Monday, January 26, 2015

January 2015 Stitch Fix Review #1

 This is a review of my first Stitch Fix order. I don't get any compensation from Stitch Fix for writing this review, but the post does contain referral links. If you sing up and order through my referral, I receive a credit (thank you!) and you'll get a link for you to earn credit if your friends sign up, too!

I've been dying to try Stitch Fix for months and months since I first heard about it a little over a year ago. I did some extra work and saved my pennies up to finally order one.

If you're unfamiliar with Stitch Fix, the premise is this: You fill out a style profile, and a personal stylist picks five items just for you. They are shipped to you, to try on in the comfort of your own home. Decide what you like, and send back the rest. Shipping is included both ways. There is a $20 charge for the service, but if you make a purchase, that $20 is applied toward anything you choose to keep. As a mom in a pretty rural area, this is such a great idea for me!

To even shop at a place like Kohl's or JCPenney, I have to drive 45 minutes, and even then, we only get the "mini" version of these stores, with a very limited selection. Even the Target in town is a mini! The idea of affordable, hand-picked, designer clothes shipped straight to me is really appealing.

This was my first time trying Stitch Fix, and so I tried to be as detailed as possible with my style and needs. After 3 kids (and a considerable Dr. Pepper habit), I have a serious mommy-tummy (read: muffin top), and have some limitations because of my religious affiliation (no sleeveless shirts, no mini skirts, etc.). I laid those needs out, emphasized my love for bright, outfit-making pieces, and then left my measurements. It's a pretty small space for the note, so I edited several times to be as concise as possible.

I also created a Pinterest board with style ideas specifically tailored for my Stitch Fix stylist. And then I waited. Anxiously.

On the day my Fix arrived, my youngest, unfortunately, was sick with the stomach flu, so I had to wait until Rob came home to tag me out. The anticipation was killing me! Even then, it took most of the day to try things out because the little guy needed me more than my Stitch Fix did.

I apologize the cell phone photos aren't great. I didn't anticipate writing a review, but wanted to do it after the fact. And yeah, I have crazy "my two year old is sick today" hair. But, it's cool. He's worth it.

When you order a Stitch Fix, you not only get items of clothing, but a note from your stylist and a set of styling cards to help you see how to style the pieces they sent. I could tell from the card that my stylist, Melanie, had put some thought into the items, and I was excited about that. I was a little disappointed in the colors, as everything was darker than I had hoped. But I was still looking forward to it, as I know a number of women who have said that it's worth trying things on, even if you think you will hate them.

The first thing I saw in my box was leopard print. If you know me, you know that's all I need to be happy. It was a super soft, funky infinity scarf. I loved it. I knew that if only one thing was staying, this would be the one. (Alena Fuzzy Leopard Scarf, $34.)

Next up was this Harley Mixed Material Cardigan ($58). I actually loved almost everything about it, except one detail. I wasn't totally sold on the color. Even though it isn't even February yet, I am ready for some COLOR! This is the kind of thing that I'd go gaga for in September, but after all the gray Idaho months, I'm just not up for more black, brown, and grey.

Even then, it was really tempting. It was amazing quality, incredibly soft, and the fit was perfect. I especially loved the detail at the shoulders. I asked Rob what he thought, and he asked, "Don't you have one just like that?" To which I said, "Noooo...I'll show you my other textured draped cardigans." As I brought out the huge pile, I thought to myself, "This alone should probably answer my question," and that thought was confirmed when I walked in the room to show Rob the enormous pile and saw the look on his face. So, back it goes.  Even though it's lovely... And I might regret it...

Next up was a pair of Just Black Dean Ankle Skinny Jeans ($78). I've seen other bloggers rave about these jeans, and it's totally justified. They are awesome. They fit great, just the right amount of stretch. The rise is just high enough to cover the mommy tummy. Again, this one came down to the fact that I already own a pair of jeans that is almost identical, and I couldn't justify them for the price. So they went back.

Item #4 was a Kut from the Kloth Neville Floral Print Blouse ($68). It was a "no" the second it was on. I WANTED to love it. I absolutely adore florals, but this was pretty dark. On top of that, it is sheer, and has long sleeves, two details that aren't usually my favorite. The price tag was high for such a lightweight shirt. If I'm going to spend that much on a shirt, I better REALLY love it, and this blouse didn't make the cut. Plus, it was a bit big in the sides, with sleeves that were about 4 inches too long. However, I did really appreciate that this was a piece that showed that my stylist was being thoughtful, and for a first Fix, I thought she was doing a good job trying to hone into what I like. 

The last piece was something else entirely. This was the Moon Collection Kira Abstract Dot Print Blouse ($48). I liked the print, but I knew I wouldn't be crazy about the fabric. 100% polyester that just felt like cheap costume fabric. To top it off, when I pulled it from the box, nearly every hem had threads from frayed edges hanging out. Already, I knew there was no way I was paying $50 for a garment with so many quality issues. 

And then...when I put it on...well, as I said to some friends: The only problem with this blouse was that they forgot to send the red foam nose and the unicycle....

Straight up clown attire. Worse, I looked like Violet Beauregarde as they rolled her out of Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. This was definitely headed back to the Stitch Fix racks.
It was so bad, I actually challenged myself to find a way to make it wearable, because there had to be SOME way to wear it...or else why would it even exist? (Also, can you see how terribly crooked that hem at the bottom is?

I thought about it a while, trying to come up with an outfit with pieces already in my wardrobe that resembled one of the styling suggestions. I came up with this, and it really was a whole new blouse! 

I no longer hated it. In fact, if not for the quality/cost issues, I may have been tempted to keep it. But, I recently left my job and am currently only working one or two days a week, with a complete reduction in the near future. So a professional piece of clothing is definitely not on my list of "needs," especially when we'll be losing some income. But I was pretty shocked at how easily the blouse was transformed into something great, just by trying out the styling suggestions. So impressed, I decided to try those suggestions with the other blouse. 

And wouldn't you know, the same thing happened! Suddenly a piece that had been very "blah" turned into something more! 

However, even with the new look (which I loved!) I couldn't overcome the fit and cost issues with this one, and so it remained in the bag to be returned.

Moral of the story?
Try your Stitch Fix items with the styling suggestions!!! 
It made a huge difference, and the pieces really came to life.

Overall, I kept just one item. I have a referral credit from way back when I first found Stitch Fix and started asking around about it, so my total cost for this Fix was just $9.

I'd like to give it another go sometime, as I hear Stitch Fix just got all their spring items in (bright colors!), and I think that with a little feedback on these pieces, my stylist can totally nail it next time!

Have you heard of Stitch Fix? Want to try it?
What do you think about the pieces they sent in this Fix?