Monday, November 30, 2009

20% Off J.Crew Sweaters {happy cyber monday!}

"Thanks!" to many of you, including Casual-Crew (in this post), AnneG, & Marietta, who let us know the following offer.

J.Crew is offering 20% off select women's full-priced sweaters (click here to shop women's online) *and* 20% off select men's full-priced sweaters (click here to shop men's online). This offer ends 12/2/09.

As far as Cyber-Monday promotions go, I think this is it for J.Crew (which isn't too exciting as far as deals go). Oh well! At least my wallet is happy ...for now. ;)

Will you be taking advantage of the sweater promotion? Are there any sweaters you are interested in getting? Where you expecting any other deals from J.Crew, this Cyber-Monday? :)

Darlings, is it time for a J.Crew coupon code?

Yes, it is that wonderful time!

"Thanks!" to many of you, including Casual-Crew (in this post), who let us know that J.Crew is offering free shipping on orders of $150+ with promo code HOLIDAY. This offer expires 12/2/09. :)

P.S. I have noticed that other blogs & websites post J.Crew codes & coupons *after* this blog does. If you happen to get codes & coupons from the JCA blog & post them at your site, could you please give give a "shout out" to the JCA blog? This way more JCAs are inclined to share. TIA! :)

The Great (Weekly) Exchange {looking to sell}

This post (of weekly posts) is for individual members who want to swap/sell/share among yourselves. This post is where you can mention your items and outside listing/ auction site (like eBay and eCrater & the corresponding user ID). Please note: this posting is not for resellers.

Please note that any transactions are independent of this blog. (Especially since you will be using an outside listing/ auction site like eBay or eCrater.) I have no dealings or interactions with any of the potential communication, listings, or transactions. :) Moreover, please limit comments about items to swap/sell/share to the "Great (Weekly) Exchange" posts. (Refer to "A Quick Note to J.Crew Aficionadas" post.)

Do you have any items you would like to swap/sell/share among yourselves through your outside listing/auction site?

Sidenote: What's up with JCAs writing "sub" or "subscribing" as their comment? It just means they are subscribing to all the comments (which are then automatically sent to their email) in that particular thread. This way they can stay aware of all the comments posted. :)

The Great (Weekly) Exchange {looking to find}

This post (of weekly posts) is for individual members who are looking for and interested in buying certain items. Please feel free to share a J.Crew store location and/or your outside listing/ auction site if it matches the requests made in this post. Please note: this posting is not for resellers.

Also note that any transactions are independent of this blog. (Especially since you will be using an outside listing/ auction site like eBay or eCrater.) I have no dealings or interactions with any of the potential communication, listings, or transactions. :) Moreover, please limit comments about items to swap/sell/share/finding to the "Great (Weekly) Exchange" posts. (Refer to "A Quick Note to J.Crew Aficionadas" post.)

Is there an item (or items) that you are looking for and interested in purchasing?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

J.Crew Updates Website with New {Holiday} Arrivals!

"Thanks!" to many of you, including Kendra, Professor & Casual-Crew (in this post), as well as Marietta, who let us know that J.Crew had a mini-update to its website today (click here to view online).

There are some new HOLIDAY arrivals for men (click here) & women (click here). However, the J.Crew Collection (click here) is the same.

J.Crew has also provided the latest HOLIDAY catalog online (click here to view). :) And of course, there is a lot of luxurious reds everywhere.

Lastly, J.Crew sent an email this morning announcing that the latest arrivals are now available online and in brick & mortar (B&M) stores. The email also reminds us that today is the last day to take advantage of the offer for 20% off (no minimum) sale online (click here) and free shipping (on $150+ *after* the discount is applied– a bit sneaky here) using promotion code EXTRA20.

What items are you most excited about and why? Which items are you surprised (or not surprised) to see? Which items did you hope would be included? Were you expecting a bigger roll-out today? Also, did you receive the latest catalog? :)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Sneak Peek: J.Crew's Holiday Catalog & Spring Look Book

"Thanks!" to RatsOnParade (in this post) who let us know about a sneak peek into J.Crew's Holiday catalog over at the Stylelist (click here to view more images).

J.Crew Holiday Catalog - Jenna Lyons Gives StyleList a Sneak Peek
By Jennifer Paull
November 26th 2009

How do you invent a new look for a holiday catalog? If you're J.Crew's creative director Jenna Lyons, you spray-paint some gnome statuettes and smash a few ornaments.

Lyons gives us a first look at J.Crew's holiday catalog (out December 2) and highlights some of the best gift choices.

One of the biggest challenges to this season's catalog is originality, says Lyons. "How do you do holiday without being corny, instantly recognizable but not overdone?" One way J.Crew avoids holiday fatigue is to use the color red only for December catalogs.

"We purposely stay away from red the rest of the year. We don't use red type or photograph red clothes at other times," she explains. When crimson appears this month, "people notice a change. It's subtle but it's a signifier."

The cover and first set of women's pages glow with a deep, winey hue -- spiked with bright, cherry-red accessories: Red ladders, unspooled ribbons, broken ornaments and yes, red-painted gnome figurines give a fun, slightly chaotic look to the photos.

For Lyons, this bit of messiness ties into a core J.Crew concept: "the imperfect perfect." Instead of an impeccable image, the joy's in the lived-in, unpolished detail.

That old-chestnut phrase "the gift that keeps on giving" inspired new temptations. A women's Jewelry of the Month Club and men's Tie of the Month Club join the original shoe club. Every month, members receive a new accessory. These won't be cookie-cutter choices; the selection will be made in real time, to pick up on developing trends throughout the year.

The importance of family is another key theme in this month's catalog. In the men's pages you'll find the Family Guys, each a fellow personally connected with the J. Crew staff who was photographed with loved ones.

