Brief review: H&M+ Fall 2012

H&M introduced a plus line in select stores and I have been anxious to see it.  (http://www.hm.com/us/subdepartment/LADIES?Nr=4294928449). Unfortunately the nearest store carrying it to Arizona was in LA.

This week, however, I was in Chicago for work and got a chance to check the line out at the downtown store.  I wasn’t impressed.

  1. The department was stuck in a small corner, packed tightly making it hard to see what many of the items looked like.
  2. The fit was very inconsistent.  I tried on items in size 20 that were too big and size 24 that were too small.
  3. But my biggest complaint was that it was DULL.  The rest of the store was full of bright, colorful clothing but the plus line is bland: black, tan, cream, tan, taupe.  There appears to be a bit more color in the summer line, but there is very little for fall. One purple jacket, a maroon top, a green top, but that’s it.  The department even LOOKS blah from a distance.
  4. There were a lot of basics but very few of the fashion forward styles I had hoped for.  Simple jackets, trousers, sheath dresses, etc. were there, but  I only saw one casual skirt, one pencil skirt, no maxi skirts or dresses and hardly any prints.

In the end I didn’t buy anything. There just wasn’t even a single item that I felt was  attractive, unique, and well fitting enough to justify the cost, which is saying a lot given how low the prices are.  Were I a young professional just starting out, this collection MIGHT be a good way to get a good foundational wardrobe.

But until they add more trendy clothing, make it more colorful and standardize the sizing, the collection is unlikely to be compelling.  My hoped is that as the collection matures and the US site gets online orders (thereby increasing the market) the collection will improve.

The end result was that I didn’t buy anything.

New Anna Scholz at Simply Be

There are some new Anna Scholz item at Simply Be, one of which blew me away in terms of how great it is for work.  Take a look at the whole collection, but particularly this great comeback dress. It is both professional and easy on as cold winter morning.

The latest from J.Jill’s Wearever Collection; Travel made Easy

J.Jill is one of my FAVORITE brands.  With their emphasis on quality fabrics, simple shapes and great colors, their clothing lasts and looks attractive many seasons after it is purchased.  Now if they would JUST carry their plus line in the stores, I would probably never shop anywhere else.

They recently released a late summer line that has a few items I was particularly attracted to, and wanted to share!

My job doesn’t require me to travel much, for which I’m glad, but if I had to travel and look professional all the time, I would almost certainly go head over heels into the J.Jill Wearever line.  For example, this skirt, tank and jacket combo is professional but wrinkle-proof and easy to wear. I might choose the longer skirt depending on where I was going.

I would then throw in this dress to create a 2nd day outfit.  The vertical color-blocking will inevitably give this dress a slimming effect.

I would not wear the flats shown with the separates; At 5’5″ my legs look short enough already.  But I rather like the peep-toed heels in the dress picture.  They have nice solid heels for walking but still give some height.

I would then add in a pair of trousers (I would pick black, but the camel ones would work as well, a solid tank and a coordinating cardigan.  With those pieces I could get through a week of anything and still look put-together.

I would finish it all off with a couple of nice pieces of jewelry.  I love necklaces, so I would grab either something geometric or plain and bolder.