a99kitten’s Musings

I blog about a WHOLE LOT of stuff :)

I want these sooooooo bad. But they don’t have my size :( I asked the girl at the J Crew store at Stanford yesterday and I think she kinda snickered in my face. Apparently they were quite popular. You’d think for all the money I spend there, they could click their heels and a pair would appear for me! Damn…

There's no place like home!

IMO, every girl needs a pair of cool red shoes and a red coat. I have my coat – and these would have been perfect! Plus J Crew is having 30% off orders $150+ sale right now! Oh well. I did accidentally buy a a new black coat there yesterday. I have NO black winter coats. Wha?? I have a closet full of coats with no black one?? I do have a charcoal grey long cashmere coat that I love but that doesn’t always fill the need for a black coat. I have purchased several from J Crew over the past few years but always sent them back as they weren’t right. But yesterday in the store – there it was! And these red shoes would look SO cute with a cute black coat! Oh…and of course a cute outfit underneath the coat :) I bought a sparkly black tank too. Now I need a place to wear them! Hiking with the huskies probably doesn’t require a black sparkly tank top :)

They have these red flats in my size. I am debating on these…cute. But not as cute as the pumps.

Cute. But not AS cute....

But if anyone sees a pair of these Mona pumps in red sparkly in 7.5 at your local J Crew – get them and I will totally buy them from you!!! :)

Oh J Crew…I really should just own some of your stock…

Wore these today. Loving them. I have always hated the idea of the “bootie” but have to admit that these are good for cold days when boots are good but your pants don’t allow for tall boots. Plus they are a fantastic shade of distressed brown.

I really want these, and now they are on sale….but when will I wear them…really? Wear with pants and you don’t see the coolness of them. But I cannot imagine choosing to wear them with skirts over my various other tall black boots due to their height (mid-calf?). But maybe? With cool tights? Hmmm…

I bought these but sadly had to return them. They looked so perfect in the catalog and could imagine them with a cool pencil skirt and crisp blouse. A bit Emma Peel-ish I thought :) They were gorgeous and the leather was awesome (plus they have a KITTEN heel) but the leather was so soft, they slouched at the ankle – boo. Great style, but needed to be a bit tighter around calf/ankle. Too bad – very cute boots. Anyone with bigger calves could probably make them work.

I would still love a pair of high heeled tall boots in a rich, cognac color. But I haven’t found any that I love that aren’t made in China. I love that J Crew has their shoes/boots made in Italy and NOT China.

So instead of a fantastic pair of cognac boots, I have been investing my money in my stock account. Silly rabbit….although I was up 26% on the year in my stock account (with NO retail stocks…well…not counting TIF) so I think still a fairly decent decision going forward. But maybe a little bit on the boots if I find the right pair :)

On Friday I saw the email coupon in my inbox…and on Friday night I added a few things to my cart but didn’t buy. Then on Sunday I removed an item or 2 but then added another…and then my fantasy football team was losing so bad and I was grumpy and it was rainy and gloomy out and I was tired from staying up late the night before so I pressed buy. Oops?

30% off plus free shipping?? Come on – how long could I be expected to hold out??

Not too bad though..

Silk Allegra in black - can you really ever enough black dresses?

Silk Juliet in clover (I LOVE this color green and have NO dresses in it)

Then I moved onto sweaters…and while this won’t be THE chocolate brown cashmere cardigan I am searching for, it will be cute..

Cashmere Cody in brown (heatherstone)

and then…

Lumiere Ruffle in Sandstone

and then last..

Glitz Stud Cami - but I will look waaay cuter in it though ;)

With the 30% off on top of the sale prices AND free shipping, it was actually pretty darn cheap. I had put myself on a shopping ban last month since I decided that I will buy my pink Chanel bag when I find it (I WILL find it!)  But I kinda fail at self-imposed shopping bans….dammit…

Just got the email confirming my order just shipped – yay! If I can’t sleep I might as well be looking at my booty (think pirates people….not Kardashians.)

Also loving this jacket. A lot. LOVE houndstooth….

