Reviews: Spliced Ikat Shift, Macchiato Jumper, De Chelly Dress, Pom Flower Shift, Sing Sweetly Party Dress, Soft-Structured Dress

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Weston Wear's Soft-Structured Dress ($148) looks beautiful on the model. How would it look on me? Read on to find out.



I knew Coquille's Spliced Ikat Shift ($168) would be challenging to fit on my curvy frame. The dress is duo-motif silk that has a shift-like shape. I started by trying on an 8 which, as you can see, was tight at best. The dress didn't cut correctly across my chest or hips, pulling at both points. There was no 10 for me to try so I'm left with these lovely embarrassing photos, but it is what it is. At least the sash was pretty accurate to the product shot.

For those curvy like me or those with larger busts or hips, expect to size up 1-2 sizes. For those less curvy your true size should work fine. The material felt nice but the shape isn't right for me. Back to the rack.



Geminola's Macchiato Jumper ($148) is a pretty combination of lace and fine wale corduroy. I own a ton of cord skirts yet I couldn't help myself from trying this pretty dress on. I'm not familiar with this brand (the tag says Zehavale for what it's worth) so I grabbed my usual size 6 and headed downstairs. Unforunately this dress is shaped like a shift, so the results were not what I hoped for.

I should have sized up to an 8. The 6 was going OK until I had to zip over my 34D bust. At that point it started pulling, and the skirt too started pulling as a result. Ignoring the fit issues, the dress is lovely. There's a nice thick cotton lining under the whole dress that keeps the lace portion from being see-through. I love the soft fine wale of the skirt and the lace peeking out from the bottom is a nice touch. I could see wearing this dress to work with a cardigan over it and then out afterwards on its own. I'm in love! Wishlisted in an 8.



Maeve takes a turn towards the southwest with its Native American-inspired De Chelly Dress ($168). What a beautiful print! I love how it's not too large, so from afar they look more like large dots. The skirt on this dress is extra flowy, with pleats galore and a flouncy cotton lining.

My true size 6 fit wonderfully, but the stripes were stretched to the point of exaggeration across my chest. So I sized up to an 8 for these photos. There is still some stripe contortion across the bust but it's better than the 6. The defined waistline hits me at just the right spot. The rope sash is an unexpected touch that I love. The straps are thick enough to wear a sturdy bra underneath which I appreciate. I like this dress but there are others like more. For now, back to the rack.



I loved Tabitha's Pom Flower Shift ($158) as soon it debuted on the website. When tastymoog reported that the dress was indeed as awesome as I'd hoped, I scurried out to Anthro to try it on. I love how the dress feels -- a thick, sturdy, textured cotton that feels thick like a winter dress should. Still, I think this will be fine in spring and fall before the temperature hits 70 or so. Since this dress is a shift I knew my true size 6 was out of the question. I grabbed both an 8 and a 10.

The 8 was not comfortable (too tight across my chest) so it was on to the 10. Thankfully, the 10 worked! My tummy is currently bulging from all the delicious, fattening holiday food but once it settles back down to normal this dress will be perfect. My gentleman-in-not-so-patiently-waiting called the print "a collection of moss." Perhaps so but I love it! The back zip is a little challenging to get all the way up alone. Once done up though I did not want to take it off. This dress will be part of my birthday haul in January. For now, wishlisted!



A happy surprise waited for me at the Soho Anthro. I was delighted to find the staff unpacking the Sing Sweetly Party Dress ($148) from Porridge. The soft cotton felt nice to the touch and the skirt has just the  right a-line. Lauren from Burnt Photograph gave me the heads up that this dress is tight around the chest. Porridge usually is. So instead of my usual 6 I tried an 8 instead.

Luckily, the 8 worked perfectly. The beautiful songbird print done in shades of light sage is darling and the sash, though not as thick as it looks online, is a pretty accent. It is of course the neckline that stands out here. I like it, but after being initially enthralled by the folds on the Winged Victory Top way back when its many successors have numbed me to the shape somewhat. I wish this were a tank dress instead of strapless, though I am always drawn to Anthro's pretty strapless frocks. This is strongly in the running for my birthday haul and perhaps my birthday party. Wishlisted!



Oh, almost forgot to mention another one of my favorite traits on this dress -- there are pockets! They don't add extra bulk here which is nice. Pockets are always a good thing to have.



Finally we come to the dress from the model shot topping this post. It's Weston Wear's Soft-Structured Dress ($148) and it comes in either a solid grey or the navy print version I tried on. This dress is a rayon/spandex mix that is form-fitting up top and slightly less so on the bottom. The print is vibrant; the fabric is thin but not incredibly so. The material is significant enough to prevent transparency issues. And of course, must always mention that Weston Wear is made in the USA!

I reached for my usual size medium. Normally I have problems across my hips if anywhere. But in this case the dress was fine in the skirt, yet close across the bust. I think a minimizing bra could fix this so I'll consider this dress true to size. I like the tulip style of the skirt, especially how there's still plenty of coverage. The knee length is perfect. The sleeves were pretty tight which isn't normally an issue for me. I'm not head over heels in love with this dress but I think on sale it's worth revisiting. Until then, wishlisted.