And who's that toward the back? Lyons herself, alongside her grinning brother and father. "It was not my idea!" she laughed. "We weren't able to get someone at the last minute so we were stand-ins. I was not the first pick, I'll have you know!" The photo session was a happy impromptu reunion, a gift in itself: "My father was beaming."

Lyons' brother models a Baracuta G9 jacket that he put at the top of his wish list. These classic British waxed-cotton, tartan-lined jackets are a J. Crew exclusive in the U.S. (We ladies will have to be patient a bit longer; a resized women's Baracuta arrives in the spring.)

A pair of menswear-inspired foulard silk pajamas tops Lyons' own wish list, along with a platinum-colored silk bow-tie skirt. "I'll have to order fast since we didn't order too many," she realizes, jumping into the holiday shopping fray along with the rest of us.
"Thanks!" to Janice who let us know that over at Courtorture, the entire 2010 Look Book is now available to view (click here to view all the images).
J.Crew's Military Meets Sparkle Spring 2010 Look Book
By Courtorture
November 26, 2009


We took you to the presentation Jenna Lyons hosted to show off her most recent collection for J.Crew, and now the complete spring 2010 look book has arrived. Models lounge on shabby chic furniture, promising a spring filled with effortlessly styled cozy cardigans, khaki army navy jackets, and plenty of girly ruffles and frills. Click below for a closer look at the collection—including a few pieces not previewed at the spring presentation.
Also, "thanks!" to Laura (in this post) who let us know this Look Book preview is also available at the Wardrobe Review blog (click here).

What are your thoughts on the upcoming styles? Are you a fan or not-so-much-fan of the latest pieces? Are there any items you are excited about?

J.Crew Email: Extra 20% off holiday sale + FREE SHIPPING (2 days left).

"Thanks!" to Marietta & GoldCoastGal who let us know about an email J.Crew sent this "Black Friday" morning.

J.Crew is reminding us about their offer for 20% off (no minimum) their Holiday sale online (click here) and free shipping (on $150+ *after* the discount is applied– a bit sneaky here) using promotion code EXTRA20. This offer expires Sunday, 11/29/09.

J.Crew also updated their sale section this morning with more merchandise. Once again, items are moving relatively quick. :)

Are you planning to take advantage of this promotion? Are there any sale item you are looking to get? If so, please share. :)

Seek & Find: Will you visit J.Crew this Weekend?

This is the weekly "sale watch" post, to help each other find sale items at our various local J.Crew stores. ;)

If you are stopping by a J.Crew store this weekend to see what's available in the FALL sale, or to see some new HOLIDAY arrivals {sigh!} in person, maybe you might be willing to share that with us in this post. In particular, if you could share with us a few of the noteworthy items that are available, at what prices, and potential sizes the store is carrying (as well as the store location)- that would be fantastic!

Also, please let us know if your local store is carrying an additional percent off sale. Thanks in advance!!! :)

P.S. I noticed that many of you have already been reporting sale items (and in which stores) in other posts which by the way "thank you!" :) I really appreciate how helpful we are for each other!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

J.Crew's Jenna Lyons to Appear with Martha Stewart {yes, that Martha Stewart!}

A big "thanks!" to RatsOnParade (in this post) & Stephanie who shared the following news (from WWD) about J.Crew's leading lady...

J.Crew Dresses Martha
By S.D.S.
November 25, 2009

J.Crew’s creative director, Jenna Lyons, will appear on “The Martha Stewart Show” on Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the holiday season. Martha Stewart wore a look from J.Crew while interviewing Lyons on her inspirations for the winter 2009 collection and showed looks from the latest catalogue. The show also aired images of Lyons’ turn as model in the next catalogue, along with her brother and father. Stewart took a keen interest in Lyons’ attractive sibling, asking “Is he married? Girlfriend? Because we have so many women here looking for handsome guys like him. We’re always looking.”
Also, "thanks!" to Kristin (in this post) who let us know that there is a video preview available at Martha Stewart's website (click here to view) which shares with us a bit more about the show:
...We are going to treat you to some inspiration for your winter wardrobe. On the next Martha: fashion show. From sweater to sequins to jewels to jeans. Festive and affordable holiday gifts for everyone on your list...
Jenna Lyons is all over the place! She is definitely becoming "the face" of J.Crew (not sure if that is good or bad). I also look forward to seeing the Martha Stewart Show this Friday (I will be TiVo-ing it) to see their J.Crew outfits. The segment looks like fun! :)

What are your thoughts on Jenna Lyon's media exposure? Do you think her appearance on the Martha Stewart Show is a proper venue? Are you "loving the Jenna-Spotlight" or "feeling the Jenna-fatigue" when it comes to Jenna Lyon's press?

J.Crew Email: Holiday treat. Extra 20% off sale + FREE SHIPPING.

"Thanks!" to Marietta who let us know about an email J.Crew sent this morning.

As reported by several {wonderful} JCAs in yesterday's "J.Crew Offers 20% Off Holiday Sale {hazaah!}" post, J.Crew is offering 20% off (no minimum) their Holiday sale online (click here) and free shipping (on $150+ *after* the discount is applied– a bit sneaky here) using promotion code EXTRA20. This offer expires Sunday, 11/29/09.

J.Crew also updated their sale section this morning with more merchandise. From the looks of it, items are moving relatively quick.

Are you planning to take advantage of this promotion? Are there any sale item you are looking to get? If so, please share. :)

Happy Thanksgiving Day! {celebrating w/ J.Crew}?

