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How to Style a Blouse: The Ultimate Guide to Wearing Blouses

How to Style a Blouse: The Ultimate Guide to Wearing Blouses

A blouse is usually a loose-fitting fashion top. It is often made of lightweight material and can either be gathered at the waist, hips, or not at all. Blouses can also have long or short sleeves. Modern day blouses have changed a lot from their French, working-class origins. These days, blouses can be a fabulous way to create a polished yet casual look that is both comfortable and stylish. Let’s dive deeper into what blouses are and how to wear blouses. 


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What is Considered a Blouse? 


While blouses and button down shirts share many features in common, blouses have some key differences. A blouse may or may not have buttons generally running down the right side of the top and usually only part of the way. Blouses also have a softer, gentler look, with flowing lines, much like a knit top. In addition, blouses often do not have a collar or have a shorter collar than the typical button down.  


Blouses can range from light and casual to dressy and formal. You’ll find blouses with long sleeves, short sleeves, or none, and in many types of fabrics and designs. Some blouses have embroidery and come to the waist or hip. 


How Should a Blouse Fit? 


Like many womens tops, modern blouses are made to fit loosely, although many are gathered to fit or accentuate the waist. The intended effect of a blouse is usually to create a softer look. If you prefer a more flowing look, consider materials like cotton. And a silk blouse can be more luxurious and formal. Most people should begin fitting a blouse by looking at how the shoulders fit. If the blouse is too loose or too tight at the shoulders, it won’t hang properly on the rest of your top. 


How to Measure for a Blouse 


how to sew a blouse


When thinking about how to take blouse measurements, pay attention to how it fits in the following areas: 

  • Shoulders 
  • Bust 
  • Shoulder blades 
  • Waist 
  • Hips 
  • Length 


If your blouse is too tight or tugs, or is too long or short, it won’t feel comfortable and may not look flattering. If you are investing in a blouse and struggling to find the perfect fit, consider a looser style. Or, find a blouse that fits in the shoulder area, and then ask a tailor to adjust the blouse at the other points of measurement. 


How to Tie a Bow on a Blouse 


styled white blouse knot

Bow blouses are a classic style that has been around for centuries. If you’ve always wanted to wear a bow blouse but were afraid of the bow, then check out this tutorial that walks you through a step-by-step visual on how to tie a blouse knot. 


How to tie a blouse bow: 

  • Begin in front of a mirror so you can see each step 
  • Hold the left tie in your left hand, and the right tie in your right hand 
  • Cross one tie over the other 
  • Hanging onto the tie that went over the top, bring it underneath to pull through the hole 
  • With the same hand you started with, make a loop and hold it between your fingers 
  • Wrap the loop underneath the other tie 
  • Grasp the tie that is longer and pull it through the hole until the loop is the same size 
  • Adjust the center of the bow, then spread the loops out  


How to Style a Blouse 


You can style a blouse up or down depending on the other clothes you wear and your accessories. The materials you choose can make a difference. For example, a cotton blouse can feel more casual, while a silk or sheer blouse can look great layered under a blazer or worn with a pencil skirt. Pairing an elegant blouse with a fitted pant can take you from the office boardroom to power lunch easily. It’s smart to incorporate several blouse styles into your capsule wardrobe. 


5 Different Ways to Style Blouses 


woman with colorful blouse


There are so many ways you can style your blouses to fit any occasion. We might be a tad biased, but styling your blouse with womens denim is a great way to dress up your jeans. For example, try these outfit ideas: 


  • A classic white button down blouse with jeans and ankle boots 
  • A peplum blouse with black, tailored trousers and flats 
  • A cute floral blouse with white skinny jeans and ankle boots 


In addition, if you are wondering what to wear under a sheer blouse, consider a silky camisole. Many women wonder what to wear under a sheer black blouse. Brightly-colored bandeaus and cropped tops underneath can inject an element of summer fun and cheerfulness. 


Wondering what to wear with a silk blouse? You can dress it down with denim jean shorts or go daring with a mini skirt and heels.  


Here’s a bonus way to style your blouse: learn how to sew a blouse. By learning how to sew your perfect blouse, you can create a blouse design and look that is your own personal style. 


How to Care for a Blouse 


woman sewing white blouse


Learning how to care for your blouses is always in fashion. Many blouses will have care instructions on the tag specific to the materials used in the blouse. Generally, it’s a good idea to wash blouses in cold water on a gentle cycle. If you have a stain, gently dab a little detergent on the stain. Bleach is usually not a good idea for most blouse materials.  


Silk blouses need special care. Many people hand wash their silk blouses in cold water for just a few moments with a gentle soap. A water and vinegar rinse can help freshen the silk. Always lay the silk blouse flat to dry, not in a dryer. Finally, it’s not difficult to learn how to iron a silk blouse. When the silk is still a little damp, turn the blouse inside-out and use a cool iron to press out the wrinkles.  


Blouses are a great way to add a lot of style to your outfit while staying comfortable. Many fashion trends come and go, but blouses, like many woven tops, have been a mainstay for hundreds of years and will probably be around for hundreds more.