You don’t have to play sports to wear a polo shirt - they’re a stylish top anyone can wear. Like a t-shirt but with a collar and a placket with buttons, a polo shirt will stand you in good stead whether you’re heading to the gym or popping out for an afternoon’s shopping. With several plus size styles and fits to choose from at navabi, there’s bound to be one that matches your sense of style. What’s more, the special material polo shirts are made from allows your skin to breathe, even on the hottest of days.
Who invented the polo shirt?
René Lacoste, the French, seven time Grand Slam tennis champion came up with the design in the Twenties. Tennis players traditionally wore ‘tennis whites’, which consisted of long-sleeved button front shirts, and he felt these were too uncomfortable to play the sport in, so he devised an alternative, the polo shirt. He first debuted himself wearing the design at the U.S Open Championship in 1926. In 1927 he added a crocodile emblem to the left breast pocket of the design in response to his nickname ‘The Crocodile’, which he earned thanks to his pertinacity on the court. After retiring from the sport René Lacoste teamed up with a merchandiser friend to sell the polo shirt in Europe and North America and the rest as they say is history. To this day Lacoste still produces polo shirts, alongside other high end clothing, perfume, accessories and homeware.
Styling the polo shirt
There are lots of different ways to work the polo shirt depending on your style persuasion or simply what mood you’re in that day. For an easy, off-duty outfit, that calls for minimal styling, pair it with slim fit jeans and lace-up pumps. Worn buttoned up to the top, the polo shirt takes on a slicker vibe which looks great contrasted with playful bottoms like a printed midi skirt. Looking for a contemporary take on the preppy look? Try layering your polo shirt under a pinafore dress and finishing the outfit with penny loafers. To get extra mileage out of a polo shirt, rock it as part of an evening look. The casual style is great for toning down sultrier separates like a form fitting pencil skirt or glossy leather trousers. Simply tuck or half tuck it in to highlight your waist and add a bright lip and heels.
Plain or printed
Black and white polo shirts are versatile buys that you can wear from winter right through to summer. In the warmer months, a colour block style in hot pink or yellow will instantly brighten up both light coloured trousers and blue denim. If you’re trying to introduce more print to your wardrobe, opt for a striped or polka dot design. In navy and white colourways they have the added bonus of ticking off the nautical trend that never goes out of style.
Whatever the weather
Not just strictly a summer staple, you can layer your polo shirt in a way that makes it work in colder weather too. Experiment wearing it over a close fitting polo neck or Breton top - the thinner the fabric the better as to avoid unnecessary bulk. Or look to a longer sleeved polo shirt that will provide extra warmth in winter.