Striped Blazer, Inverted

Nautical Stripes 5-2
Blazer – Theory Amanda B., size 00
Blouse – H&M, size XS (tag)
JeansPaige Blue Heights Skinny, size 23 (hemmed)
ShoesChristian Louboutin, YoYo 85, size 35

Nautical-esque striped jackets are a current trend du jour, and yes, even I, the late jumper-of-trends that I am, tried one recently. The look is everywhere and oh-so-tempting to jump on, but, as trends go, it won’t last.

I wanted the look, but didn’t want to buy yet another jacket, that I don’t need, or that I’ll probably only wear for one season. Wasted money, right? Instead, I went for something similar. I wanted a cute, navy blue, striped blouse that I could pair with a timeless white blazer that I already had in my wardrobe. It would be the striped jacket look, only inverted.

Here’s why I think this option is better:

1. I’m adding a new blouse into my wardrobe, which unlike a striped jacket, is easier to mix and match with items I already own.

2. After the striped jacket trend is dead and gone, I can still wear the striped blouse in a variety of classic looks. Coco and Audrey know what I’m talking about:

This cheapie H&M blouse fit the bill perfectly.

Not only does the blouse fit small and drape nicely, but the neckline and bow is 100% silk. H&M fabrics can be hit or miss for me, but this blouse feels nice and soft, and I was sold on the silk bow detail. I also like the thin stripe pattern (I feel it’s more flattering on my frame) and classic navy color.

Nautical Stripes 10-2
Nautical-Stripes-Back-and-Side
Product Info – Size XS:
H&M-Striped-Tee-Measurements
Shell: 100% viscose
Decoration: 100% silk
Machine wash, cold, permanent press
Lay flat to dry
Or dry clean

PS – We are moving to a new place (I feel like a nomad these days!), hence the new photo background. Be prepared for a general lack of photography skills as I figure out the new lighting and background choices. ;)

Do you compromise on trends that you like, but know won’t last?

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46 Comments

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Really Petite

    I absolutely am guilty of this! I like your option better because the striped blazer is definitely way too reminiscent of "jail" attire.

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Rainy Days and Lattes

    I'm really in love with this blouse! I'm really picky when it comes to tops.. I won't go overboard on trends because I know I won't like it so much later on :p I do like nautical stripes and navy blue colors though :)

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Elle

    I am definitely guilty of buying into trends as well…my style isn't timeless and ebb and flow with my mood. I think you are right to invest in the top instead of keeping the other H&M jacket. I love the bow and the trim, it's a nice touch on an otherwise somewhat standard item.

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    curls-and-pearls

    Oh I did the EXACT same thing! And it was a shirt from H&M too LOL – it's in my "meet up" post. I really like the striped jacket but for the same reasons you stated I just didn't want to invest. That and my husband said that I looked like I was wearing prison stripes LOL – he has a comment for everything!

    I think this is perfect, you can incorporate it in a casual look like you did or even pair it with a great skirt.

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Callandra

    I totally love all things striped….cardigan, jackets, tops, even scarfs! It is fun to particpate in trends but before buying an item I apply a "cost per wear" formula to ensure I actually get my money's worth out of it. I love your pictures of Coco and Audrey btw….such timeless icons of style…sigh ;)

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Leena

    i love the stripe trend, and have succumbed into purchasing a few items, at least one of which i know probably will not last past this year. sigh. i love the striped shirt paired with the crisp white blazer. very chic!

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Banhannas

    Now that is being fashion forward and economically conscious! I did admit that I lusted over a Banana Republic striped blazer for awhile now but the price tag was too steep for me to purchase. Sigh, white blazers are such a classic! Can never go out of style.

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    kimmi's fashion

    I totally love the white blazer over the stripe t-shirt . so classy!!!

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Larie

    I think your option is better, too – I can never think of what goes with a striped blazer, so I haven't bought any :) Love the blouse, especially with that bow.

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    April

    I love the outfit! You look FANTASTIC always! :)

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    Agulka-Ahnesa

    very very nice:)

  • Reply March 20, 2011

    AubreyOhDang!

    Do you really think the nautical trend is just a trend? It has lasted so long, I feel it is a classic style.

