Attacher lundi avec mardi

Attacher lundi avec mardi
Share / Tweet / Pin Me!

Informal French Expression

Meaningto misbutton, to button wrong
Literallyto attach Monday with Tuesday
Registerinformal
PronunciationFrench sound files [ah tah shay loo(n) dee ah vek mar dee]
IPA  [a ta ʃe lƓ̃ di a vɛk maʁ di]

Usage notes: French children are sometimes taught the days of the week with the help of button-down shirts: each day is equivalent to one button. From this comes the wonderful French idiom attacher lundi avec mardi.* Unfortunately for English speakers, there’s no idiomatic equivalent – we’re stuck with just the matter-of-fact "misbutton" or “button wrong.”**

Par exemple…

Fais attention, tu viens d’attacher lundi avec mardi. Pay attention, you just misbuttoned your shirt.
Tu as dĂ» ĂȘtre pressĂ© ce matin – tu as attachĂ© lundi avec mardi ! You must have been in a hurry this morning – you buttoned your shirt wrong!

Variations and synonyms

* You might hear other combinations of two days: mardi avec mercredi, samedi avec dimanche, etc. Also, you can use boutonner rather than attacher.

Other variations:

  • attacher / boutonner lundi dans le mardi
  • attacher / boutonner Pierre avec Paul
  • attacher / boutonner Pierre avec Jacques
  • boutonner Metz avec Paris
  • QuĂ©bec : ĂȘtre boutonnĂ© en jaloux

By extension, you can use these expressions to mean "badly dressed."

 Interestingly, not all native French speakers know these expressions, but the ones who do typically remember them from childhood.

** Rich Hall, creator of Sniglets, attempted to fix this lacuna with shirtlop but it never really caught on.

 There are similarly constructed expressions in English but the meaning is completely different: "Your slip is showing."

  • Saturday is longer than Sunday.
  • Monday comes before Sunday.
  • Your Monday is longer than your Tuesday.

Again, the day combinations are very flexible.

 If you believe that it must say "wrongly" rather than "wrong," I refer you to Merriam-Webster dictionary:

Wrong as an adverb

 
And Cambridge Dictionary:

Wrong as an adverb

 Related lessons

 Share / Tweet / Pin Me!

Il attache lundi avec mardi

  Lawless French Files:  

Stay up to date with Lawless French

Questions about French?

 Ask me in the comments section below or visit the Progress with Lawless French Q+A forum to get help from native French speakers and fellow learners.

More Lawless French

 Subscribe to my twice-weekly newsletter.

Support Lawless French

  This free website is created with love and a great deal of work.

If you love it, please consider making a one-time or monthly donation.

Your support is entirely optional but tremendously appreciated.