Over the last year I’ve been working toward buying more quality pieces for my wardrobe that could work well in a professional environment as well as evening/”going out” type of situations. Finding pieces with eye-catching and adaptable styles in good fabrics and in my size is a tall order that I often can’t achieve, but I do feel that in the past couple months I’ve made some great discoveries as I’ve found more brands that offer these kind of pieces (mostly) in my size. Now when I’m considering higher-quality items, I’m thinking of quality materials, polished styles, and better fits, not necessarily higher price points. This look has some of my latest finds that are helping me improve my wardrobe, and I wore it out today to an academic conference:
I’ve known about Eloquii for years. In fact, I still have pieces from their first existence as a sub-brand of The Limited, but I am not a regular shopper of Eloquii because they do not offer all of their styles in sizes 26 and 28. I had a couple months there where I would go to their site, and literally every. single. item. I. wanted. stopped at a 24. I also had purchased some items about a year ago that I thought had good promise, but they ended up being slightly too tight and too short, and so they never became a part of the circulation of my wardrobe.
I’ve been really impressed with Eloquii working toward offering more sizes lately. They now have some petites as well as the “Viola” cut, which is meant to fit shapes where a person’s bottom/pant size is 1-2 sizes larger than their bust/top size. When looking at their site at the Viola options, I saw a few styles up to a 28 that I liked, and Eloquii always has great sales, so I took advantage and decided to try them out once again.
I was pleasantly surprised. Everything I ordered fit me really well, and this top, which was purchased at a 28, is even a little big in the bust and sleeves. Not at all what I was expecting from my last experience of things being too small (I like this top so much that I’ve already ordered it in a size down). Putting on this top, the fabric was denser and nicer than one typically gets in plus size clothing. And, I should say, with the coupon this top was only $35 dollars — “nicer” pieces are not always expensive. This is cheaper than some Old Navy tops and 1000x better quality. Once I tried it on, I knew immediately that I wanted to pair it with the marble print pencil skirt that I had purchased from Melissa McCarthy Seven7.
Melissa McCarthy’s line has impressed me over and over again. She has great quality items. This skirt’s fabric is so nice, the print is vibrant, and her pieces would work wonderfully for tall people. Most impressive– after one season of offering items up to a 24/3X, she expanded to a 28/4X. I’m hopeful that she’ll keep exploring more sizes, but I will note that her dresses and skirts are roomy and many could fit someone at a size 30.
At 5’4″, I need to alter her items (for example, I pulled up this skirt to be right underneath my bust — that’s how long it is on me), but it is always easier to take fabric off than to not have access to it at all because it’s too small/short/etc. Melissa’s line is just outside of my typical price range. It means not spending money on more affordable fashion that won’t last as long in order to purchase one piece from her. Now, this isn’t hard for me because I own too many clothes as it is, but it might be harder for others who are building their wardrobe. She does occasionally have sales, and I recommend hopping on it when she does.
Lastly, Lane Bryant has been impressing me lately with shoe options. Often times the shoes I like are “online exclusives”, so I take a gamble on them, and these cutout block heels really paid off. The heel height is perfect for me–I cannot do high heels. The base is cushy and comfortable. I’m into the ties, and I love that the ties are suede and just as nice looking as the shoe themselves. I think I bought these with a coupon too, and I feel that these shoes look more expensive than they actually were.
I finished my look with cheaper jewelry – simple silver earrings from a local boutique and a really old faux white-marble stone ring. One place I haven’t made investments? Jewelry. Maybe someday….
Have you tried these brands — what did you think? What brands do you buy from for higher quality pieces?