    I hope moving is going well for you guys.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    hugstiem

    I totally hear you on the trend issue. If it's a trend I really personally love and would be willing to wear when it's over (i.e. colorblocking), even if other people think I'm ridiculous, I will splurge and stock up on it when it's on trend while tons of options are available. But if it's one I love less or I'll feel conscious about when it's out of trend, I definitely buy cheaper versions of the stuff (i.e. shearling-trimmed winter booties).

    I do, however, think you're being a little TOO cautious about trendiness here! Some trends are definitely more forgiving than others. I mean, c'mon, they're stripes! Saying stripes will go out of fashion is like saying beige will. Also the nautical theme shows up very often in springs/summers even if it's not the dominant trend. You know how "The Blouse Is Back!" this season? I highly doubt women will look at their wardrobes afterwards and be like, "Oh noes what shall I do with all these blouses??" While it's much more likely that they'll say, "These perforated cutout sandals are so last spring…"

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Fashionista

    Love the blouse! When I like the trend but know it won't last, I buy a cheaper piece to incorporate in the wardrobe!

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Recovering Shopaholic

    I am definitely seeing "sailor" all over the place these days but love how you have toned it down with the white jacket – ahhh, spring! I love the pointers and tips you provide in your blog – can't wait to up my fashion game by following you!

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    milk tea + polkadots

    Very cute top! I like the small stripes and the silky bow. The nautical stripe is definitely everywhere now!

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    PetiteAsianGirl

    @hugstiem Lol! "oh noes what shall I do with all these blouses…?" I had a good chuckle over your comment, hugstiem.

    Kelly, good find on the striped top with silk trim. That's kind of rare that they have their casual knit tops trimmed in a nicer material. I do agree with Aubrey and Hugstiem though in that I don't think the striped jacket will be dead and gone anytime soon. It's not a bold print or color…just stripes. If I can find a tiny jacket with subtle, perfectly sized stripes, I will buy it up. So far I haven't had perfect success (urban outfitters and the H&Ms were trial and errors…). I agree though that a striped shirt will probably get more wear year-round though.

    On the topic of trends…like you, I dress more classic/conservatively and don't chase trends, but I DO love picking up some fun pieces every so often. I don't buy them specifically to jump on trends, but just to add more variety to my wardrobe (ie. lace vest, crochet dress). H&M makes this really easy for us by offering tiny sz 2's/XS/s, and even if the item doesn't get more than a few wears, the price shouldn't have done too much damage.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    PetiteXXS

    I agree with you that I'd much prefer picking up a striped top than a striped jacket. In general though, I don't think stripes are actually a "trend" at all… seems like they've always been and will always be around!

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Kimchi Girl

    Hi kelly,

    OMG this is such a great outfit. You look like you belong in St. Tropez! Really classy AND classic!

    This post does make me realize I need to find ideas to incorporate the latest "trends" in smarter ways. What a budget friendly way you did this! And that top looks like it was *made* to go w/ that blazer. ;)

    I wore a blazer in my OOTD today as well!

    california kimchi girl

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Really Petite – Yes, especially the bold, thick stripes, remind me of prison garb. Or Beetlejuice now that someone mentioned it about the H&M jacket…LOL. The thinner, more subtle striped jackets can be quite nice.

    @Rainy Days and Lattes – Navy blue striped tees always makes me think of chic french girls. I suppose we have Coco Chanel to thank for that. ;)

    @Elle – I sometimes wish I had a trendier wardrobe like you do, but anytime I pick up "trendy" items, they never get much use. I learned my lesson the last closet cleanout I did where I got rid of a lot of barely worn items. If you can wear them and get good use out of them, there's no reason not to get trendy items. It just doesn't work for me. :P

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @curls-and-pearls – I love your striped top! LOL that your husband called it prison stripes. Imagine what he would have said about that H&M blazer I picked up a while ago!

    @Callandra – Yes, striped tops reminds me of Coco Chanel, Aubrey Hepburn, and chic French girls everywhere! LOL.

