Third Time’s A Charm {Stitch Fix Review}

As a baseball fan, I usually give things three chances before I strike them and move on. After last month’s Stitch Fix that left me feeling less-than-hopeful about the service, I was already anticipating a “You’re out!” when I scheduled my July Fix. There were a couple of reasons why:

1. I was very specific when I requested my Fix. I wanted a complete outfit. I wanted a jacket, a blouse, a necklace, a pair of colorful capri pants, and a pair of black flats. I wanted to be able to open up the box, put everything on, and head out the door. I had read on a Facebook group page that if your requests are too specific, you won’t get what you’re looking for. But I had also seen YouTube unboxings where subscribers had requested all dresses and they received exactly what they wanted. I admit… I was skeptical.

2. A friend of mine [Kristen at Four Hens and a Rooster] blogged last month about her experience at a local consignment store called Style Encore. She explained that they have a FREE styling service where, after reviewing the style profile/questionnaire that you submit to them, they pull outfits for you to try on in their store. It seemed too good to be true, so of course I had to try it. I did. I loved it. And I bought a LOT of things. (More details will be listed below.) Aside from the items I had specifically requested, I didn’t think Stitch Fix could provide me with pieces I hadn’t already purchased.

On July 1, four days before I expected it to arrive, my wonderful mail carrier delivered my third Fix. I had already peeked at the app and knew that my request for an entire outfit had not been granted. I opened the box, and went straight to the note. I wanted to know who my stylist was, and just what she had to say about being unable to fulfill my request. Sam’s note was very personal, she had read my request and taken it all into consideration, and she had tried to pull something together. I was very appreciative of the effort that she put into selecting pieces for me AND the time she took to explain why she was unable to send the capri pants and black flats.

As I dug into my Fix, I realized just how awesome each piece was and how carefully it was selected. Sam had singlehandedly fulfilled my ongoing request of versatile pieces that work for both the office and in a more casual setting. I was looking at five items that I could willingly keep and wear. And she also kept my box total under $200… another request that I wasn’t sure would be met. There was no striking out on this third box; it was all charm!

In my third Stitch Fix box, I found:
Margaret M Deandra Textured A-Line Skirt $78 {size XL}
Pixley Nelda Halter Blouse $44 {size XL}
Market & Spruce Kristah Ruffle Knit Blazer $78 {size XL}
Papermoon Heather Lace Detail Tab-Sleeve Blouse $48 {size XL}
Bay to Baubles Gene Coin Layering Necklace $34

The total price of all items minus the discount ($70.50) and the monthly fee ($20) was $191.50.

I am so excited to share these outfits with you! (You can click on the photo to enlarge them.)

blueskirt
JCP Blazer $10
Tommy Hilfiger blouse $8
Textured A-Line skirt (from July Fix)

gaucho
Blouse & Necklace (from July Fix)
Sunny Leigh Gaucho pants $14

haltertank
Halter blouse (from July Fix)
Maurices Hydraulic jean capri (purchased years ago)

jacketdressjacketback
Blazer (from July Fix)
Apt 9 dress $13

jackettarget
Blazer (same as above, from July Fix)
Merona blouse ($22.99) and ankle pants ($27.99) from Target

My decision:
Textured A-Line Skirt – returned
Halter Blouse – returned
Knit Blazer – returned
Tab-Sleeve Blouse – kept
Necklace – returned

So, I’m sure you’re confused. After all, I just said that I loved this month’s Fix and could see myself keeping all of the pieces. I did love everything! However, I have a confession to make. Remember my consignment store shopping experience? Let me tell you a little more about it…

Do you see all of this?


These are just a few of the outfits that my Style Encore stylist pulled for me. Crazy, right? Who knew that a consignment store would have this many options in my size. If you’re luck enough to have a Style Encore nearby, email them about their Personal Shopping Experience. Again, this is a FREE styling service… and it was so much fun!! I completed the questionnaire and submitted it via email. I was given an appointment and when I arrived, the dressing room was packed full. I had a dedicated employee devoted just to helping me mix and match pieces, search for items to replace ones that I liked but didn’t quite fit like I had hoped, and who would tell me honestly if the outfit worked for me or not. It took me an hour to try everything on, but it went by so quickly. When it was all said and done, I walked out of the store with 21 items, and had spent $213. Many of the things I purchased still had the original tags on them! Do you want to know the best part? The day after my styling, I took a bag of clothes and shoes to the consignment store to sell. {Note: They purchase your items on the spot, any season, and give you cash before you leave the store.} They bought $40 worth of clothing from me that no longer fit me or that I just never wore. That made the previous day’s $213 more like $173!

