When the thermometer is hitting temperatures higher than your grandma’s age, the idea of getting dressed can seem a bit like a curse rather than an opportunity to express yourself. The more fabric you wear, the more fabric sticking to you. So why not get rid of some (tastefully, of course)? Cut out tops are a blast of fresh air on those sweltering summer days when not even your iced coffee can save you. However, there is a thin line between tacky and chic when it comes to sporting the cut out top trend.
Pair your cut out top with pieces that have a conservative feel
Nicolewarne plays peek-a-boo in her ballet pink blouse, but covers up her legs with some sweet thigh highs. Looking to trade in your go-to tank for something fresh to pair with your maxi skirt? A cut out button down like Natuka’s is playful enough to lighten up a maxi’s intense length. Also, Kasica’s preppy striped shorts in a roomy modest cut balance the edginess of cut up shoulders.
Do It Yourself
Cut outs breathe life (and intrigue!) into your closet’s rejects. This Runway DIY makes it a cinch.
Play with different shapes of cut outs and show off unexpected areas. We love Amaritudo’s skull-embellished back. It’s clever, quirky and incredibly easy to style. The tee is right at home with a pair of skinnies, but can be glammed up when untucked over a flowy miniskirt. We are digging Disarmingdarling’s criss-cross cut outs. They are so bold you can leave home without the statement necklace. And how perfectly offbeat are Judyrose’s- elbow cut outs? They’re such a small (but important) detail that you can style the blouse just as you would if the cut outs weren’t there.
Stick to Solids
If you’re just dabbling in this trend, solid colors are the way to go. Cuts on top of a printed blouse can be tricky as they can appear as a pattern in themselves and makes things a bit too busy. However, if you’re Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte, then by all means, please go all out.
Don’t go for cut out’s that show off your belly button or cleavage
A peek-a-boo at any area of skin through a garment is alluring, so keep things mysterious and modest with cut outs highlighting often-ignored areas- shoulders, the small of your waist, the middle of your back.
Don’t go Edward Scissorhands on your topsA lot of tiny cut outs or a few large cut outs are chic, but a lot of large cut outs will leave little fabric and bystanders scratching their heads as to what kind of web you walked into. Don’t wear a top that is too cut up. This will have you falling into the tacky zone.
Don’t go cut out and cropped
Cut outs lose their novelty if your entire belly is on display. Keep the cut outs center stage by leaving the blouse’s hem at or below your hips.
- This River Island Lace Cut Out Blouse is business in the front, party in the back! We’re dreaming of adding skinnies and studded oxfords.
- The intricate detail on this Free People halter is super sweet, but the cut out adds a sense of seduction, no?
- We love how rejuvenating snipping away the shoulders of this season’s ubiquitous denim shirt is. Even better, this Style Sofia blouse is available in our very own Chic Shop!
Next time you’re looking to add edge (and air!) to an outfit throw on a cut out top—but remember to show some new areas of skin some sunshine (hello, shoulder blades!) and keep risque areas under wraps. Add a preppy or conservative piece and you’re well on your way to staying chic in the heat!
by Missy Steinberg