Friday, October 31, 2008

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 take advantage of the "secret sales", the additional 30%-40% off final sale items (percentage ranges from store to store), or to see some November arrivals 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! 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!

J.Crew Mens Store In NJ: Coming Soon! :)

There is a post over at Racked (click here), that let us know J.Crew will be opening another men's store at the Garden State Plaza in Paramus, New Jersey on November 14th. Congrats to the shoppers in the area! :)

The author of the post, Izzy, asks a great question about the new store: "This doesn't necessarily mean the Liquor Bar store will lose any of its preppy sheen, but we do wonder how the library-in-the-men's-club vibe will translate to the mall." I am also curious what the store's look and layout will be. Although I am pretty sure, whatever J.Crew decides to do, the store will look great. :)

J.Crew Holiday Collection In NYC {fabulous!}

As Anonymous at 8:20PM and Marietta mentioned (in this post), J.Crew is hosting a private preview of the Holiday Collection with Jenna Lyons at the J.Crew Collection Store (NYC) on November 11.

"Thanks!" to Marietta who shared with us that the "invitation is simple, but really classy.... it's on thick bound ivory paper".

If any Aficionadas (or Aficionados) are attending this invite-only event, please do share with us! We would love to hear more about it. :)

J.Crew Email: Fall Sale & New Styles Added

"Thanks!" to Lesley , Green_Dino (in this post), and others who let us know that J.Crew sent an email wishing a Happy Halloween and announcing new styles added to the fall sale.

I have not been checking the sale section on as much as I use to. (The section doesn't seem to be as "awesome" as it use to be- in terms of prices and selection. I feel like I get a better deal from their stores.) I also have a feeling like there will be better deals to be had during the holiday. Are any of you waiting as well? :)

Madewell Email: Deep. Dark. Dramatic.

Madewell sent an email about their latest denim shade: true black. The email's subject line of "Deep. Dark. Dramatic." made me smile a bit, because it was a bit dramatic in of itself. ;) Although that look featured in the image of the email looks great on the model, I wonder how many regular customers (like myself) can pull that look off? (In my case, I know I couldn't pull it off. My pear frame body would not look good in those pants- even though they are quite pretty!) ;)

The email also reminds us {again} that if you join their Facebook page (click here) you can receive 15% off your next purchase (either at stores or orders over the phone).

What are your thoughts on the look in the email? Do you like that outfit? Would you wear it?

Happy Halloween! {are you celebrating with J.Crew?}

Happy Halloween everyone!!! Remember in elementary school getting to dress up, march in a parade, and have a party because it was Halloween? What great times! :) I loved seeing all my teachers dress up for Halloween too- back then (the 80's), it usually consisted of a Cosby-esque orange sweater (you know what I am talking about!) and khakis that went up pre-tty high on the waist. ;)

So I thought in honor of Halloween, it might be fun to have a post on what we plan on wearing today. :)
Although I won't be wearing an actual costume, I am still dressing up for Halloween. I intend on wearing my "sweet potato" Herringbone Fiona jacket (Item 96553; Regular: $198.00) and my "dark fern" perfect-fit long-sleeve crewneck tee (item 97705, $24.50), along with a pair of Gap Khaki trousers and brown Kingston suede driving mocs (Item 90372). I will slightly resemble a pumpkin- but hopefully a stylish pumpkin! ;)

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

Thursday, October 30, 2008

J.Crew Website: "As Seen On" Michelle Obama

J.Crew updated their index page with a small pink box to the left, that links to the items recently worn by Michelle Obama (on her appearance on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno).
  1. Pembridge-dot pencil skirt (Item 99737; $148.00)
  2. Italian Deco tank (Item 97338: $148.00 select colors $99.99)
  3. Crystal-button colorblock cardigan (item 96233; was $118.00 select colors $89.99
I find it interesting that the image above has the line, "{BUY NOW, BEFORE IT SELLS OUT}". Usually, J.Crew does not make those kind of announcements on their website for almost sold out items. :)

Normally, I would not have imagined pairing all those yellows together. However, the look worked on Michelle Obama (minus the pin she wore on the cardigan). I, unfortunately, do not think this look would work well on me. ;)

What are your thoughts on these three items being used in a single outfit? Is it stylish or too much yellow? :)

J.Crew Email: Fall Outerwear On Sale

J.Crew sent an email yesterday announcing that many outerwear for women have been reduced up to 30% off in price. Depending on where you are in the country (e.g. the Northeast where it snowed already in some areas!), now may be a good time to consider looking at a new winter coat. ;)

Quick Note To Aficionadas :)

I would like to quickly say that I am very grateful for all the positive comments I have received over the past two days- "thank you so much!"

