girl to wear it; this piece will match any skirt or pair of pants (and most dresses) in your closet, no matter what which way your style skews. Skeptical? Click through the slideshow above for seven blue-blouse-based outfits—each completely different from the others—that prove it.