    @Banhannas – I think I know which Banana Republic blazer you're talking about. ;)

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Trystan L. Bass

    Imo, stripes are forever, much like plaid or polka dots. It's how you wear them that looks trendy. Wearing a ton of stripes or stripes in a flashy shape can look dated, but a classic blazer in a simple stripe has been worn by men & women thruout the 20th century & now the 21st (& you can find variations in the 19th & 18th as well; why yes, fashion history is a hobby of mine ;-). Likewise with other prints — it's how they're worn & styled that dates them to a specific decade.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Larie – Yeah, I always just see striped blazers paired with plain solid tee shirts. I think I would have only one outfit to wear with a striped blazer if I ever were to get one. :P

    @AubreyOhDang! – Oh no! Nautical stripes ARE timeless…hence the gratuitous Coco Chanel and Aubrey pics! LOL. I'm talking about the striped blazer trend that's going on right now. I love the look (styled in J.Crew catalogs…swoon!), but just don't think it'll last. The striped nautical tee however…I think will get lots of wear, and it very timeless.

    Our move is coming along slowly, but I'm excited to finally move in and be settled for a little while. ;)

    @hugstiem – LOL…I think both you and Aubrey think I'm bashing on stripes in general! No no…I love nautical stripes, and yes, think they're timeless. I'm frankly surprised it took me so long to pick up a striped tee in the first place!

    What I'm talking about are the bold striped blazers that are everywhere right now. I'm always drawn to them, but just know they won't last, and then I would have wasted money on a boldly pattered jacked that I don't wear.

    Btw…very bold of you to wear color blocking so much! I'm always impressed when someone pulls it off. It's a bit too much color contrasting for me.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    AubreyOhDang!

    ah…"bold striped blazers." Now I understand.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Recovering Shopaholic – Thank you! If you're not a "sailor" girl, just think French girl. I plan to pair the top with some black (black blazer, black cardigan, etc.) with red accessories, which I think is a very timeless French-girl-chic kind of look.

    @PetiteAsianGirl – I just don't see the striped jacket thing hanging around (besides seersucker, that is, which will always be a menswear, "I go yachting" kind of look). But if you're going to do it, a thin, subtle striped pattern is definitely the way to go. Good luck finding the perfect jacket!

    @PetiteXXS – Yup, stripes will always be around, it's just in what new incarnation fashion dictates. This striped blazer trend is cool, but not worth wasting money on for me.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Kimchi Girl – Ha! St. Tropez! I wish! Certainly sounds better than this icky rainy weather we're having here in SoCal right now. LOVE your H&M blazer! I'm dying over those elbow patches! So cool!

    @Trystan L. Bass – So true, fashion repeats itself over and over. It's all about the subtleties that dictate which era an item came from. Like menswear blazers for women, today they are slim and fitted, but in the 80's, they were over-sized and boxy. They were still blazers, but each decade translated it differently. I guess the striped blazer is just not something I see myself wearing later, regardless of it's trendiness. – I also love the history of costume…it amazes me what people wore just 100 years ago! ;)

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    hugstiem

    Ah, that makes sense about the bold stripes versus little stripes. Yeah, bold stripes are definitely a trendy thing. As an owner and lover of both types of stripes I'm kinda starting to appreciate the bold ones more. Before, I thought I had to stick to little stripes because of petite proportions. But from a certain distance away, thin stripes actually start to look like a muted solid color; black & white becomes gray, red & white becomes pink, etc. I noticed this especially in pictures. Whereas the bold ones are much more likely to stay stripey-looking. ;)

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    fashionforteens

    Such a cute blouse! You're right-It is the more classic option. I love Audrey and Coco they're my style icons. The top looks great with the white blazer too!

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Anonymous

    Actually, I just purchased the Banana Republic striped blazer- – -it caught my eye the first time I saw it! A bit pricey at $200, but I was able to nab it for $59 at the F&F sale. Come to think of it, I also got the ATL striped sweater coat (gray/navy) earlier this year.

    I am very into the "French girl" look and do not consider these items all that trendy (in that I couldn't possibly wear my blazer past this season). Stripes will always have a place in my wardrobe when Spring rolls around.

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    Tara

    That shirt is adorable! Looks great with the blazer too! If I could find a striped blazer that I loved and fit me, I would totally buy it..but that hasn't happened yet!

