Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Blouse Inspiration, Spring/Summer 2010

I am trying to focus on separates lately for Spring/Summer. I enjoyed the tailored look over Fall/Winter and think it is is easier to achieve with a fitted skirt and interesting blouse than through dresses. Although we'll see how long it lasts as I have a serious love affair with dresses! These are from the offerings at Saks.

Saks.com - Elie Tahari - Lindy Ruffle-Neck Blouse Saks.com - Fendi - Asymmetric Ruched-Silk Top All kinds of ruffles are still in style, which I love. Well, actually, I love them in theory. In truth I have very few items that actually have ruffles. I am a small person and (for the moment) I look younger than my age, so I do have to be a bit careful about too much sweetness. But I am always inspired by *seeing* ruffles. And these ruffles are quite sophisticated, I think. The Elie Tahari is more like origami than ruffles (still love the origami trim I did on this wrap blouse), which has the femininity without the juvenalia. The Fendi top is a more casual look, but I dig the external seam/ruffle situation, and a more wearable version--maybe even in the office with a jacket--is this St. John's version.





Saks.com - Etro - Marble Floral-Print Blouse Saks.com - Marc by Marc Jacobs - Silk Dots Top

Speaking of wrap blouses, here are two variations with plays on the collar. Love the wide, drapey lapels and watercolor print of the Etro--and I already have that look covered with my new favorite Burda 02-2009-123 wrap blouse with self-collar. More ruffles with the Marc Jacobs--double ruffles! And how fun it is to use a different colorway in the same print motif? This is something that can go from Marc Jacobs to Garanimals real quick, but I think here it is strictly grown up.










Saks.com - Akris Punto - Puffed-Sleeve Blouse Saks.com - Elizabeth and James - Ruffle-Shoulder Tank Top


The shoulder is still "very important," to quote a bit of silliness from Michael Kors' judging during Project Runway (early in the season). A way to use the shoulder without the molded shoulder pad are details like the subtle yoke on the Akris blouse, where the shoulder is emphasized by the directional usage of the gingham or the extravagant ruffles on this Elizabeth and James top (as for the tie dye--yeesh!).






Saks.com - Hanii Y - Tencel Tee Saks.com - Nanette Lepore - Angelfish Top Draping is another trend I like. I don't care for the unfinished look the of the Hanii Y t-shirt (I've already been inspired by a Hanii Y garment--my lace skirt), but I do like the double layer/asymmetry. Nanette Lepore shows a symmetrical drape, but the ribbon detail gives it a little more interest and I like that the tank is built in. BCBG has a classic oversized cowl tank; I think you get that look with the cowl neck version of the HP Three Graces top. I haven't been crazy about how huge that version looks on others who have used the pattern, but it does look rather appealing on the model.



Saks.com - Derek Lam - Silk Floral-Print Blouse
For pure inspiration, I love this Derek Lam faux corset top. The draping of the upper bodice and that little collar are so great, and the contrast color and closer fit of the lower bodice with the coordinating cuffs makes it a real impact piece. There are several patterns out there that could be used for this look--Butterick 4985, for instance--if you dare. I don't see myself dipping into this well in real life.






Saks.com - La Via 18 - Cap Sleeve Knit Top Saks.com - Torn - Gabi Ponti Top You all know how much I love a print; I rarely sew with solids. However, at this point it has been about three years since I bought any clothes and my old standby H&M t-shirts (which I've actually had for longer than three years, more like six) are eventually going to give out on me. But really, I just don't see how I could possibly sew plain t-shirts without experiencing an aneurysm of boredom. So I always like to see a variation on a tee.

These two illustrate what you can get just by altering/embellishing the sleeve. The Princess Seam made some tees similar to the Gabi Ponti top (on the right) a couple years ago and I have had them in the back of my mind since; her blog post also includes a photo of how she altered the sleeve to get the look. While out and about last weekend I saw two people wearing short sleeve t-shirts with a long, gathered sleeve cap like that, with elastic or gathering running along the center of the sleeve/outside of the arm. It was a cute little touch.

All my inspiration photos for Spring/Summer 2010 tops are here.

19 comments:

McVal said...

I like all of them, but really like the drapey tee! My daughters would love something like those in their wardrobe!

Trudy Callan said...

I really love the wrap blouses and the ruffle neck blouse, very feminine and flattering I think.

meli88a said...

I love the oragami looking ruffles on that pink Tahari blouse, and that Marc Jacobs ruffle top!

Victoria said...

You have some great inspired tops for Spring and Summer. They're rather stunning. I'm Loving the Tencel Tee and Angelfish top! Sometimes I forget that great tops can be the "highlight" of an outfit!

Uta said...

Makes me want to sew tops... wait -I AM sewing my first blouse right this very moment! I love the ruffled inspirations; while you're right about too much sweetness, I also think it has a lot to do with the skirt the blouse is worn with - a pencil skirt in a "serious" color would tone down the sweetness nicely.

MushyWear said...

What a great post. I loved seeing all these tops for inspiration. I just picked up Burda 8497 which is similar to the Etro marble floral print. I love that print! Will have to find something similar. Have fun making your tops. Can't wait to see what you come up with!

Rachel said...

I really love that Marc Jacobs blouse. It is amazing how a little design element such as different colorways in the same fabric can add such interest.

Adriana B. said...

Although I am not someone who would wear ruffles (just not my style), I think that ruffles do not have to necessarily translate into sweetness. It all depends on the fabric, color, texture, and styling. So, if you love ruffles, go for it,just be mindful of how you style them. I like how M. Jacobs' top is toughened up with the plain beige skirt.

Adriana B. said...

BTW, I share you feelings about making a plain tee... However, if you need plain tees, J Crew has recently released two lines of plain tees - one is in linen and other is called vintage cotton, or something like that. The latter are cut on the bias and feel heavenly. Both lines come in many colors and are at a good price point considering the quality.

Vicki said...

Thanks for the inspiration. Lots of options for cute tops.

Angela said...

What great inspiration! That's such a good idea to group them all together on flickr!

Carol said...

I'm in need of staples, so I'm working on separates this season, too. I don't like big shoulders and ruffles and no matter how many times I try to wear one, a wrap top just ends up annoying me. I can't bring myself to wear one shouldered anything and I don't like draping. Which is why I end up with plain and simple tops and skirts and find myself saying I really need clothes this season. While I agree that sewing t shirts is boredom, I make it fun by sewing them in bits of time that would otherwise be wasted, like while I'm waiting for the kettle to boil in the morning. On top of that, most of my tshirts are cut from remnants of other garments, so by sewing them in time that would otherwise be wasted with scraps left over from other garments, I get some sort of cheap thrill and feel I've cheated the system somehow.

Eugenia said...

I love your inspirational picks. I think my favourites are the Elie Tahari ruffle neck blouse and the Akris Punto with the puffed sleeves.

countrygirlcouture said...

The Fendi is my fave. I'm so going to have to figure out how to knock that off. :-)

AllisonC said...

Great inspiration pieces - now why can't the new pattern releases have stuff like that in there??

Jennee said...

I love these tops. I'm all about solid, springy colors and flowing fabrics. I especially like the Tahari. Here are a few others by up-and-coming brand Parker, and where to find them: bit.ly/ax4Wen

Cennetta said...

Oh my goodness. I love them all. Especially the first two. Great inspiration.

Rose said...

thank you for sharing your inspiration pictures--they have helped me come up with some great ideas, too!

Rose in SV

emadethis said...

The teal double ruffle top is stunning. I love love love the combo of the teal and the cream. So beautiful!