Reviews: Skirted Scoopneck, Tangled Layer Top, Slanted Layers Tee (striped), Onyx-Scalloped Blouse, Scalloped Shell, Sleeveless Racerback Shirt, Muskegon Pintucks Buttondown, Dipped Chroma Blouse, Elixir Loop Top

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Onyx-Scalloped Blouse ($118), so perfect in the catalogue shot.

Now that Anthropologie is using model shots for products instead of dress forms, it's much more of a fit guessing game. A top usually looks completely different on the models than it does on me. Sometimes that's a bad thing but it can also be good. Ironically the items that look wonky on models (too loose, etc.) tend to work best on me. What kind of messed up subliminal messaging is that?

In Parallel Pullover nĂ© Skirted Scoopneck ($68) by Lili's Closet, size down
STYLE # 22861272; black & white (018)

Another loungewear piece tempts me into everyday use. This is the Skirted Scoopneck ($68) by Lili's Closet. The hem on this piece is insane. An extended piece of white poly gives the front an extra 3 or 4 inches of length, while in the back it's even longer, probably 7 or 8 inches. Just take a look at the back view. Without that detail it would be just an ordinary striped shirt. With it the top is admittedly a bit nuts but immediately screamed casual weekend! to me. And since my life feels like one long casual weekend right now I was smitten.

This top runs large as most pieces from Lili's Closet do. I'm swimming in the medium above and would size down to a small to buy. I appreciate the crisp whiteness between the stripes. This top feels a little funny, very slippery and spandexy. (It's a mix of poly, spandex and supposedly cotton.) The stripes on the sleeves make my upper arms look pretty large and the sleeves run smaller than the rest of the top, so if your arms are sporting guns you may not be comfortable sizing down. Mine are just sporting pudge so down I'll go. I like where the top hits in front, just below my widest part which makes me look leaner even with the volume of the top.

I think this would be the perfect errand-running top for the weekend. Wear it over a pair of colorful denim if that's your thing or in my case it will be a pair of grey or black jeans. This top gives off the whiff of having such an awesome evening the night before that you can't be bothered today, and I dig it. Wishlisted!

The pants shown here are the Nella Trousers ($118), reviewed last month.

Tangled Layer Top ($58) by Lili's Closet, size down
STYLE # 25382391; moss (031)

Much like the Skirted Scoopneck above, the Tangled Layer Top ($58) is a lounge piece that can easily be worn everyday. I'm so excited by how long this top is!! It hits just across my widest part unfortunately but the length helps to trick the eye into seeing me long and lean. The top has a green-striped underlayer and a dotted mesh and lace overlayer, thus combining two of this year's hottest trends. Bravo, Anthro. As in the model shot the stripes peek out just a bit from below the mesh. 

Fitwise a small was great, which is one size down from my usual medium. I noticed that for whatever reason on me the shoulders of the tank kept wanting to push in towards my neck which caused slight bunching. But when I tried the shirt on again at another store I didn't have the issue, so maybe I just got a bad shirt. There is no real darting or tailoring on this top but the waist is slightly nipped by pattern. Mostly the top just helps you look tall and thin. Two appealing traits!

Although I like this top very much, there are a few things that keep me from giving it a higher score. First, the bottom hem of the mesh overlayer is unfinished. These review shots were taken in mid-June (I know, I'm so sorry it took me this long to run the review!). At that time most of the tops were in great condition. Now I see them looking pretty shopworn in-store -- frayed bottoms and pulls in the polka dots. It's a little sad that customers aren't taking care of what they try on but it's even sadder that Anthropologie's quality control has fallen to the level where this is deemed acceptable. All Anthro needed to do was treat the top layer to prevent frays and finish the hem. It would not prevent all damage but it would go a long way. Instead I am now planning to buy this top online and hope to the gods of shopping that it's fulfilled from the warehouse so I get a new, pristine, unworn top. Secondly, the choice of green for the underlayer stripes is fun but not as versatile as navy or black would have been. Perhaps a second run of colors is in order? And lastly, although this top hugs my hips nicely there's a swingy shape in play here so if you are shaped straighter than me this top may hang off your hips oddly.