First and foremost... Happy Thanksgiving Day everyone! It's the time of year where we can spend time with our loved ones and enjoy a fantastic meal. It also officially starts the Holiday season. :)

Per JCA tradition, this post is to find out what everyone is going to wear. I find it really interesting to see what other Aficionadas and Aficionados plan on wearing (and of course it gives me lots of wonderful ideas for future outfits). :) So for this post, what we are planning to wear on Thanksgiving Day? :)

For tomorrow, I plan on going casual but chic. I am going to go with my Double-faced Wool Lexington Jacket (in white with yellow trim) with the New Dream Griffin Crest Crewneck Sweater (in grey). This outfit is finished off with a pair of J.Crew's Trouser Jeans (in Dark Wash) and Lucia Suede Ballet Flats (in mustard yellow). [If the jacket/sweater combo looks a bit familiar, it is because I turned to a page of J.Crew's catalog for inspiration. That is right, I am semi-recreating one of the outfits featured in a catalog from 2007.] :)

What are you planning to wear this Thanksgiving Day? Are you planning to go "head to toe" J.Crew or parts J.Crew?

Product Review: Lexi Satchel

Lexi Satchel
Click here for product page
Item 18261
Regular: $425.00
Now: $249.99

According to J.Crew's item page:

Everyone is loving this bag and it's easy to see why: the stonewashed Italian leather has an incredibly soft handfeel. Carefully designed with special touches like a removable, convertible leather strap (you can wear it as a messenger bag, over your shoulder or carry it as a tote) and couture-inspired tassels to give it that can't-live-without-it status. Leather handles. Top flap with two hidden magnetic closures. Shiny gold-finish hardware. Removable exterior decorative tassel. Exterior front-wall pocket underneath flap, interior front-wall split-patch cell pocket, back-wall zip pocket. Cotton twill lining. Part of the J.Crew Collection. Import. Comes with a dust bag. Adjustable shoulder strap fully extends to 22". 6" handle drop. 8 5/8"H x 14"W x 4 3/4"D.
When this bag first made a sneak peek appearance back in June (refer to the "J.Crew's Fall '09 Look Book {thanks naomi!}" post), I knew we had to meet. I ended up ordering the "Shadow" version because I thought it might be a bit more versatile for my needs. (Although, it was a tough choice. The other shade, Fawn, is very lovely too.)

This bag is great because it offers me the option to carry it as either a handbag or a messenger bag thanks to the two removable straps. The length of both straps are just perfect too. The shoulder strap makes it very easy to carry the bag under my arm, while the messenger strap is just long enough to wear crossed my body (and not as long as the Campo Messenger Bag (click here for a review) either).

The bag is quite roomy, great for carrying quite a few things. There are also several compartments (exterior pocket, two inside pockets, one inside zippered pocket) making organization a breeze. The bag has only one zippered pocket (on the backside of the purse's interior) though. It would have been nice to have more zippered pockets- but that is just me.

Something worth mentioning is the magnetic closure. Love the concept but very difficult to execute. I find it very hard to actually get the darn magnetic closure to actually line-up and clasp together. I end up just letting the front flap fall where it may.

As for the leather, it is generally very soft and smooth to the touch. It is also prone to scratches. The bag I received already had a few scratches on the front. I am under the impression that this is normal and what to expect from this leather. (I provided a real-life image below, just click on it to view it larger).

I should also add that the leather on the front side appears to be a bit different than the other sides. The leather on the front flap and front exterior pocket is very smooth while the leather on the other sides is a bit more wrinkly. (I hope this makes sense.) The texture of the wrinkly leather allows some of the leather to flake off when rubbed against something. (I found this out the hard way when I was wearing the Wool-Cashmere Carrie Coat (Item 99071) in white.)

Overall, I am very pleased with the bag. I don't think I would have gotten it for the full retail price. However, for its current selling price, I would recommend it to a fellow JCA who is considering it.

Lastly, there is another fellow JCA who posted her review of the Lexi Satchel that you should check out if you are considering this bag: Amy Kelinda's "the j.crew lexi satchel" post over at her Kelinda Kelinda blog.

What are your thoughts on the Lexi Satchel? Are you a fan of the style & size? Would you consider getting this bag?

J. Crew Group, Inc. Announces 3rd Quarter Fiscal 2009 Results

J.Crew has announced its third quarter fiscal 2009 results. It is summed up quite nicely over at the Wall Street Journal (click here).

J.Crew 3Q Profit Surges On Higher Margins, Same-Store Sales
By John Kell

November 24, 2009


J.Crew Group Inc.'s (JCG) fiscal third-quarter profit more than doubled as the retailer posted higher margins and same-store sales, and results topped already rosy projections.


The retail industry has been hit by a sharp contraction in consumer spending and J.Crew, like its competitors, has spent the last year cutting costs, including reducing inventory, and trimming some corporate office positions. But the company's casual styles have been widely copied and creative director Jenna Lyons' design aesthetic has been credited for J.Crew's recent success.


Last month, Pali Research said the chain is well-positioned to increase market share as it courts luxury trade-down consumers, adding its "unique product at compelling price points is increasingly sought out by customers that are increasingly price and value conscious." The firm also touted the differentiated fashion and lower price points of J.Crew's growing Madewell division.


For the quarter ended Oct. 31, J.Crew reported a profit of $43.9 million, or 67 cents a share, up from $19 million, or 30 cents a share, a year earlier. Last month, the company drastically lifted its earnings projection to 54 cents to 59 cents, citing stronger-than-expected sales and margins.

Revenue grew 14% to $414.1 million. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters most recently expected $408 million. Gross margin surged to 48.4% from 41.6%.

Retail and factory sales were up 20%, and direct sales increased 4%. Same-store sales jumped 8%, in line with the company's October estimate.
Inventory per square foot was down 17% from a year ago. For the fiscal fourth quarter, the company expects earnings of 37 cents to 42 cents, while analysts were looking for 41 cents.

