Sunday, June 27, 2010

Talbots Review and Gift Card Giveaway!

OK, I'll level with ya. For years, when I heard Talbots, I thought, "stodgy, nautical-themed clothes that aren't my style." But a makeover client sang the praises of the store's plus-sized offerings, we paid a visit, and I completely changed my tune. The store was full of well-made basics, pretty prints, and modern cuts. And that was four years ago! The brand has come a long way since then, even.

I've bought several dresses and a handful of cardigans from Talbots and been delighted with the quality, so when the company approached me to do a review and giveaway, I jumped at the chance. They sent me this darling sundress and, as you can see, I'm completely enamored.

The neckline detail is irresistibly cute, the full skirt makes me deeply happy, and the print is just gorgeous.

I see this dress becoming a summer staple. No doubt.

The best part about this post, though, is not how gleeful this new dress makes me. It's that YOU can enter to win a $250 Talbots gift card from me! Talbots ships internationally, so I'll open this up to everyone. Here's what you've got to do to enter:
  1. Go to the Talbots blog, Red Chair Confessions, and pick out your favorite look

  2. Leave a comment on this post telling us which look is your fave, and also leave A VALID E-MAIL. Comments without a valid e-mail in the comment will be disqualified.

  3. Cross your fingers!

Enter by midnight CST on Monday, July 5. I'll draw a winner at random the following week. This contest is open to U.S. readers only. Good luck, everyone!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Fashion to Figure Dress Winner

And the winner is ...

Lovely Marianna! Congrats, my dear. I'll be in touch.

As always, more reviews, contests, and giveaways to come!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lucy Workout Gear Review

So when I first decided to do my workout wardrobe makeover, I contacted Lucy to see if they’d be willing to send me a couple of items to review. Why? Because most of my fitness buff friends adored the shop’s gear. Also because their prices made me say, and I quote, “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAA!!!!! $78 for a pair of workout pants that are just going to get sweaty and gross? Not a chance."

The Lucy folks obliged me, and I’ve had a chance to put my samples to the test.

I probably bought 7 fancy workout tops on my own – Adidas, Reebok, Nike, Champion, HH, you name it – and I can’t say that any one impresses me more than its friends. That includes this Quickest Short Sleeve technical top from Lucy. It’s cute and it keeps me relatively cool. It is also very, very long, and while that’s helpful for over-the-head weightlifting moves (which I definitely do), I’m not keen overall.

It’s also cut small. When it first arrived six weeks ago, it was too small for me to wear. Many, many bike rides later and I can just about squeeze into it. I take a size 8 dress/size 6 top and this is a medium.

So, ya know, fine if you get one as a gift, but not worth $48 in my experience. However, it does boast a little ruffle on the lower back. Which is, admittedly, quite cute.

I mentioned the pants in this post, but I’m going to have to gush about them a bit more here. They're called the Lucy Power Pant and they are amazing. Aaaaaahhhh-mazing. They are comfy, they are flattering, they are cool, they allow me to move. I want to build a small shrine to these pants.

I’m sure folks will have mixed feelings about this, but a feature that I really love about these guys is the embedded pair of compression shorts. (Translation: Built-in Spanx.) Are they necessary? No way. But if, like me, you prefer to jiggle as little as possible when you work out – belly, boob, and butt – it’s a fantastic design feature. Does it add a bit to the warmth factor? Perhaps. But not so much that wearing them in an air-conditioned gym would become uncomfortable.

As you can see, they are quite snug. I typically take a size 10 in jeans and slacks, and although the L was passable, I ended up trading in for an XL. I was also sent a regular length pair and needed to get the short length instead. I am 5’6”. So yeah, some of the typical sizing malarkey that makes us all gnash our teeth. But if you have a Lucy store locally, the employees are incredibly helpful and knowledgeable. So shop in person if at all possible.

Now, back to the issue of price. While I cannot fathom forking over full price for the top, you can bet your sweet bippy I’ll be buying another pair of these pants when this current pair dies. Why? It finally dawned on me that, as cost-per-use goes, my workout pants are second only to my handbag. This is a piece of clothing that will be worn hard and often, and will earn its keep in about two months. Well worth the investment, in my opinion.

At this point, Lucy doesn’t offer plus or petite sizes, but I’m hoping they will eventually. Short, regular, and tall lengths are available in most full-length technical pants. Most items are meant to fit snugly, so these clothes are for the unselfconscious exerciser who wishes, above all, for total comfort and ease of movement. If that’s you, definitely stop by your local Lucy store or cruise around the website.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Fashion to Figure Dress Giveaway

I was super excited to hear from the folks at Fashion to Figure, an online shop that stocks fun and trendy styles in sizes 12 to 26! I'm partnering with them to give away this darling summer dress, which comes in sizes 1X, 2X, and 3X. (Check their size chart for measurements.) Not exactly BLACK-OUT friendly, but the lucky winner will just have to wait to wear it.

Here's what you've got to do to enter:
  1. Be a U.S. resident.

  2. Leave a comment on this post telling us how you'd style this dress, and A VALID E-MAIL. Comments without a valid e-mail in the comment will be disqualified.

  3. Cross your fingers!

Enter by midnight CST on Sunday, June 13. I'll draw a winner at random the following week. This contest is open to U.S. readers only. Good luck, everyone!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Misty Dawn Designs Rings Winner

And the winner is ...

Laura! Congrats, lady. I'll be in touch soon.

More giveaways shortly!