Here are two of my favorite outfits from my consignment shopping:


Blazer, blouse, skirt, and shoes: $31


Dress: $14

I could not be more pleased with my Stitch Fix for July, and I will be using their services again… some day. However, I admit that Style Encore has spoiled me too. For practically the same amount of money as the five pieces I received in my July Fix, I was able to purchase FOUR TIMES as many name-brand items. My closet has been refreshed for the season and I feel like I have plenty to work with this summer and fall. I am going to take a few months off from Stitch Fix, and clothes shopping in general, but am now looking forward to shopping for winter clothes this fall… now that shopping is fun again!

If you’re interested in trying Stitch Fix for yourself, please click here and use my referral code: 7952845

Stitch Fix #2

I know I promised a video but once you read this post, you will know why I didn’t record one.

I was so excited about my second Fix because I had such a great experience last month when Cindy selected five great items with zero guidance. I just knew that, since I provided feedback with my returns and created a StitchFix pinterest board in an effort to assist my stylist, my June selections would be dreamy. I even left a note for my stylist requesting a particular shirt [Fun 2 Fun Renauld (?) front pocket blouse $44 — sleeveless, white with navy anchor pattern] and something youthful and fun, yet still somewhat age-appropriate for my birthday. I anxiously awaited the email letting me know that my Fix had shipped. That’s my cue to head over to the app to peek at the selections heading my way. In case you missed it in the last post, I’m not a fan of surprises.

I received the email on June 8 and when I opened the Stitch Fix app, I was thrilled at what I saw. There was one shirt and one dress that I immediately knew that I would keep.

My box arrived on Friday, which happened to be my birthday! Could life get any better? I was planning to celebrate that night at a local winery and began pondering which outfit I would wear; the new shirt with white capri pants or the new dress. While I was ripping into my Fix, I kept thinking, “I can do a video next month. I don’t have time to prep for a reveal today. I have to see these items in person and decide what I’m going to wear tonight!”

And then…

I tried everything on. Just like that, my heart sank and my bubble burst. Details below.

In my second Stitch Fix box, I found:
Brixon Ivy Zedd Lace Overlay Blouse $58 {size S}
Level 99 Sandy Bootcut Jean $98 {size 14}
Market & Spruce Accio Cold Shoulder Top $58 {size XL}
Market & Spruce Aerin Dress $64 {size XL}
Pixley Verleen Knit Burnout Maxi Dress $68 {size XL}

The total price of all items minus the discount ($86.50) and the monthly fee ($20) was $239.50.

My decision:
Lace Overlay Blouse – Y’all, I loved this top when I saw it on the app, and wanted it desperately. However… do you see the problem here?

It’s tagged as XL but clearly is a Small. I was so disappointed. After speaking with some folks in the SF B/T/S Facebook group, I understand that I could choose to keep the top and just request a new size but it sounds like a hassle. I’m too bummed to even deal with the exchange at this point. I will return the top.

Sandy Bootcut Jean – I can say that I love these jeans! Remember in my last Stitch Fix post, I mentioned that one of the key things I wanted to “test” with this service is just how well their products cater to us larger gals. I was convinced that their jeans wouldn’t fit me since my body shape sometimes bounces between a size 14 and size 16 pant. This particular pair of jeans fit beautifully, felt amazing, and were my favorite piece from this month’s box. However, the frugal girl in me absolutely could not justify paying $98 for them as we get ready to head into a very humid NC summer. Maybe they will resend them to me in the fall, when I’m freezing and more likely to blow my budget on some cute and comfy jeans. That said, I will return the jeans.

Accio Cold Shoulder Top – As you can see from the photo, this shirt paired with the jean really makes for a great outfit. I was pleasantly surprised by this shirt, given that it was my least favorite item on the app. (I’m not a fan of the open shoulder tops.) I am glad that it was sent to me. I want pieces that I wouldn’t select in the stores for myself. That’s a major reason why I chose to use this styling service. Ultimately, I will return the top simply because I couldn’t see myself wearing it to work. I like to have blouses that are a bit more versatile.