"Regardless of the economic environment our long-term mission does not change--it's all about product, it's about design, it's about service, it's about creativity," said Chairman and Chief Executive Millard Drexler.


Shares rose 0.5% to $41.06 in after-hours trading. The stock has more than tripled this year.


I am pleasantly pleased with the results. (Especially since I am a stock holder. Go J.Crew, go!) J.Crew's strategy to reduce inventory and keep price reductions at a minimum seem to be working quite well for them.

What are your thoughts on the news? Do you disagree or agree with J.Crew's strategy? Do you think Jenna Lyon's role has helped contribute to the success of J.Crew?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

J.Crew Offers 20% Off Holiday Sale {hazaah!}

A big "thanks!" to many of you, including Kristi, lululady & Marisa (in this post), Sophie (in this post), as well as SC Crew & Athena, who let us know about the following offer.

J.Crew is offering 20% off (no minimum) their Holiday sale online (click here) and free shipping (on $150+ *after* the discount is applied– a bit sneaky here) using promotion code EXTRA20. This offer expires Sunday, 11/29/09.

The following are the actual terms for this promotion:

Just for our fans (we’re telling you early)… get an extra 20% off all items in our holiday sale plus free shipping on orders of $150 or more* when you use promo code EXTRA20 at checkout. http://www.jcrew.com/AST/Navigation/Sale.jsp

*Offer valid online only. Offer does not apply to previous purchases, alterations or to the purchase of gift cards. 20% discount applies to sale items only. Free shipping offer valid through Sunday, November 29, 2009 11:59pm ET on Internet orders shipped via regular shipping (4 to 7 business days). Free-shipping applies to online-only orders of $150 or more after 20% discount on sale items and before shipping, handling and taxes are added. Free ground shipping and online savings are applied at checkout with promo code EXTRA20. Offer not valid on telephone orders. This offer cannot be combined with any other promotion. Limit one promotional code per order.
This is just the offer that some of you JCAs (including myself!) have been waiting for. :)

Are you planning to take advantage of this promotion? Are there any sale item you are looking to get? If so, please share. :)

J.Crew Email: A private holiday Cardmember preview (exclusively yours)

"Thanks!" to many of you, including Marietta & Missmasala, who shared with us the latest email from J.Crew to its card members.

The email above features the not-yet-officially-released-online Marché Tote (Item 21458; $278.00). J.Crew describes the the tote (which comes in either Fawn or Salmon) as:

Our designers were inspired by one of our favorite bracelets to create this elegant chain-link strap (we like wearing it both doubled up and as a single strap, depending on our mood). Perfect for every day and just dressed up enough for a night on the town. Leather. Chain-and-leather handle. Top interior hidden magnet closure. Shiny brass hardware. Exterior front pocket with hidden magnet closure under flap, back zip pocket. Interior front-wall split-patch cell pocket, back-wall zip pocket. Cotton twill lining.
Not sure what to make of the tote... I like the style of the tote's body and the Fawn shade is gorgeous. However, I am not sure if I like the chain-link strap. I guess I would have to see & try on in-person.

On a bright note, this email only confirms that new arrivals will be available online soon. {wahoo!}

What are your thoughts on the tote? Do you like the style- from the chain handle to the front pocket?

J.Crew Email: Our giftable, collectible art tees...plus FREE SHIPIPNG

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared with us the following. J.Crew is showcasing their tees (click here to shop online) with the phrase "tees with all the trimmings... an artful gift ...in supersoft cotton". The email features the Beaded Marrakesh Tissue Tee (Item 20488; $39.50).

There has been a lot of discussion about whether the quality of J.Crew's tees are worth the retail price. Several JCAs have mentioned receiving defective tees or tees that develop holes after minimal wear. What's up quality control? On a bright note, J.Crew should take back any item that is defective (even if it's from "final sale").

As for my personal experience with J.Crew's tees (and this is just my opinion)... (1) they have some of the best designs & fit and (2) definitely not worth the full price tag. Often times, I do find that the tees are super thin making them vulnerable to damage. However, usually I buy them at a low price which makes it worth it for me. :)

J.Crew is also offering free shipping on orders of $150+ with promo code FS150. This offer expires 11/24/09.

What are your thoughts on J.Crew's tees? Are there any new tee arrivals that you are interested in? Do you think the quality and designs are worth it? :)

Darlings, is it time for a J.Crew coupon code?

Yes, it is that wonderful time!

J.Crew is offering free shipping on orders of $150+ with promo code FS150. This offer expires 11/24/09. :)

P.S. I have noticed that other blogs & websites post J.Crew codes & coupons *after* this blog does. If you happen to get codes & coupons from the JCA blog & post them at your site, could you please give give a "shout out" to the JCA blog? This way more JCAs are inclined to share. TIA! :)

Product Review: Metallic Lexi Clutch

Metallic Lexi Clutch
Click here for product page
Item 17545
Regular: $225.00
Now: $69.99

According to J.Crew's item page description:

Everyone is loving this oversize leather clutch and it's easy to see why: the reverse metallic finish gives it a matte, crackled texture and authentic vintage look. Carefully designed with special touches like a removable, convertible strap (you can wear it as a messenger bag, over your shoulder or carry it as a clutch) and a couture-inspired tassel pull-tab to give it that can't-live-without-it status. Tumbled leather. Hidden magnetic closure under foldover flap. Exterior front-wall zip pocket with a decorative tassel pull-tab. Cotton twill lining.
I have provided a few real life images of the bag (just click on any of them for a larger view). I *really* appreciate it when fellow JCAs post their real-life images of J.Crew items. It definitely helps me figure out whether the item looks like the catalog image or not.

