Thursday, January 13, 2011

A quest for a perfect coat

Still on the quest for an affordable (under $200 USD) winter coat, I recently stopped by my local Theory outlet store. Unfortunately, there weren't any petite or 00 sizes left. I was told by a sales associate there is an outerwear sale happening today, so I might have to drop by this weekend in case there are any new arrivals from a newer collection. I did stumble across the anorie riding blazer:

Blazer: Theory Anorie, size 0 ($99)

Overall, I liked the fabric (Broadway) and style. It's fully lined, and almost looks like a "boyfriend" blazer, but it is marketed as a riding coat. It's not exactly a "winter coat", but since it doesn't get that cold in California, so it could work for fall and spring. I secretly like the Light Heather color, as it's a bit more casual, so it can be thrown over more casual outfits. However, since I have short legs, I look even shorter with it on! The shoulders are way too big, so alterations would be very costly. Total alterations might be up to $100 from my favorite tailor, and I'm not "in love" with this blazer, so it was a definite pass.

After lunch at an all-you-can-eat Korean BBQ restaurant, we popped in a nearby mall and shopped around. I came across two coats and another blazer. I hope everyone does not mind the fact that I am looking away (to the right) in some of the pictures! I'm always self-conscious and worried that I may look "cross-eyed" to some, especially since my eyes are close-set. ^^;;

Coat: H&M long coat size 2 ($59.95)

Overall, this long coat is a nice fit. I'm a huge fan of black coats, since they're a bit more dress than their khaki counterparts. It's fully lined with a gorgeous white lining with navy blue flowers. The shoulders fit nicely, but the sleeves are a bit loose. Since I have thicker arms, wearing a thick sweater underneath will fit comfortably, but it may be too big for some of my fellow petites. The overall length is nice, as it hits above the knee. However, I do not like the pleated hem, as it was too wide for my taste. The cinched waist is also a bit too high; it hits at a point slightly above my natural waistline (smallest part of my waist). It's not high enough to be considered a empire waist. I loved the angled pockets on each side. However, I passed on this because I saw another trench with a lower waist.

Coat: H&M Trench size 2 ($59.95)

The waist hits at the best point on this khaki trench, but the length hits right at the kneecap. A simple alteration can fix this, but my biggest concern was how wide the actual coat is. The shoulders are too wide and the the waist is not fitted - it's a bit boxy, and the double-breasted style makes my body look more flat and boxy than it already is! I've come to the conclusion that I cannot pull off the "double-breasted" style. However, that won't stop me from lemming a Burberry Trench on the future... (with free alterations from a Burberry boutique, I've heard!). I'm considering dropping by H&M again, perhaps to gives the black coat another chance!

Blazer: Banana Republic Lightweight Wool Blazer, size 00p ($198)

The fit in the shoulders is almost identical to my Theory Gabe blazer. However, the sleeves are slightly longer, and the actual coat is very wide. Before alterations, my Gabe blazer was too wide, but still slim-cut. This BR blazer looked boxy right off the rack and would require taking more in on the sides. In addition, the body of the blazer is too short for my taste; since I have a longer torso, I would prefer the blazer maybe an inch or two longer. At this price point, I could get another Theory blazer at the outlet. It's nice to see Banana Republic offering "true" petite sizing, even if only in certain pieces.

Since I didn't find any clothes that I liked enough to buy (yes, I'm really picky!), I settled on a pair of shoes:

Pumps: Nine West "Ambitious" in tan suede, size 6M ($39.99)

For $40, they're a steal! I believe they're also on a 30% discount as of right now. With a 4" stacked heel, they're very comfortable, but I cannot vouch for lengthy walks. All my pumps are peep-toes, so these are a nice addition, especially since they have just the right amount of toe cleavage. I considered the Ann Taylor Perfect Pumps, but they are at least 4x the price, and women who worked at Ann Taylor were super snobby, unhelpful, and never came back from searching for a pair in my size.

Shell: Ann Taylor LOFT, size XXSP

Currently, LOFT does not offer this exact magenta(?) shell, which I tried on a little while back before I started my blog. I would love to pair this shell with a black or gray pencil skirt, but I'm still on a quest to find one I like enough to keep and/or alter. As much as I LOVE the color and style, the fabric felt paper-thin and very sheer! I prefer not to wear an undershirt or camisole underneath, and the armholes were too wide. This is the only LOFT top I'm willing to post a picture of, as all the others were too ill-fitting that I'm ashamed to show any of them! Fortunately I deleted those snapshots. ;P Ann Taylor & AT LOFT, I guess it's just not meant to be...

Oh, and look what happened to my H&M shirt:

I'm sad that I spent $25 on a button down blouse that I only wore for approximately three weeks (2x a week) and I've only washed [gently] thrice! While trying to put on the shirt, I gently tugged it and it ripped! The blouse is a bit stretchy, so I am shocked. :-( Should I buy another one? *sigh* Should I write off buying the black H&M coat ($60 is a steal!), as there is the possibility that it may fall apart? What are your plans for the weekend?

Thanks for reading!
♥, Christina

Eyes: Lancome Floralesque on lid, MAC Mulch in crease and outer corner, MAC Femme-fi on browbone, MAC Fluidline in blacktrack
Cheeks: MAC Peachykeen, Rock & Republic Tease, and Stila 01 Bronzing Powder to contour


  1. That was quite the shopping adventure! Too bad about your H&M button down! =(

    If you ever get the urge to splurge on some nice button downs, Thomas Pink (the slim cut) and Paul Smith are cut really slim and fitted. They fit me really well except I'm too short-waisted, so the shirt bunches up. I bet they would fit you AMAZINGLY.

  2. The blazer looks cute on you, but it's a bit too long. Sucks about your H&M shirt!! $25 for that shirt would probably be about $29.95 here in Canada. You should bring it back and let them know! This morning, I poked a hole with JUST my finger through my Forever 21 camisole. It was only $2.50 so whatever!

    xx The Little Dust Princess

  3. i really love the Theory riding coat and it's too bad that the sleeves are so long. and i can't believe that happened to your H&M shirt! I would see about taking it back to the store and see what they can do for you.

    and you have the cutest dimple ever!

    cute and little

  4. Great review, for coats, I try to stay away from H&M because I don't end up keeping them for very long and they just sit in my closet. But I like the Theory jacket, if only it was slimmer. =)

  5. So many coats! I have to say that I think the black H&M one looks the best on you. I'm surprised that your blouse ripped though! H&M stuff always seemed higher quality to me (at least compared to other stores in the same price range). I think you should consider the H&M coat still; if it's made of thicker material I think you should be fine.

  6. my friend bought that coat at H&M and absolutely LOVES it. all the stuff you tried on is very cute :)

  7. Hey Christina! I'd love to see your baby pics so I tagged you in this post. Hope you can do it :D

  8. trench coats are always classic so you'll never go wrong with that!

    The close up photo of you is so so adorable!

    Stay Happy and Positive!




  9. I love that coat from H&M, but I think that's good you're super picky (unlike me, as I lately can't seem to control myself :P) - I really like that BR blazer on you, but I can see what you mean by Theory.

    Did you mean the AT from FV? I find them fairly snooty there too. When I dropped by the new one at UTC, there was a woman there that was super nice. So maybe you can try UTC?

    You're so adorable ^^

  10. I forgot to mention in the above post that I LOVE your wedges! They are so cute and chic!