Aerin Dress – I fell in love with this dress the second that I saw it on the app. The color, the pattern, and the style all appealed to me. I was convinced that I would wear it to the winery for my birthday celebration. However, when I tried it on, the belt tied right at my problem area (belly) and the length made me a little nervous. I’m 5’10” and generally go for dresses that fall at least at the knee, not above it. I couldn’t believe that both pieces – that I had already decided in my head that I would keep – let me down. On Sunday, as I was packaging up my items to send back, I tried this dress on again. I stood in front of the mirror, trying to make it work. I glanced in my closet and realized that I had a blue jacket that was close in color to the blue accent in the dress’s pattern. I threw it on, along with some nude wedges, and finally saw the potential of the dress. The jacket helped to mask my belly. I still struggled with the length. So I did what anybody would do… I took this photo and tossed it up on Instagram for opinions. 🙂 Most folks liked it. Some even loved it. One practical friend reminded me that if I wasn’t completely comfortable in the dress, there was a chance that I would never wear it. Part of me knows that I should send it back. The other part of me thinks I should step outside of the box and go for it. After all, this is my birthday Fix! I requested something youthful, yet age-appropriate. I feel like this is it. Yes, I just turned 40. But that doesn’t mean that I should dress like Dorothy from The Golden Girls, right? After much deliberation, I’m trusting the Instagram masses. I plan to keep this dress.

 

Verleen Knit Burnout Maxi Dress – This is a beautiful dress. I loved the color, I was okay with the fit, and the fabric was soft and comfortable. But what I am learning quickly is that I’m not much into maxi dresses. I am not completely against them, but I am extremely picky when it comes to them. This particular one just didn’t blow me away. I will return it.

So there you have it; my second Stitch Fix review. I should note that, this month, my stylist was Jessica. I feel like I should give this service another month, so I will request a July box when I checkout. If you’re interested in trying Stitch Fix for yourself, please click here and use my referral code: 7952845

 

Here’s a quick rundown of how Stitch Fix works:
Create an account and fill out a questionnaire.

The subscription is $20/month and that fee is deducted from your total, should you decide to keep any or all items delivered in your monthly fix.
You receive a box with five custom-selected pieces.
Try them on at your leisure (you have three days to make your decision) and send back the ones you don’t want to keep in a postage-paid envelope.

My First Stitch Fix

I have friends who have used Stitch Fix for years; some who have been subscribers since the launch of the service in 2011. I have enjoyed hearing about their experiences, reading their blogs on their latest fix, and watching their unboxing videos. I never had the desire to participate, though… until recently.

There are a couple of reasons why I decided to finally give it a try. Since my reasons are probably pretty far-fetched in comparison to the majority of Stitch Fix subscribers, I thought I would give you a quick insight before I reveal today’s package.

I like to think that I am fashionable, but the truth is — I struggle with fashion. I blame it partially on this “turning 40″ thing that is happening soon. (I’m starting to blame a lot of things on it, actually. haha) I love fashion, but fashion doesn’t always love me. I see a cute outfit on Pinterest and I attempt to replicate it, only to find that my body type  just isn’t compatible with the clothing style. It reminds me of all the years I took hair photos to my stylist and – every time – she would tell me that the cut was for someone with straight, thick hair… and that the same cut on my thin, curly hair would not produce the same look. Most cute, fashionable outfits simply do not produce the same look on me.

I’m tall (5’10”) and long-waisted. My legs are actually an average length. I am also about 20lbs overweight. I am most annoyed by my belly. It seems to be where most of the extra weight is stored. Sometimes it’s a struggle to find the right sizes and cuts. I feel like I often settle for clothes, particularly dress clothes for work, and I get stuck in a certain look that isn’t necessarily the best for me.

I’m not a fan of shopping. I loathe having to try on clothes in a dressing room. When I do shop, I typically have an agenda… I’m looking for one particular piece to pair with something I already own. The thought of shopping just to browse is a bit daunting to me.

And y’all know that I’m a self-proclaimed Budget Queen. I am so frugal. If I buy one article of clothing, I pull a similar piece from my closet to sale or donate. I only allow an extremely small amount into my budget for clothing. I don’t shop often, and when I do… I shop thrift stores and consignment shops first. It has to be on sale, and it has to be a needed item.