The day off yesterday was much needed (although I can't tell you how many times I wanted to check on the blog during the day!) ;)

Ultimately, I am going to continue with the J.Crew Aficionada blog. There also may be a few changes coming up, (as I am still deciding what to do on a few issues) but I am hoping that any changes made will be for the best. :)

Lastly, I have lots of messages in my inbox to go through, so please forgive me for any delay in responding (which I do plan to do). :) Again, thank you to everyone!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Questionable Item of the Week: Striped Jeweled Cobra Cuff

Striped jeweled cobra cuff
Click here for product page
Item 11257
Regular: $88.00

Immediate thought upon first viewing this item: "what the ...?"

Seriously, what in the world was J.Crew thinking when they decided to include this "thing" in their collection? I do not know where to begin, but a "seasonless accessory" (as described by J.Crew) this is not.

Do you think I am being overly-critical? What are your thoughts on this cuff? Would you buy this or leave it at the store? Have you see this first hand, and if so, what are your impressions?

J.Crew Wedding Collection: Sneak Peek to Spring '09 posted an entry (click here) about J.Crew's upcoming wedding collection for Spring 2009. They also were nice to share some images of the new merchandise that will be available next year.

The silk sail cloth dress to the left looks a bit odd. At first, I couldn't tell if that was the front or back of the dress! (Thankfully, I figured it was the back-side by the mannequin's position.) I thought at first that those flowers should be to the front of the dress, but I guess I have to see more images of the dress to know if it works or not.

J.Crew will also be offering a ruffled satin clutch with a jewel top closure (shown in the image to the right). Again, at first look this purse looks a bit odd. Dare I say this, but the purse might have "ruffle overload". ;)

Lastly, was able to show us a "dusty pink, pleated satin tote" (the one in the image to the left) that I *hope* is still being worked on. That pink tote does not look like it has been finished. In fact, what is going on to the left of that tote... (it's not quite a bow, its not quite a ruffle)? ;)

What are your thoughts on these three items that will be available in J.Crew's Spring collection? Do you like or dislike any of the items? Which items are you looking forward to seeing? :)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I Am Taking A Break ...

I just received an email mentioning how I am a "cop-out" and "narrow-sighted and controlling"...

... So here's the thing Aficionadas, I am getting a bit overwhelmed. In particular, I have been having a hard time finding the right balance with a lot of issues: from what to post (in terms of avoiding any controversial or insensitive topics), to what to do about anonymous posting (keep it or remove it), and the like.

This blog started out as a "fun" outlet for me to share my love for J.Crew and to meet others who love J.Crew too. After awhile, the blog became something more- it developed into a great community of Aficionadas willing to help each other out- and I loved that! Although the essence of that same great community is here, there is also some negativity that strays into the community once in awhile. (The increasing negativity has been one of the reasons why I have been posting comments less and less.)

I am not sure what I am going to do moving forward, but I need to take a break. I have two posts ready to go for tomorrow morning, but I am taking the "day off" tomorrow. I just need some time to think how I will move forward.

I am sorry to be such a "debbie downer". I appreciate all the support I have received throughout the six months (I know six months already!) this blog has been active. :)

Michelle Obama Wearing J.Crew- Got It! ;)

I have received so many emails yesterday and today about the news of Michelle Obama wearing J.Crew on Leno. I thank everyone who shared the news with me and the blog- I do appreciate it! :)

If you haven't heard, you can read more from the following links:
Jezebel: The Politics of Style
People Magazine: Michelle Obama, We Buy The Clothes We Wear
Mrs O: Mrs. O on J.Crew, We Ladies Know

I completely understand the excitement of seeing a celebrity, in this case a political figure as well, wearing and discussing J.Crew on a national forum. :) However, I also understand that the political tension during this election season is high, and that a discussion on politics itself would be inevitable (which is what ended up happening in the "J.Crew Stores: Bonus Additional Off? {super!}" post). That is why I actively choose to not post about Michelle wearing J.Crew. This blog is *not* about politics. It's about our love for J.Crew (clothes, style, and the like).

So, please no more political discussions on this blog. And please, let's keep the conversation on J.Crew going! :)

Article With J.Crew's Menswear Designer Muytjens

Our guy wants to look good, but he doesn't want to feel self-conscious
By Michael Slenske
October 28, 2008
Click here for article link

Last week J.Crew menswear honcho Todd Snyder announced he was leaving his post to launch his own collection. Expect a smooth transition: His replacement is the brand's senior menswear designer, Frank Muytjens, who has been at the company for four years, and earned his chops at Ralph Lauren, where he started out at RRL and went on to oversee outerwear for Blue Label. We spoke to the Dutch-born 48-year-old to get his take on J.Crew's new direction, its upcoming menswear stores, and whether the financial meltdown will alter his (ahem) designs for the brand.

