There's a new breed of tailored menswear-inspired vests for women</strong> that are popping up all over stores for spring 2011. The ultimate in no-frills chic, vests that are more Kate Lanphear than something to keep to house your pocket protector. The key to rocking these pieces is to not be afraid to experiment with what turns out to be a pretty versatile piece-u2014wear it as a shirt, a blazer, or outerwear; leave it loose and free; or belt it up for a suiting effect. Don't know how to wear a vest</strong>? Good thing we included a handy styling guide to help you get startedu2014study up!

Shirt Refresher</strong>u2014We're loving how a silk shirt looks when you tuck in the sleeves and wear it over a Breton stripe. This Valentino Flat Shoes Madewell version will last you for seasons.

Above, from left: Madewell</strong> Silk Safari Shirt, $98, available at Madewell; Farhi</strong> Breton Stripe Tee, $90.75, available at My Wardrobe; American Eagle</strong> Ex-Boyfriend Jean, $39.94, available at AE; Kenneth Jay Lane</strong> Valentino Rockrunner Sneakers Cross Pendant, $100, available at Net-a-Porter; Rachel Comey</strong> Open Toe T-Strap Sandals, $375, available at Saks.</small>
Belt It Out</strong>u2014A structured vest can make your top half look boxy, but a tough leather belt can bring those curves back.

Above, from left: Topshop</strong> 2 Tone Round Sunglasses, $38, available at Topshop; Tory Burch</strong> Marled Webbing Waist Belt, $175, available at Tory Burch; Diane von Valentino Ballerina Sale Furstenberg</strong> Spy Ruffle Short Vest, $298, available at Shopbop; Carven</strong> Goat Suede Pump, $455, available at Stylepaste; ASOS</strong> Criss Cross Lattice Back Sundress, $36.86, available at ASOS Valentino Pumps