Friday, May 11, 2012

Wardrobe Staples - Suiting and Icon Trench

I ordered some 1035 superfine cotton suiting with the last 30% secret promo. I thought it was a good opportunity to pick up navy blazer, trousers and skirt, all for about $200.

I like J.Crew superfine cotton, it feels smooth and it keeps its shape and it is good for year round, except maybe few super cold weeks in the winter.

Blazer size 6 and trousers size 4

It is perfect navy shade
I like this shade of navy. Not too dark to be confused with black and not too blue or faded. The blazer is basic cut, rather roomy, so do not size up. Notched lapels, flap pockets, inside pocket and pen holder, lined in navy polyester and striped lining for sleeves.

Looks good open and closed and from the back. Definitely can go to an interview, but I can easily wear it with jeans and t-shirt. Well worth the under $90 I paid.

Now, for the trousers, I posted this rant on Mothership and I will repeat it here. I have ordered two sizes and I noticed the first pair I tried looked a little different from my favorite 1035 superfine gray cotton trousers from last year.  I got out the other size and sure enough, they were exactly the same as my gray pair, wide waistband, double belt loops and vertical banded pockets that stay flat, as opposed to single loops, narrower waistband and slanted pockets, that stick out.

I checked the tag and no surprise, the pair I like is labeled SU11 and the other pair is labeled SP12. To me, this design is not just different, but shows decline in quality. These little details made me like this style.

But maybe I am wrong, and people prefer single loops, slanted pockets and thinner waistband?
Fortunately for me, there is almost no difference in dimensions (and both pairs fit me) even if they are 2 different sizes (4 & 6), so it looks like the sizing also changed. Of course I am keeping SU11 pair.
Btw, the picture on the website shows the trousers with double loops.

The skirt is also slightly different from last year's, that I also own. SP12 version has a thinner and less defined waistband. You can see the difference on the website when you compare the byzantine blue with navy. 

The skirt I received looks like byzantine blue, but I own the same skirt that looks like the navy picture. The fit is great on me, but skirt in the new design does look a little cheaper. Other than that, it is a nice basic skirt and fits TTS.

Skirt size 4
I would still recommend the superfine cotton suiting, it is great quality for the price. If I were wearing suits to work, I would even pick up more colors. The white version is also tempting me, as I could wear all pieces separately, but it is not on sale right now.

Last week, I almost lost my beloved BR trench coat. I was waiting for my shuttle and since the day was beautiful, I  took the coat off and put it across the back of the bench I was sitting on. I was looking at my phone and did not see the shuttle coming, until it pulled in front of the building, so I quickly grabbed my backpack and forgot about the coat. I did not remember about it until I got off the train in my town and I couldn't remember if I left the coat on the bench, in the shuttle or at the train station. I actually went back to look for it but it was nowhere to be found and I thought I lost it. I was really bummed about it, because it is one of my favorites and I have been wearing it non stop. I had no desire to shop for a new coat and spend money when I was very happy with this one.

But, since I was at J.Crew last weekend, I thought I would try this year's version of the Icon Trench. I first tried an 8, but it was way too big and shapeless so I asked for a 6. 

Size 6

6 was a correct size and the coat fitted me well so I would say it runs TTS to big. I did not like the color. I thought it was too yellow for my skin tone. I also did not like the fact that is is so short. I think it looks great with pants but it has an awkward length with a pencil skirt or anything knee length. I much preferred my BR coat that falls about an inch or two above the knee, almost the same length as most of my skirts and dresses.

Other than that, the shape, fit and fabric are great and feel luxurious and look chic. I have tried the current BR coat some time ago and I did not like it as much as the version I have ( I think from 2010 or 2009) First of all, it has epaulets, which I don't like, especially that most of my bags I wear over the shoulder and I don't like the look of the strap squishing the epaulets. The fabric also felt flimsier, the lining was plain and not striped like mine, the buttons and buckle details on belt and sleeves were also cheaper looking.

If I was to pick between this year's BR version and an Icon, I would pick an Icon, but if choosing between my old BR coat and Icon I would stay with BR. This is just my personal preference, mostly because of the length and color, not quality or design. 

I worked from home Monday to Wednesday (because I suffered from nasty stomach flu) but yesterday I was very happy to learn that I left my coat at the office park and that it was picked up by security!!!  We are now happily reunited, but I realized that it desperately needs a dry cleaning. 

That's all folks!

Do you own any superfine cotton suiting? How do you like it?
Do you thing the quality went down or is it just a difference in design?

Do you own an Icon Trench? 
Do you think it is better than similar trench coats from other brands?

Please share, It would be no fun without you!!!


