Thursday, May 30, 2013

Madewell Reviews: Tanks, Dresses and a Sweater

Whoops. This week breezed by me and I have barely had a moment to breathe. I've been running over to our new house on my lunch break to have various contractors come in and tell me how much I have to spend to fix all the little things. It's exciting but a bit overwhelming! Plus it was 93 degrees here today! What? It was just 44 degrees on Sunday. Yeesh. Anyway.... wanted to get a few quick Madewell items reviewed while they have a nice sale going on.

Embroidered Paisley Tank (XS) in Pure White
The embroidered details on this tank are pretty cute. It definitely ran a bit large. It's a nice piece for pairing with some cute floral denim (a trend which seems to be holding on for now). it is a bit see through but that seems to be par for the course with tees and tanks these days.

I was immediately drawn to the bright cheery colors in this sweater. I believe it was on sale for $49.99 + 30% off in store. So disappointed they aren't doing 30% off online! I almost bought it except I didn't like those little poofs it made right above the hips. The zebra studio sweater didn't seem to do that as much but I think that's because it's a slightly heavier material. Overall though, this sweater is a perfect weight for summer and really fun! Also runs big for XS.

Windowpane Boyshirt (XS)
This appears to be sold out and I can see why. There is something so perfect and summery about it. I like the light lilac color and although it is somewhat sheer, it is also really lightweight. The fit was spot on - fitted enough but not too much.

Afternoon Dress (S) in Fresh Blueberry
I really want to love this dress. It seems like a perfect stretchy little throw on and go number. The small was a little too big - made the bum section hang sort of oddly. Also not loving the high neckline. 

Afternoon Dress (XS) in Fresh Blueberry
The XS was clearly too tight - especially up top. the skirt feel more like it should in this size but I still don't love the bubble butt.

 Silk Cami Dress in Flora (size 4)
I absolutely adore this print. You know what else is awesome? Adjustable straps! The 2nd picture shows the dress after I pulled up the straps a little bit. This fixed the slight puckering of extra fabric right above the waistline. The length is totally appropriate as well - not obscenely short! I wish I could wear a bra with this one. 

 Silk Cargo Tank (Size XS) in Neon Persimmon
I could not even get the XS buttoned which is surprising because I always take an XS at Madewell. Soooo tight. It's an adorable little blouse and comes in an array of lovely colors. Would need to size up at least one size.

I've tried these on before. Just wanted to reconfirm how much I love them. So slimming and the perfect dark color (light in real life). Highly recommend madewell's denim - no gapping at waist, nice shape, good amount of stretch.

 Heathered Linen Pocket Tank (XS) in heather medium grey
I like these linen tanks. Easy, breezy, not terribly fitted. I don't know if it was the particular tank i picked up but the heathered one felt significantly bigger than the plain colored ones.

 Linen Pocket Tank (XS) in Electric Violet
Nothing to get super excited about but I do love that it's a linen and fits in a relaxed way. Even with the 20% off tees they were offering so I thought it was a little pricey so I held off.

I have a few more Madewell reviews coming including the striped tee dress which is super cute.

Will you buy anything with the current 20% off sale promo?

Sunday, May 26, 2013

J. Crew Review: In depth: Linen City Mini

I don't know why but I keep on trying to make the city mini work for me. It almost does but I think I finally have to face facts that paper bag waists are not good for me.

Linen City Mini (size 2) in Flax

 Pictures can be so deceiving. It looks okay here but... it is very short. I think this length was okay in my 20's but not as much now. I can see why they keep it short, this style done too long would look uber frumpy. The belt helps hold in the waist and give some definition. The side view is pretty blah. I do love the color, however. The perfect shade for summer, almost like sand.

 Unbelted it is definitely less successful although the side view is improved. In the first picture I have pulled the skirt down to gain some length but it looks a bit awkward and makes me look even thicker-waisted.

There is a good 2 inches of fabric that you could let out if you are really dedicated to this skirt. It seems to be selling well since there is only one size left on the website presently.

Do you own a city mini? How do you make it work?

Saturday, May 25, 2013

J. Crew Review: Summer Arrivals - some skirts and some sparkle

This round of try-ons went a bit better. I like most of what I saw but nothing is screaming buy me now. Not yet at least. Do you ever start off thinking yeah, I like that, maybe I'll wait for it to do on sale. Then you completely forget about, followed by insane sale dance trying to nab it at 50% off. I'm trying to buy more thoughtfully this season - practical pieces and pieces that initially attracted me not pieces that were favorably reviewed or are "selling out fast". Ah. Ommmmm...

