Thursday, June 30, 2011

j.crew review: pastille tweed pencil skirt.

Hello everyone!

I had a 20% off coupon, and decided to try out the Collection Pastille Tweed Pencil Skirt. It hasn't gotten much notice (especially at full price), but it looked so very pretty online, that I wanted to see it in person. I also wanted to try it out before it goes to sale (and will likely go straight to final sale, boo).

It's a bit different than I expected, but in a good way. The colors are pinks, peaches and purples, with a stretchy tan grograin waistband. It's a very large "tweed" and feels lightweight (compared to a winter tweed), but is substantial enough that it could probably span seasons. (I could see pairing it with a cashmere ivory turtleneck sweater, tights and boots.) The skirt has some stretch to it, which I liked (although that leaves the potential to show more bumps, which some may dislike). The material content is a mix (cotton/poly/polyamide/viscose), and is fully lined. The length felt nice -- to my knees (I'm 5'5").  This is my usual size 4.
I tried it on first with a plain white tee (JC perfect-fit crewneck tee), and actually loved that just plain, tucked in. You could just as easily dress it up, ladies-who-lunch style. Just be careful not to make it too twee. ;)

Here are some pics, styled a few different ways (paired with various JC espadrilles from past seasons):

What do you think of this skirt? It hasn't been in store at all, so it's an online only purchase it seems.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

j.crew "musthave" boxes rolling in...

It will come as no shock to many of my followers that I took advantage of the recent J.Crew "MUSTHAVE" additional 30% off sale promo.  Some were items I wanted to check out for size while still returnable, in case I can score them later at a lower price point. Some I had wishlisted for a while, and was happy with the price point. Lots of shoes. ay yi yi. Here are the first reviews...

Sevigne Washed Leather Capri Sandals -- I tried these when they came out at full price, and loved the soft leather and perfect neutral colors. I think $35 is a nice price for these (although of course they could go lower). The straps are super comfy. The flat sole, is, well, flat. Love 'em. Wish they'd have done them in modern red or poppy.

Merkado Wedge Espadrilles -- I knew these wouldn't work, and I still tried them anyway, lured by the $55 price and the gorgeous cognac-colored leather. The sepia color didn't disappoint, but everything else met my low expectations, alas. There's just no way to walk in something so heavy, being held up by some ribbons. Also, the leather on the sides was really wide and pulled-away, which you can see in the pic below. Definite return. The color is so pretty though, so I'd recommend trying the flats or midheel wedge if they drop in price.

Collins Suede Platform Peep-toes -- I had to give them at a whirl at $55. I tried both the lovely aged driftwood and the mossy oak. Love the colors, love the soft suede. I know that aged driftwood heel would get nicked all the hell, but it's so pretty.  Alas, I ordered my regular 8.5 and I just felt like they were too tight at the tops of my feet, where the shoe dug in a bit. It would perhaps stretch out, but it's not like I'd wear them enough to stretch them. So perhaps they're worth re-trying at a size 9, but I think I'm good without them. They are super flattering on the foot though!!

Iris Suede Sandals -- By some miracle, I scored these in the Wild Berry on eBay for $50. They had a mark through and I could see a little sticker tag torn off the bottom, so they must have been at a clearance center? Weird since they're new? Whatever, I'll take them! Love, love, love the color! The suede is soft, and they're very comfortable across the feet. The only con is that they won't slip on w/o unbuckling, but that's really not a big deal.

Toggle Cardigan -- I reviewed this previously in a size too big, so here it is in the correct XS size. I love this cardigan! The toggles, the nubby cotton, the ivory, the length. And the pockets!!!!! So cute.

Cashmere Cardigan, heather twilight -- This is a gorgeous shade of blue, and I love the heathering. It looks a little dark in this picture, but it's a nice match to the blue of the Maritime dress. The buttons are cute. This is a size small, so this is running small I think, as it is a touch short and the arms are quite tight. The cashmere doesn't feel as luxe as it once did. It was a pretty good price, but I'm actually still on the fence.

Don't worry, there's more to come! ;)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

j'crewlet visit: what I took home.

Hello everyone!

I'm back from a lovely long weekend visit at my parents' and was able to make a stop at their local J.Crew (it was wiped out, except for one score), and the Factory Store on the way back home. 

First, after seeing my parents' local store, I have to say that I'm doubly thankful to have my two fabulous stores, which are always brimming with new pieces and stocked with sale goodies. Their store was so empty and the sale section was picked over. It must sell well, so perhaps they need a bigger store with Collection there, or at least another store in the area! Anyway, there was nothing new there to try out, but I did find one lone Bellflower Tweed Pencil Skirt, in my size, in the sale section. For $35. Plus 30% off. Hello my pretty.  I can't do tweed in the summer, so it will debut in fall.

