I couldn't figure out why this jacket was hanging around so long, but since I was happy to see the price continuing to drop, I didn't waste time wondering. I finally snagged it on markdown + promo + discount, so the fact that I had to fudge my principle of no weird blends no eye of newt no toe of frog kind of took a back seat.
The edging reads black and white from a distance, close up it's a dark purple and white. The blues and greens in the main tweed go with just about everything in the green and blue families. I wore it out to lunch on Easter Sunday with my viridian green pencil skirt and my navy silk tee, dug out a pair of Hue tights from TJ's that were the same color as the skirt, and decided to stop there. Well, I know I wore shoes but there was a lot of champagne at lunch and by the time I decided to make a note of the outfit I couldn't remember which shoes I wore. The jacket can look very busy if you're not careful, so no jewelry or scarf at the neck.
Some details: I had to try on 3 or 4 sizes before I found a size I liked on me, which was the smallest one I tried. I like how it looks, but I have no idea whether it looks the way the "Design Team" meant it to look. Well, my money, my jacket, but I note that perhaps the sizing issue has something to do with why it lingered.
The fabric content tag mentions silk, cotton, poly, rayon -
there were different content tags on the different jackets I tried, so I went by feel. The lining on mine is actually quite nice in feel and texture, and I could detect no silk in the "decoration." Could a factory have made a mistake and used a silk lining? Well, sometimes the bear gets you, sometimes you get the bear.
The only "decoration" other than the binding - a few self-fringed seams. Self-fringing is not something J.Crew does well, or consistently. I trimmed the seams so that all of the fringes were more or less the same length, that is, the (still) uneven fringe on the right shoulder seam is now approximately the same length as the (still) uneven fringe on the left shoulder seam. I eliminated a few very long straggler threads that were just asking for trouble. Given JC's history of problems with seams opening, hems falling, and holes developing, I should think that self-fringing is something they'd try to avoid....
The closure consists of a few little hooks like the ones that used to be on fur coats, they're meant to be invisible and by and large are. I think this is a good idea, because if the jacket had those tacky gold buttons on the front, it would be unwearable.
The lining and construction are lovely.
Go-withs. I actually didn't like it with jeans, the tweed is not soft enough. Or something.
The "new twinsets" - I figured these for great markdowns for sure, and 3 of them, well, 2 ½, are home, after markdowns, promos, discounts. Still not the cheapest things I've ever bought, but since I've bought very little else and nothing fits the life of the perennial tourist like a light-weight twin-set...
So: here are the navy window pane cardigan and the cherry navy/pink microcheck shell. The cardigan will work with pink tops as well as navy, although so far with little else.
Wearing them now, the featherweight cashmere is very comfortable, the windowpane lines are actually a pale grey which makes the cardigan very versatile - gray pants, gray skirt, as well as the usual suspects. I think this would look too busy with a pink or red skirt, but staying in the gray/navy/denim area, it's fine. The navy is quite deep, so I thought it would go well with the first French Hen silk shirt - bargain goes with bargain, right? not this time. Still working on other combos. As a fallback, the navy microcheck cardi jumped into my arms when I entered the Rock Center store and although there was some discussion as to whether or not there was a sale/promo that day, at the end of it the sweater was mine.
I also wanted to see how the bright green/navy/medium blue combo would look on me, but was a day too late. The sweater had appeared on late-night TV. So I did a store search myself and located it in the "concept store" in New Jersey, but the person who answered the phone told me she couldn't do a charge-send for "security reasons." Not even to me, on my very own JC card, at the billing address on the account. What is with that store? They did a charge-send to me right before Christmas, when I needed something for the Hawaii trip (posts still to come).
Then the cardi and the shell turned up at the Madison/45th Street store, the sweet thang who answered the phone said she'd hold them for 24 hours, took my name, described the place where holds are stored, and when I got there there was no "hold" for me. Anywhere. That store has real problems, I understand that for a while corporate was making a serious effort to shake it up, now it just seems dreary and grab-it-while-you-can. Like a TJ's in an isolated strip mall. Third time lucky, the sweaters are mine. Of course the combo can only be worn with navy, by me anyway, because IT IS BRIGHT. If I'd had to pay the starting price I wouldn't have gotten started with this.
On all of these cardigans, the buttons are nice. As they should be.
Sizing issues: these are not "shrunken" the way the Creatures of the Wind sweaters were, so I would say after trying on a variety of sizes that they're actually true to size.
By the way, I got a lot of use out of that CofW twinset on recent trips, which is why I've been open to the possibility of another JC featherweight patterned twinset. Or two.
In case you were wondering whether the light blue/dark blue microcheck shell works with the Dual Tweed Jacket, be advised that it categorically does not. Walking test for astigmatism comes to mind. And the CofW sweaters go only with each other and with solids. Even Gail, Stylist to the Deranged and Color-Blind, didn't show these with polyester paisley pajama bottoms.