Double Crepe Skirt (size 0)
 This is quite cute. My usual bottoms size fit perfectly. The crepe is indeed thick and stiff but that is exactly what I liked about it. The pleating is subtle and on the whole flattering. The side view is quite poufy but in a purposeful way. I quite like this little skirt, maybe more so in the fall with tights.

 Space-Dyed V-Neck Sweater (size XXS)

 I have a weird obsession with all clothing or shoes in gold. It's a little strange. I ADORE this sweater. It is so lightweight and the fit is quite slouchy (even when I sized down) but I think it is just spot on. There are a myriad of colors in the sweater - gold, bronze, olive. Perfect little sweater to throw in your bag and pop over your tank top when it's a little chilly. A little bit on the shorter side.

Multistripe Popover (size 2) in brilliant monaco blue
Blech. This was really pulling across the chest and felt too short and poufy. Fit differently than the hawaiian print popover. Would be cute on someone less well-endowed tucked into a pencil skirt.

No. 2 Pencil Skirt in Double Serge Cotton (size 0)
 I have no idea what color this is but I liked it. My usual size was spot on although I wish they would make the waist on the no. 2 slightly smaller. I prefer the petite length in these skirts. This one was on sale but I forgot what the price was.

Graphic Eyelet Tee (size XXS) in Pale Apricot
You can see this above with the pencil skirt as well. I would need my usual size instead of one size down. I'm not loving this for $118. It's just a t-shirt. And that high neckline, what is up with that this season? So not flattering on my shape. The color is a lovely light peach which would look great with a light tan and cute cropped pants.

What are you loving from this most recent rollout?

Thursday, May 23, 2013

J. Crew Review: Popback: Collection Skirt in Hothouse Floral

Ah, dilemma. Ever since the Hothouse Floral print came out at J. Crew I have been a bit obsessed with it. I ended up passing on it because the prices remained too high and the top didn't really work for me (high neckline + pleats over the bustline = disaster).
So, with final sale gone, I am definitely doing my early morning check more than ever. And then the skirt, which I had never considered, pops up. In my size. Hmmm.... I walked away for a while and decided that if it was still there by the time I got back from my shower I would order it (have you ever done that? I am totally demented?). It was and after some hemming and hawing I bit. I can return it. Uh-huh.

Collection Skirt in Hothouse Floral (size 2)
 It's a shame the print doesn't photograph that well. The colors in real life are so much deeper and luscious. One of those prints I just want to dive into. I realize that it sort of looks like someone bled all over a perfectly good greens silk skirt but IRL the pattern is more complex. Anyway, I blather on. What is really selling me is the fit! The skirt lays so beautifully and fits absolutely perfectly at my waist. I was totally planning on not keeping this. I have no business owning an expensive skirt.

Sigh. I'm going to take a little time to decide but I do think it is unique and lovely. For those of you that own this - what do you pair it with?

Close up of pattern.

Do you ever play the "kismet game" with clothes? "If it's still there in my cart in one hour, then it must be meant to be :) ..."

J. Crew Review: More New Summer Arrivals: The Prints Edition

Where are the gorgeous printed pencil skirts? Seriously. I am finally in the market to buy one and all I get is plain colors or $700 sequins or little school girl skirts. Harumph. I'm not loving the prints offered so far except for:

Um, yes please.


Struggled as I may to find things I like, I still tried on lots. Just in case I changed my mind.

This is one size bigger than I usually take and was all they had. I might prefer my usual size but this seemed to work as well. I'm not into this print at all but I do love the colors and the shape. Very easy breezu and the shape of the back is quite flattering.

 Camp Popover in Hawaiian Sunset (size 2)
I think I missed the memo on Hawaiian shirts being cool and not "cool ironic". I feel silly. I'm sorry if you are loving this print and I am dissing it. I think I'm too old to get this one. What I did like was the length and the fit. Good shape and roll tab sleeves.

 Carrie Dress in Big Dot (size 2)
This might be an in-store only dress and according to the SA it is flying out of the store. I knew before I tried it on that the shape wouldn't work for me but I can see it looking fabulous on someone less curvy. The back is adorable and it feels quite effortless. I think the ability to go braless is a plus/necessity for this one. The cotton is a nice thick weave and the dots continue nicely all the way around.

 Boardwalk Linen Skirt in Stripe (size 2)
The drawstring actually works on this one so if you wanted more length you can safely go up a size (as I did). It's cute and basically flattering for an effortless, cool summer skirt. I've decided that this shape of skirt makes me feel too schoolgirl and not enough lady. I guess that's what pushing 40 will do for you.

How are you feeling about some of the latest prints?