I plan to pick up this top on sale. Wishlisted for now!

Slanted Layers Tee (now $30) by Deletta, TTS
STYLE #A24065542; turquoise (046) or black (001)

It seems like the Slanted Layers Tee (now $30) came out forever ago, and that's sort of true. I first tried this top in the solid variation (now $30) way back in February. Not surprisingly, I had pretty much the same issues with this newer striped version as I did with the original.

The top is a cotton-poly mix with tiers of bias stripes and cap sleeves. I seem to be between sizes. The medium is too big a the neckline, which causes bunching yet it also has to stretch across my hips which causes the pattern to pull. I do appreciate the length of the top. It hits across the top of my thighs. And I like the color variations available -- though why they call a mostly ivory top black I'm unsure. Still even on sale this top is likely a pass for me. It just doesn't fit right.

Onyx-Scalloped Blouse ($118) by Postmark, TTS
STYLE # 25217357; ivory (011)

Oh how excited we all were when we saw the lovely Onyx-Scalloped Blouse ($118) in the July 2012 Anthropologie catalogue. And how sad we all were when we discovered this top is a) sheer and b) has no layering tank included. I am still pouting over it. In this very cute article on Anthropologie's The Magazine, stylist Kelly claims to love the look of a sheer tank in summer. Oh, really? Look, there are times when I see a woman wearing a bandeau bra and a sheer blouse over it and think, that's hot. But more than likely there are times when I see a woman's bra peeking through a sheer top in a way that doesn't look purposeful and think, that's tacky. This top is likely to fall into the latter category. If I'm peeking my bra I want it to come off in a sexy way, and I don't think this top reads as sexy. It wants to be feminine and demure but then Anthropologie wants us to wear it sheer? Huh?? I don't get it.

It's a nylon top with a side zip that puckers. Oh, how that zip puckers. A thin sheer meshy material runs in the front circles and between the top of the chest and the scalloped collar neckline. It truly is a pretty design. The straight line of the bodice makes it hard to pick a layering tank though. One of the online product reviews recommends the Lace Chevrons Seamless Tank ($24). Great minds think alike -- that's what I've got on under the blouse in this review. But I'm not sure it works; I think the cami's v-neck is fighting with the lines of the blouse.

I am not so sure about this top. It's wishlisted for reconsideration come sale time.

Scalloped Shell ($68) by Meadow Rue, TTS
STYLE # 24557019; peach (067), yellow (072) or navy (041)

It's exciting to see Anthropologie releasing so many long tops. It makes this tall gal very happy! The Scalloped Shell ($68) is a work-friendly shirt with a simple design and a pretty double-layer of butterfly scallops down the placket. Though it's made from poly, the top is lightweight yet opaque and perfect for summer officewear. At least it is if you can get away with no sleeves. I like this soft peachy color and it should be noted that the yellow is not a pale yellow like the product shot shows. It's a bold lemony color that may keep you visible at night. 

This top is cut very straight. A 6 worked everywhere except my back -- as soon as my curves come into play the top can't quite accommodate. I would likely wear this tucked in anyway so it's not a dealbreaker but it is annoying. I also think this top would look cute over a pair of dress shorts or crops. The no-sleeves made my arms look great and I like the simple v-neck with will show off a necklace nicely but doesn't dip too low for work. 

There's potential here. Wishlisted for sale!

Frankie Shirt ($78) by Splendid, TTS
STYLE # 24548034; dark grey (005), red (066), turquoise (046) or ivory (011)

Anthropologie has two very similar racerback pocketed shirts, one from their in-house brand Elevenses and the Frankie Shirt ($78) from Splendid. This version is rayon mixed with pima cotton. It feels very soft but wrinkles easily. The top has a shirt collar, a split v-neck and a tunic-style placket halfway down the front. The back is a good three inches longer than the front and spills down in gently pleated fashion from the back center waist. Two pockets on the front are aggravatingly placed right over the bust. The pockets slide downward toward the outside, which made my chest look literally sad. I don't even know where to begin on that.

