Friday, June 5, 2009

J.Crew: Convertible Swing Dress Review

This is J.Crew's Convertible Swing Dress (item #14724), which retails for $78.  It is alpha-sized, and is available in black, navy, tropical aqua, tropical palm, and weathered stone.  J.Crew describes the dress as such:
What's more fun for sun than a convertible? We designed this little number in a supersoft, swingy knit you can wear with the top up or down—as a midlength strapless dress, a short strapless dress, a swing top or a skirt. Strapless silhouette. Pullover. Foldover bodice. Empire waist. Full sweep skirt. As a dress—falls just above the knee. As a skirt—hits at midcalf. Import. Machine wash. Catalog/ only.
I ordered this in a size small in the tropical palm color.  I also own two outlet versions of this dress, also in a size small, in black and dark grey.  The outlet dresses are the Sanur dress (which, according to a tag attached, so is this one), and do not include the pleated rows at the bottom hem, and in my opinion, the fabric is a slightly heavier.  Because the Convertible dress is a bit lighter, I think it flows a bit better.

There are multiple ways to wear this dress.  KatyO at The Violet Diary did a nice review of several different ways to wear this dress here.  I like to wear this dress as a cross between the long dress and short dress - the same as the fourth model picture shown above - where you fold the top part down to the waist, which creates an empire waist/babydoll look.  I like this look the best because it gives you double coverage (in a sense) on top, and it still falls to above my knees, but is not too short.

I think the dress fits very true-to-size.  The dress has a lot of stretch it, especially in the top.  The fabric is really nice - a soft but stretchy jersey, that moves and breathes well.  I think this dress could be dressed up with the right accessories, and of course works as a fun, casual dress.

One note about the color, which Shannon over at Wardrobe Review also mentioned: the tropical aqua color is not as saturated or as deep as it appears in the pictures online.  It is still a nice shade of aqua, but is slightly different than how it shows up online.

I kept this dress.  I love the pleats at the bottom, as well as the color.  I think it is a really fun color and dress for summer.

What do you think?  Do you like this dress?  Do you prefer this dress or the one without pleats?  Which colors do you like?  How would you wear it?


violet June 5, 2009 at 2:54 PM  

I love this dress and am a bit embarrassed to admit that have have it almost all of the colors (I got a really good deal on them). I prefer to wear it either as you have shown it (with the top folded over to meet the waist seam) or "normally" (ie, with the top unfolded).

I love the pleats but wonder if they are what is preventing from liking it as a skirt on me. I think it makes me look a little too oompa loompa (I'm only 5'4"). My husband thinks it looks good as a skirt but I haven't really found anything in my closet to pair with it. I'd be interested in hearing what tops people with the pleated version are pairing with it as a skirt. It seems like it would require a rather fitted top.

gigiofca June 5, 2009 at 3:18 PM  

I am with you on way #2 to wear it -- top folded over for support. The pleats are not bad, it's flowy, but the length is wrong on the skirt. That's why it doesn't work as a skirt for me.

Emily June 5, 2009 at 5:13 PM  

I think this fress in the aqua is so pretty on you! Love it. Thanks for the review.

Paper Bag Princess June 5, 2009 at 8:42 PM  

I like this dress a lot,a nd could see wearing it alllll summer long!

AppGal June 6, 2009 at 10:33 AM  

i found an actual jcrew (non-outlet) sanur dress at my local outlet store a couple of weeks ago. i was so excited to find it! i haven't worn it yet, but love the possibilities.

Anya June 6, 2009 at 11:01 PM  

How much was the Sanur at the outlet? And do you remember which colors it was available in? I found mine at a retail store for $42. TIA!

Anonymous March 29, 2010 at 5:12 PM  

A company called Nuova Vita makes convertible dresses. They are amazing and are made out of a beautiful soft jersey with a little bit of stretch. For a little bit more money you can can get one dress that can be worn over 20 different ways. All the pieces are made by hand! check it out