Now that you've been in the big seat for all of a week, where do you see the menswear collection going?
I think that what we did with the Liquor Store brought us a lot of opportunities to experiment with an elevated product. But it's more about evolving rather than just changing. Men need little steps.

Meaning what?
I don't think guys appreciate or want change. They're set in their ways. The trick is to give them something new without it looking too overly designed. To me it's about fit, color, fabrication, and functional details. It's also about proportions: The perfect collar and lapel on a sport coat, the perfect width of a tie, even the size of a button can make a difference.

How do your designs for J.Crew reflect that philosophy?
We pay a lot of attention to interior details, like silk-tie-fabric pockets in our sport coats, and contrast under collars. Our new topcoat has an amazing newspaper pocket on the inside that we found on a vintage garment. I'm also very excited about the fit of our new Ludlow suit, which we introduced in the Liquor Store. It has a sixties vibe to it, with details like pick stitching, functioning buttonholes, narrow lapels, and a canvas chest piece. It's a bit more fitted and shorter than our regular suit.

So the Liquor Store's become important to J.Crew's identity?
Absolutely. I think that in the Liquor Store we found a new type of customer. I was in there the other day and saw John Slattery from Mad Men. That's not the type of person who normally shops at J.Crew, but after they go to the Liquor Store, they're looking at shopping with us again at our regular stores as well.

You're opening a new menswear-only store in Paramus, New Jersey. Is it going to have the same feel as the Liquor Store?
Not necessarily. It will take some elements, but the Liquor Store was based around the neighborhood. In Paramus, we're in the mall.

What will be different about it?
We can't replicate the Liquor Store for obvious reasons—it's its own little microcosm. But the store in the mall will definitely have a masculine vibe, an easy environment for a guy to shop in. I think a guy needs to be transported to a different world as soon as he enters a store. He needs to be tempted. A store should feel unexpected, familiar, and slightly nostalgic at the same time.

Couldn't the same be said of J.Crew's menswear?
I think we give our customer easy-to-understand garments in a masculine color palette. We're understated, not overly trendy. You can't see the J.Crew guy from a mile away. Our guy wants to look good, but he doesn't want to feel self-conscious. To me, J.Crew has always been about mixing high and low, like wearing a denim work shirt shirt under a tuxedo jacket. I think it's important to personalize your style—don't try too hard, and don't take yourself too seriously. You need a charcoal suit, a pair of wingtips, and a few good dress shirts. A tie bar is cool.

Is the economic downturn making you reassess your design philosophies?
Not at all. You have to be optimistic and go full steam ahead.

Overall, this was an interesting interview! :) I am not sure if I agree with Frank's comment that men don't appreciate change, but that is just me. ;) I am also surprised by how optimistic he is about the economy- however I do like positive thinking during these times! :)

What are your takes on the article? Disagree or agree with any of the points made? Do you think men "need little steps" when it comes to fashion? ;)

J.Crew Card Members Holiday Rewards :)

"Thanks!" to Jillian who shared with us the following: "I just wanted to let you know (so you can pass on the word) that today I received a rewards gift coupon to use in crew as long as I use my Crew card (so it does come in handy after all)..."

I am *not* sure if this is the normal rewards card being sent or a special "holiday rewards" for credit card holders. If this is the latter, then I think it is wonderful to see these kind of gifts being sent out to card members. It makes getting a credit card from J.Crew more enticing. Although I will still "pass" on getting their credit card for now. ;)

Follow-Up Note: Consensus seems to be that this is the normal rewards card. I apologize for any confusion (or getting anyone's hopes up). Since I am not a card member, I did not know if this was something extra. For all those who clarified this point- I thank you! :) On a bright note, it does mean that credit card members will be receiving their rewards card soon. :)

J.Crew Stores: Bonus Additional Off? {super!}

It sounds like some J.Crew stores are offering an additional savings once customers purchase a certain amount...

kitchy7 (in the post "J.Crew Stores: Take Additional 30-40% Off Final Sale") shared with us that: "The Michigan Ave store in Chicago is not only offering 30% off final sale items, but they're also offering 20% off your entire purchase if you spend $150!"

Jackie also shared with us that "the J.Crew store in Friendship Heights all final sale items were 30% off-- PLUS, any purchase totaling over $100 received an additional 20% off!"

First, "thanks!" to both kitchy7 and Jackie for sharing that {super exciting} news with us. Second, depending on where you live, your local J.Crew *may* be offering an additional "additional percent off" promotion. :)

Is your local J.Crew carrying a similar additional promotion? If so, please share the location. Thanks in advance! :)

Update: "Thanks!" to Lauren who let us know that the Friendship Heights J.Crew is no longer offering that promotion.

