Review: J. Crew Harper Cutout Flats

January 31, 2015 in J. Crew Reviews

I have a slight obsession with d’orsay style flats, so once I saw these J. Crew flats with their stunning cutouts and gorgeous colors, I knew I had to try them. Here are my thoughts:

J. Crew Harper Cutout Flats Review
Sizing: J. Crew sizing has been a little funny recently. Their shoes used to run a bit small and I would have to size up from a 6 to a 6.5. That doesn’t seem to be the case anymore. I originally ordered these flats in a 6.5 and they were much too big and I had a nice gap in the heel. I returned them for a 6. The 6 fits comfortably, not at all too tight. If you’re between sizes, I’d recommend sizing down on these.

Comfort: I was a bit worried that these flats would have a lot of rubbing considering the d’orsay shape and all of the cutouts. Surprisingly, this isn’t the case. They didn’t require a break-in period and I can wear them quite comfortably for a long time (although they don’t have much support- I might consider adding some). However, note that I have a regular width foot. I’m not sure if these would be quite so comfortable for a wider-width foot.

Colors: I bought these in all of the colors they came out in. I adored the navy! Unfortunately, that color is now sold out (they are occasionally available as popbacks). They are still available in this misty orchid color (the color in the above pic), however those are going fast, too. They also come in a black and white crackle, but those seem to be going fast, too.

Price & Quality: As with most J. Crew shoes, you have to give the shoes a good once-over to make sure they have no defects after you get them. But if they pass your quality control test, I’d say these are pretty decent quality. The leather was beautiful and soft, the color was evenly saturated, and the stitching was perfect. I got them for 20% off, so ~$130, which is not cheap, but is pretty reasonable.

Overall: I really have to say, I adore these flats. They’ll be perfect for spring and summer! Apparently, I’m not the only one that loves these, as they’re selling out quickly at full price. I’m not sure if they’ll be restocked or not (J. Crew seems to have just added a ton of regular d’orsay flats- suede, sequin, fabric, metallic…). If your size is sold out, a good alternative would be Madewell’s d’orsay flats, which come in suede and snake spot. They seem to be getting rave reviews as well (I’m leaning towards grabbing the gray… not that I need them)!

J. Crew Chateau Wool Parka Review

December 4, 2014 in J. Crew Reviews

I usually pick out at least one J. Crew coat to try on every year. This year I was immediately drawn to the Chateau Wool Parka. Its something different. Its not constrictive and figure hugging, but its still elegant in a more casual way… especially in this lighter “dusty ginger” color!

J. Crew Chateau Parka Review
Sizing/ Fit: Nearly all of the reviews say to size down in this one, and I think I agree. My typically J. Crew shirt size is a 0, so I grabbed this coat in a 00 (regular, not petite). The coat fits exactly as I had hoped. Its not tight in any area, including the arms, so I have plenty of room for layering underneath. I prefer the regular version over the petite one. The regular gives me a bit more length in the body, which I appreciate. And the arms actually aren’t too long. But I typically prefer regular size shirts and blazers over the petite versions (I have broader shoulders and longer arms). If you typically wear petite sizes in those other styles, it may be worth giving the petite version a go.

Warmth: J. Crew calls this fabric “stadium-cloth wool.” Its their warmest wool type. This coat would be more than sufficient for most climates. I can wear it comfortably down to the 20’s, which is about my limit for any wool coat. The hood is nice and big and fits perfectly over any hat for a little extra coziness. And the front pockets are great for when you forget gloves.

J. Crew Chateau Parka Pics

Style/ Function: If you are going to buy this coat, make sure you realize that its A-line, as it says in the description. Its not going to flatter the figure in a curvy sort of way! If that doesn’t bother you, then I can only say good things about the rest of the details of this coat. It has an inner double zipper and outer snaps, making sure no cold air gets in. It has four nice and big front pockets either for storage or hand warmth! And it has one smaller hidden interior pocket :) The fur hood, like I said before, is nice and large. If fur isn’t your thing, don’t worry, its removable!

