Ideas for Styling a Statement Print Shirt with 30 Wears: Cream/Dark Green Rabbit Blouse
I was very excited last week when my cream/dark green rabbit blouse from Loft hit its 30 wear mark! As always, a thank you to Mica for inspiring me with her 30 Ways to Wear series.
I have very rarely been influenced by another blogger to buy something (probably half a dozen times or so), but back in the fall of 2016, when I saw a blogger [I don't remember which one] modeling this Loft utility blouse with a jackrabbit print, it was an absolute must-try. Isn't it terrific? This was before Loft started (and then stopped) selling plus sizes, but luckily the XXL size worked for me. Interestingly, you can still buy this blouse online from secondhand sites like Poshmark...and I didn't know it had also come in a sleeveless version!
Cream/dark green rabbit blouse - Loft - XXL - $29.75 - 10/2016
Total wears: 30
Cost per wear: $0.99
Additional wears to reach $1 CPW: n/a
Additional wears to reach $0.65 CPW: 16
I have 5 Loft XXL tops: this rabbit utility blouse, the pink floral blouse that hit 30 wears already, a blouse that hit 29 wears last week, another utility blouse standing at 28 wears, and a sleeveless blouse with 26 wears. In 2017 (I think), I a bought a couple more of this popular utility blouse style in XXL online but they were unexpectedly distinctly too narrow in the hips. When I returned them to the store, the very slender sales clerk said that she had the same problem because they had changed the cut of the blouse...and that she'd seen a lot of the new utility blouses returned to the store since the change. I mean, seriously, why would a brand decide to make a popular style of blouse smaller in the hips all of a sudden?? Because American women had spontaneously developed boyish figures?? Uh, nope. So all these people who knew their size in this blouse and ordered online (or purchased in-store without trying it on) ended up with a blouse they couldn't wear. What a fiasco.
Anyway, I wore my (not-weirdly-skinny-in-the-hips) rabbit utility blouse last week with black straight-wide leg pants (too wide for straight but too narrow for wide) and a mint green cardigan vest. If you're thinking that these pants don't look like wide legs...well, that's the magic of my substantial legs! Wide legs look like straight legs, straight legs look like skinnies, skinnies look like leggings, and leggings get worn under skirts/dresses only. I've yet to try a pair of pants that I couldn't fill out...I'm sure they exist, but my legs are up to the challenge posed by most pants silhouettes.
I wore this braided pearl necklace (also from Loft) that is a favorite combination of mine with the rabbit blouse. The leopard Oxfords create a subtle animal print + zoological print mix with blouse and introduce a second element with black to help the black pants look intentional rather than "Eh, I just always wear black pants."
For my daily bracelet stack, I pulled out a DIY bracelet set with paper bead and glass bead bracelets in shades of mint, teal, and black. Another dose of black, another little detail that indicates I'm putting some effort into my outfit, which gives it a "put together" vibe.
Here are ten ways I've worn the jackrabbit utility blouse from my OOTD photo archives. If you have a statement print top, particularly one with a simple 1 neutral + 1 accent color print like this one, perhaps you will find some outfit inspiration here.
Black & Denim
#1: Let's start with the two dominant neutrals - black and denim - and combine them with the print blouse. Dark wash jeans in a classic cut and a black tuxedo jacket (or blazer) are an easy basis for a business casual outfit. Pop on the print blouse and accessorize with a gold chain necklace and gold flats (or another metallic, neutral, or accent color of your choice). I like the gold because it also coordinates with my hair. These were my favorite gold flats (BP from Nordstrom circa 2014) that I am so sad came apart at the back of one of the shoes. (I own 3 other pairs of this style and they are all going strong so I don't know what the deal is.) I like the light gold tone on these...they aren't as bright gold as my replacement pair.
#2: This time I'm wearing a dark denim skirt with black tights and black riding boots. A cream vest and white pearls coordinate with the background of the blouse, letting the dark green rabbits stand out.
#3: I really like how the rabbit blouse adds some punch to a monochrome grey outfit (with a number of different textures and shades of grey to keep things interesting) using the outer column of color formula. The braided pearl necklace has both cream/white and grey in the mix, which is a nice way to marry the cream blouse and grey cardigan, but isn't at all necessary to making this combination work.
