Reviews: Interspersed Ponte Dress, Veiled Alder Dress, Adelaide Dress, Painted Plaid Dress, Eleonora Flight Shift, Unconditional Osier Dress, Girls From Savoy Dress, Ottoman Poppies Dress

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Many of us have been wondering where Anthropologie's pretty fall frocks have been. As if Anthro heard our cries, this week has seen the release of multiple beautiful options. This reviews set continues to plow through all the options I've tried on -- for more dress reviews check out the "reviews" label.

Interspersed Ponte Dress ($168) by Deletta, TTS (true to size)
style # 21329024, plum (052) or black (001)

Though it's tough on the hips Deletta's Interspersed Ponte Dress ($168) hits all the right notes. Clearly dancer-inspired, the dress has a simple wool/poly fabric that's been spiced up by darts, piping and a lace panel that opens up the back and shoulders. I feared the triangle tiers that sit on the hips, afraid they would magnify an already comfortably wide part of me. The solid color of the dress helps to temper the pleats and I found myself quite pleased with how the dress looks. The open lace back means you either need to wear a strapless bra or reconcile yourself to others seeing your undergarments. Despite the impracticality I found myself drawn to the beautifully intricate lace.

I found my usual size medium to fit comfortably. The overall silhouette is very nice. You'll want to avoid belting this dress if possible -- the long triangle panels will be interrupted if you belt, and may end up widening. Instead, wear a long cardigan like the Time Signature Cardigan ($148) or the Crumpled Placket Cardi ($88) to tell the eye to see long and lean. The cap sleeves are just long enough to straighten the eye along the arm line. And the dress falls just below the knees on my 5'8" frame, making this dress long enough for nearly any occasion. The wool material will probably be itchy for many people. I found it to feel rough but didn't feel the need to scratch. It's an adorable dress that's a bit challenging to wear due to the open back. Wishlisted for further consideration come sale time.

Veiled Alder Dress ($298) by Yoana Baraschi, TTS
style # 22887426, dark grey (005) or black (001)

Speaking of dancer-inspired dresses, the Veiled Alder Dress ($298) has me humming songs from "The Nutcracker." This is a dress that stopped me in my tracks to stare at its beauty. Once I finished picking my jaw up off the floor I went in for a closer inspection. Like its cousin the Gossamer Birch Shell ($148, review here) this dress is delicate embroidery upon a mesh shell. But unlike its shell cousin the dress is fully lined, much to my relief. The dress is somewhat fragile and will require lots of TLC -- the embroidery pulls easily.

It's interesting how different the grey (reads as pale peach to me) and black versions of the Veiled Alder Dress read. The black is sophisticated and party-ready while the dark grey could easily be a date dress or work-appropriate with a cardigan thrown over the top. I'd also a try a blazer over it for work. Instead of a necklace, I'd wear a pair of drop chandelier earrings under pinned up hair with this intricate piece.

I didn't see the black version in-store so the grey came to the fitting room with me. The 6 fit me nicely. The dress is close around the bust so ladies with larger rib cages or chests may want to size up. The skirt portion has slight pouf to it that is flattering and fun. I felt pretty as soon as this dress was on. At the 2nd EA Shopping Day (recap coming soon!) many of the ladies tried this dress and they all looked lovely in it. Seems like a universally flattering dress. One downside: the mesh can be scratchy. So again those with low itch tolerance may be uncomfortable. For me, this dress is pretty much perfect. I don't plan to wait on this dress -- as soon as my October budget kicks in this dress is coming home with me.

Adelaide Dress ($188) by Laurel, TTS
style # 22692982, navy (041) or green (030)

Where was the Adelaide Dress ($188) hiding all summer? Maybe I missed this casual dress on a rack behind more persuasive patterns? It's a shame because both the navy and green are versatile color options. I initially thought this was a romper and got really excited. I love rompers! When I discovered it was a simple but modern dress instead I wasn't disappointed. I was ready to try it on.

I found my usual size 6 worked best. The dress has thick shoulder straps and an equally wide sash. But it also has this odd front hem with a rise in the middle. This would be great on someone with awesome legs I'm sure but for me this meant exposing the cellulite above my knees. Not the show I want to put on. I was pretty dejected until a smart SA advised me to try the dress backwards. So instead of my quads I was showing off the back of my legs. Slightly improved view. The frock is comfortable worn either way. Options are a great thing! And it changed this dress from a discard to a wishlisted item.

Painted Plaid Dress ($148) by Maeve, TTS
style # 22639090, green motif (038)

The Painted Plaid Dress ($148) doesn't look like much on the hanger. The pattern seems like too much. The sash seems like too little. It looks too long. You should try it anyway. I'm glad I did! Made from mostly rayon with a lined skirt, the dress has a smooth side zip closure and a sash that's easy to double up. The tank styling of the top portion makes it easy to wear a bra underneath and the dress is long enough to clear my knees.

The dress is incredibly flattering. It's hard to tell from these photos but the sash is plaited and it's gorgeous! I found the shape of the dress to be beautifully tailored, nipping in nicely at the waist before gently flaring back out in the skirt. My true size 6 fit easily. The best part about this dress? Between the top layer and the skirt lining is a layer of thin crinoline. It not only adds some extra shape, it also makes the skirt portion move fantastically. Swoon! This dress is wishlisted and likely to come home with me.