I have also disabled the comments for this post. The direction of certain comments ceased being a part of a constructive discussion. Please resist making negative comments and personal attacks. Let's try to get back to discussing our love of J.Crew clothes. :)

Dear FFM: Help Put Together A J.Crew Outfit For Me

FabulousFloridaMommy (FFM) regularly guest blogs on outfits she creates with items that you, the members, request. :)
FFM has done it yet again! A big "thank you!" to FFM, who has created a fabulous outfit for numerous requests on styling J.Crew's "new arrivals" in the "Dear FFM: Help Put Together A J.Crew Outfit For Me" post!

To view the wonderful sets, click on the links below. (The name of the link relates to the request for an outfit.)
Are there any items from J.Crew (that you either own or are thinking about getting) that you would like FFM to create outfit ideas. Feel free to include additional info like: the climate/season you want to wear the item/outfit, as well as age bracket/lifestyle. :) After a few days, FFM will select a few items (from the feedback) to create a couple of Polyvore outfits with those items (which will then be posted for all).

What J.Crew pieces do you often wonder how to use in an outfit? What J.Crew items would you like to see an outfit created for (please include item name or item number)? Do you have any J.Crew items in your closet that you are unsure how to style with? Please, let us know! :)

Domino Magazine: The Rise, Fall, Rise of J.Crew ;)

This is the third (and final) installment of the Domino Magazine post trilogy (for reference see Part 1 and Part 2). ;) The following are scanned images of the mini-article called "The Rise And Fall (And Rise) Of J.Crew". I found this to be the most interesting part of the Domino Magazine coverage of Jenna Lyons.
As you can see, I have broken up the page into two parts to make it easier for viewing. To read the article better, just click on either image (which will take you to a larger version of that image). :)

What is your take on this "rise, fall, and now rise" of J.Crew? Was the 90's the "fall" of J.Crew? Do you agree or disagree with any of the points made (e.g. that Jenna "saves" J.Crew during the 2000's)? :)

J.Crew Grand Opening In Fresno, CA & Freehold, NJ

"Congrats!" for the shoppers in the Fresno, California & Freehold, New Jersey areas, as J.Crew is opening a new store there today! :)

The address for the new locations are:
Fig Garden
5098 N. Palm Ave
Fresno, CA 93704
(559) 224-4074

Freehold Raceway Mall
3710 Route 9
Freehold , NJ 07728
(732) 294-7156

Sometimes J.Crew announces a store opening by sending residents in the area a promotional offer (e.g. $25 off purchases of $150+). So if you live in the area, keep an eye out for an extra something in your email or snail mail from J.Crew. ;)

Sidenote: In case you are interested, the "J.Crew Stores: Grand Opening List!" post lists additional new locations and opening dates. :)

J.Crew's Mickey Drexler Makes The List!

"Thanks!" to Matthew who was kind enough to let us know some exciting news- that Mickey Drexler made it to the top of "DNR’s rankings of the 100 most powerful people in men’s fashion and retail". (Click here to see the entire listing from DNR.)

The Power 100

Oct. 27, 2008

7. Mickey Drexler

Men’s wear is on the mind for the merchant prince this year. Mickey Drexler, CEO of J.Crew Group, unveiled his first stand-alone men’s store in August in the site of the former Liquor Store Bar in Tribeca. The 925-square-foot jewelbox at 235 West Broadway has set a new standard with its unique merchandising techniques. Neckties tucked into tumblers, folded cashmere sweaters nestled on the bar and many of the original touches, including the lights, fireplace and historic neon sign on the exterior, all serve to showcase the curated assortment of men’s wear J.Crew chose exclusively for this location.

Another men’s-only store is set to debut at the Garden State Plaza mall in Paramus, N.J., on Nov. 14. This will offer more-upscale merchandise than the typical mall store but will not replicate the Liquor Store.

This focus on men’s stores is viewed as the company’s “opportunity to reposition, reinvent our men’s business and do something that we don’t see being done by other retailers in our industry,” Drexler said in September during a second-quarter conference call. The company also made a change in its top men’s merchant last week, naming Frank Muytjens vice-president of men’s design, succeeding Todd Snyder, who is leaving to launch his own men’s collection.

Although the Liquor Store men’s shop is doing well, J.Crew too has felt the results of the consumer pullback in spending. In Q2 it reported profits fell 12.2 percent on a 10.4 percent gain in sales. But the $1.4 billion company is remaining true to its mission, which is to offer high-quality product at a reasonable price—product that isn’t found in every store in every mall.

We’re trying to be world curators and editors,” Drexler said earlier this year. “The more ubiquitous something becomes in America, the less special it becomes.” Last year’s rank: 15. Power prediction: J.Crew sets additional locations for men’s-only stores.

What are your thoughts on Mickey's addition to the list (and jumping from 15th place to 7th)? Do you agree or disagree with J.Crew's mission (as stated above)? What do you think J.Crew should do next?

