Tuesday’s TPS Report: Strutting Short Ruched Sleeve

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

Nanette Lepore Strutting Short Ruched SleeveThis blouse has so many things I enjoy: fitted waist, peplum flounce, cutouts on the arms, and 100% silk — gorgeous, gorgeous. What a great blouse to make an impression during an otherwise boring workday. It’s $228 at Saks. Nanette Lepore Strutting Short Ruched Sleeve


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  1. Like everything except the cutouts. I don’t know if I can get around those. Nice pick otherwise!

    • Ditto. If this blouse were mine, I would cut the bottom portion of the sleeves off.

    • Salit-a-gator :

      Love this blouse – the fit and color are awesome. I don’t know why the cut-out bothers me (its not particularly revealing at all, but it seems like that for some reason).

    • I love this one, and find the cut-outs unobjectionable. This would look so awesome with the black skinny jeans I wear every single day I’m not at work. If it cost $20 it would be mine. Heck, if it cost $40 it might be mine, and that’s saying something.

    • Agree, cutouts are horrible in every context, and not work appropriate in any context.

    • I love it and a least the manageing partner would have nothing to stare at! But $228 is to much for me! FOOEY!

    • Ugh, really? Cutouts might be appropriate for a pro, but not for a woman in a professional office.

      • Ugh, really? Are we sl*t-shame based on clothing choices?

        • It sounds like you’re conflating “pro” and “sl*t”.

          I think they’re different categories altogether, so no, I don’t think SBD’s comment falls under “sl*t-shaming.” SBD is pointing out that the outfit looks like it’d be worn by someone doing one type of job, when corporettes are doing completely different types of job.

          For that matter, I wouldn’t wear steel-toed boots to my office either, because I am not a construction worker and don’t want to misrepresent (in addition to not wanting to violate the dresscode issued by HR.)

        • I agree. I don’t love the cutouts on this one, but showing upper arm means your a prostitute? That’s kind of offensive.

          • Also…what sort of “pro” would wear this shirt? It is a green peplum shirt with cut outs in the upper arms. Those are not the assets that pros usually need to display!

  2. Silly threadjack: Has anyone been on the Bachelore/tte, or does anybody know someone who has? I’m just curious how awful the experience is. :) And about how someone can return to normal life after the show airs.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      I know someone who was during Andrew Firestone’s season. She was offed in the first big cut IIRC — she said it was a silly, fun experience. She was trying to make it as an actress at the time (though that’s not what they showed as her profession) and figured it would be good exposure. It was easy for her to return to normal life – but then again, she wasn’t on long enough for the audience to really remember her.

    • Snarky In House :

      I know two people who’ve been on in recent years. Chris L from the Cape is someone I grew up with and have known for years. And then Matt from Massachusetts on Ashley’s season – we went to college together.

      From what I understand, Chris’s experience wasn’t terrible. He was a bit annoyed that they edited him to be so one dimensional – the super nice guy who lost his mom. He is super nice but he’s also quite sarcastic and dry. Clearly, it’s worked out for him as he’s now engaged to another person (Peyton) who had been on an earlier season and he’s filming a new show for HGTV.

      I haven’t heard about or talked to Matt to know his experience.

    • I know someone who has been on the show. He said it was a crazy experience, but not one he regrets. He learned a lot about himself, traveled (although you don’t get to get out much when you are at these exotic locations), and met new people. It is easy to return to normal life; you just go back to work and everything goes back the way it was before the show. People can be mean though, so you (and your family and friends) have to have thick skin to deal with all of the negative comments about your clothes/looks/personality out there on the internet.

      • When I watch the show, I just always think, “Oh my gosh, what if my boss saw me acting like that????” I guess people who go on the show might have a different perspective on that.

        • AnonInfinity :

          I have similar thoughts! “How could I ever face opposing counsel after declaring my undying love on national television to a man that I’ve known for 4 minutes and who has bad bad hair?!”

          Extremely related — I’ve been surprised at the number of really smart, professional women AND MEN who share my secret guilty pleasure (the Bachelor/Bachelorette).

