Thursday, September 4, 2014

Fix #5 from Stitch Fix - September 2014

Yes, it's that time of month again...Stitch Fix delivery time! It is always exciting getting the email that your Stitch Fix shipment is on its way to your house.

Note: For those unfamiliar with Stitch Fix, please read my first Stitch Fix Review for the details of the service. Also, if you'd like to read up on my previous fixes, choose #2, #3 or #4 to read all of my reviews.

Isn't this exciting? What's inside???
I was pretty excited to get this new box because I desperately needed some new jeans, and the Stitch Fix peeps had added a new 'jeans' section to their fashion questionnaire. The only pair of pants Stitch Fix had sent me was in my very first Fix back in May...and they fit terribly. So, I was hopeful that this time around with new questions about sizing and style they would get it right, and I'd have a pair of new pants in my wardrobe.

I also asked for patterned cardigans, since I really loved the navy-and-white striped cardi they sent me in my very first Fix. Most of my cardigans (of which I have only a few) are boring. Very little color. I needed a boost in that area.

Plus, I was still on the lookout for a red top to replace one that had been culled from the wardrobe (as I mentioned last month).

Now, anyone who has read my other reviews knows that I am a believer in Stitch Fix. I love the service. I've been happy with the pieces I've been able to add to my wardrobe. My fixes were getting better and better. Then August came, and I felt let down. I only ended up keeping one item...everything else was not good for my body type or was just ill-fitting. I chalked it up to chance. Not every box is going to be a home run. It was a blip in an otherwise positive experience.

Then came my September box. I am not so happy today. In the new jeans sizing questionnaire, Stitch Fix asked specifically for the style of jeans you wanted. They had 4 choices: skinny, straight, bootcut, or trouser. I know my body. I gave skinny a chance, and they failed big time. Not for my body type. I have also experienced trying on straight jeans, and they never work either. I wished they had 'curvy,' but I know that kind of cut is sort of a new thing that you don't find in every brand of jeans. So, I chose 'bootcut' and 'trouser.' I also gave my waist measurement. You will see in my list of items why I am not happy with my latest Stitch Fix box.

McKenzie Westmore as host of Face Off
When I first opened the box and took out the stack of clothes, I was very excited to see RED JEANS. I have been wanting a pair of red jeans ever since I saw McKenzie Westmore wearing a pair on the show Face Off. I also noticed this was a bigger box than usual with a lot of bulky items.

If you look at the stack, there's something very patterned and cool on top, two pairs of jeans (red and dark), another red item and a sweatpants-colored item at the bottom. I wasn't too thrilled about a gray item in the box, but the sight of TWO pairs of pants (and a red pair to boot) got me pretty jazzed up. With this new jeans questionnaire, I was certain at least ONE pair would fit me. I'd given them my preferences, my waist size, my weight, my height. What could go wrong?

I took out each item one at a time and hung it up on the back of my bedroom door before I tried anything on. As is usual for me, I never open up the style cards or the price list until AFTER I try everything on. I want to be in love with something because of how it fits and looks on my body, not because of the price.

1) The first item I pulled out of the pile was the Edmond Chevron Print Henley Shirt by Pixley for $54.00. I instantly loved this item. The print was bright and happy. The style was fun with elbow-length sleeves and a button tab. I knew this was a winner right away when I saw it at the top of the stack. I've seen this top before in other Stitch Fix boxes, and I was very glad they sent it to me.

 Then I tried it on. It fit like a dream. So flattering. Soft fabric. Everything about it was love, love, love. Several of the colors included in the print match other items in my wardrobe, including a pair of brown jeans, a pair of tangerine cropped pants, and a purple cardigan. I knew this was going in to the KEEP pile.

Isn't it cute? Funny how you can just spot something sometimes and KNOW it will look great on you. Sadly, this was my last bit of happiness on this unboxing day. A gray cloud was heading my way when I tried on the next items in my box...

2) I actually tried on the Jake Slim Boot Cut Jean by Just Black for $88.00 when I tried on the henley shirt for the first time. Stitch Fix sent me another style of Just Black jeans in my May 2014 fix. They were a size smaller, as I recall. When I saw that this was one size bigger, I had hopes. The words 'Boot Cut' also made me feel like this would work out for me.