On my way home today, I managed to get my toddler to do a full Crewlet perusal without a full meltdown. These days, that's a win. They had 40% off clearance and a ton of promos (50% off their Jackies and what looked like the featherweight cotton cardis with the brown buttons?). 40% off knits. I wasn't interested in much except for the adorable french tees there (two of which I had waiting for me at home, purchased with the MUSTHAVE 30% off + sale price). One tee that isn't online was...wait for it...striped. It's the Frenchie Tee in navy and white striped, but it says C'est Bon. The factory tees are always a sturdier cotton and do not tend to fall apart/hole-ify in the wash like the retails ones. I went with a size small in all the tees (TTS -- I always get a small in tees). The striped tees feels like a substantial cotton and the La Ville Vintage tee is a bit lighter in weight and softer. Here are some pictures of the cerise Frenchie Tee, La Ville Vintage tee and the store-only-so-far navy Frenchie Tee.(The cerise stripes and the chiffon flower match retail's modern red, by the way.)

They also had outlet versions of the link necklaces in plastic tortoise, aqua and white. They are smaller links, which I liked. Jewelry was all 40% off.

That's that. My mom gifted me with her 20% off coupon, which I may use to buy myself the poppy classic ballet flats for a birthday treat. I've also been watching that Pastille Tweed Pencil Skirt. Has anyone tried that one out? I feel like it's been FP for a while and is going to come down in price soon, no?

Hope you all are having a nice weekend! We are enjoying gorgeous weather today and are planning to grill out and have a couple beers tonight. Ahhh... summer.

Friday, June 24, 2011

land's end canvas reviews: linen t-shirt dress, sadie espadrilles, heritage flats.

Hi everyone,

The fabulous summer sale at Land's End Canvas prompted me to try a couple items I've been eyeing. I received them the other day -- the Linen T-Shirt Dress and the Sadie Espadrilles. Two ride-alongs were a purple checked men's Poplin Sueded Scarf for $2 from the once-a-month Classifieds sale section, and a pair of Heritage flats for $7.50 (!!Deals!!). 

I know the Linen T-shirt Dress got some iffy reviews, but sometimes I just want to judge for myself. I ordered the size 2, with lowish expectations.  Out of the box, I loved the coloring and the weight of the linen. It's definitely boxy and slouchy on -- I could have easily done a size zero. I didn't hate the boxiness of it -- it was super comfy and great for going to the park, on errands, etc. With a belt, it was much more flattering, although that does shorten it.  I decided that since it wasn't total love, and I have the similarly striped/colored Anthro Land of Springs dress, it's a pass for me.  But for $40, I think it's a cute little dress. Just size down.

Sadie Quarter Strap Espadrilles -- I've been obsessed with finding a cute navy sandal, so I gave these a whirl after they were marked down to $50.  They are adorable IRL. That said, they are quite high (4" heel, 1.5" platform), and I felt like if I walked too far, the straps would chafe a bit. But so, so cute!

Heritage Ballet Flats -- Um, yeah, these were $7.50 in the luggage tan color. I ordered the Land's End Emma Classic Ballet Flat previously and reviewed it here.  I wanted to try these out in a 1/2 size bigger (9, I'm usually an 8.5.)  These are cute and super comfy -- I'd say the leather feels like it has a bit more give in the Canvas flats and they don't have that ribbon on the top edge that was bothering other reviewers. Classic shoe and color. They look very similar to J.Crew's Classic Ballet Flat, no?

Men's Poplin Sueded Scarf -- I've had great luck with their men's scarves, which often make it to very low sale price points. This one was found on the last day of their Classifieds, so it was down to $2. Hard to beat a cute scarf for that price, especially one that's a) purple, and b) checked. :)  A bit stiff, great length, pretty purple. Love!

Did you get anything from L.E. Canvas summer sale? Anything you have your eye on?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

j.crew shoe reviews: lula jacquard, camille wedges, braidee flat sandals, avenelle wedges

Hi everyone!

Better late than never (blogger issues, grrr)...I'm reviewing some pretty J.Crew shoes, in case you are thinking of purchasing.  The Camille wedge sandals are still FP (but were recently on promo), and the Lulas and Braidees are on sale now. ETA: Extra 30% (MUSTHAVE) sale is extended, so if your size is there on the sale items below, grab them. Especially when it's not final sale, now's a good time to try out some shoes.