          • Remember that show More to Love or whatever? The Bachelor for plus-sized people (let’s just ignore the premise of that show). I was so pumped when there was an honest-to-goodness rocket scientist on that show. ROCKET. SCIENTIST. And she got booted off in the first round. I was miffed on behalf of all in the STEM fields.

    • Anony-mouse :

      I summered with a guy who then was a contestant on the Bachelorette and made it to the final 3 (regular commenter going anon for this because “who” the contest was is fairly well-known in my city). Interesting back story, he had just started at a BigLaw firm when he found out that he would be on the show. Within a month of starting, he asked for a 6-month leave of absence to film. Unsurprisingly, the firm wasn’t thrilled with this prospect and let him go. After the Bachelorette, he did contract doc review for a while and last year hung out a shingle as a solo.

      • Wow, really? Please tell me he didn’t argue that finding “true love” was more important than career!

        • Anony-mouse :

          Nah, he was in it originally for the fame and because filming looked like fun (traveling, drinking all day, etc.). And now he’s a B-list celebrity in our city and has his pick of women throwing themselves at him at clubs at night, so (I’m guessing here), he considers it a net-positive outcome.

      • That’s the impression I get– that the huge time commitment (3-6 months of being owned by the studio) would be incompatible with most corporate jobs. Which is why there are so many aspiring artists/actors, freelancers, car-sales types, mortgage brokers on the show. The car-sales/mortgage broker types have fairly transferrable skills and can go from one firm to another; plus, those jobs aren’t on a “track” the way corporate law or finance have “tracks.”

        The rest seem to be consigned to moving from reality show to reality show. Which sounds to me to me like moving from one circle of hell to another.

    • Guilty Anon :

      I knew a girl! It was one of the most rewarding experiences for me ever. After a serious ex and I broke up he went out with this new girl and rubbed my face in it- making out in front of me, etc. A few years later she ended up on the Bachelor- and getting cut. She wept and looked ridiculous crying over this guy she barely knew. Loved it!

  3. Blazer befuddled :

    Off the bat threadjack – I picked up this blazer at BR this weekend and could really use some styling suggestions. I don’t/won’t own white pants, and would like suggestions that don’t include denim since I can’t wear jeans to work (but can wear other casual pants on Fridays, ie cords/chinos) – any suggestions are welcome!


    (it is the Barbara striped knit blazer in case link doesn’t work – only available in petite online but B&M had regular sizes as well)

    • I think you could wear that with lots of things. If you have any brightly colored skirts, this would be the perfect thing to wear with them to make them more business-y (e.g., magenta, light blue, aqua, orange, yellow, etc.). You could also do camel/khaki. I just wouldn’t do black or navy, but pretty much anything else is fair game. I do think magenta (such as The Skirt) would look particularly awesome, though.

      • Yeah, I think this would look very nice with “the skirt” in some of its brighter colors.

        I also think you could probably do it with a pair of black wide-leg slacks and then a brightly colored contrasting shell underneath — but I’m less confident about how that would look.

    • This says summer to me. I think it would look nice over a solid colored sheath dress, if you have one. If you don’t mind the nautical/preppy/Nantucket look – i assume you don’t, otherwise you wouldn’t have bought this! – you could pair it with any of the classic colors in that family, like kelly green or nantucket red or pink.

      • Ditto this. I can totally see you rocking this over a kelly green sheath. Or if you’d like something more subdued, gray or maybe camel.

        I, personally, would lean more towards putting it over a column of a solid color, rather than a skirt/shirt combo. It’s a bold piece, so I would be concerned that it could look a bit busy with multiple colors. But of course, you could absolutely make it work.

    • Salit-a-gator :

      I think this would go with most solid colors (I wouldn’t add another print in the mix). I’m picturing wearing it with a neutral and a color. So a navy skirt and a red shirt. Or vice versa, a red skirt and a navy shirt. Besides reds, I think this would go well with turquise, dark blue, orange, yellow, camel, gray, dark green, light and dark purple, pink (you get the idea). As for the neutrals, I think this would look good with black, navy, gray, white and camel.

  4. Hate the sleeves. And the peplum waist looks very shapeless on the model.

    Great colour, though.

    • This.