When this bag first came out, I thought it was cute but I never really gave it any consideration. Of course, that was until it went on sale (& it wasn't final sale yet, those FB free shipping codes were around, so one thing led to another...) ;)

I ended up choosing the Turquoise metallic shade. This is a great color that will work quite nicely for most seasons: Spring, Summer, & Winter. (Probably not the best color for Fall.)

I must admit that I really like the bag. I should also add, I don't think this bag is for everyone as it does have some limitations (which I list out below).

The size. It is a bit on the small size for a messenger bag but it is a bit on the big size for a clutch. I plan on wearing it as a messenger bag, so I will definitely have to limit what I plan to carry (just wallet, cell phone, and small personal bag).

There is a convertible strap to wear it as a messenger bag. The straps can easily be removed by using the snap on buttons. The bag looks good crossed over the body or just off the shoulder (although it is a big long width-wise as shown in the image to the left).

There is a zippered pocket in the back of the bag, as well as one zippered pocket on the inside of the bag. I don't recommend putting anything in either pocket unless it is a small & flat item (like paper), as it will definitely bulge the bag.

The leather definitely has a crackled look to it. I love the look, as it has a vintage feel to it. However, I can see how some JCAs would not care for it at all. The leather is also very soft to the touch.

Lastly, there are two other fellow JCAs who have posted reviews on the Lexi Clutch that you should check out if you are considering this bag:
A Bigger Closet's post "Part 1: A Tale of Two Bags. The Lexi Clutch in Real Life Import." over at A Bigger Closet
Dinagideon's post "Boden + J. Crew=LOVE! (Oh, and a Special Bag Called the Lexi!!!)" over at My Superfluities
Up for tomorrow, my review on the Lexi Messenger bag...

What are your thoughts on the Lexi Clutch? Are you a fan of the style & size? Would you consider getting this bag?

Quick Poll: What do you think of the Metallic Lexi Clutch?

J.Crew's Jenna Lyons & Bridesmaid Dresses

Over at the Bride's Guide (click here), there is an interview with J.Crew's Jenna Lyons and her take on bridesmaid dresses.

My Conversation with Jenna Lyons of J.Crew
By Darcy Miller

September 7, 2009


We're big fans of J.Crew's collection of perfectly-polished, tailored pieces. And their bridal collection is nothing short of gorgeous. More and more brides are turning to them to outfit their bridal parties, and with good reason: The dresses are affordable and come in an array of eye-catching colors and figure-flattering styles. So, I asked Jenna Lyons, J.Crew's creative director, to answer a few burning bridal questions here on the Bride's Guide.


True or false: Bridesmaids dresses have to match.
FALSE! All girls are not made equal, and their dresses don’t have to be either.

What’s your prediction for the next big color trend in bridesmaids dresses?

Well, what I want it to be and what it will be are never the same thing. I would love for it to be nudes and skin-toned makeup colors.


What are some chic ways to personalize your bridesmaids dresses?
The first thing to do is be polite—ask the bride if she is ok with you personalizing your dress. If she is, you could add a crazy flower pin or a leather menswear's belt. As far as accessories, I'd wear a necklace around my wrist or throw on a string of pearls.


With so many lengths to choose from—short, long, and in-between—how can a bride know which one is best for her maids?

Chances are they know themselves. It never hurts to ask your bridesmaids what they'd like to wear because everyone feels comfortable in different things. Girls look beautiful when they feel beautiful.


How important is it that a bridesmaid dress can be worn again and again?

Thinking about your bridesmaids' pocket books is a generous thing to do, but ultimately it's not a necessity. It’s always great to be able to wear something again, but just know that's not going to be the case for everyone, and choose the dress that makes you happy.


The wedding season maybe over, but there are still lots of weddings taking place this Fall and Winter. Over the years, I have definitely noticed more and more J.Crew dresses at weddings & parties. I attended one party two months ago, where I kept saying to my husband, "...she's wearing J.Crew, ...that is a J.Crew dress, ...oh that skirt is from J.Crew..." :)

What are your thoughts on this interview? Do you agree or disagree with any of the advice Jenna shared (like the use of a crazy flower pin or men's belt)?

Crewcuts Email: We're celebrating crewcuts at Derby Street + a special gift for you

A big "thanks!" to Susan who let us know about another wonderful offer from J.Crew. The J.Crew in Hingham, Massachusetts is having its first anniversary. To celebrate, J.Crew is offering local customers $25 off any purchase of $150+. This offer ends 12/8/09.

Just click on the image above or here (which will take you to a larger version of the image) and print it out (so the associate can read the email).

The location for the store is:

Derby Street Crewcuts
94 Derby Street
Hingham, MA 02043
(781) 749-2482

Congrats to all those in the area!!! :)

Monday, November 23, 2009

J.Crew Factory Email: Hooray-For-The-Holidays Sale 30-50% off

"Thanks!" to Marietta & Linda who shared the following email J.Crew sent today.

The email reminds us that J.Crew Factory stores will run a major sale the day after Thanksgiving. Customers who shop before 8AM on Friday, November 27th, will enjoy an additional 40% off clearance.

Moreover, the Factory Stores will run a sale with 30-50% off select holiday styles. This sale runs from 11/25/09 to 12/2/09.

The email also shares with us that the J.Crew Factory Store hours for Thanksgiving are now available. To find out when your local Factory store opens (and closes), click here.

Will you be shopping on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving)? Are there any items you are hoping to get at the Factory store? Do you think (regular) J.Crew will have any Black Friday promotions?

J.Crew Email: Last day. 20% off all women's shoes & boots + FREE SHIPPING. Online only.

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared the following news & email J.Crew sent today.

J.Crew is reminding us about their shoe sale, with 20% off select Women's shoes and boots (click here to shop online). This offer is available only online and expires today, 11/23/09, at midnight.

