Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

October 16, 2007

The Quest for the Perfect White Blouse

Filed under: Fashion — Francesca @ 9:15 am

Francesca always tries to make sure that she has more than one white blouse in her closet. It is a staple, the white blouse. It can be worn with any color skirt or pant, and many styles can be dressed up or down appropriately for work, special occasions, nightlife, or running errands. It is very versatile, the white blouse.

It is also prone to becoming stained the first time Francesca wears it. Aaargh! So, you see, it is important to have more than one on hand, just in case.

As usual, we turn to Talbots. Francesca has tried other outlets, but finds that white blouses are prone to arriving in the mail looking much more flimsy and see-through in person than online. One wants a white blouse which is substantial enough that one’s bra and one’s skirt waist do not show through the fabric. Remember to wear a bra which is not white, but rather close to one’s skin tone!

For Francesca, who is an Apple, it must also have princess seams or similar, so that it can be worn not-tucked-in and still look put-together, not frumpy. And finally, for Francesca, it must be long enough to cover the tummy, without, once again, looking frumpy.

Behold the French-cuff blouse. Francesca loves French cuffs!

The Smocked Corduroy Shirt

And here we have another smocked blouse, with such beautiful stitching on the front to enliven it:

Oh, to buy now or wait for the sale? That is the question . . .

Happy shopping!

xoxo, Francesca


  1. Francesca, you are a woman after my own heart. I always say “I never met a white blouse I didn’t like (and buy)”. I am also prone to spilling the first thing I put in my mouth on my blouse, so you absolutely can never have too many. My sainted mother always suggested dressing to match your evening dinner choice to minimize embarassment. For examble, if you’re planning on eating Italian food, wear a nice red blouse. These days, however I travel with a “Tide To Go” pen in my purse and it has saved me on any number of occasions. Give it a try, it actually works.

    Comment by gemdiva — October 16, 2007 @ 1:59 pm

  2. All lovely choices, but the Deja has tried on that last “smocked” blouse, and would want to warn others that it has the look of someone who is wearing bubblewrap armor, and the sucker has to be dry cleaned.

    Carry on.

    Comment by deja pseu — October 16, 2007 @ 4:32 pm

  3. I have an addiction to white tops, but they do tend to look like smoker’s teeth after a few wears. White vingear in your wash is actually a really good old hippy tip for keeping colours/whites bright, and those pens are brilliant, too.

    Comment by Margo — October 16, 2007 @ 4:34 pm

  4. Margo. Thanks for the vinegar tip. You’re right. After a while they do loose their vibrant white glow. I’ve tried Oxy and Clorox 2, so vinegar will be next. Any suggestions as to how much?

    Comment by gemdiva — October 16, 2007 @ 5:02 pm

  5. There’s a stain removal tip for white tops my mother taught me that you might want to try if your regular stain removal product doesn’t work. Boil a kettle of water; holding the stained spot stretched over a large bowl or pot set in the sink – stained side down (a helper or huge rubber band is nice to have), pour the boiling water through the stain from 1 to 2 feet above the fabric (be careful not to splash yourself). I’ve been successful removing a red wine stain that had sat for a couple of days from a white blouse. Also, water can be kinder to your fabric than some harsh chemicals.

    Comment by Carol — October 16, 2007 @ 5:40 pm

  6. $88 for a shirt? – wait for the sale!
    Yep – I am a cheapskate.

    Comment by g-dog — October 16, 2007 @ 8:35 pm

  7. Francesca,

    Have you tried these specific blouses? I’m wondering because I’m looking for some good white tops, and I think the first two would work well for me (I have a very large bust, so I think i’d pass on the 3rd).

    I’m hoping you can tell me if they each require camisoles (or, can I wear them without anything underneath)?


    Comment by dangermouse — October 16, 2007 @ 10:35 pm

  8. Those are all lovely, and I’ve never bought anything from Talbots that isn’t so well-made it will outlive me. Alas, I’m such a klutz that white blouses are not an option for me. I literally used to get dressed and start the stopwatch to see how long it would take before I spilled something on myself. Twenty minutes was the longest I ever went. Now I get white blouses in the tuxedo shirt department of second hand stores, if ever.

    Comment by raincoaster — October 17, 2007 @ 2:13 am

  9. Hey Gemdiva – I just stick in a couple of capfuls to my general wash, though I remember one desperate attempt to resurrect a beloved blouse by soaking it in about quarter of a bottle of the stuff, which would’ve been fine I’m sure if I hadn’t decided to chuck in a tablespoon of baking soda as well. It was like Krakatoa in my washtub.

    Comment by Margo — October 17, 2007 @ 3:44 pm

  10. Don’t they have ANY pictures of a real woman in a white blouse! Looking at the tiny, skinny, single digit sized woman in a white blouse doesn’t tell me what I (the small busted, round bellied diva, or the full figured busty, fluffy fashionista) will look like…!!! Plus sized models are sized 10…OMG!!!!!!!! I long for a size 16 model. I want to see a bust size B in a size 18 pant…. GIVE ME REALITY OR GIVE ME A MOO MOO!!!!!!

    Comment by Jennie — October 17, 2007 @ 10:06 pm

  11. Nice blouse picks. You summed up the requirements for a white blouse really well. That should be re-printed in a shopping guide for women who are putting together outfits for professional women’s business suits.

    Comment by Johanna — November 9, 2007 @ 5:51 pm

  12. HINGHAM, Mass. – (Business Wire) The Talbots, Inc. (NYSE: TLB) today announced it has retained Moelis

    Comment by talbots closing — December 8, 2008 @ 8:50 am

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