  • Reply March 21, 2011

    featherfactor

    Beautiful! I love the nautical look for spring as well :)

    http://www.featherfactor.com

  • Reply March 22, 2011

    modern.girl

    i love blazers with anything!

    by the way, i ordered a husky's boy blazer and it didn't fit me right. i have a curvy body, so it was really loose around the waist and tight around the hips. i think it would have probably worked better than girls with more boy-ish figures. o well, now i know.

    cheers,
    yvonne
    modern.girl

  • Reply March 23, 2011

    kileen

    what a great alternative to the striped blazer!! this shirt looks great on you and the white blazer fits you perfectly!

    cute & little
    check out my TIKKR watch giveaway!

  • Reply March 23, 2011

    Cori

    I almost bought that exact same blouse at H&M 2 days ago. Sadly my arms didn't look so fabulous in it, so I passed it by. But I did try the inverted stripe blazer thing. It looked great. Thanks for the inspiration.
    la vie petite

  • Reply March 24, 2011

    tradeshow giveaways

    The shoe actually caught my eye. I love it!

  • Reply March 24, 2011

    SugarNikita

    I think the white jacket with the striped tee makes the outfit look cleaner…which I tend to prefer. Nice look!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    tradeshow giveaways

    The shoe actually caught my eye. I love it!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    kileen

    what a great alternative to the striped blazer!! this shirt looks great on you and the white blazer fits you perfectly!

    cute & little
    check out my TIKKR watch giveaway!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    PetiteAsianGirl

    @hugstiem Lol! "oh noes what shall I do with all these blouses…?" I had a good chuckle over your comment, hugstiem.

    Kelly, good find on the striped top with silk trim. That's kind of rare that they have their casual knit tops trimmed in a nicer material. I do agree with Aubrey and Hugstiem though in that I don't think the striped jacket will be dead and gone anytime soon. It's not a bold print or color…just stripes. If I can find a tiny jacket with subtle, perfectly sized stripes, I will buy it up. So far I haven't had perfect success (urban outfitters and the H&Ms were trial and errors…). I agree though that a striped shirt will probably get more wear year-round though.

    On the topic of trends…like you, I dress more classic/conservatively and don't chase trends, but I DO love picking up some fun pieces every so often. I don't buy them specifically to jump on trends, but just to add more variety to my wardrobe (ie. lace vest, crochet dress). H&M makes this really easy for us by offering tiny sz 2's/XS/s, and even if the item doesn't get more than a few wears, the price shouldn't have done too much damage.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    fashionforteens

    Such a cute blouse! You're right-It is the more classic option. I love Audrey and Coco they're my style icons. The top looks great with the white blazer too!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Kimchi Girl – Ha! St. Tropez! I wish! Certainly sounds better than this icky rainy weather we're having here in SoCal right now. LOVE your H&M blazer! I'm dying over those elbow patches! So cool!

    @Trystan L. Bass – So true, fashion repeats itself over and over. It's all about the subtleties that dictate which era an item came from. Like menswear blazers for women, today they are slim and fitted, but in the 80's, they were over-sized and boxy. They were still blazers, but each decade translated it differently. I guess the striped blazer is just not something I see myself wearing later, regardless of it's trendiness. – I also love the history of costume…it amazes me what people wore just 100 years ago! ;)

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    April

    I love the outfit! You look FANTASTIC always! :)

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Larie

    I think your option is better, too – I can never think of what goes with a striped blazer, so I haven't bought any :) Love the blouse, especially with that bow.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Banhannas

    Now that is being fashion forward and economically conscious! I did admit that I lusted over a Banana Republic striped blazer for awhile now but the price tag was too steep for me to purchase. Sigh, white blazers are such a classic! Can never go out of style.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    curls-and-pearls

    Oh I did the EXACT same thing! And it was a shirt from H&M too LOL – it's in my "meet up" post. I really like the striped jacket but for the same reasons you stated I just didn't want to invest. That and my husband said that I looked like I was wearing prison stripes LOL – he has a comment for everything!

    I think this is perfect, you can incorporate it in a casual look like you did or even pair it with a great skirt.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Rainy Days and Lattes

    I'm really in love with this blouse! I'm really picky when it comes to tops.. I won't go overboard on trends because I know I won't like it so much later on :p I do like nautical stripes and navy blue colors though :)

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