I did end up taking advantage of this offer and got another pair of ballet flats (no surprise here, I love me some flats!) ;)

Moreover, J.Crew is offering free shipping on purchases of $150+ with promo code HARVEST. As mentioned in yesterday's post (click here), Kater (in this post) observed that J.Crew has changed the terms of this offer mid-way through the promotion.

Originally, this free shipping offer was to run until 11/30/09 (refer to here). Except, this email & the one sent on Friday (click here to view) state this offer expires today, 11/23/09. Huh? Hopefully, J.Crew will honor the original offer with the end date of 11/30/09.

Are you planning to take advantage of the shoe promotion before it expires? What are your thoughts on the HARVEST promo? Will it end today or on the 30th? :)

The Great (Weekly) Exchange {looking to sell}

This post (of weekly posts) is for individual members who want to swap/sell/share among yourselves. This post is where you can mention your items and outside listing/ auction site (like eBay and eCrater & the corresponding user ID). Please note: this posting is not for resellers.

Please note that any transactions are independent of this blog. (Especially since you will be using an outside listing/ auction site like eBay or eCrater.) I have no dealings or interactions with any of the potential communication, listings, or transactions. :) Moreover, please limit comments about items to swap/sell/share to the "Great (Weekly) Exchange" posts. (Refer to "A Quick Note to J.Crew Aficionadas" post.)

Do you have any items you would like to swap/sell/share among yourselves through your outside listing/auction site?

Sidenote: What's up with JCAs writing "sub" or "subscribing" as their comment? It just means they are subscribing to all the comments (which are then automatically sent to their email) in that particular thread. This way they can stay aware of all the comments posted. :)

The Great (Weekly) Exchange {looking to find}

This post (of weekly posts) is for individual members who are looking for and interested in buying certain items. Please feel free to share a J.Crew store location and/or your outside listing/ auction site if it matches the requests made in this post. Please note: this posting is not for resellers.

Also note that any transactions are independent of this blog. (Especially since you will be using an outside listing/ auction site like eBay or eCrater.) I have no dealings or interactions with any of the potential communication, listings, or transactions. :) Moreover, please limit comments about items to swap/sell/share/finding to the "Great (Weekly) Exchange" posts. (Refer to "A Quick Note to J.Crew Aficionadas" post.)

Is there an item (or items) that you are looking for and interested in purchasing?

Sunday, November 22, 2009

J.Crew Email: What she really wants...(p.s. FREE SHIPPING ends tomorrow)

"Thanks!" to Marietta, Susan, & GoldCoastGal who shared the following news & email J.Crew sent today.

J.Crew is showcasing their jewelry with the caption: "Joy to Jewels. Custom-colored, hand-assembled, one-of-a-kind desings + brilliant gifts". The email image above appears to feature the Pearl Twisted Hammock Necklace (Item 22599; $98.00) with another necklace (which I can't figure out). To shop J.Crew's jewelry selection online, click here.

J.Crew is also reminding us about their shoe sale, with 20% off select Women's shoes and boots (click here to shop online). This offer is available only online and expires tomorrow, 11/23/09, at midnight.

Lastly, the email also reminds us about free shipping on purchases of $150+ with promo code HARVEST. As Kater (in this post) correctly pointed out, J.Crew has changed when this offer expires. Originally, this free shipping offer was to run until 11/30/09 (refer to here). Except, this email & the one sent on Friday (click here to view) state this offer expires tomorrow, 11/23/09. Say what J.Crew? Not sure what to make of this "correction". Personally, I think J.Crew should just honor the original offer (to run until 11/30/09).

What are your thoughts on the new jewelry arrivals? Any pieces interest you? Are you planning to take advantage of the shoe promotion before it expires? What are your thoughts on the HARVEST promo? Will it end tomorrow or on the 30th?

J.Crew Email: We're celebrating in Stamford + $25 off

A big "thanks!" to Marietta & Soon to be PhD who let us know about another wonderful offer from J.Crew. The J.Crew in Stamford, Connecticut is having its first anniversary. To celebrate, J.Crew is offering local customers $25 off any purchase of $150+. This offer runs from 11/24/09 and ends 12/8/09.

Just click on the image above or here (which will take you to a larger version of the image) and print it out (so the associate can read the email).

The location for the store is:

Stamford Town Center
100 Greyrock Place
Stamford, CT 06901
(203) 406-9673

Congrats to all those in the area!!! :)

Friday, November 20, 2009

J.Crew Email: 20% off all women's shoes & boots + FREE SHIPPING. Exclusively online.

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared the following news & email J.Crew sent today.

J.Crew is running a shoe sale, with 20% off select Women's shoes and boots (click here to shop online). This offer is available only online and expires this Monday, 11/23/09.

What is also interesting is the email makes the following very clear:

Exclusions include all women’s styles for QUODDY®, AIGLE®, HUNTER®, TRETORN®, SPERRY TOP-SIDER®, and SOREL®.
They are also offering free shipping on purchases of $125+ with promo code SHIP125, and on $150+ with promo code HARVEST. These offers expire 11/30/09.

Are there any shoes that you are interested in? Will you be taking advantage of this promotion?

Seek & Find: Will you visit J.Crew this Weekend?

This is the weekly "sale watch" post, to help each other find sale items at our various local J.Crew stores. ;)

If you are stopping by a J.Crew store this weekend to see what's available in the FALL sale, or to see some new HOLIDAY arrivals {sigh!} in person, maybe you might be willing to share that with us in this post. In particular, if you could share with us a few of the noteworthy items that are available, at what prices, and potential sizes the store is carrying (as well as the store location)- that would be fantastic!