#4: I actually can't tell if these are navy pants or very dark denim, but once your blue/indigo denim is dark enough, there is very little difference! I chose a necklace with crystal stones in a variety of "jewel tone" colors (also from Loft, coincidentally) and picked out the burgundy to add a pop of color from my maroon flats. Green and Red are complementary hues on the color wheel, so they make a great combination, and by choosing these darker versions, they don't automatically say Christmas.
#5: A navy pencil skirt and nude stud flats create a very simple look with the rabbit blouse, but a wildly colored statement necklace and pink bracelet ramp up the fun quotient. Note that none of the specific colors in the necklace match the dark green rabbits in any way, but it really doesn't matter! The dark green functions more like a semi-neutral when paired with the vivid necklace.
#6: You have seen the denim skirt, cream vest, and jewel tone crystal necklace with the rabbit blouse in various of the previous outfits. Remember that it's not just totally OK to repeat pairings that you know work together in various outfits - it's actually a really smart way to create outfits. And of course you can repeat entire outfits if you like! What's different here is the use of burgundy tights + maroon ankle boots as an accent color. This is basically a colder weather version of #4 with the maroon flats. I do think that a color pop from tights and boots is harder to get right than with shoes. The tights and boots take up so much space on one's body that it risks being an overwhelming explosion of color rather than a nice pop. But experimenting with semi-neutrals like burgundy is a great place to start.
#7: With this outfit, the burgundy color is ramped up even further to include the legs and feet. It's no longer a pop of color but a primary color of the outfit. The semi-neutral burgundy is terrific with dark green because they are both deep in value "shades" (colors with black added). The familiar cream vest and braided pearl necklace provide some contrast to the dark pieces. My bracelet stack has gold spacer, DIY dark burgundy garnet, DIY dark green malachite, and DIY malachite/garnet/cream lucite bead bracelets. (I had made that last bracelet with the mix of dark green, burgundy, and cream to coordinate with a different shirt that includes those colors, and it worked perfectly in this outfit.)
#8: And now for something different! A blouse with a collar can be worn under a pullover sweater just like any collared button up shirt, and it has the advantage of being soft and drapey rather than stiff, which makes this layering easier. I just love this color combo, so a maroon pullover (which has a bit of black marl in the knit) was my choice along with dark denim jeans. I went for a triple print mix with the rabbits, leopard Oxfords, and a silky twilly polka dot scarf. I was really happy with how this one turned out!
#9: This outfit was initially put together without the rabbit blouse, but I decided I wanted another layer underneath the sweater for warmth. I could have worn a white long-sleeved T under it, but thought it would be fun to see how a rabbits + rabbits print mix would work. The sweater rabbits have some sage green leaf embroidery on their ears, which was close enough to the dark green for me to give it a shot. I think it was a cute look! So print collared top + intarsia sweater is definitely a combination worth trying.
#10: The dark green in this blouse is a little awkward because it has just a hint of teal in it rather than being a true green. These variations have the capacity to drive me crazy, but I'm trying to be a more free "color coordinator" rather than a strict "color matcher." So when I thought about wearing the blouse with a coordinating color of pants at the beginning of October, I pulled out these green ones in a color I call "pure green" in my inventory to give them a shot. I added the cream vest and braided pearl necklace that I am comfortable wearing with the blouse...and I really liked the result! For another low-key shirt + shoes print mix, I wore some loafers with a blue/black/green floral print. I chose a mix of DIY bracelets that reinforce the various shades of green in the outfit, and I added a DIY gold/silver bracelet to make the stack more cohesive-looking.
As long as this blouse continues to fit and hold together, I will keep wearing it. It's one of my identified "favorites" that I am wearing this cool/cold season instead of buying new. For my next outfit, I am trying it with a bright teal pencil skirt! And the cream vest and jewel tone crystal necklace you've seen repeatedly because those are "comfort zone" pieces with the rabbit blouse that will make experimenting with the teal skirt easier to face. That sounds very dramatic, but sometimes exploring unknown style territory can feel a tad forbidding. I find it's easier to think of it as a fun adventure when I have some trusty companions (like the rabbit blouse + cream vest combo) along for support!
Do you have a print top or statement top that you will be styling in the coming months (for fall or spring, depending on where you live)? Do you have favorite ways of wearing it? Do you have ideas for any new ways of wearing it?
Blogs I link up with are listed here.