Monday, October 27, 2008

J.Crew: Can or Can You Not Price Match Stores?

"Thanks!" to Lauren (check out her great site: who shared with us an interesting entry from one of her members:

"When I was placing an order on Friday, the SA told me that they had a meeting that week and were told that they can no longer PM store discounts!"

I am not sure if this latest news is true or not. However, it is something definitely to consider the next time you are placing an order, using the red phone at a J.Crew store or elsewhere, and hoping to price match the store.

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

Yes, it is that wonderful time again! :)
"Thanks!" to Julie and Lesley who let us know that J.Crew sent an email offering free shipping with promo code PUMPKINS on orders of $125+. (Also, it works for orders to U.S. and Canadian addresses.) This offer expires 10/29/08.
Also, "thanks!" to Robin and Anon at 9:01AM (in this post) who let us know that that J.Crew sent an email offering free shipping with promo code PUMPKIN (sans the "s") on orders of $150+. (Also, it works for orders to U.S. and Canadian addresses.) This offer expires 10/29/08.
J.Crew also sent an email today offering free shipping with promo code BOOO on orders of $100. (This is the same code mentioned in this post.) :) This offer also expires 10/29/08.

Domino Magazine Features J.Crew's Jenna Lyons {part 2}

To follow up on the post "Domino Magazine Features J.Crew's Jenna Lyons!", Domino magazine has posted the images of Jenna's home (that are also in the magazine). To view all of these images, including her gorgeous closet that is filled with J.Crew lovelies, click here. :)Quick reminder, if you are interested there is a "Jenna Lyons' Airy Brownstone" video (click here) at Domino's website too.

As for the article itself, it was okay. All the images on Domino's website (with corresponding item descriptions and prices) were the same as those found in the print version of the magazine. I thought the most interesting part of the article was the mini- insert on the "rise and fall (and rise) of J.Crew" (which I will try to scan a little later today).

If you read the article in Domino magazine, what are your thoughts? :)

The Great (Weekly) Exchange

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.

Individual members can also request in this post, items that they are looking for and interested in buying. :)

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

Saturday, October 25, 2008

"Be Back Soon..." Comes Back To J.Crew's Website :(

As Minah, Mary (in this post), and others have pointed out, J.Crew's website has the dreaded "be back soon..." sign up.

Mini-Update: "Thanks!" to Anon at 5:25 PM in this post who let us know that the website is back up. {yey!}

My fingers are crossed that the website & system will be fully functional (and glitch-free) for the holiday season. :)

Open Invite & Request For J.Crew Aficionadas

OPEN INVITE: There are lots of great sites and blogs discussing J.Crew and J.Crew-related topics. I think it would be great to have a blog roll on the side of the main page at J.Crew Aficionada listing those places.

So, if you currently have a site/blog that discusses J.Crew (and/or J.Crew related topics like fashion, clothes, and the like), please feel free to share with us (or send an email to I will be sure to add it to the blog roll (which will be up in a day or two).

OPEN REQUEST: One of the things I enjoy about this blog is hearing from so many Aficionadas and their different perspectives. If you are interested in guest blogging about a review of a J.Crew item, a visit to a new store, or the like, then please do! Just send me an email at "Thanks!" in advance! :)

J.Crew's Favorite Things {do you agree?}

J.Crew's homepage has a new flash slideshow, showcasing a few of their favorite things. The following are their picks (w/ corresponding text):
  1. Completely Worth It | Victoria Ruffle Cami | $88 | (so many pleats, so little price) | Buy This Item
  2. Dress Accordingly | Stretch Vintage Bootcut Cord | now $69.50 | (our go-to pant of the season) | Buy This Item
  3. Sheer Bliss | Tissue Turtleneck | only $39.50 | (why not get two and layer them on?) | Buy This Item
  4. Warm Waffles | Featherweight Waffle Tees | only $34.50 | (get them while they're hot) | Buy This Item
  5. Wise Investment | Sherpa-Lined Goosedown Puffer Vest | only $118 | (the finest goosedown, the softest Sherpa-lining -- quality doesn't have to come with a cost) | Buy This Item
  6. Guilty Pleasures | Crystal Garden Bracelets | starting at $75 | (surprise, they only look expensive) | Buy This Item
  7. Happiness Is A Hoodie | Sherpa Hoodie | only $69.50 | (now that's something to feel warm and fuzzy about) | Buy This Item
Although I do not agree with all those items on the list, the Victoria Ruffle Cami and the Crystal Garden Bracelets are definitely a few of my "favorite things"! ;)

What are your thoughts on J.Crew's favorite things? Do you agree or disagree with any of the items selected? How do you think J.Crew selects those items for the list? What are some items you would pick on your favorite things list?

