Tuesday, May 26, 2009

J.Crew: Garden Dress Review

This is J.Crew's [SUPER PRETTY!!] Garden Dress (item #15685), which retails for $68.  It comes in classic navy, sweet papaya, shell, and white, and is alpha-sized.  J.Crew describes the dress as such:
The spray of hand-placed, raw-edged petals adds a modern touch to this sweetly feminine cotton dress. Fitted at bust, straight bodice. Straight skirt. Spaghetti straps. Fully lined. Falls to midthigh. Import. Machine wash.
I first saw this dress way back in March/April, and got it right away with the Mickey card.  They didn't have it in-store, so I ordered it over the phone in the shell color, in a size small.  I haven't had a chance to do the write-up for that one yet, but the dress finally appeared in-store, so I grabbed it for the blog.  Below is the picture of the dress in shell *swoon*

I ordered the dress in a small, but I tried it on in-store in an extra small, because I was feeling extra skinny that day (HAHA).  I will say that the dress fits almost true-to-size.  I had a teeny bit of wiggle room in the small, but the extra small was definitely too small.  It was pretty tight around the bust, so I would say that you should just stick with your regular size.  If you are way, way on the small end of your size, then I would recommend trying on the smaller size if you can.

I also wish the dress was a teeny bit longer.  The dress is supposed to hit at mid-thigh, but it came to a few inches above my knee instead.  I still wished it would have been just a bit longer.  Taller ladies may have an issue with this dress if you don't want to wear something as short - I would recommend trying it on to see how you like it.  Keep in mind that it is supposed to be a lounge/beach cover-up, so it's a bit shorter than maybe a non-beach dress might be.

The dress is a fairly straight silhouette.  If you want a dress with shape, then this one is probably not for you.  The good thing about this dress is that the dress is relatively simple, so you can easily use a belt or other accessories to create some shape.

The fabric is a very nice, light, and soft cotton.  The dress is lightly lined, but the lighter colors lend themselves towards the sheerer side, so if you planning on wearing this as a straight-up dress, then I'd recommend that you check your behind before you go out.  The fabric will be really nice for late spring/summer/very early fall.  I imagine you could get away with pairing this with some leggings/tights or a sweater as it gets cooler, too.

I was nervous about how the petals would look in real life.  They could either look really cute or really sad, sloppy, or silly - and I'm sure there will be plenty of people who think they are the latter, but I think they are super cute!  I think they are really feminine looking, and are just the right amount to be cute and delicate, without being overly precocious.  The petals on the top of the bodice do help add a teeny tiny bit of shape to the dress.

You can't really see it in the IRL pictures, but there is a bit of ruching across the back, which is also kind of a cute touch.  Again, it adds a little bit more interest and shape to the dress.

I love this dress.  I can't wait until summer really heats up and I can wear this out and about!  I love this dress because I think it's really light and feminine, and I love that style.  I prefer the shell color to the white one, but I do love the white color too!

What do you think?  Do you like this dress?  Have you seen it or tried it on?  Would you wear it as a dress or a beach cover-up?  What color would you get?

I have a separate question: I have a few J.Crew swimsuits that I have semi-prepared for review.  Is anyone interested in IRL pictures and reviews of swimsuits?


GingerSnap May 26, 2009 at 9:58 PM  

I love this dress on you, but when I tried it on a couple of weeks ago...I looked BAD in it. I think it was just too much for my petite frame...boo. You look great in it!

KatyO. May 27, 2009 at 2:14 AM  

I *must* try this dress. And of course I would love swimsuit reviews, seriously. I am so bad about bathing suits. I didn't realize until last year that I was wearing the wrong size and cut for my body.

AppGal May 27, 2009 at 12:20 PM  

this looks amazing on you! so glad you bought it and that you gave it a good home :)

i, too, would like to see some swimsuit reviews. I tried on my first j.crew suit this past weekend--it was marked down HEAVILY so perhaps it wasn't the best to try on, but I didn't like it. I'd like to see some of the other options.

JTS May 30, 2009 at 10:19 PM  

@GingerSnap - Aww, that stinks :(

@KatyO - Have you tried it yet? I love it SO much! I posted one swimsuit review so far, and will hopefully get around to posting a couple more.

@AppGal - Thank you! It is definitely very loved, haha. Which suit did you try on? I love J.Crew swimsuits, they are probably my favorite!