    • Diana Barry :

      Agreed, the sleeve cutouts are terrible. They may just have pulled the peplum tight around the model for the photo – it may not be that flat looking in person.

      • LOL. I wouldn’t be surprised if the model had those giant wooden clothespins behind her, pulling the top tighter. It’s always weird to see this done with clothes worn by mannequins at stores. For me, it’s quite off-putting. Even if there’s nothing wrong with the garment, I assume it’s a shapeless tent, or else, why pull it tight so artificially?

  5. I have been dying for a shirt in this color for some time– the green is so striking!

  6. Love everything about this blouse.

  7. a passion for fashion :

    I am in love with the whole outfit — the green top w/ the navy slacks and the navy and white stripe jacket. not sure if its the best use of a grand, but i really want this.

    • We are in the minority but I really adore it too! Mbuy it to wear with my navy pants and pencil skirt. Love the color, and I think the otherwise really conservative style balances the cut-outs at the arms just fine.

  8. On what body type are peplums flattering? They must be on someone, right? Not me.

  9. MeliaraofTlanth :

    Does anyone have suggestions for a really good jeweler in NYC to repair and appraise old pieces? I inherited an old 1920s cocktail ring from my grandmother, as well as a vintage-ish (1950s? 1960s?) Rolex. I want to see if the stone can be replaced on the ring–it’s an aquamarine that’s so old it’s been worn down smooth and almost looks like a moonstone(a jeweler in my hometown told me he couldn’t do it–something about it being bezel set and too delicate to change, but I suspect I might have more luck with a good jeweler in new york), and the watch needs some cleaning/band repair, rewinding and appraisal. The actual rolex store is never open during non-standard work hours, and it’s too far from work to go during lunch to see if they can do anything with it, so that’s not realistically an option. Anyone have a jeweler they trust that’s very good with repairs?

    • I’m not from NYC, but I know if you send it to rolex they will replace every single part that is not up to their standards and may ring up a hefty fee. I believe there’s 2 rolex locations that do this kind of stuff, nyc and like texas or something in south/west. I live in NJ and know people who send their watched to texas or wherever rather than nyc but the nyc is difficult to deal with. there are authorized rolex people elsewhere though (i’m near philly and know people who use people in PA). Alternatively, you can look for local jewelers who are good with mechanical watches. So sorry to say I only know a good mechanical watch and jeweler in south jersey.

  10. MeliaraofTlanth :

    oh how annoying. Moderation because I used the word c*cktail. I keep forgetting. Ok, sorry for the double post once the original gets through moderation, but posting this again because who knows how long that will take:

    Does anyone have suggestions for a really good jeweler in NYC to repair and appraise old pieces? I inherited an old 1920s c*cktail ring from my grandmother, as well as a vintage-ish (1950s? 1960s?) Rolex. I want to see if the stone can be replaced on the ring–it’s an aquamarine that’s so old it’s been worn down smooth and almost looks like a moonstone(a jeweler in my hometown told me he couldn’t do it–something about it being bezel set and too delicate to change, but I suspect I might have more luck with a good jeweler in new york), and the watch needs some cleaning/band repair, rewinding and appraisal. The actual rolex store is never open during non-standard work hours, and it’s too far from work to go during lunch to see if they can do anything with it, so that’s not realistically an option. Anyone have a jeweler they trust that’s very good with repairs?

    • Eric’s Antiques in the diamond district (47th, just off 5th ave) – they are lovely and expert at working with old pieces.

    • I don’t live in NY so can’t help you on the jeweler but this is just to say congratulations on the watch ! I love vintage ones and a properly-looked after 50s/ 60s Rolex should keep giving you good time as well as being a lovely memento of your grandmother. My dad recently came into one from his dad and we are 3 siblings greedily eying our family’s 2 vintage watches now – his plus my granddad’s. Is yours an automatic ? A ladies version ?

      • MeliaraofTlanth :

        Thanks:-) No idea if it’s an automatic or manual (haven’t actually had anyone open it up and look, though I suspect automatic–doesn’t it have to be like ealry half of the century for manual?). It’s a ladies version, and lovely. I really hate current nice watch designs because I think that, for the most part, even the ladies watches look so masculine now, so I was super excited about this one.

