in preparation for my event on saturday, i popped into madewell to try-on pieces from their pre-fall collection. as a lover of warm tones (think rust and mustard) and animal print (as you’re now WELL aware), i loved so many things! below are a few items that particularly caught my eye, including a few pieces that made their way home with me. you’ll have to stay tuned for what outfit i’ll ultimately sport on the day of my event. gah, i can’t wait!
pleated button-front shift dress (small) || as soon as i spotted this dress online, i knew i wanted to try it on in the store. as expected, it received high marks. i love the slightly a-line silhouette and the feminine details (the smocked shoulders, dainty buttons down the front, and the pops of eyelet). it’s a light-weight linen material so it’s ideal for the transitional time between summer and fall yet it’s lined to avoid being too sheer. to me, a LBD is a blank canvas on which you can create a zillion different looks. i’d pair it with mules now and with booties come fall. dress it up with tights, leather pumps, and an animal print clutch for a perfect date night look.
size verdict: true to size.
texture & thread puff-sleeve dress (xs) || unlike the dress above, this dress was a big miss for me. while i loved the mustard color and the button-down detail (you’ll notice a trend with me and my love for buttons), the hemline was a wee bit short for me. at a hair under 5’7″, i tend to prefer midi or maxi length dresses/skirts so this particular one missed the mark for me. however, if you’re 5’5″ or under, i think this dress would be a great everyday piece to dress up or down (pair with sneakers for a casual look or heeled mules for an elevated ensemble. as noted in my instagram stories, the button-down detail also makes it nursing friendly and mommas -it’s machine washable! if mustard isn’t your thing, it also comes in a pretty coral color and classic black.
size verdict: true to size (best for petite girls).
canvas transport tote in painted spots || don’t pretend to be shocked that i snagged this cheetah-print bag during my visit to the store. i can’t stop with the animal print (hides face in shame). i love the versatility of this tote (it can be a purse, a diaper bag, a gym bag, an overnight bag, heck, it could even hold your groceries!). its canvas fabric makes it mom-friendly and the cheetah print adds a pop of personality to any outfit. at under $70, it’s a great deal for a high-quality tote that i promise you’ll be reaching for over and over again. i’m also considering getting the matching clutch 😉
perfect vintage jeans in cassie wash (25) || i had a request from one of my instagram babes to try on this specific pair of jeans and i was happy to oblige. if you haven’t experienced the goodness that is madewell denim, you MUST do yourself a favor and head into your local store to try some on. the brand just does denim RIGHT. i won’t lie, the perfect vintage jeans and i have a troubled past. my last pair stretched out comically large after only a few wears so i’ve been apprehensive about purchasing another pair. however, i believe if i had sized down an additional size i might have avoided the issue. i loved the cropped fit on these and the classic blue wash. i tend to be a true 26 in denim in general, but almost 99% of the time end up sizing down one or two sizes when it comes to madewell’s styles. if you’re looking for levi’s-esque pair, i think the perfect vintage style is a great option, just take note to size down one to two sizes. trust me, they may fit snuggly upon first try-on, but rest assured they’ll stretch and morph to your body in no time. p.s. i didn’t try them on, but i love the washed black version of these jeans, too.
size verdict: size down at least one size.
montford fringe pullover sweater (small) || momma loves a fringe detail so as soon as i spotted this ivory knit online, i crossed my fingers that it would be available for me to model in the store. i grabbed my normal size (i’m usually a small in madewell sweaters) and quickly realized that it was QUITE oversized, despite its cropped fit, in other words, very boxy. these days i don’t mind a boxy fit if i can pair it with a high-waisted bottom but dare i say it, this sweater might be too cropped for this long-waisted gal. it’s a bummer because i really love its weight and fabric (a good cotton knit). it’s the perfect thickness for san diego winters where it really never gets that cold. important to note, i did end up trying on the xs after i filmed the try-on session and it fit much truer to size, but as i said, i’m afraid i would grow tired of the shorter hemline.
size verdict: runs boxy, size down one size.
high-rise slim boyjean in melbourne wash (25) || i fell in love with the high-rise slim boyjean last year at one of natalie’s influencer events. we both purchased the same silhouette in a distressed style and even now, they are one of my favorite pairs of jeans. so when i spotted this updated version, i knew i had to try it on. as expected, i loved them. after years of subjecting myself to skinny denim, i’m learning to give my gams some breathing room with straighter-leg styles. i personally love the unfinished hem on this pair and again, the classic blue denim makes them perfect to sport year round. aside from the fit, the best part about these jeans are their 11″ rise. and if you ask me, the higher the rise, the better!
