Possible Keep - and review

You possibly remember my struggles with BR chambray tunic which had a defective placket and was pulling at the chest. I decided to order another one  - just in case if mine was a weird oddball.
While I was ordering my eye also fell on  the soft wash chambray BF shirt in a brighter blue. Well, it arrived yesterday and when I got it out of the package I was immediately smitten with the fabric. It is incredible: soft, drapes like a dream, feels like the best quality silk (even though it is viscose / lyocell blend). It even has a light sheen to it - sooo beautiful! (can you see I am infatuated already :-) ) BTW this is this shirt in this pin

Please not that it is not styled in the pictures at all - I just popped it over culottes I had on last night. I would wear it untuckes with skinnies or tucked or semi-tucked for culottes, BT+F jeans , etc.

Now I need some independent view on the style and fit as I very well may be blinded by the beautiful fabric here. What do you think of the style and the fit? This is size L - should I try size down as well? For comparison I added a picture of the chambray tunic - it feels much stiffer than this one.

Thank you in advance!


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Review: Banana Republic Navy Anorak

I don't have "sporty" in my style description. If I do sporty luxe it is 90% luxe and maybe 10% sporty - if that. And yet I was mysteriously drawn to this navy anorak from Banana Republic and decided to give it a try. My excuse was that my current purple trench ( my travel staple) does not have a hood from the rain and  - maybe - I need a more casual jacket in addition to the trench?

It arrived this week - and it is going back. I love the color - rich navy with a slight sheen, very beautiful. I don't mind the oversized style at all - even find it attractive. This is size M in Tall and it is pretty oversized on me...except for the sleeves. Sleeves are very slim to the point that when I wear a thin wool jacket under it is uncomfortable  to bend the elbows.

The sleeves are the main reason it goes back but there are others:
- I just do not feel all these hanging drawstrings, especially on the bottom. I tied them in bows to make shorter but they still bother me. I know it is the style but...
- I don't feel the slit in the back - you can see it in pic 2. I feels weird to me - slit while the ends kept together by the drawstring on the bottom.
- the fabric is too stiff for my liking - it does not drape as well as I hoped. It is especially bothersome in an oversized style - to me anyway.
Just to compare the sleeve fit I tried on my old almost 5 year old purple trench (pic 5 -unfortunately its beautiful rich purple-red color does not photograph well indoors) - and my mind was made up immediately. The trench sleeves fit much more comfortable, the fabric is softer and lays better and there are no annoying strings hanging anywhere. The anorak style may be a fun wildcard for me but the classic trench style wins my heart every single time! I would rather use umbrella when travelling but wear my trusty old trench which feels completely me.


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Ask Angie et al: these drapey pants?

I was looking for upscale track pants for a long time. My usual problem with them is that they are too tight in the calf - or that I did not like the fabrication or style on me.
Here I am trying the drapey navy track pants from Banana Republic and I need some help here. The whole notion of ankle pant is alien to me so I am not sure if they look right or not.
The smaller size is on the left and the bigger size is on the right.  It is hard to see with the dark pants in the pictures. I think the bigger size is too roomy overall. The smaller size is still fluid but not baggy or slouchy, just has the right amount of ease - even in the calves. I think I am into more tailored trousers now because I am sure the bigger size would appeal more to me just a year ago...
...however the bigger size is longer. Not much, just 0.5" but still. The smaller size ends just over my ankles and the bigger size covers them a bit.
So which size should I keep? Oh should I just return both and look again? Or is this style is not for me at all? I get drawn to this style but not sure if it suits me. As  bonus I included the shots with these pants and two of my blazers. The fabric is different from my navy blazer but I think they work together. I like them but do they look ridiculous on me? 
I am perfectly confused now... :-(

Thanks in advance for your help!


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Angie et al: a couple of questions...

Not that I am shopping or anything   :-) but I am quite curious about 2 items.
#1 These loafers from Ros Hommerson. I am trying to expand my low heel shoe collection and loafers are on the list. You are all tired to hear about how insanely hard it is to find stylish and comfortable shoes in my size which are shipped in Canada...
What do you think of those? Frumpy or fab? Also if fab - which color: red or nude?
#2 Angie, you  recommended these Maddie pants so I need to pay attention. They come in Tall which is a bonus! Angie, do you think the cut can work for my not rectangular body? If so - which color? Navy is easy neutral but purple sounds fun...although I am not sure how easy it would be to fit into my style...


