The closest I've come to describing my style is to mutter "something of the Sue Pollard" and leave it at that. After 18 months of housewifery in three different countries my 'work' wardrobe was straggly, to say the least, and I do not enjoy shopping for clothes in shops so I found myself googling "online personal stylist". An thus, my relationship with Stitch Fix began.
The name, naturally, caught my attention, as I thought perhaps my search history and google had colluded and concluded that there was no point showing me stylists and was taking me to some new sewing product instead. But no. It is an online personal stylist who looks at the information you provide (their questions plus optional links to your Pinterest, LinkedIn etc) and sends you five items in your size as often or infrequently as you want and where you can send back whatever you don't like in a prepaid return envelope. Your only risk is $20 which you pay upfront to be 'styled' and if you keep any of the items that is redeemed against their cost. If you keep all five items they knock 25% off the total price. It almost sounded too good to be true but I looked at reviews and saw more and more fashion and normal blogs praising it and thought "Well, OK then." I scheduled my first box to arrive on the 15th - tomorrow - which is when I get paid, but it actually arrived early so I have the swag already. These are my five items.
1. Skinny Jeans - $150ish
(You get one of these little cards with each item showing you two styling options - day and night kind of thing.)
I gulped a bit when I saw this as I have one pair which were on sale for £15 in Dorothy Perkins and which give me a muffin top and aren't terribly comfortable. Plus I would never try on a pair of jeans in a shop that cost $150 because who pays that much for jeans? You can get them on sale for £15. But...I tried them on they were really comfortable. To the extent that I just kept them on for the rest of the day. The fit and length were great and when I mentioned all this to my fashionista sister she she that was the difference between £15 sale jeans and $150 good jeans. Not something I would buy more than once a year but a definite KEEP.
2. Zip Back Blouse - $50ish (I haven't got the prices handy but remember them roughly)
I have always been rather disdainful of exposed zips. To me it smacks of cheap tailoring methods since it's much easier to make them with the zip out than with it 'properly' covered. I have therefore never tried on a single item with an exposed zip and have even curled my top lip somewhat when seeing someone wearing something with one. More fool me. Maybe. I don't see myself going in for them in a big way but then this is why this service has proved so popular - it takes your style profile (or lack thereof) and tugs at the edges to push you where you haven't been up til now but where they think you'll look fiiiiine. It's a lovely red too and looks great with the jeans. It's a KEEP.
3. Racer Back Tank - $35ish
By now you may be predicting I am about to start with 'I have never tried on a racer back top before but...' and you would be part right. I have tried on one before, but not liked it. Ditto with this one. I have pretty broad shoulders anyway - sleeve seams on t-shirts rarely sit where they should - but also the blue on this was a bit too electric plus you need to fiddle with your bra straps to go racer back. So based on the colour and back, it's a NO.
4. Polka Dot Tank - $50ish
As someone who rarely meets a polka dot she doesn't like, I had high hopes for this. Navy with white dots at the top and then a stripe in a good red at the bottom. Sounds good?
Pooch took this photo and told me my face looked like a wrestler. I assume he was thinking of this.
Back to the top - I tend to avoid things that make me look like I have an Equator. What looked and sounded perfection on paper has let me down because of my quintessentially english pear-shape. That red stripe - just NO. Those are the skinny jeans btw.
5. Asymmetrical Zip Cardigan - can't remember the price
San Francisco is, on the whole, a fairly warm kind of place. You don't need big heavy coats but sometimes you could do with something snuggly when out first or last thing. Enter this cardigan. It clearly has a tried and tested pedigree at Stitch Fix since I've seen blog posts elsewhere going back a year or so which have featured it as being in a box. Unnecessary seams (by which I mean you can do these things with just a front, back and sleeves in four pieces but this has more pieces than that) add shaping and style while the thick jersey cotton is snuggly but not hot. Plus if you leave it open it's a waterfall cardigan which looks good too.
I discovered the pockets and knew it was all over - KEEP.
For me to keep three out of five items was, for me, a complete win. I'll send back the other two tomorrow by just dropping the prepaid bag in a postbox and I'm going to schedule another box for when I next get paid. If you feel like giving it a try click on one of the links in this post and I get something like $20 credit with them, admittedly, but do it anyway because it is a very cool service, especially if you're like me and not keen on clothes shopping in real shops.
So now ty for reading and I'll brb.