 I liked the dark color. I had a hard time seeing the 'boot cut' styling, and the legs (in the thigh area) looked awfully skinny...but you don't know until you try 'em, right ladies?

I wish I had a better picture of these. They look okay in this photo. I think the dark color does not show the tightness of the pants from the knees up. I did take a photo of the waist and how it was probably 1/2 inch too small, but it was not pretty, so I deleted it. The whole problem with these pants was the thighs/hip area. I would've been okay with a bit of a tight waist, if the rest was Comfort City, but that was not the case. I believe the word 'slim' in the description of these pants is deceiving. I thought they meant that the boot cut at the bottom was slimmer and less bell-shaped than most boot cut pants, but really, I think they meant the leg styling. It was quite narrow and even with stretch materials, it didn't work for me.

For a younger woman, this might have been okay. In fact, someone in her 20s might want super-tight pants like these. However, I am in my 40s. I am not trying to look 'young.' I am trying to dress my age, and super tight jeans really is not the style I'm going for at this point in my life. Also, these jeans cost $108. If I'm going to pay $108 for a pair of jeans, I'd better look dang amazing in them. REJECT.

3) I moved on to the dreamy red jeans. When I read the description tag, I was really worried. These were the Kayla Skinny Jean by Margaret M in red for $108.00. Oh my. Skinny. HELP ME LORD! On the hanger they looked very awesome. The right shade of red that I was looking for.
No, the off-center thing was not meant to be artistic. I'm just too lazy to crop this photo!
These were lovely, lovely pants. But the skinniness of them was frightening after my attempts at wearing a 'slim' pair of jeans. As most of you know, I try EVERYTHING on...even when I don't think it's gonna work for me. You just never know, right? Well, I should've listened to my inner self-sizing projections and just dumped these pants into the return envelope.

Oh my God. I cannot believe I posted the horror that is this photo. This is probably the worst-fitting pair of pants on my figure that I've ever tried on in my life. As I explained to my teenage daughter, I have had pantylines before...but never on the FRONT of my pants. Yes, the FRONT. Front pantylines!?  It burns my eyes. It actually was even worse than the semi-blurry photo reveals.

The weirdest thing about these pants was that the waist fit perfectly! I loved the waistband. In fact, it could've even been 1/4 inch tighter for my taste. But the hips, legs, knees, etc. made me feel like an encased sausage. Holy hell what a nightmare. I ripped off these pants as fast as I could and tossed them on my bed. I was never going to achieve McKenzie Westmore red jean awesomeness. It was just not meant to be. REJECT.

 4) Next, I moved on to the red blouse that was included with this box. I had asked for a red top in August (which didn't work out), and I thought I'd give Stitch Fix another shot at it with something from their fall wardrobe choices. I really should've left well enough alone and let them surprise me with something. Instead, they sent me the Filbert 3/4 Sleeve Popover Blouse by 41Hawthorn in Burgundy for $58.00.

I actually liked the look of this blouse on the hanger. I wasn't 100% sure the red was the right red for what I had in mind. Honestly, that was the biggest worry I had when I saw this blouse. That, and the fact it looked very similar in style to the Pixley henley I was keeping. However, strange things happened when I tried on this blouse.

 I posted two pictures, so I could explain the issues I had. First, the picture on the fits pretty well. I liked the way it looked on me. It was possibly slightly too tight across the bust, but not bad. The color was a good one on me. Now, the problems. See the photo on the right? There was this strange sleeve detail that was irritating to my arms. I could feel that hitched up piece of fabric on the back of my upper arm. It felt sort of like when you get a sleeve caught up in a want to pull it down and fix it. However, the sleeve was permanently stitched like that. The other oddity were the epaulets on the shoulder. I tried to take a picture of them, but none of the photos turned out well. The shoulder line of this shirt sat on the back on my shoulder, rather than straight across the shoulder line. Therefore, the epaulets sat on the back of my shoulder. It was bizarre. I am not sure why the epaulets and shoulder were not lined up properly, Maybe it was just my massive shoulders? I don't know. But due to those two facts about this shirt it was a REJECT.