Ask Angie et al: K/R this utility vest?

I have no utility clothing in my wardrobe and was never really attracted to them for my style. However when I spotted this coated military vest on BR website somehow it attracted me enough to order it.
It came today and I am surprised myself how much I like it. The color is a dark navy bordering on ink, there is some crinkle texture to it as well so it is not flat. It also has a hidden tie so you can change the style from loose (like in my pictures) to waist defined (like in the stock picture).
I have never had coated clothing before so I was not sure if I like it but I do. It does not have that plastic feel to it I was afraid of. The inside is indigo cotton so nice to the skin. Flap pockets on the chest do not bother me as I have no chest to speak of and they even add some substance there :-)
And at last (but not the least at all)  - the length, the length!
What I am not sure about is how it will fit into my style. Did I tell you I have never had utility and military clothing at all? Is it too casual for me? Does it fit the Urban Prince persona (I hope I still live in that domain)?
Even on sale it was not very cheap (for me anyway) so I would not want to get an orphan. Is this my first wild card of 2015 or am I losing my sanity here?

pics 1-3 - open, pics 4-6 - closed.

And if the verdict is to keep - what about the size? Is this the right size for me or should I size up to Large?
Thanks in advance for your help!


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Confession or Danger of Consignment Shopping

I have a confession to make: yesterday I went to check out two consignment stores for party wear for my upcoming ballroom dance Gala. I have not found any decent party stuff there but somehow I ended up with a couple of items I was not looking for.
pic 1-3 Wide leg baggy 100% wool camel trousers new with tags (from a local boutique). Only on Friday I was mulling over Angie's formula an thinking that I would love to have a pair of toffee pants to play with - and this is what I find the next day.  The fabric quality is very nice!
I also was gathering these outfits with baggy wide trousers without a hope that I can ever find those:

How could I have left them in the store? I could not. I think I need to let out the hem a bit but need to decide first on the heel height. In the worst case if I cannot make them work as long trousers then I will make them into another pair of culottes!
Now tell me I am crazy because very possible I am...

pic 4-7 BCBG mixed media blazer

For some reason I fell for this jacket even though it was black and I already have a black tux jacket. Look at the length - isn't it perfect? I also loved the sharp shoulder line, the faux leather sleeves, the low stance and narrow lapels  - all this looked pretty current to me. My only hesitation was the double breasted style but in the end I decided to risk it.  There was also  black long jacket by Robert Rodriguez with an awesome patterned silk lining and cool design details...but it just did not fit me right at all: looked like a sack on me without fashionable fluidity. In comparison this BCBG jacket fits like a dream!

What do you think - score or "what she was thinking"? :-)


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Danier: I need to look away!

...but it is SOOOO hard when I see this beautiful mixed media coat - in INK  wool and black leather!  I SO WANT it! But the only coat I really need this year is a new puffer and money is short...but this is so beautiful!!!!
Need to stay strong!

On the other hand it is good that this flared skirt comes in black only: if it was available in cognac or burgundy or some other color I would be so tempted...but I am safe with black! :-)


I have a crush on Angie's friend...

...Stuart Weitzman  that is!
I am in love with those pointy toe oxfords! Aren't they fab? If only they were all leather and not fabric I would order them...but unfortunately fabric is not practical enough for this price point :-(
 Another love - these dress tall boots - aren't they gorgeous? If I win a lottery (or rob a bank)  they will be mine!
I want these Regent pointy toe flats as my interview shoes to go with my new navy suit - what do you think?
How about these Slash Chelsey booties for the fall?
Oh, and I would not say no to a pair of ink or patterned Poco kitten heels - actually they can be my other interview shoes, no?

As I said - I am in love!


JCrew loafers: what do you think?

I love JCrew cognac monk strap loafers from Angie's round up and seriously considering to order them if they go on sale. However while browsing other shoes on JCrew site I was strangely attracted to those double zip loafers as well. Am I crazy or are they cool?
They look pretty plain except for the zips and at first I was not sure...but they are growing on me. Now I think they are sleek and streamlined and actually like a low cut pair of booties...
I want a navy pair but it is gone in y size now. I wonder if burgundy pair can be equally versatile for me...
What do you think? Double zip or monk strap for me?

