The Budget Babe | Affordable Fashion & Style Blog

Silk and Cotton: A Match Made in Textile Heaven

Forever 21 at ShopStyle

Pick silk/cotton blends like this Love 21 dotted top for breathable summer style that's affordable, too.

Here at The Budget Babe, I often focus on the way things look because the last time I checked, the internet does not yet allow for the sense of "touch" to be explored (or at least, not the way I'd want to explore it as it relates to fashion!) But of course one of the most important aspects of fashion is the way clothing feels against our skin and the way it moves, stretches and breathes when we wear it.

In the winter, I'm drawn to warm wool or cashmere blends for their unique heat-trapping, moisture-wicking properties. And after a few warm days here in New England, including this past Memorial Day, I'm beginning to think silk/cotton blends may just be my favorite type of fabric for warm-weather attire. I have a blouse from H&M that's 70% cotton, 30% silk and it is the lightest, breeziest blouse in my closet right now.

Despite the 3/4 length sleeves, it's cooler than the skimpiest tank top. It's infinitely more sophisticated and dressier than a basic cotton tee (which I also adore but one can't live in t-shirts alone), it washes well (I go for cold water, delicate wash to be on the safe side) and it was excessively affordable at just under $30.

Ladies, my advice to you when shopping for summer tops and blouses:

  • Read those tags! Avoid 100% polyester altogether which will make you sweat and just feels icky in hot weather.

  • Look for silk/cotton blends: I even saw silk/cotton blend tops at Kmart over the weekend! They're out there, even for budget shoppers.

  • Use your sense of touch: Feel the garment to gauge the softness. Scrunch it (gently) to see how well it resists wrinkles. Another great summer fabric is linen but it wrinkles like mad, so I tend to look for linen/cotton blends which are slightly softer and won't wrinkle as readily as pure linen.

  • Think silk for day or night: Don't pass up a silk blouse just because you think it's too dressy. This fabric's perfect for work and casual, everyday style too.

Be as selective about how your summer clothing feels as it looks and you'll love each piece that much more. Get started by browsing this small selection of cheap chic silk/cotton blend tops from around the web:

good advice BB!!!!
#1 Real Style Real people (Homepage) on 2009-05-27 08:36 (Reply)
Fab post BB. Silk and cotton are a match made in heaven indeed. Such drape and elegance. Like you, it’s my favourite Summer fabric composition!
#2 angie cox (Homepage) on 2009-05-27 09:12 (Reply)
that bluefly blouse is really cute

it is great advice, love it..its definitely important for the feeling of the quality to be fine, especially during the summer

awesome post!
#3 Neira (Homepage) on 2009-05-27 10:33 (Reply)
You made that H&M blouse sound so fantastic...and then there's no picture of it? =( Any chance we can see which one it is? I really like the first polka dotted top, thanks for the post!
#4 Srujana on 2009-05-27 10:36 (Reply)
Silk really is nature's miracle fiber, and silk cotton blends are totally ideal for summer wear. Good call, BB!
#5 Sal (Homepage) on 2009-05-27 10:56 (Reply)
I looooove silk/cotton blends. Actually, silk blended with anything, especially linen!

I just bought two gorgeous-hued, boho-ish tops from Jaques Penay this weekend that were each marked down to about 17 bucks! Bright, saturated colors in a modern tropical print with pintucks at the neckline. Light and airy and so comfortable. Probably one of the best purchases I've made this season. So far!
#6 Steph on 2009-05-27 16:16 (Reply)
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