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Review: Madewell

If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that I’m in LOVE with Madewell. While other petite bloggers have been digging LOFT duds, I’m never far from the Madewell store.

Sure, it’s gained popularity since the Alexa Chung collection debuted, but even before, it has amazing offerings. In the same vein as J.Crew, but slightly cheaper, their style caters to a younger, trendier, and edgier crowd than the average J.Crew customer. Though I tend to think of it as a casual store made up of denim and tees, it also has great basics that can work for the weekend and for the office.

It’s not the cheapest place to shop, but you get great quality items at a reasonable price. In stores, the sale prices are cheaper than the ones online, so if you’re ever near a Madewell store…check it out.

I popped by the store to try a couple of items in XS from the sale section.

The triple tiered tank and the blazer in XS make for a cool summer pairing. In stores, the tank was on sale $29.99 and the jacket cost $39.99.

The tank was sheer, but the floral pattern is interesting with some asymmetrical ruffle tiers. It feels quite delicate and though I wanted to get it, I didn’t. Since I already have a sheer floral tank I had to pass on this one.

The greyish-blue blazer by Buckley Tailors fit perfectly everywhere…even the sleeves. It kind of has a schoolboy blazer feel to it, but when buttoned, it creates a nice feminine shape. Great construction, awesome fit and on sale? I had to get it especially since the original price of the blazer is $168!

Next was this striped sweatshirt, in an olive color.  I wish I had a better photo, but it looks like the stock photo. This was exactly skinny stripe I was looking for but in a sweatshirt material. Very simple, warm, and comfy, I would’ve taken this home as well but I’m holding back for the skinny stripe top I actually want.

This is a very typical outfit for me…a loose top and a cardigan.

The Autumn feathers tank feels just like the other tank I reviewed, sheer and delicate but in a subtler print. It’s really nice, but it’s in the exact same style as my floral tank from Madewell.

The Zip Cardigan Jacket was the surprise of the day. It doesn’t look like much online but in person, it’s quite unique. The cardigan is  lined on the inside with a mohair/wool blend that peeks out a little on the sleeves. It’s super warm and cozy…with a slim fit…so perfect! I ended up purchasing it for $39.99.

Additionally, on my wishlist, I was craving a calf hair belt from J.Crew but I didn’t get it because the price was pretty steep. But at Madewell, they had a similar version, just skinnier and cheaper…in zebra print online and in cheetah in stores. So I’ll be contemplating getting that version instead.

Have you tried Madewell and what do you think of the brand?


{ 22 comments… add one }
  • Kileen October 27, 2010, 7:05 am

    Thanks for the useful post. I always walk past the Madewell store and never think to stop in. I’ll definitely be changing up my tune the next time I see their store. Thanks for the useful outfit suggestions!

  • Em October 27, 2010, 8:05 am

    Thanks for the review! There’s a Madewell store nearby but I never stopped in because it looked like an expensive hoity-toity-trying-to-be-rough-and-tumble kind of store. Didn’t know they were cheaper than J.Crew. That blazer is certainly a steal for $39.99! I will be stopping in my neighborhood Madewell soon.

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:53 pm

      When I first stopped by the Madewell store, I had sticker shock because it seemed expensive compared to F21 and H&M. But as I kept going in, I realized that the sales are reasonable (but not dirt cheap) and I’d be willing to shell out some cash for some seriously nice duds. Especially since some of their items seem better constructed than ones from other places.

  • Elle October 27, 2010, 8:15 am

    That blue blazer looks a bit like a lightweight jacket that I got from J. Crew a while back and your version looks a million times better/thicker and the price is pretty incredible too. Can’t wait to see you sporting it in an outfit.

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:54 pm

      LOL. It seems like J.Crew and Madewell have several items that overlap, but their price points are so different that I would much rather get a similar version at Madewell than from J.Crew.