All of that said, the four reasons I finally subscribed to Stitch Fix are:

  1. I am hoping their stylists can recommend the appropriate cut/style/look for me.
  2. I want to see if Stitch Fix caters to someone with my body shape/size.
  3. The clothes come straight to my door and I have a few days to try them on at my leisure.
  4. I want to see if the clothing offered is affordable and well-made.

A quick rundown of how Stitch Fix works:
Create an account and fill out a questionnaire.
The subscription is $20/month and that fee is deducted from your total, should you decide to keep any or all items delivered in your monthly fix.
You receive a box with five custom-selected pieces.
Try them on at your leisure (you have three days to make your decision) and send back the ones you don’t want to keep in a postage-paid envelope.

Simple enough, right?

So… on to my first fix! I’m sorry this isn’t as entertaining as other Stitch Fix reveals. I wanted to get this blog posted quickly, so I didn’t have time to edit a video or even slap on some makeup to be presentable in photos. I’ll do better next time.

I purposefully did not give my stylist any suggestions aside from the basic questionnaire at registration. I wanted to see just how in-tuned the stylists are before I even created my Pinterest board with suggestions. I was vague… and Cindy nailed it!

A few days before the fix shipped, I learned that I could download the Stitch Fix app and preview what was on its way to me. A lot of folks wait until their package arrives to see what was selected for them. I, however, don’t like surprises. When I saw the items that were selected for me, I was impressed. Cindy did a great job… and I got even more excited about getting my fix and seeing the clothes in person.

What I was a bit disappointed in was the price. At registration, I selected “The cheaper the better” option, hoping I would get some discounted items. However, the average Stitch Fix items seem to be in the $50 range. That is very high for my general budget. I was leery as to if I would even purchase anything, or even use the service again, but I decided to wait until the package came to make my decision. Especially since I also wasn’t convinced that I would fit into the clothes. [Stitch Fix sizes range from 0-14 and XS –XL. I am on the upper end of that scale, and sometimes 14s aren’t the best fit depending on the cut of the clothing. I’m a generally apprehensive person anyway.]

In my first Stitch Fix box, I found:
Daniel Rainn Ginnie Lace Trim Knit Top $58 XL
Loveappella Liette Embroidery Detail Knit Top $48 XL
Gilli Kimberly Maxi Dress $64 XL
Margaret M Christiana Textured Pencil Skirt $78 XL
Romolo Lea Leaf Collar Necklace $28
The total price of all items minus the discount ($69) and the monthly fee ($20) is $187

My decision:
Lace Trim Top – I love it. The fit. The feel. The pattern. The versatility. LOVE. I’m not a fan of the price, but when I deduct the $20 I’ve already spent (and won’t be refunded) then the top will be $38. That is still way more than I would typically spend on tank top but I really do love it. I can wear it with shorts for a casual look in the summer, or pair it with black dress pants, heels, and a blazer for work. I’m going to keep it.

img_8497.jpg

Embroidery Knit Top – It is a pretty top, but the fit was a bit snug for me… and the design was a bit plain. I couldn’t see wearing this to work so I’m going to return it.

Maxi Dress – I love the fit of this dress! It was comfortable and slimming. I considered keeping it, but there was something about the hemline that bothered me. If it didn’t have the asymmetrical bottom, I probably would have kept it. At $64, I decided to return it.

  
Pencil Skirt – I was surprised at how comfortable this skirt was. I liked the color/texture and length… but it was a bit too snug for me. It really accentuated my curves, particularly those in the rear, and I didn’t feel like that would be appropriate for work. I also couldn’t fathom paying $78 for a skirt. I’m going to return it.

Necklace – I thought the necklace was adorable, but between the length (too short) and color (I have a couple gold ones already) I decided to return it.

Since Cindy did such a fantastic job selecting items for me with little direction, I have decided to give Stitch Fix another try. (That’s huge folks… I really thought I would be cancelling my subscription right now!) This time, I have created a Pinterest board at their suggestion, and plan to send back a note with my returns to let my stylist know what I loved about each piece and what I didn’t. Although I’m still not a fan of the pricing, I do love the anticipation and convenience that comes along with this service. So be on the lookout for my next Stitch Fix post. Maybe *just maybe* there will be a video too.