I am in a fix. A Stitch Fix, to be exact.
Here is the problem: After spending the last three and a half years of my life either pregnant or nursing, my wardrobe has taken a hit.
My closet is filled with clothes in a plethora of sizes and shapes, with very few items that actually fit now that I'm back to a (hopefully) consistent size.
Big deal, you say. Isn't every girl looking for an excuse to go shopping?
Well, pre-children, yes.
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Now? It is a wonderful dream.
Those leisurely shopping trips of old are gone. Shopping with young children is often unproductive and unpleasant.
The rare child-free trips look like marathons as you try to squeeze months of shopping for the entire household into a couple of hours.
This is all compounded by living in a small town with limited a selection.
Although I've been to Eugene and Portland several times in the last year, only one trip included shopping (while my husband and kids waited in the car). Talk about pressure.
No wonder so many mothers end up on What Not to Wear!
So, when my sister told me I could have my very own Stacy and Clinton on Stitch Fix, I was ready to take the plunge.
Here is how Stitch Fix works:
You create a profile on stitchfix.com. The profile survey asks you questions about your size, proportions and style preferences.
You can also provide a link to your social networking sites (like your style board on Pinterest) to help the stylist get a better idea of what you like.
Note: If you are still suffering from Post-Partum Reverse Body Dysmorphia, it may be a good idea to have a friend help you answer some of these questions.
You may also have to take at least one trip to the store to figure out what size you actually are.
After you complete your profile and schedule your "fix,” a stylist chooses five items and sends them to you on your scheduled date.
You try on the items, decide which things you want to keep, then return what you don't want in a pre-paid envelope within three days.
Then you login to give feedback on your items and pay for the items you decide to keep. There is a $20 styling fee that is applied to your last order.
Ideally, each fix gets better as you provide feedback and the stylists learn more about you.
The most time-consuming part of the whole process is completing the profile, which takes about 15 minutes (if the kids are asleep).
Filling out the profile was a little bit depressing. For example:
How often do you dress for the following occasions?
Business? Not anymore.
Cocktail? You mean after 8 p.m.?
Date Night / Night Out? Sounds wonderful.
Laid back casual? Every. Single. Day.
What do you like to flaunt? Hmm, in front of the kids?
What would you rather keep covered? Let me make a list.
Turns out I have the style profile of a soon-to-be 30-year-old stay-at-home mother of two.
Anyway, I was so excited and hoped the stylist could work some miracle and make me (and my life) look a little bit more glamorous.
It was the closest I've felt to a kid at Christmas since being a kid at Christmas.
Finally, my package arrived. I hastily tore it open.
My fix included two outfits. The first outfit included a pair of shorts (which I had requested) and a sleeveless blouse. The second outfit was a maxi skirt, blouse and statement necklace.
The items came with styling tips that showed pictures of my items paired with different clothing and accessories.
I really liked the first outfit. It wasn't something I would have tried on in the store, but it was flattering, stylish and fit my lifestyle.
The shorts were an appropriate length and the outfit made me feel like a somewhat fashionable mom on the go.
I ended up sending back the second outfit because it didn't fit right and wasn't quite my style.
This isn't bargain shopping, but you do select price range options in your profile and can send back anything that you think is too expensive. The cost of my fix was about the same amount as I would have spent at the store.
Price options range from "the cheaper, the better" to $50 to $100, $100 to $150, $150 to $200 and $200 and up. All of my items were at or below the price range that I selected.
I concluded that the fix was fun, extremely convenient and helpful. While I wouldn't use Stitch Fix to fill an entire wardrobe, I might use it when I am having trouble finding something I need (shorts, in this instance) or during times that are particularly difficult to get to the store.
While the end result wasn't magical and didn't make my life any more glamorous, it did help me look and feel great, just the way I am.
It was the closest I\'ve felt to a kid at Christmas