  1. j. crew should hire you! you seriously do such a good job. i love my icon but i don't have a lot to compare it to. i like the way it classes everything i have on up! happy mother's day! xo

  2. The suiting looks great on you. It is so tough to find light weight suiting, but I think J Crew does a really good job here. I've only tried the blazer and the fit was perfection, but need it in black not navy. I prefer cotton as it is can be worn nearly year round in my climate. The byzantine blue is gorgeous online, and it is something I might consider at sale time since I missed it during the last go round.
    So happy about your trench! Happy Mother's Day too!

  3. I bought the superfine cotton suiting when it first came out and the pants were called "bistro" back then. The first year they had a narrow waistband and no beltloops, which was a disappointment but I still loved the pants. Everything that year was tagged as machine-washable. The next year the pants had a wider waistband and twinned beltloops. I liked the fit much better. I picked up the gray, beechwood and navy pants, skirts, jackets and Emmaleigh dresses over the two years so I thought I was done but this year I wanted the new blue so I picked up the skirt and jacket. I thought the cotton was thinner and they were not as nicely finished but were still decent for cotton suiting and the color is pretty.

    As for the Icon, I love this trench so much that a couple of years ago when J.Crew had the 25% off promos I bought it in gray and black in different sizes so I have the option to layer. The next promo I bought the short version in the pinkish taupe and it is really nice. I have trenches from Burberry, Mackintosh, Tahari and I.N.C. and they are all lovely but for some reason I usually reach for one of the Icons. I couldn't do that yellowish khaki color either but it must sell because they seem to offer it every year.

  4. I like the suiting pieces on you. I bought the skirt in purple, but had to exchange it for the petite version bc it was too long on me. The petite was just a bit too short do I retuned it. I am a bit over 5'5" so I wonder if different sizes run different.
    I have the icon trench an I like it buy I don't love it.

  5. I very nearly bought the navy cotton suiting but I resisted, I regret it because it looks very polished on you!
    As for the Icon trench, I am a huge fan. I have it in black in two fabrics: the Japanese cotton as well as the wool and cashmere.
    I am happy for you that you were re-united with your trench!

  6. I bought the trench from the factory and couldn't be happier. It's fully lined and does NOT look like a flimsy factory some of their items can. This is such a classic piece that I plan on having for a long time!

  7. I did thousands of hours of research (yes wee bit obsessive I am...) and eventually bought one from a canadian line called Mackage, shaped and lovely, its a beaut.

  8. I have to remind myself that buying suiting is aspirational shopping for me, mustn't do it! But I am so tempted, it looks great and the prices are reasonable for the reportedly good quality. And the different shades of blue are so pretty. I do have the Banana Republic trench. I bought it in 2011, but it has the blue and white striped lining, so maybe it was a 2010 still lingering in the store. I have never liked trenches on me before this, but this one, I put it on and it always makes me feel great. The length is really good on me too. I am so glad yours found its way home, that would have been sad.

  9. Thanks AJC - I have the 1035 in beechwood and really like it. I do not have the trousers, as they looked wretched on me in the store a couple of years ago when I tried them on in NYC. Reading xoxo above, I wonder if I might not have tried on the older cut. Trousers are difficult for me, as I am petite, have very thin legs and no butt whatsoever! The trouser must hang just right and I have typically bought Theory suits for that reason. While I love ELie Tahari, I find his trousers fit me like the old 1035s. I am going to give them a try this fall as I need a new black suit!

  10. Nice back shot! Those are tough to near impossible. I'm not even going to mess with JC suiting. I found two great suits at Macy's for $140 total and they fit perfectly. It was nice to try on in-store and not fool around w/ordering online or on the phone because petite is not available in-store. The suit looks good on you. I hope you're feeling much better and yay for finding your trench. I agree the 2009 BR trench was outstanding.

  11. I have icon trench from 2010 and love it- such a great coat, on par with much pricier designer trenches. Mine is a lighter color though.

  12. Look at you working those camera angles ! The suit looks great and I love the Icon on you. I tried in on in Vancouver in a 8 but it didn't look great. Next time I'm over I'll try it again in the 6 as I need a new trench.
    Thanks again for the reviews and Happy Mother's Day

  13. I adore your blog...thanks for taking the time to show all of the newest arrivals with us.

    Do you find that the superfine cotton pants stretch with wear? My cafe trousers become embarassingly stretched out in the butt during the day, and I would like to replace with something similar, but nicer.

  14. Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info. wool suiting fabrics online store

  15.  After linking to that page, the people can easily get the details of the concerned subject. First day Collections and Audience Response is necessary to recognize because if we know only then we can say whether the movie is Hit or Flop.  suiting wool fabrics guide