The Directrice Re-presents: Unworkable Blouse ISO Smock-like Jacket

From May of 2015 — 2015! — one of my favorite jacket and blouse combinations. I’m going to wear this outfit this weekend!

Sometimes the oddest combinations come together very effectively. Behold the smock-like jacket and beruffled blouse that were matched unexpectedly.
Also made for one another
Made for one another!

Conventional wisdom tells us that we should: (1) shop with clear purposes in mind (I need a black jacket!); and (2) add garments to our wardrobe only when we have satisfied ourselves that they will relate to some arbitrarily-selected number of garments already in our possession (This jacket must go with three other things in my closet!). These rules are, in general, a good idea; if regularly applied, they will prevent the accumulation of a totally incoherent collection of clothes.
But sometimes, the heart simply wants what the heart wants — like this jacket with many pleasing attributes. The fabric is a linen-cotton blend that has enough structure to give the jacket presence without being too stiff. The pleated neckline stands up and away from the neck. Top-stitching in white highlights the construction.
The jacket was too big for me, but not available in a smaller size, so I asked my tailor to narrow it by simply moving the closures (a column of snaps hidden behind the placket) over two inches. A very lazy — but in this case effective and low-cost — alteration.
The jacket
Beloved jacket

Pleats, top-stitching
Despite these virtues, I wasn’t really sure what this jacket should be paired with when I bought it.
Little vents at the hem
Little vents at the hem provide ease when seated

The blouse is harder to explain. I ordered it because I love stripes, but was perplexed when it arrived by its many contradictions. Billowing shape with deep v-neck? Pockets made of a fabric too light to hold anything more than a clean tissue?
Perhaps you can see how I was perplexed and fascinated
Perhaps you can imagine how I was perplexed, then fascinated
But I was charmed by the ruffles on the shoulders and neckline which were too irresistible to let go.
Come closer and see the ruffles
Come closer and see the ruffles

So these two appealing, but somewhat useless, garments were co-habitating in my closet when I had an idea. I love this jacket and I love this blouse, so they should be together! [Warning: This idea sometimes works with clothes, but rarely works when you try to set friends up.]

Ruffling, nestling
Ruffling, nestling

The ruffles fill — really, nestle in — the neckline. And the jacket constrains the billowing of the blouse.
Together 4eva.

Have a fantastic holiday weekend!

Jacket: Alberta Ferretti; Blouse: Rebecca Taylor; Jeans: Lucky Brand; Shoes: French Sole New York; Bag: Coach Poppy Tote; Bracelet: Dina Mackey; Watch: Shinola; Sunglasses: Elizabeth and James

5 thoughts on “The Directrice Re-presents: Unworkable Blouse ISO Smock-like Jacket”

  1. What a great reworking of the smock jacket! I still do not have an eye for imagining fashion possibilities like you do. What a gift.

  2. You aren’t thinking about pin at the neckline?

    I think I would tuck the tail of the striped shirt into my black linen skirt as horizontal stripes at the hip aren’t my best look.


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