Also, please let us know if your local store is carrying an additional percent off sale. Thanks in advance!!! :)

P.S. I noticed that many of you have already been reporting sale items (and in which stores) in other posts which by the way "thank you!" :) I really appreciate how helpful we are for each other!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

J.Crew Factory Email: After-Thanksgiving Sale - Midnight Madness at J.Crew Factory

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared the following news & email J.Crew sent today.

J.Crew Factory stores will run a major sale the day after Thanksgiving (known to the retail world as "Black Friday"). Customers who shop before 8AM on Friday, November 27th, will enjoy an additional 40% off clearance.

Factory stores will also run a sale with 30-50% off select holiday styles. This sale runs from 11/25/09 to 12/2/09.

...and so the Holiday shopping begins! :)

J.Crew Email: Keep warm (and stylish). Plus, FREE SHIPPING.

"Thanks!" to many of you, including Marietta, as well as jBird & CheesyGoodness (in this post), who shared the following news & email J.Crew sent this morning.

J.Crew is reminding us about their latest new arrivals that are available for purchase online and brick & mortar (B&M) stores.

They are also offering free shipping on purchases of $125+ with promo code SHIP125, and on $150+ with promo code HARVEST. These offers expire 11/30/09.

Are there any new arrivals you are interested in? Will you be taking advantage of this promotion?

Check Your J.Crew Catalog {offer inside, maybe}

"Thanks!" to so many of you {fabulous} JCAs who let us know, throughout various posts, that J.Crew has sent customers a little something extra special in their catalogs this past week.

Some of you have mentioned receiving codes ranging from free shipping (no minimum!) to getting coupons for $25 gift cards to be used at the local brick & mortar (B&M) stores.

I should add that not all catalogs have an offer inside. (J.Crew's marketing team has a special top-secret formula for who gets what, if anything. Don't bother trying to figure it out. I stopped thinking about it a long time ago.) ;)

The Holiday catalogs are still being sent to customers. So if you get a catalog (which some of us get later than others, or not at all, no matter how hard we try to be on that magical list ...excuse me for my rant), double check inside to see if you received something extra sweet. :)

I have to say that although I don't benefit from the "catalog offers" and "free shipping when you log-in online" promotions, I give props to J.Crew for offering them. A nice gesture for those who receive them. :)

Product Review: Cadogan Tall Leather Flat Boots

Cadogan Tall Leather Flat Boots
Click here for product page
Item 18209
Regular $325.00

The almost knee-high leather boot is just a staple that is a part of any JCA's wardrobe. It is a timeless piece that transitions seamlessly from Fall to Winter to early Spring. Of course, J.Crew has an updated, yet classic, version available this season.

J.Crew's Cadagan Flat Boot page states:

Crafted from soft, supple Italian leather with the clean, classic lines we're famous for, this is the perfect pair with our favorite jeans, but they go just as well with feminine skirts and dresses. Leather lining. Full inside zip. Leather sole with rubber forepart for better traction. 1 1/4" stacked heel with a rough finish. Made in Italy.
A big "thanks!" to Jessica who shared her thoughts on these shoes with us. The following is her review:
I just received a pair of the tall boots in black and they are gorgeous...truly the boot I have been searching 3 years for! The leather certainly feels like good quality and is super smooth, the tailoring a quite refined--but not stuffy or stiff (like many other riding-style boots), the zipper is smooth and well-hidden. The stacked heel is not chunky at all. In my opinion, they have the perfect "rounded point" toe.

Now the bad news: while I would say they run perfectly true to size (5), the regular boots were too tight for my calves. I'm pretty muscular (14") and have small feet for my size, so maybe other size 5 girls won't have this problem. This was my first J.Crew boot purchase and I'm so sad I have to return these! The extended calf seems to only come is a 6 or larger, bummer! I took rudimentary measurements:

Size: 5 (measurements will surely be different for larger sizes)
Shaft (from top of heel): 13.5"
Calf (widest part): 13 1/8" (so close!)
Heel: 1.25"


Thought this might be helpful to other Aficionada readers who are considering buying these.
"Thanks!" again to Jessica for her great review!

I have two pairs of last year's Brewster Leather High Boots (Item 86198; $198.00). After inserting Dr. Scholl's comfy heel inserts, I love them. However, I had to size down (1/2 a size down to be exact) and they are tricky to get on. So I am thrilled to see this year's version true-to-size and has a zipper (convenient!)

What are your thoughts on the Cadogan Tall Leather Flat Boots? Are you considering or already have purchased these boots? Have you seen these boots in person? If so, please share with us your reviews too! :)

J.Crew Clearance Store Sample Sale {oh my!}

A big "thanks!" to Liz (check out her "Save the Date" post over at her Pink Monkey blog) who shared the following {fantastic} news.

J.Crew's Clearance Store in Lynchburg, Virgina is having a major sale. This event takes place this weekend:

Saturday (10AM to 8PM)
Sunday (12PM to 6PM)

From what I hear these sales are awesome! Unlike the sample sales in NYC (which usually suck, yup I said it), these warehouse sales offer very reasonable prices for items. Of course, it requires a bit of digging through boxes and stuff. Very much worth the search for the gems that can be purchased. :)

The location for the store is:
J.Crew Millrace Clearance Store
25 Millrace Drive
Lynchburg, VA 24502
(434) 316-6324

Congrats to all those in the area!!! :)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

J.Crew Email: INSIDER SALE. Ends today. 20% off your order of $150+.

Did you forget about the recent promotion? J.Crew sure hasn't! ;)

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared the following email J.Crew sent this morning. J.Crew is {yet again} reminding us about their offer to take 20% off purchases of $150+ with promo code INSIDER. This offer expires today, 11/18/09, and is available online only.

