Reviews: Samhain Dress, Black Walnut Dress, Empress Garden Dress, Evening Primrose Chemise, Maple Dress, Easy-As-Pie Dress,

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I'm sure this is not what Anthropologie intended, but every time I see the Samhain Dress ($258) I think not of November or fall festivals but of "Sam Hain" and, by proxy, the Winchesters. It only makes me love the dress more but also gives me a fit of giggles every damn time.

If you or someone close to you likes the idea of your chest as a present, this is the dress for you. I wondered whether the material would feel like a shiny garbage bag on. It doesn't but it does resemble a freshly wrapped present up close. For a holiday party that's just the right ticket.

I give up on figuring out Eva Franco for Anthropologie sizing. In the brand I take a 6 every time. At Anthro I've ranged from a 6 to a 12. In this case, an 8 was the best fit over my chest. The dress isn't stiff but it doesn't move freely either. I noticed a nice pucker of fabric building over my butt. A cool iron would fix that issue though it made for some interesting fitting room pictures. I was satisfied with the belt and the print itself is beautiful. It didn't bowl me over but I liked it. It's a great cocktail dress. Not a buy at full price for me but I'll reconsider come sale time.

I was excited to read about Anna Sui reissuing a few classic designs at Anthropologie! This is one of my favorite lines and the idea of owning one of her signature pieces was exciting. The first dress I saw from the line was the Black Walnut Dress ($498). Love the design, which has Native American touches. Very earthy in a decidedly luxurious silk. The dress is lined so it's not sheer -- yay! I tried on my usual size 6.

Unfortunately this dress isn't cut for my curvy frame. The dress is meant to waft down and I'm not built in a way conducive to wafting. The dress fit over my chest but as a result everything below was too far away from my body. I kind of looked like an undulating jellyfish. I know that's not how the design is supposed to be. Pass for me.

I fared better with another Anna Sui frock. The Empress Garden Dress ($248) has a pretty wave print up top and a stunning bird plumage on the bottom part. I love that this shift is cut with a very slight flare to the skirt. It looks straight but fits over hips much better than classic shifts do on me. The silk material also helps.

My true size 6 was pretty big, so I'd size down to a 4 to buy this dress.The fit was largest through the shoulders for me, with plenty of extra material in the 6. This print strikes me as more spring than winter. Oh well. With a solid cardigan over it I could wear this to work. It would also be great for events that fall somewhere between casual and dressed up. Wishlisted!

I finally had a chance to try on Eloise's Evening Primrose Chemise ($58). I've said it before -- much of Anthro's loungewear can easily be upgraded to casual look with the right accessories.

This chemise seems to run large. I tried on my usual size medium but had all kinds of extra room around my midsection. I love the lace embellishment along the neckline. The floral pattern on the skirt is cute but does keep this dress from being a summer work dress for me. Through a wrap over this and you've got yourself a look. Wishlisted, but waiting for sale.


This darling dress from Maple is the Across The Land Dress ($138). I'm drawn to all things polka dots so of course I needed to try this dress on. It's a long frock that falls about two inches below my knees. There's a faux wrap up top and two pleats right over my hips -- unfortunate placement if you ask me.

I tried on this navy dress in a 6, which felt big. I'd size down to a 4 to buy it. It fit over my chest fine, though the neckline split enough that I'd want a cami underneath. I love the length and fullness of this dress but I hate the pleat placement. It makes me feel wider. I'm interested to see how (or if) Anthro styles this piece online. Until then I'm reserving judgment.

It was anything but finding the Easy-As-Pie Dress ($138) from Edme & Esyllte. I've noticed that after going haywire earlier this year this brand seems to be edging back to a consistent fit. Good news!

I tried my usual size 6, which fit well on the bottom but was closer than I'd like across the bust line. The waist of this dress is well-placed. Unlike many of Anthro's ensemble dresses the waist actually hit me at the waist rather than tugging up into an empire. I love the button-tied sleeves and the beautiful print on the skirt. Again this strikes me as more of a fair-weather frock. Wishlisted for now.