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Styling a Feminine Lace Thrift Store Top for an Unexpected OOTD

On a recent trip to the thrift store, I saw what at the time I thought was this rather odd, intriguing lace tunic style top. At first I dismissed it, regarding its saccharine femininity as something outside of what I would normally go for (and it is), but I kept coming back to it for another look. It had a kind of edge to it that I found intriguing, and it felt somehow oddly familiar, like an estranged old friend I should try to reconnect with, even though I most certainly had never seen it before.

A woman standing against a wooden barn wearing a lace tunic top, beaded jewelry and cowboy boots


I ended up bringing the thing home. I figure when something catches your attention like this top did mine, there must be a reason. I wasn't sure exactly what I was going to do with something so unabashedly girly, but that's the beauty of thrifting - the ability to step out and try new looks without the looming threat of instant bankrupcy.

The former owner of the top had removed all of the inside tags (I hate it when people do this), so it took me a minute or two online to find out exactly what this thing was, but as it turns out, this is the Tell Tale Sheer Lace Tunic by Free People, a discovery which completely explains the edgy, bohemian vibe I was getting from this top. I've always been a fan of Free People and at any given moment there are several of their pieces on my sartorial wish list, so the seeming familiarity of this top suddenly made a lot more sense.

a woman in a sheer lace tunic and beaded native jewelry

Styling-wise there's really not a lot to be added to something so heavily decorated. This top with its keyhole peekaboo neckline and flared sleeves is definitely giving 90s Shania Twain vibes, so I just added some beaded jewelry, a pair of vintage (also thrifted) Dan Post boots and I left it at that. I think adding a blazer over the top would be layering perfection, letting the full flowy hemline peek out the bottom. But me being me, I didn't think of this until after the rain came on, forcing me inside to try and finish my little photo shoot with a smudged screen and the inadequate indoor lighting characteristic of the Scottish winter months.

a woman in a white lace top and beaded turquoise jewelry

The takeaway here is that the weird thing that you saw in the shop and and keep thinking about...that thing should come home with you. Just do it. Take it home. You'll figure it out.

The Tell Tale lace tunic can still be found online secondhand and as overstock, and it comes in various colors, sleeve lengths and sizes. I've linked some of them below* if you're interested, or you can search the entire complement of options on eBay.

a full body shot of a woman in a lace tunic and tan hand-stitched cowboy boots

*some links may generate a small commission to Highland Fashionista at no cost to you

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