recent acquisitions, recent returns

Rampant materialism, did I hear someone mumble? You may have a point, Ms Mumbles, but I prefer to think of posts like this as Public Service Announcements.

the Everlane sleeveless silk shirt in the Clay color:
great color, great fabric, great fit, love the collar, buttons, etc, etc. All things considered, the price is not terrible. And astoundingly, it fits just like in the picture.

Well, I find myself saying that about Everlane merch quite often. For example, the Everlane Swing Trench:

I consider this a jacket, not a coat. That said, I'm loving it. The sleeves are a touch narrow, I've noticed this on Everlane's long-sleeved silk blouses as well, but I can get in and out of it with no trouble, so no complaint. Sturdy fabric, and when on, it hangs nicely. I was afraid it would look like an old-fashioned maternity top, you know, those loose smocks that preceded tight t-shirts as appropriate pregnancy wear? But no, it's just a jacket, not quite as straight as a pea jacket. Loving the collar and the shoulder detail. All things considered, the price is -- not terrible. I'm keeping it. Note that it's a cool-fall-day jacket, not a windy-winter-day jacket. Just so you know.

Madewell. The denim work shirt. So far I've only gotten my hands on one of the shirts I wanted to try, the one in the "slate roof" color, which is grey. It's not really denim, either, a bit lighter and more flexible, which is a plus for a shirt. Decent detailing, the 30% off promo applied. The fit is kind of floppy, like I wouldn't be comfortable in a smaller size, but it's a cute throw-on. The side slits are too high, tank required. When the white one arrives, however, it's going back. 

I'm not a screaming fan of Madewell,  I find that the dresses and skirts are generally unfriendly, and I've had a few off-putting experiences in the Fifth Avenue store. Like the time I brought in a pair of shoes to return (web order), and was told that I couldn't return them in store because Madewell doesn't carry shoes. "Um, what are those things over there?"

    "That's a display. We don't sell them."

Well, glad we straightened that out. 

Oh, you want to know how this ended? Well, I went down the street for a sulky stroll through Anthropologie, came back to Madewell, returned the shoes with a different staffer, no problem.

Anyway, periodically I do find shoes I like at Madewell and I grab them, often in 2 or even 3 colors. This is not my year to buy Madewell shoes. But I can wait.

J.Crew. I'm hanging on to the Black Paisley Shirt, having decided that it will work very well with some pencil skirts that are dying to get more friendly with it, as well as with the Collection black leather pencil skirt from last winter or the winter before. I'd love to find tailored black silk pants to wear with it, full-length pants with a mid-rise or even high rise are essential, because the silk on the blouse is so rich that
skimpy skinny capri or ankle pants would just look like I bought the blouse and then ran out of money. Well, I just about did, but whose business is that?

Update: I saw several different versions of the Noir Floral Shirt in London a few weeks ago, and decided that J.Crew's is the nicest print. When it resurfaces in my size, I will have it. This print appeared in pants and a coat too, the coat struck me as something one would wear once, and the pants - well, as I said, I like it on the blouse, but on the pants the print just looks creepy.

Update: I pounced! Love it with the black leather skirt. Found black silk pants at the Saks sale (online, the live sale in the store is not for me). V. tailored, from GO by GoSilk, great fabric (thick and matte 100% silk). I was amazed that there were any left to go on sale, but then I realized that there's so much junky nightgown-variety silk around, many people may have forgotten what silk can really look like.

I love me a good newsboy cap, but as I've already admitted, I seem to have gained weight around the circumference of my head. Dear Lord, how many more places can there be left where You can inflict additional weight upon me? Anyway, as to the newsboy cap, I thought I'd found a contender when I spied this one in the Men's section, Harris tweed with label no less:and I was delighted to see that I could get it in Large/Extra Large. Alas, it wasn't Fathead Week, the hat was too tight. Not keeping. Except that, given J.Crew's inconsistent sizing, I'll try on other L/XLs if I pass a store with Men's merch. The fabric is much prettier IRL than in the website picture.

J.Crew again, the funnel-neck sweatshirt. I'm being daring here, because I don't like poly blends, but I see this as easy-on easy-off for air travel. Good price on the promo, I got it in black. Probably not keeping - the funnel hits just at the bottom of my chin when turned up - the shirt not the chin - and the zipper teeth at that point could be a problem. 

Update: yes, it went back.

Shoes. I have two pairs of silver or silver-ish oxfords coming from At least one will go back. Update: one went back, fit issues, sad but ok. The other - well, I took another look this morning while waiting for my head to clear, and oh, dear, they are gold. They will leave town by tonight.

