Monday, June 8, 2009

Banana Republic: Cotton Embroidered Dress Review

This is a Banana Republic dress that I believe came out last spring/summer, but I'm not entirely certain; it could have been the year before that, too.  Before I get to the review, I need to give you a little background.  Boyfriend and I were strolling through the mall one day, and we popped into Banana Republic, and this dress was right in the front.  I tried it on, and...I honestly can't even remember what I thought of it.  Boyfriend and I were discussing the dress recently, and he thought I hated it, but I didn't have that same recollection.

Boyfriend: oooh, now I remember it
  you hated it after you put it on! (or did you just lie??)
Me: no, i didn't think i hated it? :(
  i might have just lied
Either way, this is one of those rare garments that I actually regretted not buying.  There aren't many things I actually regret buying - I eventually move on and don't really think about things any more, but this is one that I always wished I had taken home.  Well, thus began the internet hunt to find this dress.  I was at a bit of a loss because I couldn't remember what it was called, and couldn't remember exactly when it came out.  A few searches on eBay proved fruitless.

Then, two suddenly appeared (and sort-of in my size, to boot!), and after almost a week's worth of eBay agony, I was finally able to nab the one I wanted (the other one didn't come with the sash).  The best part was the price though.  This dress originally retailed for $148, and I was able to get if for $27 (including shipping)!

So, I got this dress in a size 6.  It is a very shapeless shift dress, with triple strand spaghetti straps and embroidery at the bust.  You use the same color sash to cinch the dress at the waist.  I believe this dress fits true to size, but maybe a bit on the smaller size.  I usually wear a 2 or 4 in Banana Republic dresses, but the 6 fits fairly comfortably, if not a teeny bit loose.  I haven't decided if I'll have this tailored or not.  The most constricting part of the dress is the very top, where the embroidery is, so I would base fit around this measurement.

The fabric is a soft and light, but a little bit on the stiffer side.  That said, because of the numerous pleats on the bodice and the swingy shape of the dress, the dress does move very nicely.  On the other hand, even though the fabric is light, because there is so much of it, it's a little heavier than you might expect it to be (but not heavy overall).

The dress is a little bit on the long side for me, so I may look into getting the straps shortened a bit.  The back of the dress has a really pretty two-button closure that is in line with the embroidery around the top.  There is no zipper on this dress, but because of shape, it's pretty easy to slip on over your head.  Because the dress is so voluminous overall, I think it does add a little bit of volume around your hips and backside, but it can also work to hide those areas very well.

I really like the sash on this dress - I think it really helps to pull the dress together, and give it some shape.  I didn't take any pictures without the sash, but without it, the dress really just kind of hangs there and looks shapeless, and not in a cute, shift dress kind of way, but more of a sack kind of way.

Here is a close-up of the pattern on the bustline, and the sash as well.

Here is a close-up of the embroidery on the bottom hem.

I really love this dress (as evidenced by my eBay hunt)!  I think it is a really pretty shade of blue, and I love the details - the embroidery and the sash.  I am really glad to have been able to get this one!

What do you think?  Do you like this dress?  Do you own it?  What do you think of the details?  Are there any clothes out there that you regret not picking up when you had the chance?


HeidiG June 8, 2009 at 4:53 PM  

I remember this dress from last year - so pretty!!! Enjoy it!

JTS June 10, 2009 at 8:58 PM  

Okay, so it was last year! Couldn't remember :) And thank you! I was so glad to find it!! :)

Kenzie August 8, 2009 at 5:36 AM  

What a beautiful dress.! I think that dress was made for you.. Now I can't stop my self to shop at Banana Republic.