Cheap + Chic: Crease-Wrinkled Big Cotton Shirt

A fan of the big white cotton shirt, years ago I discovered that XXL MEN’s cotton poplin shirts could be had for about $25 at Target* and looked as good as the much pricier women’s version.  Averse to ironing, I’d drop them off at the shirt laundry and ask for “extra starch”. At about $2 each, I’d live in those crisp starched shirts . Then one day I wondered if I could apply a technique of crease-wrinkling that I used to maintain an Agnes B twist skirt I’d had years before. And sure enough, those cheap cotton shirts started to look like Issey Miyake. Here’s how:

Sally Schneider

Sally Schneider

Throw the shirt in the laundry with your whites and then into the dryer. When dry (or even barely damp)  hold the shirt by the collar and spray it with spray starch (I like Niagara Heavy Spray Starch) until it is evenly dampened. Improvised Life Assistant Mira Serrano Keras had the good idea of hanging it from one of the pot hooks I hang my towels from in the bathroom to save space.

Sally Schneider

Sally Schneider

Starting at the collar end, twist the shirt as tightly as you can

Sally Schneider

Sally Schneider

…keep twisting until it starts to curl up…

Sally Schneider

Mira Keras

Place it on a surface and tuck the edges in so it holds its coiled shape. I like to leave the collar untwisted and sticking out so that it stands up when I wear it.

Sally Schneider

Sally Schneider

Put the shirt in a warm place and leave to dry about two days…

Sally Schneider

Sally Schneider

You can store your crease-wrinkled shirt as a “package” until you’re ready to wear it.  Simply untwist and put it on, styling any way you like. Mira likes to tuck one of the shirt tails into her jeans…

Sally Schneider

Sally Schneider

I just like it big and loose. It’s great with leggings.

 

 

Sally Schneider

Mira Serrano Keras

And as you can see, it works for a twenty-something as well as for an older-something…

*Target’s men’s poplin shirt comes with a breast pocket. I use a utility knife with a razor-sharp blade to carefully cut the threads and remove it. After a washing or two, you’d never know it had been there.

 

4 Responses to Cheap + Chic: Crease-Wrinkled Big Cotton Shirt

  1. kimithy 01.14.2016 at 3:37pm #

    I’ll humbly suggest homemade starch – it’s cheap and easy, and no risk of sketchy aerosolized chemicals on your clothes (and leeching into your skin)

    I never realized commercial starch often contains scary stuff until I got a little sweaty in a heavily starched shirt – and promptly got itchy and ill. Didn’t put 2 & 2 together until it happened 3 more times 🙁

    If anyone is looking for a good reusable glass spray bottle – I have these and they’re awesome, and surprisingly attractive… http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MBWBF7M?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00

  2. Lindsey 01.14.2016 at 6:54pm #

    I LOVE this look ….Mrs. Keras will confirm it’s my go-to <3….can't wait to try!

  3. Sally 01.14.2016 at 11:15pm #

    Ok Lindsey Crafter. I’m gonna check with Mrs. Keras. (I never thought of her as that.) THANK YOU!

  4. sarah 01.16.2016 at 9:18am #

    I stumbled on this method of wrinkling shirts to make them fit a little closer after I lost weight a few years ago. I twist them right out of the washing machine and leave to dry. Added benefit is no more ironing summer linen shirts. And packing for trips is a breeze.

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