Tag Archives: Banana Republic

Pretty Little Preppy

23 Sep

I’m trying to go without belts, but it’s so difficult!

Maybe I’ll just wear more non-belted outfits but today…belted.

One of my guilty pleasures when it comes to TV shows is Pretty Little Liars. The storyline reminds me of Desperate Housewives but younger. Plus, Aria and Spencer are great style inspirations…a little boho and a little preppy…right up my alley.

So I pulled out this button-down shirt that I never wear and tried to make it look like something I’d actually wear.

I’ve always had trouble with button-down shirts. In petite sizes, the length is usually too short to be tucked into pants. But in regular sizes, it’s too loose to be fitted. Even when I had a shirt tailored to fit me, I couldn’t think of how to wear it.

After a couple of horrible combinations, I pulled out this little number.

Outfit Details: Banana Republic Factory Store shirt – XS, Forever 21 skirt – XS, random skirt, vintage pearl necklace, Payless pumps

What do you think?

What are you favorite ways to style a button-down shirt?

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Review: Banana Republic Dresses

10 Sep

I was looking for dresses the other day and I stumbled into Banana Republic.

Though Banana Republic isn’t really my style, I saw a lot of 00P dresses in stock at the store so I wanted to try them out and save the trouble of ordering them online.

I want to find more office dresses but there too many options at other stores given my size so I took my chances with BR.

In 00P, this dress has a lot of movement and it feels as comfortable as wearing a jersey tee. I love the neckline, but it’s a tad loose and shapeless. Plus, I’m not a fan of the smocking.

To make this dress better, a nice chunky belt can give it better definition and shape. If it was one size smaller, it would be more flattering and harder to put it back on the rack.

Would I buy it? Maybe as a casual walking dress.

This dress was already reviewed by PetiteXXS. It’s an interesting print but the dress is too loose and the v-neck is too revealing when I move around. It definitely needs a belt to make it look more put together.

Would I buy it? Not really, unless it was one size smaller.

This work sheath has a great neckline again and it minimizes my bust so it doesn’t look too revealing despite the v-neck, which is something I want. But the rest of the garment doesn’t fit at all. It’s too long and too loose.

If I could alter it, I’d take in the waist by 2+ inches, shorten the sleeves, shorten the hem to be above the knee, and make the waistband thinner. Cher from a.fashion.deliberation also reviewed this dress.

Would I buy it? Maybe, if it’s on sale and a trip to the tailors.

I thought this dress would make a good layering piece since it has a tank already attached to a tweed skirt. However, instead of a stretch tee, this top has no stretch and comes with a size zip. The top fits pretty well, but the skirt over-accentuates the hip area with an awkward shape that makes me look really bottom heavy.

Would I buy it? Not likely since the skirt looks so unfortunate.

Overall, the dresses at Banana Republic in 00P are too loose and ill-fitting on me. Either they size inflated or I lost weight (which I doubt) but the dresses don’t fit right from the bust down.

Compared to the average BR shopper, I guess I have smaller waist(by 2+ inches) and smaller hip girth(by .5 -1 inch). If they start making XXXS/000P dresses, I’d probably shop there, but as of now, I don’t think I need to go back this season.

How about you readers?

Where do find work-appropriate dresses that can do well for casual and more formal occasions?

The Look: A Petite Suit – Separated

26 Jul

Everyone needs at least one three piece suit right?

Well, I don’t need to wear suits so I only have one three piece suit and it’s from Banana Republic in 00P (pants are 0P). (I’m over BR, but it doesn’t mean I’ll eliminate all BR items from my closet.)  I bought it 3-4 years ago when I was starting to job hunt and I picked it up for $150 on sale in Boston when I was visiting a friend. At the time, it fit pretty well and I thought it looked nice. But when I brought it home, my mom thought it looked too matronly when I wore it as a suit.

Even now, I don’t think I can pull off this particular look. I was never a fan of the pantsuit, but even the skirt suit seems odd when I see myself in it. Perhaps when I turn 30, I can wear this outfit, but for now, it’s a little too “old” for me.

I’ve been back to BR multiple times, but I just haven’t found a suit that looked and fit so well that would warrant another purchase. But I am on the lookout for a cute blazer.

Instead of wearing these items together, I wear them separately and it works out fine. Even though the pants and the skirt are in 0P and 00P respectively, they are now too loose for me to wear, so I had them taken in by 2-3 inches at the waist. I guess my body is becoming more womanly with a slimmer waist and more defined hips and not because I’ve lost weight (well, maybe I kept off 5 lbs the last few years…but that doesn’t count).

Here are a couple of outfits I’d wear with these suit pieces. I tried to keep the clothes as similar as possible so you can see how it’s styled.