How long has the Eleonora Flight Shift ($128) been on my mind? Since the Color + Print Event, when I saw the sketch above and started searching desperately for the dress! The final look changed from this original design but luckily that beautiful print is still intact.

Eleonora Flight Shift ($128) by Maeve, size down
style # 22865158, orange (089)

The dress went from short-sleeve to long sleeve and the length shortened a bit. The slightly mod feel is still there though and I like it! The beautiful blurred watercolor print is fall captured on a dress. It's made from rayon but it feels like treated silk -- pretty luxurious against the skin. In the back, a simple inverted pleat below the shoulder allows this shift to graduate from extremely straight to incredibly flattering. Major kudos are due to whoever designed this dress! It's clear they thought about how to make a shift shape work on a variety of bodies. I'm thankful for that pleat which allows this dress to fit over my hips easily. There is no zipper on this pullover style dress.

Maeve's fit is likely to be confusing for Fall 2011. In their tops I have to size up one or two sizes right now; in their dresses I am either in my usual size or sizing down With the Eleonora Flight Shift ($128) I sized down a little too much for these photos when I accidentally grabbed an extra small instead of a small (oops!) but hopefully it's still clear how lovely this frock is. It's meant to be a little loose so you may have to try on more than one size to find the right fit. I initially bought this dress in my usual size medium but after trying on a small I realized the small was a better fit. It is a little short, hitting a good inch or so above my knees. I will want to pair tights with this dress to slim my leg line.

Update 9:22 PM: thanks to my awesome coworker I was able to recover my original review photos. Above I am wearing the dress in a size small, which fit much better than the extra small.

For the curvier body shapes like mine no belt is required, however you can always give it a shot with a wider elasticized belt to define the waist. I'd pair this dress with a long cardigan or coat that hits either at the hem of this dress or just above. Store reports are that this dress is selling quickly in NYC -- Rockefeller Center is already on its 2nd delivery. No waiting for this dress -- it came home with me.

Unconditional Osier Dress ($168) by Weston Wear, TTS
style # 22804454, brown motif (029) or blue (040)

Weston Wear, my favorite USA-made brand, continues to churn out flattering dress after flattering dress! Their latest piece is the Unconditional Osier Dress ($168) which continues the dancer-inspired feel of many of Anthro's fall dresses. A layering tank is snapped to the shoulders under a slightly felted leaf embroidery print set to mesh. This dress is delicate for sure and will require some TLC. At home I'd put this dress on one layer at a time but in the store I tried putting it all on at once -- it ain't easy! The underlayer wants to twist and bunch.

Aside from an odd sleeve length I am very happy with the fit. Those on the smaller side have been able to size down, but for me a medium worked best. The bottom gently grazes my knees at the perfect length. I appreciate that the waist of this dress actually hits at my waist! This dress is begging for a belt. At the EA Shopping Day the personal shopping team selected the Precise Bow Belt ($38) which makes for a darling pairing! With a simple necklace and either a soft or structured overlayer this dress is an excellent day-to-night option. Very well done Anthropologie! Wishlisted!

Unknown Dress by Girls From Savoy ($158), size down
style #22880975 for size small, yellow (079)

This dress isn't online yet but has already captured the attention of the community. I've been calling this the Mustard Midcentury Dress in my head though it will probably end up with something much more whimsical. It's made from mostly rayon with a touch of spandex and isn't lined -- not a big deal to me given the thick fabric but possibly a deal breaker for some. What I love, love, love is the shape. Long sleeves with this built-in velvety belt and a somewhat shorter silhouette. Well, actually, I'd love another inch or two in length. But the shape is really nice.

The fit on this dress is challenging. The top portion is much larger than the skirt. So in my usual size medium (not shown) was very loose up top. I ended up sizing down to the small for these shots, where there was still some room in the top but the skirt was right on. So with a better bra the small is the right size for me. The dress just barely passes the sit-down test for me -- be sure to try sitting in the fitting room! You might be surprised by how far the skirt rides up. Anthro's personal shopping team recommended pairing this dress with either dark tights and warm brown tall boots or black tights and a metallic shoe. Eager to try both I decided this dress needed to come home with me.

Update 9:22 PM: I was able to recover my original review photos for this dress too! These shots show the difference between the sizes so you can see how the dress runs large. Though the medium is clearly longer, hitting me where I'd like, the top portion has too much room and the back sat away from my body. So I decided to purchase the small.

Ottoman Poppies Dress ($298) by Leifsdottir, TTS
style # 22500474, brown motif (029)

How beautiful is this print? So beautiful that despite owning the tank version (review upcoming!) and trying the shirt version (review here) I am strongly considering the dress version as well. Leifsdottir's Ottoman Poppies Dress ($298) has a 70s vibe to me (Anthro says 40s, not sure I see it). No doubt the top portion is revealing thanks to all the cutouts and a centered keyhole that could, ahem, leave little to the imagination. A lacey cami underneath fixes that issue for day. The skirt is double-lined in a slightly shorter silhouette than most of Anthro's fall dresses. The sleeves have a slight bit of pouf at the wrists.

My usual size 6 fit nicely, blousing slightly in the top while the skirt fell straight. I love how the skirt swishes to and fro as I walk. Overall this dress has a lovely airy feel to it. When dresses have beautiful prints like this in dreamy silk I can't help but swoon a bit. In my mind Leifsdottir has done it again! I hope this dress hits sale so I can add it to my Ottoman Poppies circa 2011 collection. Wishlisted!!