J. Crew Chateau Parka Pocket

Quality: J. Crew quality is so hit or miss now-a-days. Thankfully, this coat is a hit. The fabric is great. It most closely resembles by Burberry Brit wool coat in weight and texture. The hardware is very sturdy, especially the large zipper. There aren’t any hanging threads or stitches coming out. Nothing to complain about, really.

J. Crew Chateau Parka Zipper

Overall: I was surprised to love this coat as much as I do. When I wear it I feel wintery elegant… and warm! Its just plain expensive at $365. I got it on sale for about $270, which is still expensive, but at least that’s kind of reasonable. Of course, I’ll keep my eyes out for a better sale, but I doubt it’ll happen with this one.

Buy the Chateau Wool Parka Here

J. Crew Elsie Suede Pump Review

November 9, 2014 in J. Crew Reviews

I’ve been raving about these J. Crew’s Elsie Suede Pumps in nearly every post for the past few months. Its about time for an actual review post! I’ll go over the typical topics, but feel free to ask if you have any additional questions! Note that this review is only for the suede version of the Elsie’s. They also come in a leather camo version, a leopard calf hair version, and a printed fabric version (and likely a solid leather version in the near future!).

J. Crew Elsie
Aesthetics: I love the look of these shoes! They have a sleek, classic design. They feature a modestly pointy toe and medium-high heel. They come in a variety of stunning colors. If you’re a more adventurous type, perhaps the bright red, bold violet or neon pink would be your pick! I’m a neutral lover, so the beiges and black were calling my name.

Sizing: The sizing on these is, well, interesting. The first pair I got was the kraft brown. I got them in a 6.5, my usual J. Crew size (I’m a tts 6). They were a little bit big, so I put a cushion in the toe box. I still have a little extra room in the heel, but not so much that my heel slips out when I walk. When the next batch of shoes came out I decided to compare the 6 and 6.5 (I bought the black and the blush stone). I’m not sure if this second batch ran a slight bit bigger or if its just my feet, but it seemed like the 6.5 was just too big, even with a foot cushion. The 6 fit absolutely perfectly. Snug, but not too snug (and I’m sure they’ll stretch out a bit). So, while most J. Crew heels are 1/2 size too small, I’d say these are running pretty true to size.

Comfort: There are very few pairs of pumps that are comfortable enough for all day wear, but these are one of them! They have a few things going for them. First, the toe box is on the wider side, which eliminates the typical pinching of the toes (and allows room for my foot as it swells slightly throughout the day). Next, they’re a super soft suede and are lined in leather. The suede eliminates any potential painful rubbing at the edges (note this is not true with the fabric versions) and stretches just enough to conform perfectly to the foot. The leather foot bed is slightly padded, which is comfortable enough for casual wear (but I add some extra cushion in the ball of foot area for even more support). Last, the heel is advertised as 3 7/8″ high (with no platform). I was a bit nervous about the height (I typically don’t go above 3 1/2″), but they don’t feel so high… not sure why. Maybe its the placement of the heel?

Quality: To be honest, J. Crew’s quality is totally hit or miss. Sometimes the suede doesn’t totally match, or there are marks on the suede, or the leather lining is bumpy… you get the idea. I’ve already returned a few pairs of these due to defects. But the pairs that I’ve kept are perfect. So, good pairs do exist, but just be aware that you may potentially have to exchange a defective pair. I’d advise avoiding final sale, if these ever make it there.

Overall: Its already quite clear that I love these shoes. I have them in three colors already and will likely buy more (I’ve seen a leather version in the J. Crew catalog that I’m super excited for)! The price on these is middle-of-the-road ($245). Its definitely not designer price, but definitely not cheap, either. I’m a little bummed that J. Crew keeps increasing the price of their pumps, and I’m especially bummed that these have been excluded from every single sale. Oh well, I can’t blame them, I guess. If the shoes are selling out at full price, why put them on sale?