Gap’s jeans are running small. I tried about half a dozen pairs of skinny and legging denim and could easily size up to regular sizing in all of them except for the inseam. My usual size in petite sizing was actually too tight, but the inseam was correct. Taking the regular size version of my typical petite size in an ankle or crop length jean is what would work best for me. And that’s probably why all of those styles are sold out in the small sizes.
Waist gaps are finally totally gone, as is saggy butt syndrome (from the fabric stretching out over the course of the day while wearing), as far as I can tell. I haven’t worn the current fabric all day, but generally there is less stretch and less cotton than in the past so I’d say it’s looking good on that front. If you’re looking not for black or white jeans but for blue denim, the color options weren’t perfect (not navy enough, too light, too faded, etc) nor were the cuts the most flattering (acceptable, but no WOW factor) nor was the fabric the best (so much synthetic fiber that I think breathability must be compromised). The pockets on the regular sizing were a bit too large so that might be one benefit of going up a size in petite sizing versus looking for an ankle or crop length regular size.
Over at J.Crew I looked at denim also, as well as other things. A round-up of thoughts:
The fabric feels very polyester and not so much cotton, not at all as good as the old toothpick denim. I really did not like the feel of the fabric. They are supposedly “terry-like” inside so that they are “comfy like leggings.” It didn’t seem too “sweatpants fleece” in there (unless that starts further down the leg; I only felt near the waist band), and it did not seem too thick or hot for summer wear.
8″ mid rise and 9″ high rise toothpick jeans
I tried these in regular sizing (whereas I would typically take petite). They both fit well everywhere except the inseam. I like the higher 9″ rise; it’s very flattering. However, the fabric of the 8″ mid rise jean felt better. Fabric quality definitely varied a lot across the different colors and styles. I’m not linking either because I’m not totally sure exactly which color I tried as it wasn’t clearly stated in the store.
This was probably the best top they had in store. A lot of the other cotton shirts were pretty thin and just didn’t seem as great quality as past seasons. The Funnelneck shirts in the stripe colorways were made of a different fabric that lacked nubbiness and were more sateen-like. They did not carry any of the solid color versions of this shirt.
Everything else was pretty underwhelming. There is a t-shirt campaign to help decipher the different options, but it is more confusing and unclear than ever. Please just make one great t-shirt. I don’t even want to look at the t-shirt wall and try to figure it out.
My store carries swimwear now, but unfortunately none of the most successful styles made it there (I’m looking at you, French bikini top). They are filling the racks right now with Playa swimwear (thin and flimsy), one-pieces with large words on them (not classic at all), and other styles that just aren’t of the same quality as the French bikini top. For example, the Tie-front bikini top in piqué nylon (runs small – all their tops seem to run small but there bottoms run large?) is cute and there is a white option not on the website right now but the fabric is thin and flimsy (although there is padding and it is lined). It just felt cheap and like it wouldn’t last long. Even the beach cover-ups they had (eyelet) just weren’t as classic or well made as past styles.
There was a stack of the palm print (white on charcoal) tote bag in store (can’t find this online anymore). Exciting, until I realized every – single – one had the palm offset or cut off and barely there, and the print was predominantly nondescript flowers. One actually had the palm tree upside down.
Mercantile merchandise was everywhere and not easily distinguishable from standard J.Crew items. Lots of polyester dresses with cheap elasticized waistbands that look like tween store offerings and Point Sur items that look more like Lucky Brand.
Also no one ever greeted me in the store, asked me if I needed help, or even spoke to me in the dressing room. There were new people working and the vibe was a little more pretentious than ever. I know they are looking for a new store manager, but what’s up with that?
After seeing Mercantile, Point Sur, Playa, and that upside down palm tree, I believe the the old J.Crew can’t come to the phone right now. Because it’s dead.
* Please join me now in silent prayer for an immediate course correction. *
* Thank you. *