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1/17/17

Ann Taylor Fitting Room Reviews (Part 2) + Sale Alert

Left to Right:
Shimmer Jacquard Flare Dress
Piped Sleeveless Blouse - winter white
Tweed Single-Button Jacket - faded rouge
Striped Pleated Cuff Blouse - skysail blue
Abstract Butterfly Micro Pleat Blouse - navy
Butterfly Mixed Media V-Neck Shell - antique rouge
Calla Lily Jacquard Coat - blue multi

Hi, Everyone!

Today I'm wrapping up the final part, Part 2, of my fitting room reviews from my recent visit to Ann Taylor. In case you missed it, you can find Part 1 of the reviews in my previous post here

As a quick recap, I tried on several swoon-worthy pieces including many of the brand-new arrivals featuring pretty, abstract prints of calla lilies and butterflies; candy-colored stripes; micro pleats; bell-sleeves; mandarin collars; and contrast piping details.  So much yes!

*Sale Alert*  
 - Get 40% off all full-price tops (blouses, tees, and sweaters) with code "TOPS40" online and in-stores. Promo ends Friday, 1/20, at 9 pm PST (1/21 midnight EST.)  
 - Get an additional 50% off all sale items starting today - no code needed; discount will be taken automatically at checkout. 
Note: final sale items are excluded from this promo in stores.

Now, on to the fitting room reviews!


First up is this Butterfly Mixed Media V-Neck Shell in "antique rouge." This is a soft, drapey shell that would transition easily from work to after-hours. The blush-mauve color is pretty and feminine (love) and the scattered, navy butterflies are a nice contrast. I like that the placement of the butterflies is done in such a way that it resembles a floral or leafy print, which is what I thought it was at first glance. Butterflies are definitely a key player in this season's new arrivals.

As with Ann Taylor's other mixed media tops, this one has a woven front and a slinky, jersey-material back. It's the best of both worlds, really; it gives the feel of a comfy, well-loved tee but looks dressy and work-appropriate. It's also very versatile; wear this style layered under a cardi or blazer to the office, then shed the layers when it's time to head out for dinner/drinks, errands, etc. Easy-peasy. This shell also has side slits, allowing it to drape nicely when worn untucked (as shown above.) 

It's 100% polyester and machine-washable.

It's available in both regular and petite sizing. I'm trying on a size XS regular, which runs true-to-size. I like the length and the blousey fit. Any smaller and it would likely pull at the bust. For reference, the regular size is 25 3/4" long and the petite size is 24 1/2" long.

Fit: True-to-size

Price: 49.50 retail / $29.70 with promo



I paired the shell with this Seasonless Pencil Skirt in "fresh navy." 
It's a modern take on a classic pencil skirt with its slide-slit detailing, which you can see ever so slightly in the photo above. The bottom of the slit is sewn shut (as with all new, unworn pieces) but it looks to run about 5 - 6 inches. In a conservative workplace, this may be an issue, but it could be quickly remedied by stitching it up either a few inches or entirely, depending on your dress code and personal preference.  For me, it was a pass; I didn't want to fuss with it and I have plenty of other classic pencil skirts that would more than suffice. It also has a side zipper instead of the usual back zipper that I prefer. That said, this may be a great option if you're looking for a pencil skirt with added allure. ;-)

The skirt consists of a poly/rayon blend and 4% spandex for a hint of stretch. The stretch makes all the difference in my opinion; the contouring it provides gives it a more contemporary look. It's fully-lined and has a flattering fit, hugging all the right curves while remaining modest with its longer length. 

I'm trying on size 0P, which runs true-to-size for me in most of AT's pencil skirts, and hits me right below the knee. I like that the longer length gives off a sleek look. The skirt comes in both regular and petite sizing, which is always convenient. For reference, the regular size is 25.5" long and the petite size is 23" long. 

Fit: True-to-size

Price: $89 retail



I decided to swap out the pencil skirt for this Wool Blend Circle Skirt in "navy" and loved it immediately. I have an affinity for circle or flare skirts because the silhouette they give off is so lovely and feminine. This one also has a more structured fit with its heavier wool fabric. It's fully-lined (not itchy at all, thank goodness) and has a back-zip closure. The only thing that would make it more perfect in my book is the addition of pockets. Oh, and less lint. I noticed this wool tends to attract lint, so I'll have to keep my lint roller handy. A tad annoying, yes, but not a deal-breaker since all of the other pros out-way this one con.

Unfortunately, this skirt now appears to be sold out online, but I've seen sizes pop back (just yesterday, in fact) so it's worth keeping an eye on. It may also be available in select stores since I was able to find this one at my local store. Try using the "find in store" option on the product page of AT's website (just click the above link) or try calling their customer service line to help you locate one. The style number for this skirt is 422374, which is for the petite sizing option. 

I'm trying on a size 2P, which is larger than I usually wear, but after tucking in the shell and adding a skinny belt, it fits nicely; it's not too snug and skims my hips without adding bulk, so it's a keeper. I was able to take advantage of the sale promo running last Saturday, so with an additional 60% off, I was happy to bring this darling number home with me. :-)

If you're looking for more options, I like this flare skirt here and here, too.

Fit: True-to-size / slight large

Price: $98 retail / $59.99 sale / $30 with promo

I was also pleasantly surprised with this belt I tried on. I don't normally wear lizard-skin or "exotic" patterned belts like this, but the print on this one is more subdued, acting as a great neutral. It's also the perfect color match to this season's blush offerings, i.e. these patent pumps I'm eyeing. I like the 1/2-inch width and the fact that it's real leather, too. The only drawback for me is the length; even in the XS size, you can see that the belt tail is too long. And I'm puzzled as to why there's no belt loop to help secure it (shouldn't this be mandatory for all belts?.) I passed on it for now but may reconsider it if it goes on major sale to offset the hassle of using double-sided tape or a small, clear rubber band to help it stay put. 