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

Yes, it is that wonderful time again! :)

"Thanks!" to Jeff (in this post) and Mary who let us know that J.Crew sent an email offering free shipping with promo code TRICKORTREAT on orders of $100+. (Also, it works for orders to U.S. and Canadian addresses.) This offer expires 10/27/08.

Most likely, the other codes mentioned in the ""Heads Up" On Potential J.Crew Promo Codes ..." post are working now as well. :) These codes are for free shipping with promo code BOOO on orders of $100+ as well as free shipping with promo code CANADA for $150+ orders in Canada These offers most likely expire 10/27/08 as well.

Happy shopping! :)

Madewell Email: 15% Off Plus Jeans & Boots {cute!}

Madewell sent an email announcing their ultimate Fall combo consisting of skinny jeans and leather boots. The email also reminds us that if you join their Facebook page (click here) you can receive 15% off your next purchase (either at stores or orders over the phone).

For 15% off your next Madewell purchase, just click on the image to the left (which will take you to a larger version of the image) and print it out (so the associate can read the promotional number). This offer expires 10/31/08.

I am really liking Madewell's boots- they look super cute for Fall! :)

Calling All J.Crew Aficionadas: Can You Help? :)

I have received a request to help locate an item from a fellow Aficionada, that I am hoping our community can help out with. :)

Herringbone Cheshire Jacket
Click here for Kaboodle page
Item 89711
Regular: Petite $225.00

Esther placed an order on October 18th, for a pair of cords and the Herringbone Cheshire Jacket (in "Salt Pepper; size 0 in petite). The order arrived to her Canadian address on October 24th, but the shipment only contained the pair of cords. Although she was charged for both items (the jacket and cords), J.Crew forgot to ship the jacket. :(

After talking to J.Crew's customer service, J.Crew informed her that there were no more Herringbone Cheshire Jacket in "Salt Pepper" (size 0 in petite) left. (They even tried a "we-will-find-it" search with no luck.)

Esther believes "that the jacket was accidentally placed into someone else's box and thus, shipped to a customer who did not order the Cheshire". She is hoping that the customer who received her jacket by accident might be a member of this blog. (She is also aware that the chances of her receiving the jacket are slim, but thought it would be worth a try to ask.) :)

So, if you received an extra Herringbone Cheshire Jacket in "Salt Pepper" (petite size 0) in your recent J.Crew shipment that you did not order, would you please contact me at I will forward your information to Esther. "Thank you!" in advance! :)

P.S. Another request for an item with a similar situation has been made. Kaitlyn is looking for the Cashmere fringe scarf (Item 11789, $150.00) in sea mist that she ordered, never received (but was charged), and is now unavailable to order. If you received this in one of your J.Crew shipments that you did not order, would you please contact me and I will forward your information to Kaitlyn. "Thank you!" again in advance! :)

Another Aficionada Visits The Collection Store {yey!}

I really enjoyed reading Lindsay and Roxy's {fantastic} reviews of the new J.Crew Collection store in NYC in the "Aficionadas Visits the J.Crew Collection Store :)" post. They both did a great job of describing the store and what to expect (e.g. available merchandise). :)

Another aficionada, Cortney, recently visited the J.Crew Collection store and was kind enough to share with us her review too:

"I visited the Collection store in NYC recently... It was beautifully, beautifully done. It was filled with vintage furniture, art books, glass display cases, and "curiosities." The floors were a beautiful unstained wood and the dressing rooms were luxurious - mine had a vintage chandelier, 50s era wallpaper, and a white wool shag rug. The associates and doorman/security guard seemed to be on best extra-polite behavior. ... I was surprised that the selection was not only Collection, but also regular clothes too. There were some regular and Collection items that I had not seen at the other stores in NYC, so I was excited about that. The selection was very well-edited, it was a small store but everything they had was special. The shoe wall was amazing. I tried on the Babette heels in yellow, and they are now on my wish list for sale time! I bought a skirt that was also unfortunately available at other stores, it would have been nicer to find something unique to the store, but oh well. And the bags they give you are all white with white J.Crew embossed on them. I thought it was worth the trip."

"Thanks!" again to Cortney, as well as Lindsay and Roxy, for their great reviews of the Collection Store. I really enjoy reading everyone's perspective on the J.Crew Collection store. :) I feel like I know so much about the store and what to expect thanks to all the reviews! :) Lastly, those dressing rooms sound divine (and better decorated than any of the rooms in my home)! ;)

Friday, October 24, 2008

"Heads Up" On Potential J.Crew Promo Codes ...

Kamantha in dc (in the post "J.Crew Free Shipping Offer & Fall (Not Final) Sale") was kind enough to share with us some free shipping codes she found online (and I really do appreciate it!) :) The codes included promo code TRICKORTREAT and promo code BOOO for $100+ orders; and CANADA for $150+ orders in Canada.

