Shedding that mighty comfort zone with Stitch Fix

Clothes


I have a hard time getting dressed these days.

I know I wear too much black and my clothes are rather ill-fitting and I lack a distinct sense of “THIS IS ME!” in my apparel choices. But the truth is, pre-weight loss, I was mostly trying to hide beneath my tops and jeans. I certainly wasn’t showing off in them.

I just didn’t feel good. Physically, mentally, emotionally.

Today is actually my one-year anniversary of joining Weight Watchers! And what a year it’s been. Losing 35 pounds has given me a new perspective — and though I’m still not completely comfortable strutting my stuff, I’m getting there. I mean, I’m a book nerd; I’m not someone accustomed to others’ evaluation. It feels weird.

So this post? A little out there for me. Definitely out of my comfort zone. But I figure I’m getting gutsy and ready to start investing in myself, and Stitch Fix* was calling my name.


What’s Stitch Fix?

A personal styling service that brings fashion to your doorstep. After filling out a rather extensive style profile (with all your appropriate sizing, measurements, likes/dislikes, etc.), shoppers pay $20 to have a collection of five items — dresses, skirts, tops, jeans and/or jewelry — sent directly to you.

You set the budget and share information about yourself, including a Pinterest style board (if you have one). You try everything on at home, choose what to keep and mail the rest back in a pre-paid envelope. If you keep an item, your $20 fee is applied toward your purchase. If you keep all the items, you receive a 25 percent discount on your total. Anything that ain’t workin’ for you is returned at no cost. More details are available here!


Stitch Fix box


Why I’m goin’ for it

To celebrate losing four dress sizes, I decided to treat myself to a Fix and use it as an opportunity to get outside my little bubble. I scheduled my first shipment weeks ago and waited anxiously for the package to arrive, checking the tracking like a lunatic. What can I say? I’m super impatient.

In my style profile, I mentioned my changing size and desire to try wearing new things. I hate that I’m constantly in dark, drab clothing — and as I work to scale down my closet and donate items I no longer need, I’m ready to start investing in clothing I will actually wear and enjoy for years to come. Now that I’ve reached my goal weight and am determined to maintain it, the timing feels right to upgrade my clothes.

The only problem?

Money.

Like so many of us, I’ve been trained to love a “good deal” — but that $8 sweater bought on clearance looks a whole lot less inviting after a wash or two. I never paid attention to the labels or fabrics, ignoring the hems and seams coming apart rather quickly. If the item was on clearance, I bought it. Never mind that it looked flimsy and threadbare in no time.

And then who wasted their cash?

I’ll be honest — paying $50-70 for pants or a top is not typically in my comfort zone. Though Stitch Fix allows you to choose a price level for items, there are no $10 shirts. And that’s okay. I’m not rich, friends, trust me, but I’m realizing that investing in higher-quality items I truly like — versus just a bunch of cheap-o clothes I’ll tire of quickly — is going to serve me better in the long run.

If I add up all the impulse purchases I make at department stores or Target, I easily surpass the budget I would set for Stitch Fix each month. As 2014 is the year of being more accountable and conscious for my actions and my spending, I’m foregoing buying other items in favor of trying Stitch Fix. I want to get serious and sophisticated.

Mind = open.

Also, I chopped off my hair two weeks ago. It’s probably the shortest it’s ever been since I was, like, 10, so prepare to be shocked. And amazed. And maybe freaked out. It’s different, I know — and different can be scary! But I really liked it. My tresses seem slightly less insane when they’re not frizzy and long. Frizzy and short is actually much better — who knew?!


My first Fix


Skinny jean

1. Just Black Dean Ankle Zip Skinny Jean | $78

Though I liked the fit of these, I wasn’t sure about the ankle zip detail — and I have a similar pair already. If I was in need of black skinny pants, I probably would have given them more of a fair shake! And honestly, since I wear black to work every day (and think these would have been too casual for the office), I try not to wear black in my “off-hours,” too. But they looked great with my favorite red flats and the tops included in my Fix. Including . . .


Striped top

2. 41Hawthorn Brentwood Jersey Stripe Tiered Top | $68

Cute top, but too similar to items I already own. In fact, I shed the black-and-white striped top I wore to work yesterday in order to put this one on! For $68, I would have wanted something more outside my comfort zone. But the material was very soft and I really liked the tiered styling; the triangles at the bottom were flattering, I thought.


V-neck top

3. Collective Concepts Valencia V-Neck 3/4 Sleeve Blouse | $68

Oh, I was torn about this one — but in the end, I think the sheer quality of the fabric ultimately convinced me to wait. I hate having to constantly wear a camisole under everything. I loved the bright color, though, and thought it was really cute with heels and the black skinny jeans! I’ll have to look for something similar myself.


