10 Ways To Wear A Balloon Sleeve Top

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Well, well, well. After my big NSale try-on, this unexpected Club Monaco statement top made it to one of my favorite pieces. But there was an issue. It came in two colors I rarely wear, a beautiful mauve pink — too dusty and cool-toned for me — and black.

I used to wear only black, but then I stopped, and it’s been over two years since I haven’t gotten anything new in black — I had too much.

My closet is now full of colors I love and feel amazing in, and that’s the big reason I don’t feel like wearing all black anymore. If I’m buying something black, it has to be 100% worth it. So I’m basically writing this post to decide whether to keep it or not. Will you help me decide?

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Black l Mauve

The Club Monaco Balloon Sleeve May Be The Perfect Statement Top

This balloon sleeve top has three things I look for…

1. It features a mix of textures, the sleeve has this cool pattern, and the body is a fabulous knit.

2. It looks precious, but in reality, it is super-comfy and forgiving.

3. Lastly, it has shoulder definition. My shoulders drop a little, so I like anything with a small shoulder pad or gathering that will lift my shoulders and give me a stronger shoulder line.

Style tip: Size down to avoid a droopy sleeve, especially if you have a small or a dropped shoulder line. I didn’t like it when I tried it on in my regular size, but once I sized down, the difference was huge. I’ve noticed it’s better when the puff starts over the shoulder than where your shoulder ends. Don’t worry about the top being snug. It’s very forgiving.

10 Ways To Style The Club Monaco Balloon Sleeve Top

So in order to decide whether Club Monaco’s balloon sleeve top is indeed the perfect statement top — and in black at that — I’m styling it 10 ways. Let’s see how convincing the positives of this top are.

1. Add A Pop Of Color

Whenever I wear black, I add a pop of color in one of my best shades. It can be earrings, a belt, a bag. It makes it fun and adds personality. I’m still unsure about this bag, but I love the combo with black. You will see it throughout the post with different looks.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top XS l Jeans l Bag l Necklace (Latino owned business)

2. Add Denim Cut-Offs, Sneakers & A Straw Bag

While we’re now in the heat of summer, this top would be a great transitional piece. It works amazing with shorts, sneakers and a straw bag. If you’re curious about these AGOLDE shorts, I have an entire post devoted to them (watch the try-on video here.)

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Shorts l Top l Shoes

3. Dress It Up With A Midi Skirt Or Over A Midi Dress

I just realized I don’t have anything in the skirt department. So if you’re like me, layering on top of a midi dress will give you a similar result. Depending on your day, pair with mules, sneakers, booties, tall boots…. I love the look with these white FRAME Boots.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Dress (S) l Top (XS) l Shoes


Now, Let’s Try The Club Monaco Top With All The Jeans

There are tops I mainly wear with a specific type of denim style. I will rarely wear an oversized top with full-length straight or wide-leg jeans or a super snug top with skinny jeans. Things about balancing things out that help me dress my petite body. Of course, they’re not set rules, and there are always exceptions.

4. With Straight Leg Jeans & Sneakers

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top (XS) l Jeans (26) l Shoes l Bag

5. With Full-Length Straight Leg Jeans & Chelsea Boots

I’m very into these Levi’s Ribcage straight-leg (Noe Fog – light wash) that, thanks to my short height, I can get a 29 inseam and get the perfect full-length look. I’ve been wearing them nonstop this summer, and this is one way I plan to wear them in the fall.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top (XS) l Jeans (25) l Shoes l Bag

6. With Ribcage Straight Leg Jeans, Statement Earrings & Sneakers

This is an everyday outfit for me as a work-from-home mom. I need a good top and some color next to my face for calls with clients, but then I have to run to school pick up, so sneakers it is.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top (XS) l Jeans (25) l Shoes

7. With Skinny Jeans & Chelsea Boots

I don’t wear skinny jeans often, but once the cold hits and I start wearing all the coats, I want the skinny jeans, too. Because this top is not tight and has a relaxed feel, I love it with skinny jeans. Add your favorite pair of shoes, a chic bag and done.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top XS l Jeans (26) l Bag l Shoes

8. With Bootcut Jeans & Block-Heeled Booties

Two years ago, I started wearing bootcut jeans again and loved them. They’re perfect for tops with puffy sleeves because they balance the volume at the shoulders.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top XS l Jeans (26)

Well, this top passed the test with my most-worn jeans. Let’s get more creative now.

9. Fall-Ready: With Paperbag Shorts & Knee-High Boots

This would be great with a mini skirt, but I don’t have any. However, I’ve had these suede-like paper bag shorts for a while, and I wear them from spring through fall.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top XS l Similar shorts l Similar boots

10. With Faux-Leather Trousers & Loafers

Any pair of trousers, including dressy joggers, will work. Here I’m wearing it with my faux-leather track pants.

Is Club Monaco's balloon sleeve top the perfect statement top? Cool pattern & texture, shoulder definition + fabulous, forgiving knit. Let's style it up.

Top XS l Similar shorts l Similar boots


I created at least four more outfits, but ten is enough for this post. All the outfit ideas would work with the mauve version too. I loved the versatility and easiness of this top, and so far, it’s in my keep pile. What do you say? Which outfit would you wear?

Besos, Julieta

For more ways to take your closet from casual to dressier, look casually put together, join me on IG (@julietatorresd). I’d love to see you there. And if you need help discovering your best colors (I have a few spots left in August), email me here.

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Personal Stylist, proud Latina with half of my heart back in my country. I now live in the suburbs of NY with my husband and two crazy boys.

When I'm not helping mamas enhance their natural beauty through style, I'm raising bicultural and bilingual kids - taking as many bathroom/closet trips as needed, chocolate in hand, and all.

Find me on Instagram (@julietatorresd) Would love for you to join me there!

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1 COMMENT

  1. This top makes every outfit come alive, it even livens up basics. The fact that it not only works with everything, but makes everything better is an indicator that you should keep it. I’m going to order it for myself to see if it does the same for me.

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