Let me here expound upon my 30 Before 30 goal of completing my dream wardrobe.
Approximately one year ago, I became a student of fashion. I read books and formulated ideas. Then I realized that I had neither the time, nor the money, nor the personality to become a fashionista (that is: a graduate of the school of fashion), so I decided to become a student of style.
Yes, the two are very different. Style is the reason my wardrobe is entirely black, white, and grey. Fashion is the reason cheap clothing stores stay in business. Hey, I’m not knocking it. Fashion is super fun. But it’s not for me. I’m cautious and slow on the uptake when it comes to trends, and I can’t stand wearing polyester.
At the beginning of my Great Style Quest I was pretty overwhelmed. Which timeless pieces did I need? It seemed that there were so many “wardrobe essentials” that my wardrobe would never be complete enough. I tried making lists, but then I would get distracted and buy other things. Eventually I found this gem of an article from RealSimple.com, and it’s pretty much been my guiding light ever since. I have literally been working my way through the list one piece at a time. Next month is denim jacket month!
(And I know. Shoes and accessories aren’t included–how irksome! If anyone finds a reliable article about the essential shoes for a women’s closet or essential accessories, I would be glad to have it. In the meantime, I’ve got a list of shoes I’d like to own, and occasionally I’ll buy a pair off of it.)
I also really fell in love with this article from Lucky.com, “19 Affordable Pieces for Your Ultimate Closet”. There’s another online article that goes along with it (they were together in the magazine) showing 45 different outfit combinations from the pieces, and when I found the article last year, I immediately thought, “Vacation!” Because who doesn’t need packing help? And because we’re planning a trip to Norway (still planning it!) and I want to look, well, not like an American traveler.
So for a while I put the Real Simple list on hold while I acquired some of the most awesome pieces from the Lucky article: the silk shirt, the blazer, the wedges, the chambray shirt. But then I guess I was like, “Aw…no…” Actually, I don’t really remember what made me turn back to the Real Simple list. I’d still like to continue with the Lucky list eventually, and with adaptations. Because you know coral shorts aren’t going to be in style for much longer.
All this is to say that I purchased my newest wardrobe acquisition a few weeks ago, and I feel the need to review it so I can link this article to JCrewAficionada.com as a sort-of pay-it-forward. This month it was time to buy black pants, and I had had my eye on this beautiful pair of J. Crew stovepipe trousers for a long time. But I knew that, unless I caught them on sale, I would have to wait a few months to save up the dough needed to buy them. So when the wool flannel version went on sale, and then the sale went on sale, I deliberated for about twelve hours and bought the pants.
Since I’m 5’4 (and 127 lbs, 28” waist, 38”-40” hips depending on the month–just so we can get my measurements out there if anyone wonders how the fit will compare to their body) I have to wear petites, at least with J. Crew. I also know that size 6P J. Crew pants generally fit me well. I’m always pretty scared to buy stuff on final, non-returnable sale, but thankfully, these pants were no exception to the fit rule.
The fabric of these pants is coarse–I feel like I’m wearing wool pants (because they’re wool flannel, and not stretch wool). But they’re not thick by any means. They’re also unlined, which only bothered me yesterday when they were sticking to my legs a bit. Other than that, though, they’re fine. The waist is high enough that I don’t get any sort of muffin top, which is great.
My only beef–and you’ll hear me say this so much that you’ll get sick of it–is that they’re toooo shooooort! This is a perennial problem for me. At 5’4”, I’m right in between petites and regulars. Petites fit well, but they’re always an inch or two shorter than I’d like. But I’ll get over myself and deal wit’ it. Overall assessment: great purchase. I’d recommend these pants to anyone.
P.S. In the picture I’m also wearing the J. Crew Perfect Shirt in small (love it soooo much even though I’ve got a uniboob from wearing an undershirt), the J. Crew Collection Cashmere Cardigan in small (love it soooo much, it’s so warm and soft), and the J. Crew Cece Leather Ballet Flats in size 7 (great, though they took a little bit of breaking in and have a low vamp). I know. An entire J. Crew outfit. Go ahead and call me an aficionada.
P.P.S. Sorry for the weird faces. I still don’t know how to act around cameras.