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PatternReview Blog > The Classic White Shirt…a must have for the spring wardrobe! by Angela Wolf
The Classic White Shirt…a must have for the spring wardrobe! by Angela WolfBy AlexisW on 2/13/14 12:41 PM

The Classic White Shirt … a must have for the spring wardrobe!

- by Angela Wolf

The classic white shirt is taking a forefront in the spring/summer 2014 trends.  The white blouse coordinates with so many of the looks this season, not to mention it fits in the with the vibrant colored fabrics; from wild prints to floral designs. 

Two of my favorite ways to wear the blouse:

  • Tucked into a higher-waist trouser or skirt accessorized with a belt
  • Left hanging out over a skinny jean or slender pencil skirt

Photo: Fabio Ionà (Donna Karan) and Yannis Vlamos / Indigitalimages.com (Akris and Michael Kors) from Style.com

Fabric Ideas

Cotton seems to be the most prevalent fabric choice in much of the spring apparel, not just the blouse.  A cotton-blend won’t wrinkle quite as much as 100% cotton and a little stretch in the fabric allows for extra comfort.  Sheer fabrics are also a great choice, of course silk chiffon is one of my personal favorites, which I prefer to wash and dry for easy care.  A few more:

  • Linen
  • Gauze
  • Silk charmeuse
  • Sueded silk
  • Organza
  • Silk noil
  • Georgette

Pattern Alteration

Consider altering the pattern, similar to color blocking, creating a unique design to use solid and sheer fabrics on the same top:

  • sheer for the sleeves
  • sheer for the shoulder area
  • solid from the upper chest down to the hem
  • solid for the cuffs and collar

The White Shirtdress

Onto a few pattern alterations … shirtdresses are big part of this trend.  The longer blouses are accessorized with a wide, low slung belt. Very cute!  I only wish I would have kept my 80’s belts :) Don’t worry about finding a new pattern for this style, just lengthen a standard blouse pattern (I listed a few patterns below).  If you want to keep the curved edge at the hemline, cut the pattern apart at the waistline to lengthen the pattern.

Also, compare the measurement in the hip area of the blouse with your own hip measurement.  If both hip measurements are close, slightly angle the side seams out from the waist down to give a little more room.

       

Pattern Alteration

Consider altering the pattern, similar to color blocking, creating a unique design to use solid and sheer fabrics on the same top:

  • sheer for the sleeves
  • sheer for the shoulder area
  • solid from the upper chest down to the hem
  • solid for the cuffs and collar

Do you plan on adding a white blouse or dress to your wardrobe this year?

 

      

 

Join Angela on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest, or sign up for sewing tips and class updates on her blog.

Angela Wolf is the designer and founder behind ABO ApparelAngela Wolf Ready-to-Wear and ABO Sport. An A-list clientele has given Angela more than fifteen years of experience dressing and fitting many diverse women and has enabled her to understand the different styles that compliment each individual woman.

See Angela's patterns.

See Angela's classes on PatternReview.

 

Missed Angela’s previous columns?

Jackets and Outerwear Take On a Fashion Twist!

Leather Jackets for Fall!

Designer Dresses & Fall Colors

Summer Fun with Flirty Fabrics! 

Fabrication to the Extreme!

Dressing Up the Little Black Dress


6 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
Mimi O said...
Thanks for the article. I have a favorite "go to" white blouse with princess seams that I just love. Time to make a new one being as I have had this one for a while.
2/20/14 6:35 AM
kiwi stitcher said...
Thank you Angela, I am a fan of the white shirt, but like OceanSew pure white is my enemy because of my colourings, in saying that I have always had at least one 'white shirt' in my wardrobe. They vary in colour from cream through to off-white which all suit my skin tone. I team them with jeans, pants and skirts and I wear the same ones summer and winter. I don't often have a 'what am I going to wear?' moment. I love some of the pattern recommendations. Thank you.
2/19/14 7:07 PM
Ashford said...
I like the Classic White Shirt on other women; but I have never been comfortable wearing it myself. It seems to make my wide, square shoulder tips the focal point of the outfit and makes me appear short and stout. Angela's article and the Little White Dress Contest have me thinking about variations. For me, I think the collar width and shape could make a big difference. The trend gives me incentive; the versatility gives me motivation; the collar idea gives me possible solutions. i may end up with a white shirt this season.
2/19/14 6:57 PM
CBLSEWS said...
Great article! Thanks for giving of your time to help all of us with your knowledge.
2/18/14 11:28 AM
OceanSew said...
I've read seen & heard about the wonders of white shirts for Years...I'm nearly 60. But alas I just can't go there with my coloring. As a pale skinned faded strawberry blond, both Black & White are my enemy (if I want to look alive & healthy). I will go my own way, but I love the looks on others. I love these articles also. Thanks Angela!
2/18/14 11:11 AM
Futuralon said...
If I make a buttoned shirt soon, for sure it will be white with black accents. Contrast piping and minimal color blocking (plackets, collars, cuffs and tuxuedo-type strips), both rooted in pyjama and/or menswear styling, are having a moment. White shirts have a lot of vintage undertones but a pop of contrast is a good way to make it modern.
2/15/14 7:02 PM

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