        And thanks for the rec, anonymous. I’ll check them out.

  11. Another threadjack. My house turns 100 years old this year, and we were thinking of using it as an excuse to have a party. Any ideas for how we could make that fun and not too thematic? I thought we could serve classic cocktails, but that’s about as far as I’ve gotten.

  12. Darn it, stuck in moderation. Apologies for the double post:

    Another threadjack. My house turns 100 years old this year, and we were thinking of using it as an excuse to have a party. Any ideas for how we could make that fun and not too thematic? I thought we could serve classic c*cktails, but that’s about as far as I’ve gotten.

    • it’s not *quite* 100 years but you could do a prohibition party. let people wear whatever they want, but serve classic drinks and play jazzy music and give it a speakeasy theme.

    • what about having the music start 100 years ago and move to the present throughout the evening?

    • As people come in, you could give them each a card with a historical figure from the time’s name and some factoids about them. People could then try to guess who each others were and when they guess, they get the person’s card. Whomever gets the most cards, wins some kind of prize. :-)

    • OK, I started writing this before I got to the part where you want it not too thematic, but here are some themes anyway, because I find them fun:

      How about trying to create an entire “theme” of 1912? You could find out what music was popular at the time and play it, maybe decorate with old newspaper clippings from the year, if your town’s library has them, maybe some vintage posters from silent movies, and maybe you could find a cookbook that was popular at that time and serve recipes from it? Maybe even invite people to dress up (In what, I’m not sure – it was sort of an in-between time.) This sounds way too much fun, and now I want to come!

      Alternatively, I think it’s the 100 year aniversary of the Titanic – that could also make a great theme, particularly if you happen to be one of those people who was nuts about the movie. (I do not, however, recommend the Titanic inflatable slide, seen here: http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=titanic+inflatable+slide&id=88ED7A89AD062C2ED86279A986DECE1B6DDE9E0D&FORM=IQFRBA, which is extremely creepy.)

      Double alternatively: 2012 Mayan calendar end of the world party?

      Or, if going for not too thematic, classic c**tails and either music or silent movies, and try to find out if maybe there were some parlor games from the time – I’ll be those would be fun to try out.

      • Okay, those were really good ideas! I’m excited now! By saying I didn’t want it to be too thematic, I was just thinking of my mom’s suggestion that we put artifacts from that era around the house. It would be fun to play silent movies, and I hadn’t thought of a Titanic theme. I also like the historical card game. This will be fun!

        • A Titanic theme would be fun! Also, if you’re up for it, Downton Abbey is very popular right now and it is set in roughly the same era that your house was built, so this could be a good opportunity for a costume party of sorts (though I don’t think anyone will want to dress up quite as much as the aristocrats of that era, but they do have such pretty things!).

      • These ideas all sound like so much fun! If you end up doing something like this, let us know how it goes.

    • My in-laws did this when their house turned 100. They didn’t do any theme, they just threw a party, although I think early in the evening they did a tour of some of the unique older features of the home.

      Maybe you can have old photos of the home (if they are available) as decorations? (Check your historical society.) Another friend with an older home did a great Christmas card where they had a 1940s photo of a family in front of their house, along with a 2010 photo of them in the same poses in front of the house. (Luckily, each family had one small child.) Otherwise, I don’t think you need to do anything special. Your house’s birthday is a great reason for a party!

    • Oh shoot, you make me feel guilty. My house either turned 100 in 2009 or this year, depending in which records you believe, and I didn’t throw it a party. But that’s such a good idea. Maybe I still will.

      (mamabear, stop anthropomorphizing your house. it does not have feelings. it is not hurt by this.)

