There's nothing new about pussy bow blouses, they've been in and out of fashion since the Edwardian times right up until Maggie Thatcher killed them off in the mid-eighties.
I adore their buttoned-up femininity and when worn with skin-tight jeans or tailored shorts and opaque tights they look ultra-sexy without the need to flash the flesh.
When they started to make a catwalk comeback three years ago I just had to have one. However, as you'd expect from me, walking into a store and buying one from a rack of hundreds just goes against the grain.
Call me weird but there's something dull and soulless about high street shopping. You run the risk of bumping into someone else with the same garment or even worse, some low-rent "celebrity" pictured wearing one. I love to set my sights on something and leave no stone unturned until I find my quarry. There's nothing quite like that sweaty-palmed, quickened heartbeat you get when the item of your dreams is there in the local charity shop for £1.99
I've now got a collection of mostly vintage pussy bow blouses including (from the top) a 1980's Vicki Volts shadow striped red blouse (£1.99 local charity shop), the 1960's Bri-nylon blouse in lime green (£1.29 eBay), the violet satin pintucked contemporary blouse (30p car boot sale) and the semi-sheer 1960's Parisian retro printed blouse with shirred elbows (£5 vintage clothes shop). The rather kitsch couple at the end are a car boot find!
Fancy being a Pussycat Doll? Here's my tips:
- Search eBay using the keywords - tie-neck, ascot, power, city or secretary instead of the "pussy bow" word - you're more likely to find a bargain.
- Popular fashion house that manufactured pussy bow blouses were Dereta, Lerose, St Michael, Jacques Vert, Jaeger and Viyella.
- Too big? Wear with a tight waistcoat over the top or cinch-in with a wide elasticated waspie belt.
- Search the older ladies' stalls at car boot sales.
- Ask an older female relative if they've got one lurking in the depths of their wardrobe (my Mum had lots!)
- Add some foam shoulder pads (available from any haberdashery department) for a groovy 80's vibe.