Thursday, 13 March 2014

Elizabeth and Clark Spring Collection 2014 Review

This was one of my most anticipated boxes, because I knew exactly what was coming to me. I walked through the cold Canadian winter to get this from the post office! Luckily, I did not have to pay duty fees or even sign -- the mail carrier just didn't want to leave this large package in the snow.

Box Overview
Box: Elizabeth and Clarke
Price: $30 for one shirt, $50 for two shirts, $60 for three shirts, per season. $15 shipping charge to Canada and $25 for international.
Ships to: Worldwide
What's inside: Your pick of shirts from their collection, typically out of 5 each season.

First look
With the box came a coupon code for a "Be Ours Necklace" if you get a subscription to Your Bijoux Box, a jewelry subscription box. The coupon code is: E&CSPARKLE.

The shirts I got were the White, the Arden, and the Taylor. The Arden was a returning item in a new colour (black) and the Taylor is part of E&C's "Forever Collection". I got the box for $60 including, using a $15 coupon code.

Left to right: Taylor, White, Arden
The shirt materials were light and felt delicate. I'm worried about how I'll clean them. All three shirts were thin and the White (a white colour) and the Taylor (a cream colour) were sheer enough to show whatever I wore underneath (In the pictures below, I'm wearing a black camisole with pink florals. The Arden was a Black colour which didn't show anything underneath, but was a huge pain to try and photograph with my terrible camera.    

I am 5'0. I typically wear a size 24-26 (0-2) in pants and an XS-S in shirts. In other words: I'm a tiny person. Using the size guide provided, I picked the 0. I should have picked the 00. All three shirts were big on me, the White and Taylor especially.

The White - front
The White - back
It's clear to me that the shirts were not made for petite people. The arms are long on the White and were not made to be rolled up. I'm fine with this on hooded sweatshirts or winter clothes, since I tend to dress like a slob when it's cold, but this is supposed to be a nice, formal shirt!

The White hits me at mid thigh and looks like a lab coat on me. The amount of fabric makes it difficult to tuck in (as it's supposed to be worn) and regardless, it's still baggy in the bust and shoulders.
For the life of me, I do not know how to salvage this shirt. I may try to sell it to a taller friend. It is a nice quality, and I'm sure someone could make it look great. Just not someone of my stature. Maybe I could get it tailored?

The Taylor - front
The Taylor - back
The Taylor looks better than the White, but was still very large on me. Notice  how much the back sags down, and how the rolled up sleeves extend past my elbow. I really  wanted to like this shirt, but I couldn't make it look the way I wanted it to. It did not tuck into my pants very well, and there was too much extra material to wear it half-tucked like the model on E&C's website. The picture looks a lot better than it did in real life!

The Arden - front
The Arden - back
In contrast, the Arden looked much better in person! Though it fit better than the other two, it could have been better. It was still baggy and the arm holes were too big. As well, there's a strange pooch on the right side that doesn't seem to go away when it's buttoned up. I'm hoping an iron will fit that. The Arden is the only one of the three that I can make work for me, by pairing it with a belt.

Because the distance between my collarbones and my chest is proportionally smaller than the average woman, the widest part of the chest on the shirts is actually a little below the widest part of my chest. As such, I got "puffing" on each shirt. It was most noticeable on the more fitted Arden. It was very distracting, especially when I sat. 

Unfortunately, Elizabeth and Clarke only offer free returns to US citizens, and I can't afford to ship all three shirts back from Canada, so it looks like I'm stuck with these. I've put my account on hold over the summer and I'll be re-thinking my subscription when the Fall collection comes along.

Overall? Though the material and stitching were decent, and the cost per shirt was good, the sizing was way off. I knew I was going to have length problems when I ordered the shirts, but I did expect them to fit me width-wise. The puffing is worse than many other non-petite blouses I've bought. Other clothing companies often add an extra, hidden button in the chest area to fix this, and I wish E&C did too. Still, if you're a taller person than I, try them out! If the shirts happen to fit you, it's a great deal. I suggest going a size down from what the size guide says.

Did you get any part of the Spring collection? Let me know!

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