+ Look for Less

10th Commandment: February 14


Collective Concepts Swiss Dots ($48)

If you have been reading this blog for awhile, you know that I enjoy a nice sheer blouse.  They’re feminine, pretty and just a little bit sexy.  The perfect alternative (in my view) to the stuffy button up blouses that were the staple of every D.C. woman’s wardrobe when I started in politics eight years ago. (Wait…(counts it out on her fingers)…holy dear, it was eight years ago.  Where’s the sangria?)

I think a sheer black blouse is the easiest for most women to assimilate into their wardrobe.  If you’re not a fan of swiss dots, this sheer black top from Target is under-$25 and this sheer black button up is $40.  

Not loving the black?  I adore this ivory sheer blouse with a yellow placket detail for $89.  One of my favorite tops in my own wardrobe is a sheer nude blouse similar to this ASOS number.  This navy top and this grey top would also be nice neutral pieces to add to a wardrobe.  Or try this sheer split neck blouse that comes in handful of colors.

If you like pattern and texture, this short sleeve Mango blouse caught my eye.  (It would be great under a loose-fitting black blazer.)  This DVF printed blouse (on sale!) and this watercolor short sleeve top are also lovely.

Plus size? I love this Kenneth Cole blouse that comes in citron and berry.  I also like this black top and this dot-print button up.

As for what to wear underneath, with black tops, I like a black tank.  In fact, whenever possible, I try to match the color of the tank to the shirt.  However, when that’s not possible, I think nude is fine for most occasions.  I like the Shimera tanks and camis from Nordstrom.  They also come in plus size.  

Lastly, in the comments last week, someone mentioned that she couldn’t wear a sheer blouse and tank to the office.  If you’re also in that boat, you can either a) add another layer (blazer, cardi, etc.) or b) look into a partially sheer top.  For example, I think this top with sheer sleeves is quite lovely and demure.



  1. Heather says:

    Love this top, but I never buy sheer blouses because they either have a built in cami with spaghetti straps or are shown on the mannequins and online over spaghetti strap camis. If you're well endowed and using a strappless bra is not an option because you NEED straps, what do you do about undergarmets? Do you wear a bra the same color of your spaghetti straps and hope it doesn't peek out too much, or do you wear a tank with thicker straps? I've tried the Shimera tanks with thicker straps with sheer shirts before and thought it looked odd.

    February 14, 2013/Reply
  2. NL says:

    FYI: everything on piperlime is 20% off, including this shirt!

    February 14, 2013/Reply
  3. Belle says:

    Heather: You have two options. Thicker straps like you mentioned is one. The other is something my friend Sarah does. She has one bra and one black tank that she sewed those little metal snap fasteners onto, and she fastens the bra strap to the black strap to camouflage it. I couldn't even tell she was wearing a regular bra because the widths matched up almost exactly.

    February 14, 2013/Reply
  4. Heather says:

    Strap fasteners on a bra, that is genius! Thanks!

    February 14, 2013/Reply