I had definitely intended on updating this blog before the next Stitch Fix came but here we are. I’ve been trying to live by the demand feeding guidelines except when I’ve felt as though it’s just been a replacement for the structure of the diet cycle. And I’ve been a bit depressed, frankly, a bit like grieving something, even though that thing I’ve given up isn’t good for me. It gave a roadmap, for better or for worse, for how to feel about myself. Without that, the fact that I haven’t much of a long-term goal for anything in my life has come into sharper focus. It’s not a discovery that comes with a boost of self-confidence, as it happens.
But I’m plugging forward and occasionally eating all the things and wondering what I ever saw in them in the first place. It’s hard to accept that naming an issue doesn’t fix it. It’s hard to accept that I need time and patience to work through, both behaviorally and emotionally, whatever is behind my compulsive need to eat when I’m not hungry.
In the meantime, more clothes, yay! (Is this helping me? I’m not quite so sure anymore — probably a good question for another post) I also want to confess that when I sneaked a peek at what I was getting this week, I broke down and bought a skirt, a sweater, a tote bag, and some black ankle booties on sale from Old Navy. I ended up returning the tote bag for weird handle-action, and exchanging the booties for a smaller size. First time in months that I have felt the need to go outside Stitch Fix just to feel like I had something seasonally appropriate to wear. I got rid of most of my sweaters in the purge and it didn’t look like this Fix was likely to bring me any replacements.
If you are not familiar with Stitch Fix, here’s the skinny: Stitch Fix is an online personal styling service. You can subscribe for regular Fixes or just schedule them as you like. You fill out an extensive online profile of your tastes, sizes, and budget preferences and for a $20 fee, one of their stylist puts together a box of 5 clothing and accessory items to ship right to your door! You have 3 days to try things on, solicit opinions, balance your budget, whatever — you send back anything that doesn’t work for you in a prepaid envelope, and keep whatever you love! Your $20 styling fee is applied to anything you decide to keep, and if you buy the whole box of items you get 25% off the entire box! Prices vary but they say the average cost per item is $55 – 65. If you haven’t ever tried it and are interested, please consider using my referral link. If you use my link to schedule a Fix, I get a $25 credit towards my next purchase! (Note that I do not receive any compensation for reviewing this service; I just enjoy doing it).
This time around I made some specific requests, which I usually avoid in an effort to keep my expectations in check. I really am usually happier when I just let them do their thing. But lately — probably as a result of feeling so uncomfortable in my non-dieting skin — I’ve had that bummer of a “nothing to wear” feeling as the weather gets colder and I realize just how much of my closet I have purged in the several months. So I requested some seasonally appropriate tops such as chunky sweaters, open cardigans and blouses in bright jewel tones, as well as some fun pants for work or play. Lauren addressed my requests in her personalized note (I love her notes!), lamenting the lack of jewel-tone blouses and saying she wanted to stick to more fitted tops (possibly in response to last month’s graphic print top sadness). So here’s what I got:
Benzer Heathered V-Neck Sweater by Market and Sprice ($68). First up, a layered-looking v-neck in a stripey-type pretty blue and white heather. This sweater is very soft and the fitted sleeves and shoulders were very promising. I am pleased to say I was not put off by the false bottom attachment when I got it (this is something that would have driven me batty pre-Stitch Fix and pre-keeping-an-open-mind-about-clothes). Sadly, though, it turned this otherwise lovely sweater into a boxy flowy mess right at my hips and butt. I really like it in the front-on photo on the left, but cannot abide it in the right. My husband and I agreed that second photo was extremely “maternity”. Not what I’m going for, I think. Ultimately, too, the V of the v-neck isn’t quite deep enough for my longish upper chest. Verdict: Return.
Cicely Mized-Stripe Long Sleeve Top by Tart ($68). A couple people said “Beetlejuice,” but not as many as I thought after the first one. I like that it’s fitted, I like that it’s not just your basic black and white striped shirt. I like the neckline and I like where it hits me at the hips. I’m just not sure it’s worth the price. I think I am going to have to try this one on again and see how it feels if I where it around for longer than a few minutes (we were rushing to take these and make it out to a reading the evening the box arrived). This was the most popular item when I posted the choices on Facebook. I think the only thing holding me back is not feeling all in love with it. I always say I have to love it, and that if I don’t, I won’t wear it. But it will go with a lot of things so I think I need to give this one another look and another chance to fall for it. Verdict: Undecided, leaning towards keeping.
Abrianna Longsleeve Knit Cardigan by 41Hawthorn ($48). Speaking of loving it, I love this sweater! It’s very thin and drapes beautifully, can be dressed up or down and is a rich teal color that I had been craving. This outfit is a direct recommendation from Lauren, and I loved it. Part of what makes me lean towards keeping the Tart top is how much I enjoyed wearing it with this cardigan! Verdict: Keep!
Taber Foldover 3/4 Sleeve Sweater by market and Spruce ($64). My husband said this looked much better on me than it did in any of the photographs, but after looking at the many pictures we took (twice as many as far any other item), I was convinced this just wasn’t for me. For one thing, I have “gray” checked as one of only two colors I’ve asked to avoid (the other is “beige”) so it has a strike against it from the get-go. I understand if they don’t have jewel toned tops in stock, but rather than send me something that really washes me out, maybe a dress or an accessory or anything. Once on, it was comfortable but sort of made me look shapeless and lumpy. Verdict: Return.
Emer Jacquard Print High Waisted Cropped Pant by Margaret M ($98). I was really pleased that Lauren remembered how much I like Margaret M when I asked for some fun fall pants for work or play. These would have totally delivered had I not purchased a Margaret M pencil skirt in Fix #10 in the exact same fabric (the photo on the right above shows the skirt and the pants side by side. I also kept an orange pair of the Emer style cropped pants in Fix #8. So I absolutely understand why Lauren chose these, but it doesn’t feel right to spend almost $100 on something that isn’t that different than two other pieces in my closet. Now I have the opportunity to let Lauren know that I’m simply looking for a greater variety of styles and fabrics in my closet, having once been a victim of ‘one-in-every-color” thinking. In the meantime, these are gonna have to go back. As side note, I was very relieved/pleased to still fit comfortably in an extra small in this style — looks like I still have a really long way to go towards breaking out of the diet mind set. Verdict: Return.
Any thoughts on the striped top are more than welcome! Part of me is convinced that if I don’t buy more than just the cardigan then Stitch Fix will take Lauren away from me. Is that weird? I have read many bloggers’ reports that if you purchase less than three items they change your stylist. On the other hand, I have previously a) written to customer service and requested they let me keep Lauren as long as she’s available, and b) only kept two items from Fix #8 and still kept Lauren the following Fix. Ultimately I’ll have to do what feels best, and I’ll be sure to post an update once I decide.
Updated to add: I slept on the decision and kept the stripey top!