  13. I need some suggestions for a gift. My friend is turning 40 next week. She’s a really good friend. She always remembers my birthday and always gives me a gift (even though most of the friends in our circle don’t do that generally… we usually just take each other out for breakfast/lunch). Here’s the kicker… the gifts she gives me are always weird and unusable. Here’s a sampling– cardboard photoframe (may have been from a cereal box), an itchy wool sweater that was on clearance for 5 dollars (we are both allergic to wool), clearance lotion giftsets from walmart, nylon scarf. Even my cleaning lady does not want this stuff and she will take my kids’ used clothes. Said gift is always presented with “I thought of you when I saw it.” She is not poor and she wears fabulous items and stylish outfits. I am by no means a fashionista but I buy and wear decent quality. Maybe it’s just me, but her gifts always seem like a backhanded put down if that makes sense. I absolutely would not mind if she did not give me a gift. Anyhow, I can’t bring myself to do the same thing so I always give her a decent gift, like nice chocolates, something from Sephora, or the like, with a gift receipt. Now she is turning 40 and I want to give her a nice, usable gift but I don’t want to spend more than $25-30. She likes all the usual girly stuff. I was thinking of some texting gloves but don’t know if I can still find any. Any suggestions? Thanks for listening.

  14. momentsofabsurdity :

    I’m so happy – I’ve finally figured out what shape I am!

    I always got frustrated because I assumed I had an hourglass shape – but then didn’t understand why a lot of the advice for hourglass shapes didn’t work on me. Those magazine articles with apple, pear, hourglass were great, but I’d put on an a-line or flared skirt and look wider and couldn’t figure out why.

    In fact, it’s now pretty clear to me that I’m 8 shaped – like an hourglass, but with higher-set hips, which has a different set of rules to it. The clearest part to me was when I read – if you can balance a child on your hip without needing to jut it out you are probably an 8 shape. I should be aiming for straight fitting or flared from the knee skirts, peplum jackets and tucks in at the waist and avoiding anything flared from the waist or loose around the waist, which will just make me look bigger. Who knew?

    • That sounds like me too! That’s good to know. And now I need to get back to work . . .

    • Did you get this information at a particular site?

      • Take a look at an Australian fashion website called insideoutstyleblog dot com dot au. There’s a tab at the top of the page for body types. The author describes different body types, including an 8.

    • Tired Squared :

      Yep, I’m more of an “8” than an hourglass too … I guess the difference is having “high hips” vs “low hips?” Tucks at the waist are my go-to, and straight/slightly flared skirts are MUCH more flattering than A-lines!

    • I think I am shaped like a “6”

    • 100% 8 here and I also got it from insideoutstyle, though I had missed that bit about carrying a child on ones hip, which I fully did for at least four years.

      I often describe myself as hourglass because no one knows what an 8 is. ;)

      I love peplums, straight knee length skirts, and am psyched that my figure icon is Catherine Zeta Jones, because I think she’s one of the most beautiful actresses living.

  15. This blouse is the sort of thing I’d only wear in black or white. Too much else happening with the sleeves and the peplum to have the bright colour going on at the same time.

  16. Is anyone else having an AAAGGGGHHHHHMMMPPPHHHH kind of day?

    Please tell me I’m not the only one who wants to go back home and hide under a blanket today.

    • I just got a splinter in my lip from a pair of chopsticks. I absolutely feel you. Also, ouch.

    • Uggggh I so am. So many little things going wrong. And it’s my birthday. :(

    • Yes! I didn’t want to get out of bed at all this morning, and I probably shouldn’t have. I had nothing to wear because I forgot to put the clothes I washed into the dryer last night and everything was wet. Then I realized a mile away from my house that I’d forgotten my purse. I was 20 minutes late to work, and now I’m having an impossible time staying awake. Is it 5 yet???

    • Right there with you! Part of me wants to pull a costanza at work and just pretend the day will end…

    • Alanna of Trebond :

      I was this morning. I have a lot of 9am class this semester (which is sad, but I suppose I’ll be working soon), so I got up early and caught an early train and was very excited that I would be on time (very rare for me). Then I missed my stop (well, I actually missed it by *three stops*) because I was playing an extremely interesting game on my phone. Because I had to leave the station to take the train in the other direction, I ended up getting lost between the downtown and uptown trains? As a result, I was late to class! And I forgot my textbook :-(.

  17. Can I just complain for a second?
    Me: normal idea
    supervisor: that doesn’t sound good what about crazy idea?
    Me: nicely point out a concern with crazy idea
    supervisor: well we can see . . .