Winter vests. I've made the delightful discovery that a kids' size 14 or 16 will sometimes fit me. On top. In my closet awaiting winter are a Sherpa-lined quilted vest from last winter, and a creamy white Sherpa-on-the-outside vest with gray quilting on the inside from this year. Recommend trying, they fit me and I wear a size 10 J.Crew perfect shirt. I also have a couple of size 14 tees waiting for next summer. Meanwhile, I'm pondering: as much as I love the Sherpa-on-the-outside baby, where would I wear it? It wouldn't be creamy white for long in the city, and it's a little too too cute (read: inauthentic) for the beach in winter. It's reminding me of Ralph Lauren's mistaken but mercifully brief flirtation with velveteen skiwear...
Update: I replaced the new Sherpa vest with the Sherpa popover, also a Crewcuts marvel. Now this is warm and cozy. I will try not to bump into things when I wear it.

J.Crew Kelsey dress. I thought this dress would benefit from having the poofy shoulders brought down to reality, and I was right. The money I saved on the promo took care of the tailor, who is expensive, but Does What He Is Told To Do. The shoulder puff is gone. Otherwise, the dress is smooth wool, not fuzzy or scratchy, nicely made, not much room if one wants to be really fashion-forward and let the hem down, but that's not really a factor this season. If the dress is still around next winter, remind me to check how a false hem would work.
Accessorizing with goosebumps - a trend that has run its course. Would this be a good place to say that while I resent spending serious money on tights F/K/A pantyhose, I have taken a real dislike to the look of bare legs with wool or wool-like skirts and dresses? And coupled with the reappearance of micro-mini skirts, it's an unfortunate confluence of trends that I wish would go away. So I'll buy the tights, big deal. I always liked the look of tights that are the same color as the skirt - like, say, gray or wine; not so much with a dress. With the Kelsey dress, for example, adding green tights would create the impression that a very large stalk of broccoli had stopped by. Black works much better.

J.Crew Donegal tweed stovepipe pants. Suitable for wear in the Great Frozen North. This fabric is gorgeous, gorgeous, it's a true Donegal weave with flecks of this color and that color, and I just fell inn love with the pants. Sadly, the fabric is also extremely thick and heavy. Since the tweed is a blend and the lining is poly, the pants are hot and don't breathe. Otherwise, nicely tailored, but the heat factor made them a no for me. A larger size didn't work either. The off-cuts from the bolts of pants material have been used to make a top and a skirt in conjunction with other fabric. I wasn't impressed. I would have loved an entire skirt, perhaps what is sometimes called a riding skirt, out of that tweed. Sigh.

Meanwhile, I'm still on the lookout for:
Black satin oxfords with 1 ½ inch or 2 inch heel, almond or pointy toe.
Heavy real flannel pj's in silly retro print to wear for sleeping
comfortable but effective bra

and of course

world peace.


  1. You have some winners here. Yay! I struggle with the tight issue because I still feel like I have to wear panties over them to prevent saggy crotch...maybe I just buy the wrong brand? I have decided for Christmas Santa will be giving me Long John pajamas. I'm still looking for navy leather pumps...can always find suede but want leather. Have a wonderful Thursday with your fat pants. Happy Thanksgiving.

    1. Ah, navy leather pumps! An idea whose time has come! May I suggest browsing - btw, they have good sales.

  2. Good for you! But sweetie, if you are fitting into a child's 14, no more discussion on being pudgy. I know pudgy and that's not it! :-). I like all your choices!

    1. Hi, Red, it seems a deranged form of vanity sizing has come to girls' sizes. And not a moment too soon.

      For years a Ralph Lauren boys' 16 was my go-to for tailored shorts and vests. I recommend trying those - and the 14s - for lovely soft real (100% cotton) flannel shirts.

  3. I also have a fathead which I do not enjoy. Knitted caps are all I can manage and some of those I can barely pull on. I do like your blouse picks, that noir floral blouse, I've had a crush on it for months. It's just a gorgeous print.
    I tried to wear a size 16 dress from crewcuts in the elephant print but then I realized it crawled up to my butt when I sat down, the cut didn't account for my butt circumference. Oh well, that was a return. Like BB I'm looking for navy leather pumps, not suede: hard to find!
    Enjoy Thanksgiving!

    1. I've had good luck with men's' hats, 7 ½ and - oh, heaven, 7 ¾ - yes, shameless. I'm famous for my rant about men's sizes - hats, shirts, pants - being so specific and women's being so vague. Except for bras, of course. If one ever wanted empirical proof that men control the garment industry, look at sizing.

      I'll be cooking all day tomorrow and Thursday morning, and even though a snowstorm is expected, people better show up!

  4. You have been quite busy. I find the buying, returning, finding something - hoping it works-returning cycle exhausting!

    1. Hi, Julie, I've been managing to keep my optimism under control.

  5. Great J Crew shirt! I love everlane white ts but have not explored anything else. Perhaps will check out Black Friday deals...

    1. Hi, Jen, I haven't tried their sweaters yet, but I've been happy with the silk shirts.

  6. I'm an Everlane fan myself. I'm having a bit of an issue with rampant consumerism these days. It makes me crazy, which isn't a long trip, but there's just so much "stuff"! But of course that's what makes the merchants happy.
    Enjoy your Thanksgiving!

    1. and Happy Thanksgiving to you, Jennifer, I've been trying not to buy things. Except, lately, groceries.


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