Incidentally, what is up with the sale updates? They seem to be happening at the most random times (for example at 3AM this morning, and again at 8:30 AM, EST). J.Crew likes to change it up a bit I guess. ;)

Have you already taken advantage of this promotion? Will you be taking advantage of this promotion? Are there any items you are interested in getting?

J.Crew's Holiday Style Tips: Fashion Do or Don't?


By popular JCA request, this post is about J.Crew's latest style tips for Holiday 2009 (which can be found online here). Many JCAs have questioned the "advice" (and oh yes, that word is in quotes for a reason) being offered by J.Crew this merry season. Perhaps someone got to the eggnog a bit early this year. Read on for more...

Holiday Style Tips: Our resident stylist reveals her secrets for how to make your party attire a little less predictable

Style Tip #1: There's more to holiday dressing than costumey holiday sweaters and black cocktail dresses. 'Tis the season to get creative. A celebratory sequin reindeer tee and thigh high socks (rather than conventional tights) give an otherwise classic ensemble a chic twist.


Style Tip #2: Who says sparkle is only for evening? Nothing makes a better day-to-night piece than a sequin sweater jacket. Layer it over a shock of holiday red and when the sun goes down lose the casual cords for sexy cropped black pants and sky-high heels.


Style Tip #3: There's always a winter occasion that calls for an all-out glamour gown. Heels are the most obvious footwear choice, but glittery flats make a bigger style statement- not to mention prep your feet to dance the night away.


Style Tip #4: Not only is a borrowed-from-the-boys buffalo check tie a festive accent, it also keeps this ladylike taffeta skirt from feeling too fancy. Fishnet anklets are the perfect playful finishing touch.


Style Tip #5: The quickest way to get more mileage out of a frilly party dress is to wear it the day after with a boyish blazer and motorcycle boots. I can see a cool mom wearing this outfit to her kid's school Christmas pageant.


Style Tip #6: Throw a tuxedo jacket over a sequin sweatshirt with dark skinny jeans and strappy heels for an effortlessly cool remedy to little black dress boredom.
{gasp} I am still collecting my thoughts around the tips...

Okay, now that I had a moment I can properly reflect. The outfits selected with each style tip is over. the. top. C'mon now J.Crew!

For example (style tip #5), do you honestly think some "cool mom" is going to rock that outfit at her kids Christmas pageant? Really? Right. What about style tip #2, that whole outfit (including trapper hat, that's right a trapper hat!) screams "sloppy" to me. Not so much sexy. And I can't believe I am saying this, but we get it J.Crew you like sequin tops.

Needless to say, I am not a fan of the style tips or outfits showcased. I am going to go with the ever popular phrase that "less is more" and hope J.Crew will recognize that too.

What are your thoughts on the Holiday Style Tips? Are you a fan of any (or all) of the styles? Are there any "tips" that you strongly disagree or agree with? :)

Madewell Email: The sweater of the season

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared the email Madewell sent yesterday.

The email features the Striped Cocoon Cardigan ($72) which is described as "a cool, unique shape meets cozy lambswool and angora– so soft you won't want to take it off".

Not going to lie, I am going to pass on this cardigan. I think it would make me look bigger than I am and why would I want to do that?

What are your thoughts on the Cocoon Cardigan? Do you like or dislike the style? Are you a fan of Madewell's sweaters? :)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

J.Crew Email: Are you missing out?

"Thanks!" to Sandra (in this post) & GoldCoastGal who let us know about the following. J.Crew sent an email to non-card members listing all the reasons why it's great to be a card member. This topic was recently discussed in the October 20th "J.Crew Email: Are you missing out?" and October 16th "J.Crew Email: A special offer... for a limited time" posts.

There are several stated benefits associated with the card:

  • $25 Rewards Card for every $500 you spend
  • Lookbooks featuring their favorite pieces
    (and how to wear them)
  • Prioritized status when receiving monthly catalogs
  • Cardmember-only invitations to private sales
  • Advanced notification of the biggest sale each season
  • Early access to select items
  • Complimentary standard alterations
    (does not apply to Factory stores)
  • Personal shopping (they'll even open early or stay late to suit your schedule)
  • Access to the Cardmember-only priority number, so you'll never have to wait in line
Some JCAs have been very happy with the card (especially those who do not carry a balance). They reported getting their rewards card quickly as well as several preview emails. However, some JCAs who are card members mentioned not receiving all the slated benefits (like not getting the Look Book, getting the catalog late, etc.)

As for me, I still don't plan on opening a card with J.Crew (the interest rate is outrageous!) But thanks for the offer! ;)

J.Crew Email: INSIDER SALE reminder. Ends tomorrow. 20% off your order of $150+.

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared the following email J.Crew sent this morning.

J.Crew is reminding us about their offer to take 20% off purchases of $150+ with promo code INSIDER. This offer is expires tomorrow, 11/18/09, and is available online only.

Some JCAs have mentioned using this promotion already. Moreover, some of you {selected} JCAs have used this promotion in conjunction to J.Crew's "free shipping (no min) when you log-in" offer. (Refer to the November 10th " Surprise! Log Into J.Crew for Free Shipping {yey!}" post for more information on the latter offer which runs until November 22nd).

Lastly, remember all those free shipping codes last week? {sigh! good times, good times.} I am surprised there are no codes out right now. :(

Have you already taken advantage of this promotion? Will you be taking advantage of this promotion? Are there any items you are interested in getting?

More Sneak Peeks for J.Crew's 2010 Collection

We have seen quite a few sneak peeks for the Spring 2010 collection (refer to here, here, and here). Well, now there's some more! :)

"Thanks!" to J.Crew Guy In Canada who shared several additional articles on the upcoming collection...

What are your thoughts? Has your opinion on the upcoming line changed? Are you looking forward to the Spring Collection?