5) The last item was very very weird. I think I have seen a similar style of cardigan in other people's fixes, but you really don't understand the strangeness until you encounter it for yourself. This was the Alan French Terry Asymmetrical Zip Cardigan by Market and Spruce for $68.00.

It looks kinda cool on the hanger, doesn't it? Sort of like a motorcycle jacket, but made out of comfy sweatshirt material. Not so fast! First, I was not very pleased with the color. A dull gray. I'd asked for fun patterns. This was neither a pattern nor fun. My husband has pointed out that I have maybe too much gray in my wardrobe, and it can come across as a bit depressing. However, I was willing to give it a shot. 

All right. Two photos again, so you can see different ways of wearing it. On the left is the cardigan fully zipped. First, this cardigan has a very bad zipper. It doesn't slide smoothly at all. Second, as you can see in the photo, when you zip it up you end up with this weird piece of floppy fabric under the zippered area that has no place to go, but to create bulk around your body and weird lumps. Also, you end up with a strange piece of fabric sticking out below where the zipper begins that makes no sense. I was ready to reject this puppy after that left photo was taken. Unflattering, bulky, weird. There were also VERY long sleeves on this sucker. Not necessarily a bad thing, but just noticeably long.

Then, I looked at the style cards. See how they have the cardigan open in both photos?

So I thought, maybe the zipper is just a design element, and the cardigan is meant to be worn open. So I unzipped it and did a reassessment. As you can see in the above right photo, it looks better this way. It happened to be really cold in my house yesterday, so it felt good to wear something warm and layered. It also looked good with my new henley, so I kept it on all afternoon. I wanted to get a second opinion from the daughter and spouse before I completely dumped it.

When my daughter got home, she pointed out that the zipper being on only one of the lapels meant that it sagged weirdly and made the whole 'open' cardigan not work or look nearly as even as the style card implied. She was right. REJECT.

That's a 1 out of 5. How depressing!  You should see the size of the return envelope for this was SO huge, the bag ripped open at the tear line, and I had to seal it shut with packing tape. YIKES!

I have never felt so misshapen and un-thin as I did when trying on this box of clothing. This dialed back my self-confidence a couple of notches. I declared to my husband that I was just going to tell Stitch Fix no more pants, and that I could do a much better job of finding pants that worked for me. I wrote some pretty scathing comments about each of the rejected items and put in big capital letters that I do not want anything SKINNY or SLIM ever again. In my notes for my next fix (arriving September 30th) I asked for no pants and just long-sleeved dresses, colorful cardigans, skirts, infinity scarves, and fall tops.

Although I will continue the Stitch Fix service because it works for me to some degree, my excitement and enthusiasm is starting to wane slightly. I'd really rather get 3 out of 5 items, at least, in a box that I love. Only getting 1 is depressing. Only getting 1 and having to try on pants that are not meant for your figure makes it even worse.

Here's to hoping my next box is a better box. I asked for a stylist that knows how to style a 'hard-to-fit' woman in her 40s. We'll see what they come up with.

If you are interested in trying out Stitch Fix, please feel free to use my referral link below. Honesty: I will get a $25 credit for your trouble. Thanks.

Totally off topic...but if you are a reader of paranormal romance, please consider entering my Book Giveaway contest which runs through 12 am September 15th!


  1. I liked the burgundy shirt! Then again, I'm biased because I just kept the same shirt in black!

    1. I am glad you liked the shirt...I did like how the rest of it fit. It was flattering and the red color was cute. I think my mega-shoulders were the thing that ruined it. The epaulets were on the back of my shoulder. If they sat on the top of my shoulder, I may have kept it. So strange how things can fit so differently on a different body! Thanks for commenting. :-D

  2. K - This is just too funny/random. I just started receiving StitchFix a few months ago and I was curious about a cardigan I kept (the weird asymmetrical gray one, haha) so I did a google search and clicked on the photo of you wearing it in your review. Can you imagine my surprise when I saw K J Gillenwater!?!? Too funny. Hope all is well!!

  3. LOL, Beth! What a riot! Hope you are doing well. I am obsessed with StitchFix, as you can tell by my blog. I read other people's blogs and look at what they get, etc. There is something fun about looking at real people in clothes they are trying on, rather than models. Thanks for stopping by! ;-)