I found a medium to be comfortably loose. I would likely tuck this shirt in to a skirt though it would also look good over dark denim. The v-neck is just deep enough to give a hint of decolletage without going too far. The no-sleeves cut in just enough to make a standard bra's shoulder straps visible. I don't think this top is dressy enough for conservative offices but I think it would be fine in a casual environment. I like it, but it seems expensive at full price for what it is. Waiting for sale.

Sleeveless Racerback Shirt ($78) by Elevenses, size down
STYLE # 24832107; black and white (018)

The in-house version of the collared tank shirt is the Sleeveless Racerback Shirt ($78). It's hard not to compare this to the Frankie Shirt above. Overall I think the fit is much better on this in-house version with one major flaw: the armholes are HUGE. Ridiculously so. There is no way you can hide a bra. The top is also sheer, which basically forces our hands into layering something under the top. Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose of being a summer-weight top? 

This top runs very large. I'm a small above and it's still very roomy. I love the tiny polka dots. I'm not as in love with the large pockets that sit right over the chest. Like the Frankie Shirt reviewed above this one, the split v-neck dips down just far enough to give a hint. Of course since this top is sheer it's not like you're hiding much anyway. Eyerolling! If you prefer a solid variant this top also comes in a dark sky blue but it too is annoyingly sheer.

A pleasant fit but annoying design choices. Back to the rack.

Muskegon Pintucks Buttondown ($58) by Meadow Rue, size down
STYLE # 25479148; mint (102) or ivory (011)

Anthropologie may want to pretend otherwise in their online product and outfit shot, but the Muskegon Pintucks Buttondown ($58) is yet another sheer top. Sooooo sick of sheer tops. This top is a cotton gauze that causes puckering down the front placket, even when the top is decidedly loose. A workman-style shirt, this top has rolled sleeves, a mandarin collar and a long center hemline in both the front and back.

If this top weren't sheer I'd love it. The mint color is beautiful and the v-neck is appealingly perfect. I like the light weight of the gauze material and think this would make a really cute summer weekend top. The sheerness just kills it for me -- I'd love to wear this top on hot days and having to layer is just no fun. Somebody please have a sheerness intervention with Anthropologie's design team, for the love of the flowy! I can't take this crap anymore. Back to the rack.

Dipped Chroma Blouse ($98) by Maeve, TTS
STYLE # 24560971; coral (085) or blue (040)

Whether by accident or design, the Dipped Chroma Blouse ($98) reminds me quite a bit of Sine's Oscillating Folds Blouse from 2010. Same fluttery sleeves but with one long ruffle instead of a few. I so adore ruffles and it's nice to see a top in a pretty, flirty coral color. This Maeve design is silk -- really! -- with a hemline that's longest in the center.

The top I tried on had a store anti-theft device that caught much of the bottom, so the top was pulling across my hips in my usual size 6. But with that device gone I'm sure the top would be fine, perhaps even a drop loose. The ruffle's diagonal trail is cute but a bit tough to wear. I do appreciate that it's not creating an arrow of sorts down to my crotch but I wish it trailed around to the back instead of just dying in front. The sleeves are fluttery but flattering.

Cute and wearable, but not worth $100. Waiting for sale.

Elixir Loop Top (now $40) by Yellow Bird, TTS
STYLE # 24101909; cream (012)

It's a sweater top and yet it is still see-through. For crying out loud Anthropologie! The Elixir Loop Top (now $40) is beautiful tank with a crochetwork bust and neckline, plus a racerback. It's light enough that I'm sure you could wear this on a breezy summer afternoon or evening. The top is mostly cotton with an empire waist and scoop neckline.

My store was running low on sizes so I tried a small. It was too tight over the bust so a medium would be my size of choice to buy. Unlike the Onyx Scalloped Blouse above, I think the Lace Chevrons Seamless Tank ($24) would work perfectly under this top -- and you do need something underneath because the bodice is mostly see-through. Why? I have no idea. I think this sweater tank would look lovely over denim, or a slipdress, or with shorts. It's very versatile and in a nice, neutral color. I would have loved to see this top in other shades too.

I am hoping this top makes it to second cut. Wishlisted, waiting for further markdown.

Coming up later today -- more reviews!! If you have a review request please let me know in the comments. Do you own any of the items reviewed here? Let the community know your thoughts!! How are you styling these tops?