Vintage style: blousing around

It’s by now quite clear that as much as I’d like it to be, writing this blog isn’t my day job.  I’m a 5 days a week in an office kind of girl where my love for all things a little bit retro has to be channelled through an outwardly professional appearance.

I’m a big fan of a pencil skirt and blouse ensemble – it’s feminine but it means business.  There’s some great blouses out there at the moment, so I thought I’d share a few of my favourite styles.


Pussybow short sleeve blouse, ASOS, £25

I’ve seen pussybows on shirt patterns from the 30s right up through the 70s – they’re so versatile for creating different looks depending on the material or colour.  Not enough people wear them today! I like the coral colour of this shirt too, very Joan.

Winged collar

Long Sleeve Blouse, Vivien of Holloway, £39

I love this one – again, a popular collar style that you see often through the 40s to 60s and even better, Vivien of Holloway offer it in just so many different patterns.  I think this one is kinda delicate 40s, but there’s some fantastic 50s-style ginghams too.

Peter Pan collar

Chloe light brown top, Rock Steady @ Retro Vixens, £26.97

This one has a 60s mod flavour with its peter pan collar and contrast details. Good sleeve length too.

Revere collar

Gretta shirt, Retro Vixens, £36.97

This is on my wish-list for as soon as I get paid – simple but classic.  Again the collar gives a 40s/50s appeal, along with the sleeve-length. Surely an office staple.


Greta shirt, Collectif, £30

The pleating and draping on this blouse hints at the 40s – although the anchor print is a modern rockabilly twist.  Collectif have also just released plain versions of this blouse.


Black floral print peplum top, Dorothy Perkins, £17

Floral print? Check. Peplum? Check. Cute 40s style shirt? Check. And all for the bargain sale price of £17 – thanks, Dorothy Perkins.

Cute print

Shirt with elephant print, ASOS, £35

Ok, so maybe elephants aren’t going to appear on any shirt you find in a vintage shop, but I couldn’t resist.  Actually, the shape of this shirt is quite classic and you can either wear the sleeves down or shorten them to almost a bracelet sleeve length using a concealed button fastening.

Two office looks… (the left skirt is mine and the right skirt is this 40s skirt I wish I owned from Collectif)



  1. May 16, 2012 / 1:51 pm

    Marilyn looks very sweet in that photo, good find. You've inspired me to go and shop for blouses and a pencil skirt! Especially ones with elephants on them, brilliant :o)

    • May 16, 2012 / 2:05 pm

      I am most pleased to inspire clothes shopping of any kind, but particularly for blouses and pencil skirts – what a winning combination 🙂

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