Purple skirt

4. 41Hawthorn Milo Pleated Detail Skirt | $38

Cute — but too snug around the midsection. Half a cookie would have sent me into paralyzing discomfort!


And finally . . .


IMG_2328_cropped

5. Ezra Kim Racer Back Fit & Flare Dress | $64

Winner, winner, chicken dinner! I knew I’d be keeping this one as soon as I slid it over my head. The material has a slight stretch that is sleek and polished, and my husband had to pick his jaw up off the ground when I walked out. It’s very comfortable, sophisticated and lovely.

I added my own belt at the waist, plus one of my favorite zebra-striped necklaces, and I could easily see how it would mesh with my current wardrobe while still updating my look. It’s hard to tell from that first photo, but it’s actually a very bright blue similar to the bridesmaid’s dress I wore in my sister’s wedding. Oh, like this:


Blue dress


The verdict

Only the blue dress, No. 5, has a permanent place in my closet now, but I absolutely loved the experience of Stitch Fix! The personalized note and style cards that accompany the pieces were so fun to read, and I felt inspired just looking through everything.

Stitch Fix was so fun, and I adored trying on clothes chosen by a stylist for me. A fellow Megan definitely nailed my interests and sizing, and I liked that the tops were in the realm of something I would normally choose while still being just a little bit different.

I already have my next Fix scheduled for February . . . and I sense an obsession a’brewing.


* Referral link. I am not being paid to write about Stitch Fix and purchased my first Fix myself, but signing up through my links will grant me a referral credit toward my next box. Thanks, friends!


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55 thoughts on “Shedding that mighty comfort zone with Stitch Fix

    • You wouldn’t have caught me in a dress before college, J.R., but I did eventually give ’em a shot — and I love skirts and dresses now! But on the weekends? Nah. Totally all about comfort. 🙂

  1. Congrats on your new dress! You look gorgeous in it 🙂 I really liked the pink-ish blouse as well, but I totally understand why you didn’t keep it. Practically every blouse I see these days is kind of see-through, which always annoys me because I don’t know how to combine it properly.
    Are you going to post another Stitch Fix post in February? 🙂

    • Thanks so much! Yes, blouses tend to be rather sheer these days . . . and I’m a bit too old-fashioned for that! Yes, I will definitely plan to review my next box in February. Can’t wait!

  2. I LOVE the dress, but I have to say that I adore those two tops. That striped shirt, the way it is layered, is so slimming. See that would be my problem. I’d end up keeping everything. This is a really cool idea…

    • It was definitely hard to put the tops back in that “return” envelope, Sandy, but I convinced myself to hold out for something I simply cannot live without. If I had a really phenomenal month with a Fix, though, I’m pretty sure I’d want up wanting to just keep it all!

  3. I’ve been hearing such awesome things about Stitch Fix. I love that dress and your hair looks awesome!! I’ve been looking for a good pair of black skinny jeans and I’m sort of in love with the ones they sent you!! Thanks for sharing your Stitch Fix experience with us.

    • Thanks, Christina! Yes, good black skinny jeans can be hard to find. I was in love with an Elle pair I got from Kohl’s last spring, but I caught the knee on a weird and apparently violent part of my desk — I ripped a big hole in them. 😦 I’ve been scouring eBay to find a replacement pair in the correct size, but no dice yet. I do have others that are okay, though, and I’ll make them work for now!

  4. Your hair looks great, and I love all the items they sent you! I’ve never heard of it before, but it sounds like something I could use. I work in a super casual office (anything more fancy than jeans is cause for comments and alarm) so I don’t know how much use I’d get out of it, though. Definitely going to check it out anyway and see if it’s worth it!

    • It’s really fun, Erin, and you can actually specify the level of “dressiness” you’d want in a box. Stitch Fix asks how often you wear casual versus dressy clothing, and how much of it you’d want to see. They’re really rather organized about it! I was surprised. In a great way.

    • Thanks, Allie! I’m probably going to be sad I didn’t keep them, but I’ll roll that saved money into my next box. 🙂

  5. How fun! I love the dress. I lack any sense of style as well and really need a personal shopper. I know Booking Mama gets tired of me asking her fashion questions all the time.

    • Haha — I understand, Kathy! I feel like I’m just now starting to really develop a sense of style, and I want it to be in a multicolored way. I tend to favor dark colors because I think they all coordinate, and no one pays much attention when you’re in black. But it’s time to branch out!

  6. Everything looks so cute and you look fantastic, and that dress is definitely a winner! I hope you do another one of these with your next box. Such fun!

    • Thank you, Chrissie! It was such a fun experience, and I’m sure I’ll review the next box, too. Though I am far from comfortable modeling (an awkwardness that shows in my pictures, no doubt), it was fun to step on the other side of the camera.

