Toppers make the outfit

What’s a topper?  A topper is any top layer – the item you wear over your shirt/dress, whether that be a blazer, a cardigan… or

DSC05761something a little wilder.  A topper sets the mood of your outfit, all the more if you’re working with basic, foundational pieces.


I like a creative/feminine/crunchy vibe and I picked up two really fun toppers this summer that are going to add so much to my wardrobe, I had to share with you guys.

  1.  I picked this dress up in the Macy’s clearance sale.  As a dress, I’d never wear it – it’s not my style and it’s a size too small.  Everything I’ve ever said about “cupping” comes horribly true.  But *over* my normal clothes, it adds a funky edge, just a little bit of bite.   And because it’s snug, it doesn’t add any volume through my torso.  It’s too warm to wear right now, but I’m so looking forward to rocking this through the winter.
  2. TDSC05760his blouse turned up at an estate sale.  It’s also too small – but it’s incredibly flattering (flattering enough that something similar just added itself to my sewing list).  It’s the soft shade of aqua that I find relaxing and centering.  It increases the femininity of any outfit.

Your basic cardigan or blazer toppers have basic figure-flattery rules, and if you’re investing, you should follow them.  Go classic.  That perfect spot on the hip, the one that slims you?  Use that.

But if you’re not investing – have some fun.  Choose colors, proportions, silhouettes, details, that you might not generally use.  A topper is almost (but not quite) in the realm of accessory, it is meant to season your outfit, not to be its base.  Check the fashion mags – what kind of silhouettes are being used right now?   What’s the sleeve of the moment?  The print?  A topper is a great thing to find at a fast-fashion boutique, or somewhere random – like an estate sale!

Imagine either one of these toppers over a basic light-colored t-shirt and dark-wash jeans.  Do both items work?  Yes.  Are they the same?  No.  Imagine them how I’ll probably wear them, over ivory lace.  Still working?  Yes.  Same vibe?  No.  Are they your cup of tea?  Maybe not!  But something is, whether that’s a luxurious knee-length camel cardigan or a wisp of chiffon they call a beach cover up.  Something is – and that something can add a lot of fun to your wardrobe.

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