Fashion Must-Have Piece: The Victoriana Blouse

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Mr Style & Substance and I had our first night out together since having Daisy two weeks ago. This sounds rather dramatic given that she’s a year old (and a bit tragic) and technically it wasn’t actually the very first time but it was the first evening we had been out and didn’t get a call because she was poorly/teething/refusing to sleep. (I’m also discounting the very first meal we had out as new parents when she was weeks old as I think we ate in approximately 3 minutes and were back home before she’d even had time to notice.)

The cause for celebration was in part Valentine’s Day but mostly to celebrate surviving a year of parenthood. Being that I don’t get out much these days, I wanted to make more of an effort than I would have done before Daisy so such a special occasion called for a special outfit…

I’d seen and admired the Victoriana blouse from a distance but I wasn’t sure it was for me and my minimal fuss-free wardrobe. Heading up the fash-pack was Monsoon with their white lace blouse but wearing something that white with a child is just asking for trouble so I steered clear. Then they bought it out in black this month – if I hadn’t known any better it was like it was meant to be!

Suffice to say my opinion on fuss was completely turned when I put on this top. Granted it featured more frills than I would have normally ever worn but I was pleasantly surprised to find how subtle they are when on. For a first time frill-seeker this blouse comes in at the perfect entry level – and of course black makes it a lot less in your face. The neckline and cuff detailing are beautiful and although the lace is delicate in appearance the thick cotton fabric makes it a lot sturdier than you’d think and prevents the top from being too flouncy. If I had any reservations about ruffles before trying this top I was instantly sold when I realised the cunningly placed ruffle across the bust line was extremely helpful for boosting the bosom-challenged like myself.

I didn’t know where I was going for dinner as Mr Style & Substance wanted to surprise me so rather than go all out and risk being overdressed I erred on the side of caution pairing it with jeans, a blazer and my old favourite leopard print heels. With so much detail the top was definitely the centre piece of the outfit. It is also worth mentioning that I added a simple black camisole vest underneath as I was no way brave enough to just wear a bra (no one wants to see that!)

Blouse, Monsoon. Jeans, ASOS.com. Bag, Dune (old). Heels, Marks & Spencer (old). Lipstick in Peach Stock, MAC.

Blazer, Zara (old). Blouse, Monsoon. Jeans, ASOS.com. Bag, Dune (old). Heels, Marks & Spencer (old).

Since our evening out I have been surprised how easily this top has worked for daytime too – it is not be saved just for special occasions (yay!).  For instance, I’ve teamed it with dungarees and worn it over a polo neck – it would also be perfect in the office for a day to night ensemble. Every wardrobe needs an outfit elevator item such as this blouse – it lifts an everyday outfit and adds glamour on days when you simply want to look and feel a bit more fabulous than usual and let’s be honest, we all have those days.

Happy Shopping

Cx

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