    • Thanks so much, Caitlin — I’m just in love with the new dress! I wore it the very next day to work (with a cardigan!) because I just couldn’t stand it languishing in my closet alone.

  7. I love your hair!!! The other items looked great on you, too, but I agree – that blue dress is definitely the winner. It looks like something you could wear as is in warm weather or pair it with tights, boots,and a cardigan for colder weather. The color is perfect for you, too. 🙂

    • That’s exactly what I was thinking, Stephanie — thank you! It’s versatile for the different seasons, which is a hallmark of excellent clothing for me. 🙂 I’m loving it so far with boots and knitted leggings, so I can only imagine how much I’ll like it when the weather gets warmer.

    • It was lovely, Juju — and so unique! Definitely something I would look for in a slightly bigger size and different color. 🙂

  8. I totally agree. It’s better to invest in a few expensive but long lasting treasures, then buy something cheap, only to never wear it again (unless you’re repainting the house of course)

    • Quite true! In a disposable society, it can be hard to change one’s mindset about “investing” rather than simply buying . . . but I’m trying. 🙂

  9. First of all, congratulations on your weight loss!
    Second, I felt like this after I lost weight… I just had NO sense of style. I am still discovering how I want to dress now and it’s almost a year on!

  10. I love the idea of this but I love clothes so much that my sense of style is set…but I love all of the outfits on you…and it looks like a fun way to shop. I think you do have a sense of style…you are just becoming more comfy with it! I love buying clothes that I will have for years…so…quality really does matter!

  11. That blue dress is super gorgeous! I love it! Stitch Fix sounds like a great idea. I rarely get clothes myself and would love to give this a try.

  12. I love this post in every way! 1. That you stepped out of your comfort zone– and showed the photos. 2. That this company exists and the way they work it. 3. That you’re doing something great for yourself because congratulations you deserve it! 4. How you broke down the cost analysis– so true. These days I’m not into paying a lot for clothing either– but truly, as my husband is fond of saying, “You get what you pay for” in terms of quality. Pricey things last. Love it! Thank you!

  13. I’m getting my first Fix next week and am SO excited! Especially after seeing this. That blue dress – HOTT STUFF!! Seriously, it looks perfect on you!

  14. Late to the party! Loved the dress best too. I really liked the coral 3/4 sleeve top too, so yes look for something in that color perhaps, great on you. Your hair is fab!

  15. Ahhh… Stitchfix. I saw Amanda Nelson (@deadwhiteguys on Twitter) raving about it a couple of months ago and I tried to sign up… but I’m not *quite* in their size range. #tallgirlproblems I’d love to have someone help style me, too, especially since I’ve lost ~20lbs in the last 6 months with WW. Ah well… I’ll just have to go shopping with friends (not really such a hardship…)!

    Loved your post, and so glad you found a great dress!

  16. Pingback: Shedding that mighty comfort zone with Stitch Fix | Stitch Fix Reviews

  17. Congrats on your weight loss! I’m sure it was a lot of hard work and you look fabulous! You made a great choice with the blue dress. It was really flattering. I think the pink top was super pretty too. It looked great with your complexion and hair color – you should definitely look for something similar!

  18. I’ve tried Stitchfix and so has my roommate and we didn’t like it. I’m glad you had a good experience though. After stitchfix, I tried Tog and Porter and haven’t turned back since. You have to try it!!!!!

    • Thank you, Isabella! 🙂 During the Stitch Fix sign-up process, you provide them with pretty extensive measurements — and I found that the clothes sent to me fit very well, neither too big or too small. One of the tops (the striped one) was a little snug compared to what I would normally wear, but it was still okay! And you actually specify in your style profile whether you like things to fit your shape snugly or be a bit looser, etc. They’ve thought of everything, eh? 🙂

  19. I really want to see if I can commit to losing more weight and keeping it off – since I had such a rough second half of 2013. So far, 2014 has felt better. We’ve been eating better and I’m trying to get to the gym 4 times a week. I’d like to lose at least another dress size and see how I feel. But StitchFix is the reward at the end of it. I’m doing the same thing – buying cheap clothes that just DON’T last and I need to build a wardrobe that’s comfortable and fits well.

    That blue dress is a knockout. You look stunning!! I’m also in love with your short hair. It looks so so good!

  20. You look AMAZING in that blue dress! Amazing! And I love the haircut. It’s adorable, very chic and super mature.

    I’ve been curious about Stichfix mainly because I didn’t really see the point…after all, I can just go to the mall myself, but your post definitely explained the benefits and why it might be worth considering.

    Hope you’ll post more details from your next haul!

  21. Ummmm helllooo your body is STUNNING!! I knew you had lost a nice chunk before the wedding and were doing really well with WW – but WOW these clothes seriously look spectacular on you!!! WOohoo! And I love the blue dress.

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