Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.


1. Having buttons extending down the front from the collar to the waist: a button-down shirt.
2. Fastened down by buttons: a button-down collar.
3. also but·toned-down (bŭt′nd-) Conservative, conventional, or unimaginative: "a colorful character in the buttoned-down, dull-gray world of business" (Newsweek).
A button-down shirt.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.buttoned-down - unimaginatively conventional; "a colorful character in the buttoned-down, dull-grey world of business"- Newsweek
conventional - unimaginative and conformist; "conventional bourgeois lives"; "conventional attitudes"


also buttoned-down
Conforming to established practice or standards:
Slang: square.
References in periodicals archive ?
Speaking to the Radio Times, cowriter and co-star Connie Booth said: "Fawlty Towers succeeds, I think, because it allows infantile rage and aggression a field day in a buttoned-down, well-mannered English society."
In 1984, Prince William was photographed wearing a white buttoned-down shirt and sky-blue shorts.
Shearsmith's blank, buttoned-down performance as Malcolm Webster is a study in banal, cowardly evil.
The 70-year-old former Beatle wore a white buttoned-down shirt, narrow-lapel suit and knitted tie at the award ceremony.
Back in the early '90s when comedy was being referred to as 'the new rock and roll' this pair of geography teacher-a-likes were the buttoned-down, tweed-jacketed square pegs to Baddiel and Newman's slightly more hip and cool counterparts.
The fevered, buttoned-down intensity of Kinnear's playing is an exciting foretaste of his Hamlet for director Nicholas Hytner in the fall.
As someone who has been in a monogamous relationship for three years, allow me to clear up a popular misconception about those of us who appear more buttoned-down: I have not had my inner sexual outlaw brainwashed out of me by an increasingly conservative gay mainstream.
In 1965, when The Offering was shot, China was a closed country and Toronto a buttoned-down, Anglo Saxon town.
With its potential for serious spills on rough terrain, mountain biking would seem more suited to twentysomething thrill-seekers than buttoned-down executives twice or three times their age.
But rather than trafficking in overt anatomical distortions or historical mannerism, Cerletty prefers a steadier, more buttoned-down, domestic center.