Sunday, July 31, 2011

Petite Clothing Review: Work Attire from the Outlets

I finally was able to take some photos of my most recent purchases at the wonderful Tanger outlet mall in Rockville, NY (we took a visit on our way back from the Hamptons). During this outlet trip, my main goal was to find teacher attire for my upcoming student teaching: I needed well-fitting slacks, and I was lusting after another non-iron shirt from Brooks Brothers. Needless to say, the trip was a success!! Here are my great petite finds:

I wasn't even planning on visiting AT Factory, since I'm always horrified by how the prices of the made-for-the-outlets clothing are often more expensive than the sale prices of the good quality normal-store clothing. However, I decided to take a peek anyways, and I'm glad I did! Turns out their trouser pants are roughly the same quality and price as LOFT, AT's sister store, with the exact same fit system. As advised by my tailor, I always go for the low-cut modern fit, which is the appropriate cut considering my short stature and low butt-to-thigh ratio. For slim-legged  ladies with a bit extra in the derriere, stick to low cut pants as higher cuts won't drape properly and will cause bunching (as taught to me by my tailor, Noemi!).

Pants: Ann Taylor Factory Store, Modern Fit, sz. 00P

With heels, no shortening is necessary! The length is perfect as is. I also picked up a pair in a subtle plaid pattern:

I realize they draw attention to my backside, but I prefer to err on the side of overly flattering than overly frumpy (as long as it's tasteful, of course)!!
While in AT, I also found a nice top:

Top: Ann Taylor Factory Store, sz. XXSP(Watch: Vintage)

The quality of this top is nothing exceptional, but it's good enough, and it fits very well. I'm very fond of bunched necklines, since they draw attention away from my tiny bust and give my narrow neck/shoulder area some dimension (note: if you are also narrow on top and wider at the hips, bunched or gathered necklines are a great way to balance your figure!). This top could be worn as is during the warmer months, and paired with a blazer during the colder months. The black and white coloring and subtle pattern makes it super easy to pair with pretty much any solid blazer or cardigan.

Lo and behold, I found my petite non-iron shirt!! Although it wasn't the exact fit I wanted (I wanted the more feminine "tailored" fit), this "fitted" shirt works just fine, and it's my favorite color:

Shirt: Brooks Brothers Factory Store, Miracle Shirt, Fitted, 0P

This shirt fits me how a "classic" fit would fit most women- slightly looser and a bit more modest. The cut is perfect, and the sleeves are the perfect length (although I think I look hideous with the sleeves rolled down!). The quality is great for a made-for-factory shirt: when I asked the saleswoman the difference in quality between the factory store shirts and those from the regular store, she said the only differences are what country the shirt is made in, and a slightly lower thread count. It still has the same non-iron "miracle" fabric as the regular store's shirts have.

I have never had any luck with Gap (they usually run HUGE), but I remembered reading something about a petite-friendly pair of Gap pants in the Alterations Needed forum, so I decided to give the store a try. I am so happy I did, because I was SHOCKED by how well these pants fit:

Pants: Gap Skinny Pant, sz. 1
(Shoes: Payless Shoe Source, sz. 5. These pants are dying to be worn with a cute pair of flats, but I had to make due.)

I'm guessing these pants are meant to fit average-sized ladies as a cropped pant, although the tag didn't mention anything about it being "cropped." What's even more shocking is that the sz. 0 was too small!! Just to make sure I wasn't going crazy, I checked out a different style of pants in sz. 00, and sure enough they were super long and too big. This pair alone is magic, I guess. Even so, I will no longer write off Gap as being hopeless.

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Successful shopping trips are such a mood-booster, even more so when I'm pleasantly surprised. I'll soon be posting about a slight tragedy that happened with my Brooks Brothers shirt, as well as some wonderful news regarding a J.Crew cardigan.



cRk said...

Good finds!! I am going to our outlets sometime this week, I hope I have the luck you did!

Michelle said...

Great finds!! Pants are the one item that I especially struggle with. Size oop are usually too short, so I end up covering my legs with tights in the winter and capris/skirts in the warmer months! Your post made me want to actively look for pants!! Thanks! :p

Do you know what grade level you will be student teaching? I am looking forward to hearing more about your experience!

Raulston said...

You look exceptional in the blue button-down shirt, the khakis and pearls. I think you have found your look! Stunning & Elegant.

Elaine A (TOBeautyReviews) said...

Wow, all those pants look AMAZING on you! You're so lucky to be able to fill pants out well ;)

La Professionnelle said...

Wow, I have paid no mind to Ann Taylor for pants in a while because I felt they didn't fit my proportions well. But the length on these is perfect!! Hmmm, I shall try again!!

Anyway, I live in Brooks Brothers!! Love the top!

Katherine said...

I just found your blog so I have to comment on how gorgeous you are! You are beautiful - and those pants fit you perfectly :)