I am liking these high-heeled Oxford from J Crew. Mixing the conservative banker with a little naughty…

They could totally go badly with the wrong outfit/attitude. Like a little wicked witch-ish. But the right outfit? I’m thinking hot. Plus, I love wing-tips…

These however….J Crew….elf shoes?

J Crew silk multi-color tank top
J Crew light green spring-weight cashmere cardigan
Michael Kors mustard yellow 5″ heels
Kate Spade Kelly green Opus

All tie in color-wise to my True Religion “butterfly” Joeys.

I totally win today’s color coordination contest :)

Listening to CNBC on the drive into work this morning. They were discussing retails stocks and had the Baird retail analyst on. She was quite bullish on J Crew. I love J Crew as a store to shop in,  but I stay away from the retail sector (except for TIF), so when she said she thought one of the reasons it was a good buy here (they are reporting earnings after the bell today) is because “they provided good value for quality” I actually laughed out loud.

Let’s be clear – I love-love J Crew. Half of my closet is from there. Have loved them for years since I was kid (long before Michelle Obama started making it so popular – pfft.) But I would in no way ever say their full retail pricing was a good value. HA! Come on?  Their quality IS good – better than the Gap brands are anymore, that’s for sure. But considering their price points are on items made in China now? Good value is not how I would describe J Crew.  Cute, fun, comfy – sure.

I never buy anything full retail there. Well, that’s not true. I have probably bought 5 items full price. And 3 of them I was able to return shortly after I bought them and get them at a sale price. And I hate doing stuff like that but paying $295 for a blazer and then seeing it on sale for $110 about 1 month later – nope – going back for better price. Sorry.

So I think the Baird analyst needs to re-evaluate what she thinks “good value” is. Perhaps the stock is a good value – that’s questionable in my opinion (early 2009 was a GREAT VALUE!) but the retail sector is tough right now. Trading in 33 range today. Guess we’ll see tomorrow AM after earnings tonight.

I think I give them so much of my money IN the store, owning the stock as well might make sense ;)  But TIF also reports tonight – I’d rather spend some money IN store there! :)

REVISED: http://www.reuters.com/article/idCNN2621991720100826?rpc=44

Oops, guess the Baird analyst was wrong about it being a buy at 33….although after-market trades aren’t always indicative of tomorrow’s trading.

J Crew never has % off coupons for non-sale items. They just don’t. They will send out e-coupons for their sale items but it always says “for sale items.” I was lamenting this to my friend one afternoon. “If they just sent me a coupon I would buy the jacket I want now. Plus maybe my boots.” I said. Apparently, J Crew has satanic minions listening to our conversations…2 days later BAM – in my email box – 20% off anything. Oh my….

So yes…I bought the wool schoolboy blazer I tried on 2 months ago and fell in love with..

J.Crew at ShopStyle

..and the boots I saw in the catalog and hoped would actually be that same beat up barely black color like they were in the catalog (they are…)

and…the cute mohair retro cardigan (looks so football-ey!!) that is just preppy enough..

oh…and this bracelet I have been hoping would go on sale since June…

So, yes…went a LOT crazy. But everything was so cute and 20% off! And they were all things I had been coveting for months now. AND, they can all be worn with one another. Sigh…so I should be cut off from shopping for awhile…maybe till after all of Christmas shopping is done (oh that sounds so far away:( ) but I will look cute in the meantime :)

Of course I do still want a few things there…but maybe they will go on sale by the time I un-ban myself :)

Had trouble deciding on which shoes to wear today! The reason this is funny is because I used to have no black/dark shoes to fit this category – open toe heels but not sandals/wedges. Husband would looks at my shoes and say “How can you need *another* pair of black shoes??” Well simple, there are:

Work Pumps – high (4″+)
Work pumps – low (-4″)
Pumps – dressy
Flats – casual
Flats – work dress
Wedges
Flip-Flops (don’t even count)
Strappy high heel (more of a sandal) – going out/dressy
Strappy high heel – casual/work acceptable
Peep toe pumps – dressy
Peep toe pumps – casual/work acceptable
Casual but not too casual heel to wear with capris or skirts – work
F Me Pumps (see bottom of page for these…)

There are probably more I haven’t listed. But this is your basic black shoe list (and brown shoe list if you are like me.)