size verdict: size down one to two sizes. i ended up ordering a 24 upon the recommendation of the store manager (hi kari!). similar to the perfect vintage jean, rigid denim like this tends to stretch out (especially in the waist) with frequent wear.
texture & thread eyelet flutter-sleeve top (small) || i’m always a sucker for a frilled sleeve, so this top was definitely on my radar. while the yellowish shade appeared mustard online, it was definitely a more chartreuse-y yellow in person so i opted for the ivory shade instead. someone recently pointed out that texture & thread tops tend to be less friendly to long-waisted ladies and unfortunately i tend to agree. i love the eyelet detail and the flutter sleeves, but i couldn’t get past the fact that it was barely long enough to cover my mid drift. if you’re more on the petite side (or simply don’t have an ample torso), this is a feminine tee with personality. albeit a tad bit sheer, as long as you wore a nude bra (or a nude cami for more coverage) underneath, you’d avoid a wardrobe malfunction.
size verdict: true to size.
bobble cardigan sweater (xs) || hands down this sweater was the piece i was most excited to try-on from madewell’s latest batch of new arrivals. despite the shorter-than-expected hemline, this sweater exceeded expectations. it is SO GOOD. i have a strong feeling it’ll sell out so if you’re interested in it -in either the ivory and mustard colors (i’d imagine these shades will be popular for fall), i highly suggest you order it (even if you end up returning it later). at under $100, it’s a great investment for an item that will fast become a closet staple well into fall (and winter if you live in a temperate climate like san diego). it’s the perfect weight -not too heavy, not too light and the cotton knit will ensure it won’t pill like some of the ‘precious’ fabrics that madewell employs for certain cardigan styles. while i loved both colors, i ended up snagging the sweater in the ivory color since i think it’ll be a bit more versatile (i also love a ‘winter white.’).
size verdict: runs a big oversized, size down one size.
texture & thread button-front swing tank in wild stripe (small) || i spotted this cute tank on my final lap around the store. although it’s definitely more cropped for my liking, i am absolutely smitten with its black and white design and playful button-front detail. as noted above, the texture & thread line tends to fit a little differently than the traditional madewell pieces and this tank is no different. it’s a small garment (cry/laughing emoji). i was [ ] close to purchasing it but realized it was just a little too petite for me, even when paired with the 11″ rise denim. i feel like a broken record, but seriously, if you’re a 5′ 5″ or under, so much of this madewell collection is best-suited for you! i think this tank would be adorable paired with a high-waisted pair of black pants for a chic date night outfit or layered under a blazer for the office.
size verdict: albeit short, it still runs true to size.
button-down jumpsuit (2) || madewell jumpsuits -1, shawna -0. it’s always a gamble to try on a jumpsuit given my long-waist (how many times can i mention my long torso in this post? sorry, guys), but it’s a risk i’m always willing to take. in this instance, i was drawn to this jumpsuit for 1) it’s rich olive color 2) the fact that it had pockets (!) and 3) its wide-leg silhouette. unfortunately as soon as i tried it on, all of its pros were overshadowed by its unflattering fit. while it was too big in the hips/waist, if i sized down, i feared it being too tight in my nether region (if you know what i mean). the straps were also an awkward length, making it hard to wear with a proper bra. overall, this jumpsuit was a classic case of close but no cigar -best in theory but not in execution. womp, womp.
size verdict: runs slightly big but i wouldn’t size down.
scalloped midi dress in rainbow gingham (0) || i swear when i’m pregnant, i’m going to buy all of the billowy things because i’ll finally have an excuse to wear them! although this dress’ print was adorable (love the madras style), it was clear that the shape was best suited for a momma-to-be. otherwise, i’d be afraid someone would mistaken me for being with child (a tad bit prematurely). empire-silhouette aside, the rainbow print and the scallop neckline were my favorite details and in other circumstances, i think this dress would be perfect soaking up the last month of summer sitting on the back patio sipping homemade lemonade.
size verdict: flowy fit, so i’d recommend sizing down one size if you have a smaller chest. stay true to size if you are bustier.
other items that weren’t in the store that i would have loved to have tried on include: these jeans and these jeans, these fun wide-leg pants, this canvas fanny pack (i’m a full convert, you guys), and of course, these gorgeous booties. i think i’ll use my own discount to order a few of these items and have them shipped to my house instead. if they turn out to be winners, i’ll definitely share in a future post/on instagram.
as a reminder, i’ll be at madewell at the forum carlsbad this saturday, august 3rd from 9:00 a.m-12:00 p.m. if you’re local, i’d love to see you/meet you in person. come shop, snack, and enjoy a generous discount on your purchase! can’t wait to see you then.
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