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The guys at Put This On (PTO) wrote a great article as part of their “How to Dress Like a Grown Up” series on shirts. Now, not all of it applies for women, but the basic concept is the same. I like focusing on women because this is a blog for women. But once in a while, we will have to reference men so that I can get points across.

POINT #1: If you can’t breathe without your shirt stretching across your chest, you need a bigger size.

  • I think that one’s pretty self-explanatory. You want to be taken seriously at your office, presentation or wherever you are. The last thing you need is guys being distracted by what’s below your mouth because it’s too tight, stretched thin and suggesting something that you are definitely not trying to suggest.

POINT #2: If you can’t raise your hands without your entire blouse rising up, you need a bigger size.

  • Similarly to the last one, a shapely fit doesn’t mean a tight fit. You will look serious and relaxed when your blouse is relaxed.

POINT #3: Collars. If your shirt has a collar, it should be tucked in neatly under your jacket. I generally try to avoid collars because they cause weird neck feelings. I also like to leave it to men to wear tight, sweaty collars.

POINT #4: If you have sleeves, they should easily reach just past your wrist bone. It should show past your jacket sleeve ideally, but it’s okay if it doesn’t. If you wear a non-shirt blouse, it makes this especially easy because you usually have no sleeves.

POINT #5: Sit down in your shirt!

  • This is the main takeaway from the article, and it’s a great guiding principle. You don’t want to feel or look constrained in your blouse. Sitting down in it will ensure that when your tummy sits out or it’s pulled up in the back, it’s still a good fit. If it rides up your back and out of your skirt/slacks or stretches out, you need a bigger size!

Now of course, no one wants to look like a ballon with blouses that are too big. But you also don’t want to look ill-dressed. It’s a fine line. Grown ups have to deal with that a lot. In the future, the educators at Veni Vici’s stores should be able to help you out.


I’ll also add this bit from Deo Veritas – an online store for men’s custom shirts and more…

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Hope that was non-overwhelmingly informative! Look out for tomorrow – I’ll be taking on skirts!