So I have purchased a few pairs of shoes this year to try and fill out some of these categories. And after doing so – I found myself debating WHICH pair to wear today instead of lamenting that “I had nothing to go with this outfit!” YAY!

Outfit = simple one. Pair of Seven For All Mankind A pocket jeans – (sparkly butt to go w/my new Edward Cullen poster ;) )

7's sparkle :)

7's sparkle :)

Plus white lace tank top under a gray J. Crew cashmere short-sleeved cardigan. Now which shoe…

Steve Madden Makel - black

Steve Madden Makel - black

or

Guess Nevel - pewter

Guess Nevel - pewter

I wanted an open-toe shoe so as not to wreck my pedicure! Plus it is summer. I love them both and both went with the my outfit…

So after walking around the house while I finished getting ready I chose the Steve Maddens as they were a bit more summery/open. And good thing I didn’t walk out of the house with 1 of each on like I *almost* did!! Because then I would have to take this lunch break to go buy a matching pair of shoes at the mall instead of write this :)

And of course explain once again to my husband why I needed *another* pair of black shoes…silly boys…

Like these (that I WILL have someday!)

Christian Louboutin Very Prive Peep-Toe Pumps - Suede

Christian Louboutin Very Prive Peep-Toe Pumps - Suede

Oh…and these from the 2009 Fall Collection:

HOT!!!!!!! But I want the burgundy/black combo please :)

So according to both recent articles that I’ve read, and real-life experience, vanity sizing is alive and well.   This annoys me for several reasons…

How the heck can I buy anything online if the size doesn’t really correspond to anything in real life?  And those size or measurements charts you (the e-tailers) offer are a load of crap.  And even if I am 1 size in one of your pair of pants/skirts/sweaters/dresses, I might not be in another style.  Who the hell does this and why?? Not good business!!

Look – if I’m a size 2 or 0 or 18 based on actual real-life measurements that I can take and that will apply across all brands, or at least all items within 1 brand for cryin’ out loud, fine.  But no…that would be too easy.

And premium denim (you know who you are Rock & Republic, True Religion and Seven) don’t even get me started on your washes and material contents. I can wear 4 different sizes – IN THE SAME BRAND?!?!

Today’s 0 is not a 0 from several years ago.  The designers and brands have fattened them up pretty well. I guess this is because you want someone to feel good about themselves and buy from you when they can magically fit into your size 6 but everyone else’s size 8 (or 10)?? Think I’m off? Marilyn Monroe was a size 10 or 12 back in her day. According to her measurements, she would be a size 4 today. That’s insane.

Oh, and, Jennifer Love Hewitt and Kim Kardashian publicly swearing they are a size 2. No dears – you are not.  Not to say you don’t look good whatever size you actually are – but it’s not a size 2. And *maybe* you can fit into a size 25 or 26 jeans – IF they have a heck of a lot of stretch in them. And really – BIG IF here.  No way rigid 100% cotton. Again – I don’t care what size you actually are but just say what it is (or don’t talk about it all..but don’t lie.) Big damn deal – you are both gorgeous girls.

I’m sick of not being able to know if I’m a 0 or 2 or an XS or S in J Crew, Banana Republic, whatever.  And forget designer clothes. I tried on some dresses in Vegas and the size SOOO varied by designer. Not a single dress that I tried on had the same number on it’s size tag. Yet when you looked at the dresses – they were all the same. ANNOYING! Girls do NOT like this! At least no girl I know – and I know some gooood shoppers (myself excluded of course!)

But I think I am most irritated by the fact that I work out all the time (every single day), I watch what I eat for the part and make sure I do not get to a size that I am unhappy with. So do not just F with the sizes to make people who don’t work as hard feel better about themselves. Make them realize, yes I am a size 4, 8, 10, whatever. If they are OK with that and like how they look – great! If not – then they need to deal with it with diet and exercise. But stop EFFING with the size of the clothes for their vanity (and my insanity!)  Please keep it uniform. I do not think it is too much to ask that a single brand has the same sizing WITHIN it’s own brand?!?!?! (J Crew I am talking directly to you…)