Skin-baring cutouts are undeniably the defining trend of 2021. Their viral status makes perfect sense considering how popular re-emergence fashion is. Everyone’s ready to dress up and go out, whether that’s through embracing this flirty detail or opting for more colorful clothing and accessories. Naturally, the detail came to represent 2021’s sultry dressing trend, where every chance to leave the house felt like a celebration and opportunity to bare all. But as Meghan Markle’s cutout blouse on The Ellen DeGeneres Show exhibited, the detail can be worn in a more modest way.
In a teaser trailer of Markle’s in-studio interview with DeGeneres, which officially airs on Nov. 18, she wore a polished ensemble that encapsulated her minimalist aesthetic perfectly. She wore tailored black trousers with a dark leather belt and an ivory Oscar de la Renta blouse with cutout sleeves. For shoes, she chose a pair of black Giorgio Armani pumps, which were the final refined touch to her outfit.
Markle’s designer blouse was the hero piece in her look. It boasted a high-neck silhouette and billowing balloon sleeves that, toward the bottom half, featured intricate flower-shaped cutouts. Here, Markle posits that skin-baring designs don’t always have to carry a sultry connotation. Instead, revealing, punch-hole details can be understated, elegant, and only offer a slight peek of what’s underneath. In essence, her cutout blouse subverted what’s expected of the cutout detail, which made her sartorial choice all the more refreshing.
Markle isn’t the only star opting to rebrand the reputation of cutouts. Blake Lively, too, is discovering more reserved methods of participating in the trend. The actor recently wore a high-neck, three-quarter sleeve, midi dress with a chest cutout. Considering the more covered-up design elements of her garment, the keyhole on Lively’s dress felt like a strategic and subtle flash of flesh. As such, her LBD was a nod to the sultry fashion phenomenon, but done in a more delicate manner. Furthermore, since demure cutouts — like those on Lively’s dress and Markle’s blouse — cover more skin, you can wear the buzzy trend in any setting. (Yes, even for work!)
Below, you’ll see TZR sourced a selection of tops with modest cutouts, including Markle’s exact floral number in a bright lupine shade. (The ivory version of her blouse is, unfortunately, sold out.) If you’re set on the crisp look of a white blouse, however, shop similar styles ahead.
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