Unfortunately, those codes do NOT work. I do n0t think they have been released by J.Crew yet (which is why they are not working right now). I think they will be released by J.Crew relatively soon though (maybe in a day or two). :) (Although, now that they have been mentioned pre-release, who knows!) ;)

Also, "thanks!" to Vivi (in this post) who shared with us the following about promo code RCLK: "I tried using RCLK earlier today, and it was not working online. I called J.Crew, and they informed me the coupon can only be applied by a call center representative."

J.Crew Email: Take $10 Off Corduroys

"Thanks!" to Lesley who shared with us J.Crew's latest email announcing $10 off select women's corduroys. This offer should apply to selected corduroys in stores and online (click here). :)

What's Your Oldest J.Crew Item That You Still Wear?

Kitsmommy (in this post) came up with a great post topic: "what is your oldest J Crew item that you still wear"? This is a slight take on the post "What's Your Oldest J.Crew Item in Your Closet?"

I know there are lot of Aficionadas and Aficionados who have been with J.Crew for years! Many of us have closets that resemble small J.Crew boutiques. So the answers should be a lot of fun, interesting, and revealing (in terms of which items have lasted the test of time- in terms of quality, but also in terms of fashion/ style). :)

My oldest item from J.Crew that I own and wear out on a continuous basis is my black plaza winter coat. I bought this coat 6 or 7 years ago (I can't believe it has been this long!) and it still looks great. It just has a classic silhouette and the fabric is lovely for the fall/winter seasons. It really is a timeless piece for me.

What is your oldest J.Crew item that you still wear out? What are some of the reasons as to why you keep wearing that item (e.g. comfort, classic style, beautiful color, great fabric)?

J.Crew Stores: Take Additional 30-40% Off Final Sale

A big "thank you!" to all the great members of the blog who were kind enough to share with us that their local J.Crew stores are offering an additional 30-40% off the final sale.

The following is just some of the stores & the percent off:
  • 40% off final sale at the Summit in Birmingham, AL
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 11:38 PM in this post)
  • 40% off final sale at the St Louis, MO store
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 12:22 AM in this post)
  • 40% off final sale at the Pleasanton, CA store
    ("thanks!" to gigiofca in this post)
  • 40% off the sale at the Rockaway, NJ store
    ("thanks!" to Mary in this post)
  • 30% off the sale at the Short Hills, NJ store
    ("thanks!" to Mary in this post)
  • 30% off the sale at the Tysons, VA store
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 11:19 PM in this post)
So chances are your local store is offering a similar percentage off their sale items. :) The increase in percentage off is really great news, especially since just last week, the majority of stores had an additional 20% off the final sale.

Is your local store offering more than an additional 20% off final sale merchandise? If so, what is the percent and location of the store? Is the sale in your local store "final"? Thank you so much in advance! :)

J.Crew Grand Opening In San Antonio, TX

"Congrats!" for the shoppers in the San Antonio, TX area as J.Crew is opening a new store there today! :)

The address for the new location is:
The Shops at La Cantera
15900 La Cantera Parkway
San Antonio, TX 78256
(210) 558-1072

Sometimes J.Crew announces a store opening by sending residents in the area a promotional offer. SJs Mommy (in this post) let us know that in her catalog, there was an "announcement of the new store opening at La Cantera Mall with a gift card (coupon) for $25 off purchase of $150". So if you live in the area, keep an eye out for an extra something in your email or snail mail from J.Crew. ;)

Sidenote: In case you are interested, I have also updated the "J.Crew Stores: Grand Opening List!" post to reflect additional new locations and finalized opening dates. :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Love It Or Leave It: Babette Jeweled Feather Flats

Babette Jeweled Feather Peep Toe Flats
Click here for product page
Item 10825
Regular: $315.00

When I first saw these flats in the catalog, I just thought "pass". I thought they were "over the top" and just not for me. (And of course, the price tag scares my wallet.)

Initial thoughts: (1) The deep yellow is too loud. (2) The feathers are too showy. (3) Peep toes for Fall? (For this point, I guess it depends on which part of the country you live- because in Connecticut, it is cold already! ;) Yet, places like Florida, the weather is still nice enough to not need a jacket and to wear these flats comfortably.)

However, the more I look at these flats, the more I like them! After some time I thought: (1) With a pair of dark jean trousers and a white tee, the flats are a great source of color. (2) On close up, the feathers are quite beautiful and I love the jewel detail. :) (Although I am not sure how fragile those feathers are in person.)

A bit off topic... but J.Crew really likes their bright colors! Is it just me, or has there been a lot of bright yellows, oranges, orange-reds, fushias, and the like lately? ;)

What are your thoughts on the Babette jeweled feather peep toe flats? Do you love them or would you leave them? Have you tried these flats on (or seen them at the Collection store)? If so, what are your first hand impressions?