Fit: Runs long

Price: $35.50 retail



Next, I tried this Fringe Stitch Sweater Jacket in "black." If you've read my previous AT reviews, you may recall that this is the same jacket I tried on in October in the "winter white" color, which was actually more of a marled-grey color. I thought I'd try it on again to see if maybe I had been too hasty to dismiss it last time, but instead it only confirmed that my first impression was correct. While there are so many noteworthy details -- the nubby tweed with fringed trim on the hem and sleeves, the Chanel-esque styling with the front flap pockets, the pretty metallic threading -- it still misses the mark. It's unlined and scratchy, requiring a long-sleeved blouse to be worn underneath (limits outfit choices), and the fit is boxy and unflattering. It's such a shame, too, because I really wanted to love it. The cropped length is ideal for us petite gals, and the arms and shoulders fit nicely, yet the overall shape completely swallows up the waistline. 

This jacket may look darling on other body types, but for me, it's a pass. 

For reference, I'm trying on size XS, which fits true-to-size, but the cut runs wide in the torso. Also, the front is longer than the back, measuring 17.5" versus 15.5" in the back. 

Fit: True-to-size / boxy

Price: $149 retail / $99.99 sale / $50 with promo




Next up is this Shirred Blouse in "winter white." This is a polished, easy-to-wear, classic, white blouse. It has a nice, blousey fit, a mandarin collar, and a nice weight to it. It's not too sheer, allowing you to wear a nude bra. It also has a hidden-button front, which always looks super sleek. 

It comes in three other colors:
"black" - online-exclusive, regular sizing only
"intense emerald" (teal) - regular & petite sizing
"coral blaze" (bright coral) - regular sizing only

 I'm trying on size XSP and it runs slightly large. The arms are slightly too wide and long on me, so a size XXSP might be best. This color comes in both regular and petite sizing, and the length is the same for both: 25 3/4" long. It's 100% polyester and machine-washable. 

If you're looking for a timeless, wardrobe staple, this is a great one.

This exact same style blouse is offered in a variety of prints, too:
Calla Lily Shirred Blouse (eye-catching abstract print)
Dash Stripe Shirred Blouse (navy with white dashes)
Floral Shirred Blouse (vibrant coral with white florals) - online-exclusive

The print blouses are available in both the regular and petite sizing except for the last one, which is available in regular sizing only.

Fit: Runs large - suggest sizing down 1 size for a closer fit

Price: $69.50 retail / $41.70 with promo

I paired the blouse with the Shimmer Leaf Pencil Skirt in "mountain lavender." The color is a cross between mauve and lilac, and it's really unique and pretty. Gold metallic thread is woven throughout the floral jacquard pattern, giving it a dressy and festive look suitable for parties, weddings, and other special events. The gold shimmer is subtle and not overly glittery or flashy, too -- it can easily be dressed down with a basic blouse or sweater and look effortlessly polished. 

It's a cotton/poly/nylon blend, and fully-lined and stretchy. It hugs your curves nicely and is super soft like a sweater skirt. It even has an elastic waist in addition to a back zipper for extra comfort. The length is almost a midi length, which gives it an elegant look that I love.

Sizes seem to be going quickly, with the petite sizing currently sold out online. As I always say, though, keep checking for pop-backs, or call AT's customer service to ask for help in locating one in your size. The style number is 422579, which is for the petite sizing.

I'm trying on size 00P, which fits true-to-size for me in this skirt style.

Fit: True-to-size

Price: $89 retail / $39.99 sale / $20 with promo

You can find the matching and equally-darling Shimmer Leaf Peplum Shell here, but sizes are also going fast. For reference, the style number is 420411 for the regular sizing if you want to try locating one. Note: the top is unlined and online reviews state it runs large, so you may wish to size down if ordering.

Price: $69.50 retail / $39.99 sale / $20 with promo  




Last up is this Shimmer Jacquard Flare Dress in "gold metallic." I saw this dress tucked away by itself on a rack near the back of the store and grabbed it to try on. The gold color is really eye-catching! It is certainly a bright dress and very festive -- perfect for weddings, showers, parties, etc. The textured fabric is beautiful and is softer than it appears. It's fully-lined and not scratchy or itchy at all. I'm not a huge fan of the A-line silhouette on me, which is much more pronounced at the hem of the dress. I can't put my finger on it, but it looks unfinished and less polished as I would like for this dress style. The hem looks uneven and doesn't lay flat. It also runs really wide in the waist and hips. I think a closer-fit, sheath style would look much better in this fabric. That said, it may complement other ladies' shapes much better than mine. 

I styled it with the Shirred Blouse (shown above) for added interest.

The dress fabric is a cotton/poly blend, and due to the metallic threading, I would suggest dry cleaning only.

I'm trying on size 2P, the only size available in the store, and it runs large. I would need a 0P or 00P for a more flattering it. Sizes are very limited online in the petite sizes, and regular sizes are currently sold out online. You can still try locating one in-store using style #415365.

Fit: Runs large / wide - suggest sizing down 1 size for a closer fit

Price: $179 / $134.99 sale / $67.50 with promo

That wraps up my Ann Taylor fitting room reviews! So many pretty colors, abstract prints, pleats, and feminine details this season, right? Which ones are your favorites? 

I hope you found these helpful! If you have any questions, feel free to comment below or send me an email and I'll be happy to help. 

Stay tuned for new outfit posts coming to the blog soon - I have new goodies I can't wait to style and share with you!

Thanks so much for reading, and have a wonderful evening! 
XO

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