Outfit Details: Martin + Osa cardigan – XS, Anthropologie Pearly Glow Tank – XS, Banana Republic pants – 0P (waist taken in), Forever 21 necklace, Aldo pumps

Outfit Details: Banana Republic blazer – 00P, Anthropologie tank – XS, Theory Ibbey Pant – 00P, Forever 21 necklace, Payless pumps

Outfit Details: American Eagle cardigan – XS, Anthropologie tank – XS, Banana Republic skirt – 00p (waist taken in), Jcrew skinny belt – S, Forever 21 necklace, Aldo pumps

Closing the Door to Banana Republic

23 Jul

When I got my Banana Republic credit card four years ago, I was super excited to enter the working world and pick up a new wardrobe to match. I almost made to Luxe status but I kept returning things that prevented me from upgrading to that level. After a while, I got settled with my clothing choices and slowly tapered off my purchases.

Since I haven’t been using the BR card regularly, the credit line has been gradually reduced and since my last purchase was in February, clearly BR and I have parted ways.

Like a ex that you still Facebook-stalk, I would window shop at the B&M store, check the new arrivals online, and put items in my shopping cart only to close the browser before proceeding to the checkout. Banana Republic…you were good to me, but it’s time to tie up the loose ends. I won’t be going to the B&M store or the website anymore, though I will still keep in touch with your cousins…GAP and Piperlime occasionally.

Yesterday, I officially closed my Banana Republic card.

I know, Banana Republic is a petite lifeline since they’re one of the few retailers that sell petite-specific work apparel. But my style is no longer in line with what BR is selling and I don’t really need basic wardrobe staples anymore.

It’s time to cut my losses and let go.

Goodbye Banana Republic.

The Wrap Shirt

19 Jun

I have this wrap shirt, but I don’t wear it that often because I’m not sure how to style it.

It has that military detailing which makes it challenging to layer since it has so much going on. Two details on a shirt is more than enough for a petite…three is pushing it. Needless to say, if I was taller, all these details wouldn’t make this shirt look so busy.

Anyways, I have two basic outfits that go with this top, but I need some fresh ideas.

The first outfit is pretty boring I must say. I might add a small pendant necklace, but other than that…maybe some colorful pumps? I tried a chunky necklace or a longer chain one, but it doesn’t go.

How can it look more interesting?

Outfit Details: Banana Republic Military Wrap Shirt – XSP, Theory Kissan Pant – 00p, H&M bracelets, Payless pumps

What about the second outfit?

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Alice in Wonderland

9 Mar

I’m still waiting to see Alice in Wonderland. It definitely has the old Tim Burton charm to it, but I’m not sure if it’s going to be amazing or just another film. As much as I love his movies, they’re getting the point where it’s the same old tricks which lead to lackluster productions like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and The Corpse Bride.

But who am I to tell Tim Burton to be more creative?

For myself, I need to be more creative with my outfits. I’m still sticking to neutrals lately (this time it’s navy)…can’t seem to get out of that rut.

Outfit Details: American Eagle cardigan XS, Forever 21 braided tank S, Banana Republic floral skirt XS, Forever 21 accessories, Kate Spade Genny heels

Troubling Trousers

10 Feb

I’ve been looking for a great slim-cut trouser for quite some time, but either I haven’t found one in my size or it’s out of my price range. To me, slim-cut pants makes work attire more stylish than the traditional trouser. Then again, I’m not a fan of a regular suit. On me, the most basic suit can be described as follows:

button-down shirt + trouser pants + fitted blazer = little kid playing dress up

The culprit may partially be fit, but I think it’s also due to my childish face. Instead of basking in woe, I’ll make the best of what I’ve got: traditional trousers and loose-fitting chinos.

Both types of pants can have the same cut but the material is different. Most of the time, I’m on the more casual side of business casual, but I don’t want to look too informal. I personally don’t like khakis, so chinos provide a nice alternative.

Anyways, I got these J.Crew Favorite Fit Everyday Chinos in 00P and they feel like wide-leg pants. The waist is loose, but it sits well at the hip, so I’ll make do without alterations for now. Usually, I stock up items to take to the tailors so it’s one big trip instead of a bunch of little ones. In the future, I’d look into taking in the waist and slimming the leg.

Where do you shop to find your favorite trousers?

Outfit Details: Banana Republic Silk Floral Wrap top XS, J.Crew Favorite Fit Everyday Chinos 00P, American Eagle cardigan XS, Qupid nude booties

Petite Tips:

When wearing a light-colored loose leg trouser, it’s best to pair it with a slimmer or darker top. A wrap top opens up the neckline while the tie defines the waist. A shorter dark-colored cardigan streamlines the silhouette and keeps everything balanced. It’s easy to look overwhelmed in loose leg trousers, but as long as the rest of the outfit is fitted, it maintains the correct proportions.