Oh, and JCrew also has Chelsea booties now which come in black and chocolate...another consideration... 


NAS 2014 - part 2

Following my footwear NAS post here is the part 2.
I was very restrained with clothing for this NAS so I only ordered 3 things.

pic 1-3 - KUT plaid skinnies - wild card with potential to become a workhorse?
I was sure they were going to stay behind. This was such an impulse buy! However I was really surprised how much I liked them when I put them on. I have ordered 3 sizes. 30 fitted like regular skinnies which is not what I am after. Size 31 (these ones) fitted like relaxed skinnies  - enough room in the waist and hips so I would need a belt to keep them in place but not so much that they are baggy. The fit in the thighs was good too - not tight but not flopping around them either. Actually I compared them to my Banana Republic cream skinnies is size 12 and they are exactly the same size. BR jeans are 1" longer and 0.5"  wider in the hem.
The biggest con is the length - I wish they were at least 1-2" longer, they just cover my ankle bone and no scrunch. I guess I can wear them rolled for warmer weather and full length with booties in the fall.
My biggest surprise was the color. When I looked at it online I was not sure which colors can work with them. OK, cream should work, maybe grey and camel - but surely these muted warm colors are going to be a beast to style with my  - on the cool side - wardrobe?
As you saw in my other post I was wearing a printed blue shirt - and I was amazed how well it worked with these skinnies. I did not expect that! Then it dawned on me: these jeans have pale muted yellow background - and blue is a classic partner for yellow. I tried them with ink, navy, indigo, medium blue - all seem to work! How cool is that!
But yellow is also a complimentary color for purple so I tried my purplish orchid pink sweater (pic 10) - and call me crazy but I like the combination!
So unless you tell me I look like a plaid sausage in them or they are unflattering and I am kidding myself they stay. Most likely I will not wear them with a shorter top like in these pictures - just wanted a shorter top to show you the fit.
The only thing is that  I wanted fun skinnies to wear with tall boots and I don't like those with tall boots very much (I tried black, grey and cognac)...which means I may need to shop for another pair of skinnies for winter! :-)

pic 4-6 Trouve long sleeveless jacket
I think it is going to be very handy i winter and allow me to wear my blouses and shirts more while keeping me warm. This is size M, I have not even tried L as M is a bit big on top - see pic 11. On the other hand it will allow to fit it over a thicker sweater and a fit below the waist is good so S will be too tight. I think it can be altered on the top if needed.
What do you think? Does it make me look too big? I can see a lot of styling possibilities with it but is it flattering.
And Angie was right saying it is for tall gals - I am 178cm tall and it hits me just 2-3" above my knee! This does not happen often when something fits tall gals better that the average height so it is a reason to celebrate for me! :-)

pic 7- 9 Halogen striped skirt
I have ordered this skirt in all colors but as Angie predicted (she is always right!) brown-black stripe was my favorite. Unfortunately the smallest of the sizes I ordered (10) was too big (see pic 7 how it sits on my hips instead of the waist) but there were no skirt in any color in size 8 in the whole store. How weird is that - all sizes were there but 8! Anyway I decided to try on size 6 and it fitted. There was even some room left in the waist area so it was not tight. However the fit kept bothering me, especially on the back. See it in pic 9 how the pleats stick out a bit on the back and compare with pic 8 of a bigger size - how pleats skim the rear smoothly? It was just slightly snug on the lower hip but enough to bother me. SA told me the fit was good but it was not good enough for my PPP mantra so it was left behind.
(and do I get bonus points for my socks matching the skirt in pic 7? :-) )
I really like this skirt  - the pleats look crisp, the fabric has a slight sheen and nice weight, it is lined - I think it is a great skirt for this price and a fun one to play with. For it would be fall / spring skirt and possibly winter under a long wool coat or puffer (as long as temperatures allow to wear skirts at all). 
It was a bummer that I could not find my size in the store but  still want to order this brown stripe in size 8 - judging how 10 and 6 fit me size 8 should be the right one. Wish me luck!


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