Bargain Tuesday’s TPS Report: Silk Abstract Blouse

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.
Banana Republic Womens Silk Abstract BlouseBanana Republic has a ton of stuff marked 40% off, including a lot of basics and great seasonal items like this lovely silk blouse.  We like that it’s not quite a plaid, and not exclusively Christmas-y — but still seems every bit as appropriate as the usual Christmas plaid.  We’d wear it with a high-waisted skirt and perhaps a long-sleeved, thin-knit turtleneck beneath it.  Was $60, now $29, available in sizes S-XL at BR.  Banana Republic Womens Silk Abstract Blouse
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  1. anon - chi :

    Pretty! I can tell I would have the “is my bra strap showing?” issue though.

  2. Why does C always suggest a turtleneck beneath everything? There is no way I would add a turtleneck to this silk blouse and I would probably think it odd if someone else were to do so in an office (or anywhere for that matter).

    • I’m with you, @3L. Not feeling turtlenecks under silk short sleeve blouses…

      • Ditto. I have never seen this look done and it seems to me it would look very odd. Maybe it is particular to C’s geographic area?? People in Boston (where I am) would be more likely to wear it under a cardigan or suit jacket.

        Cute blouse though!

  3. That is gorgeous. With a suit, it would be that nice bit of color without overwhelming.

    (a safety pin takes care of the bra strap showing problem. Ihave to do it because I have really small shoulders that don’t hold straps of any kind well.).

  4. Word to the wise, all:

    This top (and ALL other BR tops, as far as I can see after many hours in BR dressing rooms) will look horrible on anyone who is not built like Kate Moss.

    I am a BR size XS/2-4. I also work out semi-regularly and have some muscle to show for it. ALL Banana tops, for the last 4-5 years, make me look like a football player.

    • I completely agree. The sweaters and knits are okay, but I haven’t been able to buy a blouse there in ages. It’s too bad because they look cute on the models, but they make me either look like a linebacker or look pregnant. Either way, not the look that I’m going for.

      I will admit that I haven’t tried this particular blouse on.

      • I’ve noticed the problem seems to be expanding into the knits, unfortunately. I recently tried on some shirts that were tiny in the arm/shoulder area but huge around the midsection. I think the tops are more for women with a very straight silhouette up top- narrow shoulders but not much difference between the bust/waist measurements either.

        • BR silk tops are cut really wide through the midsection because they don’t have zippers- otherwise it would be impossible to get on. I don’t know if omitting the side zip is a cost cutting measure or what. I usually end up wearing a belt or a fitted cardigan over them to create a less boxy shape.

          • Jenny’s point is right on. This is why I always buy a size down in BR or buy their tops in petite sizes (I am 5’6″ and 125).

    • I love this blouse so much that I tried it on the last time I was in BR. It fit, but made my chest look very strange. Unfortunately I have to agree with Erin, with regard to blouses anyway. I love my BR sweaters and tees and wear them all the time, but anything that isn’t designed to stretch looks bizarre.

  5. I must be in the minority here but I hate it. I just don’t think the sleeves are flattering. I can’t imagine myself wearing a turtleneck under a silk shirt either. I will wear turtlenecks under sweaters if the neckline is right and it’s cold, but not with a short-sleeved shirt.

  6. I agree that I would never wear a turtleneck with this. I also don’t like the print or the sleeves :) The price is right for a shell though.

  7. I am in the minority here, but I think that C has hit on a great way to take clothes from one season and move them into another. The beautiful fabrics add color and pattern, almost like an accessory, while the turtleneck adds the practical warmth and comfort necessary in cold climates in the winter. I have been doing it all winter, and it really works. Keep up the good work, C.

    • It may be practical, but stylish it is not. I have never seen anyone in NYC wear anything that way in an office. I’d rather just wrap a scarf around my neck or wear a turtleneck only without the silk shirt over it (I also imagine static cling problems occurring as well).

      • I’m with C on this one. I think it can be a good look, if you wear it well. Nice top.

  8. I have actually seen women do this in — GASP ;) — oh-so-fashion-forward NYC, and I think it can work very well, given the right turtleneck (tissue thin, very fitted,black, with a somewhat drapey, almost cowl-y neck that’s not too tight or too high). And, yeah, it would definitely not work with a dowdy, thick ribbed t-neck — especially in white or red or some other elementary school-type, primary color.

    That said, obviously, we all have our comfort/discomfort zones, and this is not something everyone can pull off & still look “fashionable.” But I just had to defend the style (even as a non-fan of turtlenecks generally). It can be quite cute & it’s a great way to wear lighter fabrics in winter.

    For the curious, I spent about 2 min on google images trying to find pics of how this can look good. Obviously, as I am at work & have actual work to do, these are imperfect (and not even all turtlenecks) but I think they showcase the point as much as work time will currently allow :)

    • I stand by my statement. The only look I liked from those above was the DVF — gorgeous, but alas not a turtleneck. I just cannot see someone pulling off this look in a law firm.

      • Ah, people can and do pull this look off in law firms. Nice pics, aims. I’ve had good luck with the whisper-thin layering pieces from the Gap this year. Hadn’t bought anything from there in ages, but tossed a couple into the BR online shopping cart and have been pleased with them.

  9. Anne Vohl :

    I would wear this at this season with a black tailored pants suit. (No turtleneck.) In the summer it would be nice with black jeans.

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