J.Crew In-Stores Promotional Prices

J.Crew often offers promotional prices on items in their stores. Many of you have been kind to share that information with this blog. I was hoping that we could pool that information in this dedicated post, making it easier for our weekend shoppers to know what prices to look out for.

Some current promos (but could vary store-by-store) include:
  1. Matchsticks on promo at $69.50
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 1:53AM in this post)
  2. Sequined chiffon-ruffle cardigan for $88
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 6:21PM in this post)
  3. Some cashmere sweaters on promo for $99
  4. Merino turtleneck sweater (Item 99219) for $69.50
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 11:54 PM in this post)
  5. Novelty sweaters for $88
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 11:54 PM in this post)
  6. Cable crewneck may still be for $59.50
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 11:54 PM in this post)
  7. Boatneck city tee (Item 96955) for $24
    ("thanks!" to Anon at 11:54 PM in this post)
What are some current promotions that your local J.Crew is having? (Please include item name and price.) Thanks in advance! :)

WWD Article On Specialty Retailers Including J.Crew

The following is an interesting article at WWD (and to view the article in its entirety, click here):
Specialty Retailers Seek Best-Selling Items in Tough Times
by Whitney Beckett

October 22, 2008

What’s selling for fall? Not as much as previous seasons, specialty retailers agree.

Women are shopping less and evaluating more closely what they are spending money on, faced with a dim macroeconomic environment. That’s pushing comp-store sales down around 12 percent at many mainstream
specialty retailers, including J.Crew, Talbot’s, Ann Taylor and White House|Black Market.

“We’ve seen it all this month — deep discounts, incremental promotions and sales, early friends and family days, repeated e-mail blasts. Specialty retailers have been pulling out their entire bag of tricks in the desperate hope of convincing the reticent shopper to spend,” said Catherine Sadler, president of the New York marketing firm Catherine Sadler Group. “But, as we all know by now, it hasn’t worked. September sales plummeted. According to recent traffic studies, traffic is down by close to 10 percent — and, I suspect, still falling. Next will come inventory cutbacks as these same retailers desperately try to preserve their eroding margins and reduce the risk of leftover merchandise. Net net — everyone is girding for what could be the worst holiday season in two decades.” ...

Sadler said newness and differentiation are the only saviors this season, pointing to J.Crew’s higher-end line (“accessible luxury could just be what the doctor ordered, when luxury is no longer attainable”)
and Ann Taylor Loft’s washable products conceived in partnership with Procter & Gamble (“to a certain customer, not having to pay for dry cleaning bills may be just the ticket right about now”).

Based on early fall best-selling items as reported by retailers, customers still want:

• Classic items with a twist.

• Versatile pieces that transition from office to evening.
• Seasonless fabrics, with nearly year-round shelf lives.

• Tops that can move from outfit to outfit.

• Newness that surprises her and that she doesn’t already own.

• Solid price-value relationships.

At J.Crew, that means an $88 heather ruffle cami has been the apparel bestseller. “It has that element of surprise we all need these days — it has a layered ruffle and pleating detail that makes a plain old ruffle seem boring,” said creative director Jenna Lyons Mazeau. “Customers want something special — a reason to buy — a sense of quality as well as style. The more unique and special pieces are, the more sought after and talked about.”

After J.Crew’s second-quarter earnings fell 12.2 percent, mostly due to unexpected computer-system upgrades, the 212-door retailer lowered its profit guidance for the year to between $1.44 and $1.54, down from previous guidance of $1.70 to $1.75 a share.

Banana Republic eked out a slight increase in second-quarter sales to $599 million from $596 million last year, but comparable-store sales d
eclined 6 percent. Gap Inc. improved its second-quarter earnings by 51 percent by carefully controlling costs and inventory.

As Gap Inc.’s best-performing brand celebrates its 30th anniversary, the “quintessential pieces…that have defined our heritage” — a $225 khaki trenchcoat and a $175 tie-neck black dress — have been the 594-store chain’s bestsellers this fall, according to a spokeswoman. ...

But even for the best positioned, the retail pie is getting smaller, as consumers feel the strain of devalued stock portfolios, higher commodity prices, lower home values, tighter credit and general economic uncertainty and pessimism. And retailers that saw strong second-quarter results did so before the bottom truly fell out of global financial markets — spooking even the hardiest consumer.

There’s nothing wrong with J.Crew, Club Monaco or Banana Republic, but they have to be on their A-game with wonderful product combined with unbelievable value,” said consultant Emanuel Weintraub.“ At best, stores will meet reduced expectations, not their prior expectations.”
What are your thoughts on the article? Do you agree/disagree with the list of what customers still want in their retail purchases? Are you surprised (or not surprised) to see that the Victoria ruffle cami (Item 99742, $88.00) is a best-seller at J.Crew?