  18. phillygirlruns :

    i frequently wear very, very boring shirts under suit jackets and blazers – i have about 10 identical white short-sleeve crewneck “perfect tee – stretch” from the gap. i’ve been looking for more interesting tops but am shortwaisted and large-chested, which knocks out just about anything silk. this weekend, i picked up two j.crew “tippi” sweaters, one in flaming orange and the other in a bright blue. LOVE. LOVE LOVE LOVE. they hit at the right spot on my hips to avoid emphasizing my waist, look good tucked and untucked, and fit well – loose through the waist without being dumpy and fitted without stretching unattractively over my chest. the only thing that stops me from buying about ten more is that they’re about $10-15 overpriced at $72.

    wearing the flame orange today with a coral/white check button down underneath. i want pink, and green, and fuchsia, and even the neon yellow, and definitely the leopard print they had instore and not in my size. i’m pretty sure i’m just going to cave and buy six more, protesting all the way about the price.

    • Non-neutral colors usually go on sale. Set up a price alert on shopping notes and decide that you’ll get the ones still in your size when the price goes down below $x. That’s what I usually do.

    • Might be worth checking out the Factory store where prices are generally a bit more reasonable (online version is only open weekends). Alternatively, sign up for their email list, as they’re constantly running promotions on certain items. If you’re lucky, you might be able to snag them for an additional 15-30% in the near future.

    • My flame orange Tippi sweater is hands-down my favorite cool-weather clothing purchase of 2011. Seriously, I LOVE THAT SWEATER: it has such a flattering shape (I’m short-waisted as well, although I have the chest of a twelve-year-old), comes in great colors, and has held up under frequent wear since October.

      Sadly, I also agree that it’s just a little too expensive for what it is. Hence I only have the one. But I also have its page on the website bookmarked, and look at it weekly to see if it’s on sale ;) Glad to see Tippi getting some love!

    • This sounds perfect, and the colors are gorgeous. Do you mind if I ask how tall you are, to get a sense of where it falls)? (Busty and short-waisted but tall here.) Also, is the crewneck one of those high crewnecks, or does it leave the neck a little room to breathe?

    • You could call the J Crew outlets and see if they have any there.

      • phillygirlruns :

        i’m not much of a crewlet fan for things like this – the regular version is already a very thin knit, so i feel like the factory version would be basically made of toilet paper.

    • OH, I am wearing the Tippi in leopard today for the first time and I ADORE it! Agree that it was overpriced, BUT I love it so much that I may have to get it in solid colors — especially with your recommendation. Thanks!

    • Is the tippi sweater the same weight and material as the jackie cardigan?

      • I don’t believe so – the Tippi is merino wool, and I think the Jackie is cotton or a cotton-blend.

        • Does anyone have the Jackie? I’m curious how well it holds up. I’ve had horrible luck with J. Crew lately.

          • I have several, the oldest of which is from spring of 2008. They’ve all held up well – no pilling or anything – but I probably don’t wear any of them but one more than once a month. That one that I wear more frequently I made the mistake of machine washing and drying. It’s still wearable, but it has a fuzziness about it now that makes it look more casual, and it’s pulled a bit out of shape along the placket. So, be prepared not to machine wash.

      • phillygirlruns :

        nope – the tippi is merino vs. the jackie’s cotton, as the other poster noted, and seems to be a finer gauge as well. and another s, i have a few jackies – the regular store version and the factory version. the factory jackies seem boxier to me and are definitely not as substantial as the regular jackies. both versions have held up fine from a few years of semi-regular wear, but i haven’t bought either since 2010.

    • thank you! i’m big chested and short waisted too and normally just stick to august silk shells under my suits. I was contemplating ordering some lands end sweater jewel neck tops.

  19. SoCal Gator :

    I am in the mood to add some colorful tops, either blouse or nice tees, to my work wardrobe. Need some suggestions for some that I can wear under a solid blazer. What colors combos for under a black, brown or tan blazer? And does anyone have a favorite bright color tee or blouse? I need to brighten things up!

  20. What do We think about red jeggings for weekend wear? (Worn with bottom-covering top, of course.)


    Any age cutoff for these?

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