A blouse is a top shirt-like garment meant to be worn alone (as versus the chemise), or as a layer. As the name implies, the sleeves are loose, can be short or long, and the overall cut is usually generous, perfectly suited for a small child. Blouses can have various neckline styles, with or without collars. The materials are commonly cottons, linens, synthetics, satins, and silks. Fancier blouses can be made of velvets, velveteen, and valoure (sp?)--essentially, anything of a middleweight material. A blouse can be tightly fitted or drape loose from the body. The blouse has become the essential staple article of women's dresswear, but in past years was also worn by boys.