  • tinyintexas October 27, 2010, 8:16 am

    So cute!! I love Madewell, all of these outfits look great on you! I especially love the olive sweatshirt- so comfy!

  • Erin October 27, 2010, 8:48 am

    I need to find a store near me! That’s my biggest reservation with Madewell. You do a good job of selling the clothes though… I wouldn’t have given it a second thought online, but that cardigan is really cute on!

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:54 pm

      Yea, I think Madewell items look so much better in person than online. It’s hard to see the details and workmanship in an item through a computer screen.

  • Callandra October 27, 2010, 9:09 am

    I really like their clothes on you, but seeing your review confirms my fear that I would have to have their tops shortened if I bought them myself. I’ve noticed that Banana Republic’s in-store prices are lower than the on-line prices for their sale items too (which is very annoying if you need a certain size). Thank you for the review – very helpful!!

  • Banhannas October 27, 2010, 12:44 pm

    I don’t think I’ve seen a Madewell store in my area. You do have some pretty cute stuff from them so I definitely want to try them on! The blazer looks adorable, I love the structured fit and the color. LOL to your statement about Loft, I find it funny how the 00p and XXS fit comparably with Madewell’s XS.

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:56 pm

      Each store has its own target customer, so I guess the ones from LOFT OOP are similarly sized to Madewell’s XS except that Madewell doesn’t make petite-specific items. But they’re still “petite” friendly.

  • Yvette October 27, 2010, 2:01 pm

    I love Madewell (especially their ‘blink and it’s gone’ Alexa Chung line.) They’re a bit too expensive for me though.

  • Michelle October 27, 2010, 2:57 pm

    There was a Madewell in Vegas, but it only lasted about a year or so. :(

    I especially love the jacket on you! And your necklace is awesome!

    Thanks for the review!

  • mich LA October 27, 2010, 3:38 pm

    Wow I didn’t know their sale prices were so good! $39.99 for that jacket is amazing!!! I was just at Century City last weekend and didn’t stop by. I wish I had now!

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:58 pm

      It really depends on timing I guess. That jacket was marked down twice! So it’s great for me, but if I came earlier, it would have been twice as much.

  • Cee October 27, 2010, 3:51 pm

    I need to stop shopping at Madewell online and go to the stores. I can’t believe all the good deals you found! I love the floral print tank and the jacket fits you so well.

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:57 pm

      There are some items that are in the stores that aren’t available online and those are the best ones! Still, online shopping does help narrow down the options.

  • Meredith October 27, 2010, 3:55 pm

    I love Madewell stuff, but sadly it’s all too big for me. I’m 4’9″, 100lbs. I can usually do XS/XXS petites or 0/00 petites in Ann Taylor, Loft, and Banana Republic, but the Madewell stuff seems to be cut for a longer and looser fit. :(

    • admin October 27, 2010, 4:50 pm

      It really depends on the style and item at Madewell, the pullover tanks are loose, but they fit about the same as the LOFT ones, just longer (and I like that aspect). But for jackets and other items that should fit close to the body, I like it better than BR/LOFT/Ann Taylor because it’s less boxy more slimming. Even some items in 00P, XXSP from those places are big on me, so I don’t see how Madewell XS is a big leap. But that’s personal preference.

  • PetiteAsianGirl October 27, 2010, 5:43 pm

    That blazer is a must-buy on you…I wonder if the sleeves were meant to be cropped because they look perfect on you! At first I was quite surprised at the price listed but then I saw the retail price, which makes more sense. I went into my local Madewell a few times but there were NO sales to be found, which was an immediate deterrent.

  • PetiteXXS October 27, 2010, 9:03 pm

    I’ve seen the store at Century City mall, but have never gone in for some reason… probably because I get distracted by the abercrombie kids store right next door 😛 The first top is really pretty, and pairs really well with the blazer!

  • Liz October 28, 2010, 12:03 am

    You scored a great deal! I’m loving your necklaces too!

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