Lula Jacquard Ballet Flats (sale $140, not including 30% off) -- I've been searching for a comfortable and cute gold flat for ages. I didn't love the Gap City flat's gold color, and others I like the color, but the not the fit.  These Lulas are super comfortable, don't dig in at all, and actually fit TTS for me. I like to go up a 1/2 size in JC flats, but didn't need to in these (although the 1/2 size up still fits).  The material and color is soft and pretty, and doesn't scream *gold!!!*, which I love. Can I wear them in the rain/snow? Mm, maybe (a little sprinkle - yes, downpour - no).  I love that there is that bit of khaki/tan in there as well, making it a perfect neutral.  Overall, these are a definite love for me. (See FFM's review of the similar Lula Glitter Jacquard Flat.)

Camille Wedges -- (sale $99) I talked about these sandals in a previous in-store review, and wanted to do a few more pictures. They are a perfect neutral sandal, and I love the Sand Dune color. I like the mix of wood and rope in the heel -- feels very summery, but a bit more polished (work-friendly) that straight rope espadrilles (which I also love). The heel is a smidge high, but the platform makes them easily walkable. The straps are quite comfortable, although one little section has needed a bit of breaking in. Overall, another love.

Braidee Flat Sandals  (sale $50) -- These have been around quite awhile, and are mostly popbacks now in the sale section (meaning they are sold out online for the most part, but will pop up when they refresh stock randomly). With the discount, they are a really great deal. I got the Shadow color, which is a faded black, with definite blue undertones. I think they can get away with being a navy shoe pretty much.  The suede is very soft and comfortable on my feet, and I love the color. They are that flat hard sole, which means no arch support/super long walks. I wear an 8.5 in general, and the 9 was a perfect fit.

J Crew sandals

Avenelle Cutout Wedges (sale $100) -- I love a wedge and these looked like they'd be pretty on the feet with a bit of an edge. I adore that lovely burt sienna, but know the wedge/heel part would get so easily nicked/dirty that I couldn't do it.  I tried out the black instead.  They are very comfortable with the midheel wedge, fit TTS, and the suede is very soft. I do think they are pretty on the foot and make a nice statement without being too crazy. I wouldn't pay any more than $70 for something that is still a trendy piece and has a manmade footbed/sole.

My next shoe obsession from J.Crew is the ballet flat in poppy. must.have.  What shoes are you craving?

ETA:  New discounts on some shoes Thursday morning with the sale extension, including some faves of mine, Iris Tortoise Sandal (fits TTS), Camille and Maryann Wedges, and Eva Espadrille.

blogger issues!

I have a bunch of posts queued up and am so annoyed with Blogger b/c it won't let me upload any pictures! I'm not ignoring you all, never fear!  Will return shortly!

Monday, June 20, 2011

j.crew summer sale promo picks.

Hi everyone!

My appointment was cancelled this morning, so now I have some bonus time and can do a second post. That means time to list some of my J.Crew Summer Sale picks, in honor of the 30% off that started today (code: MUSTHAVE). I'm sure pieces will go fast, but will pop back over the promo. Some great prices on shoes and a few items that have been lingering and needing to drop in price. 

Here are some of my favorites:

Lady Lace Popover -- Adore this. These will go fast I think at this dropped price. See it on the Chic Chauffer.

Toggle Cardigan -- Reviewed this here. The toggles are really cute and it's a nice quality all-cotton sweater.

Elsa Jacket -- Just reviewed this here. Sharp in the modern red especially.

Featherweight Cotton Cardigan -- I love the new brown buttons on this cardi. $35 is reasonable.

Factory La Ville Village Tee -- I'm a sucker for a french-themed tee and the colors here work with a ton in my wardrobe. It's new, but on promo, so nice to get the extra 30% off.

Sevigne Washed Leather Capri Sandals -- These are really comfortable (well, as comfortable as flat-as-a-board shoes can be) b/c of the super soft leather. Great price.

Lula Jacquard Ballet Flat -- Love these. I received them the other day and re-ordered them with this promo. Very comfortable, fit is TTS. I've been waiting for a comfy gold flat for a while, as I didn't like the Gap City Flat in gold.

Collins Suede Platform Peep Toes -- Lots of love in the blogworld for these, and at $55, worth a try. Lots of colors and sizes were still available this morning.
Are you jumping on the 30% off promo this round?

ETA:  Back from the store, where it's final sale on extra 30%. I'm guessing that will start applying online soon. I picked up a Silk Henley Top in bright pink for $14 (with discount), a hooded utility jacket (dark green, not sure of name?) for $20, and the Delaney short-sleeve top in navy for $14 (I have the white and wear it all.the.time -- nice for when you want a little dressier than a tee, but the still casual).  Also, just want to give huge props to my personal shopper, who always goes above and beyond. I can't recommend starting up a relationship with one enough.
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