We might disdain them as so basic as to be boring but the ladylike blouse, full sleeved, button front and collared is a fashion essential. Showing only the most socially acceptable portions of skin the basic blouse allows us to move freely in most workplaces without concerns of offending and confident that our clothes do not undermine being taken seriously.
Lucky Magazine recently ran a photo article entitle “Drapey Blouses” (page 92, Feb 2010). The fabric used was drapey and thin softening the edges of the classically tailored designs. After a few years of collarless necklines it is refreshing to see a return of the collar which looks so spiffy when paired with the right jacket.
I found them so lovely that I hurried to my local fabric store to look up some patterns. There are still a lot of peasant and fitted blouse patterns out there, but there were a few with what I consider the main components of this look: collar, button-front, no waist dart and preferably no bust dart. As soon as my fabric stores runs a pattern sale I am going to pick one of these up.
A standard notched collar with belted waist and tabbed sleeves all reminiscent of the 80’s. It also kind of captures that safari look that was in for awhile. The pattern calls for linen and cotton but you could try a softer fabric and see how it comes out. A tying self belt of the blouse material may be more pleasing than the leather one on the model.
Simplicity 2807 http://www.simplicity.com/Search.aspx?SearchTerm=2807
From the Project Runway collection. This is most like the blouses I remember from my early work years. It is a simple oxford with gathers draping from the front shoulder yoke. This would be lovely in plain material or in some of those funky involved prints, that in my youth adorned the housedresses of very old ladies, but which I now see resurrected as part of our current fascination with all things vintage.
Another simple blouse that lends itself so well to either a bold or subdued fabric. I like the extra length where you can make a tunic or shorten for a standard blouse.
A classic work blouse with sizes up to 6X designed by Connie Crawford. The detail work at the shoulder is a touch of elegance that you don’t always see in plus-size offerings.
I’m sure there are other patterns out there as I haven’t a chance to check the independent pattern companies for their latest additions. If any readers have favorite patterns that work well for them I am eager to hear from you.
Next Post: Thursday, February 18, 2010 ;Cussing Out the Ladylike Blouse