The clothes discussed below were given to me for free from Gap.
As a blogger, I tend to compose the beginning of posts in my head a lot. I think of a hook for a post and then compose the sentences in my head. For this post, I had a hook all planned - I was going to tell the story of my beloved Gap khakis - circa early 90s - that I once called in late to work to get a wood stain out of after slipping and falling three stairs before catching myself with two flailing arms and my butt on the slippery-when-wet wooden staircase that led out of my garage apartment. The same khakis I still wear at least once a week today.
It would have been a great opening, but then I came home, pulled them out of my closet, and read "Express Chinos" on the tag. Oops.
Well, I'll tell ya one thing, the sizing is a bit more forgiving. Both the jeans and the pants I ended up with are size 8s, and I'd probably still have to get a 10, maybe even a 12 if I could find one, at Express. (Although admittedly I haven't been there in years; I turned into a Macy's girl a few years ago, and then turned into a broke girl who doesn't buy anything ever. But my work pants are still my Express pants from years ago.)
At Gap, I was beyond excited to see "curvy" as one of the pants & jeans options. Because I have issues with pants. Usually, to get pants that fit in the hips, I end up with pants that don't fit in the waist, and I have to cinch them in with a belt or get them altered. So two things: First, very cute salesguy Aaron helped me decide to buy size 8s after I explained that I have a terror of buying pants too small and therefore a closet of pants that are too big. Second, I could get the 8s because they fit right. I didn't have to go up to a 10 to get the room I need in the hips.
They carry long and regular, and they call the shorter pants "average." Aaron and another Gap guy, Joel, both thought I could go with regular, but I went with average. They seem like the right length to me, although at 5' 4" I may be hitting the top of the "average" height range. Sometimes when I've bought "short" at other places in the past, they were indeed too short, and buying petite to get a shorter pant leg is usually a disaster for me.
So Gap pants = Win. I have seriously - FINALLY - found a new place to buy work pants.
Meanwhile, my most favorite find today was an awesome jacket that will go with pants and jeans whenever I want to look a little professional:
This pic doesn't really do the jacket justice, and as an outfit, there may be too much going on between the shirt, which has a pretty pearl and ribbon treatment at the neck, and the gray jacket, which has a striped inner lining. I'm not sure - What do you think? In the store, they had the gray jacket with black pants, but the top underneath was cream.
Here's outfit number 2:
The best thing about this green cardigan is that I now forever have something green to wear on St. Patrick's Day. I am so serious. Also, LOVE the little lace tank underneath which is an awesome purple.
But let's talk jeans. The "curvy" jeans did indeed fit me fabulously - but there was one little wrinkle. I didn't like the back pockets, which felt oversized, underdesigned, and frankly, made my butt look big. Now, I've got as many self-esteem issues as the next Angelino, but if I know one thing in this world for sure, it's that I've got an butt for jeans. It's a rare day that I pull on a pair of jeans, turn to look at my butt in the mirror, and don't like what I see. So the jeans above are not the curvy jeans.
The jeans above - which I am crazy about because they feel a little 80s retro meets modern denim to me - are the cropped skinny button jeans. A commentor on that link says, "...they look great and the detail on the leg makes them rock n' roll." I heartedly agree, and I really like how the denim is distressed.
So can an Express girl find clothes she loves at the Gap? Yes, yes, she can.
In fact, there seemed to be a lot of different choices. There were definitely some clothes I didn't like, but that's as it should be. You can tell I picked pieces with catchy detailing (including the studded, braided belt), but I'm sure other people came out with other sorts of looks. If I liked everything then maybe there wouldn't be clothes someone else might like. Perfect example: one of the pants styles hits the waist. I HATE pants that hit the waist, but I know for a fact that some women hate the low-rise that I love. So, especially in pants & jeans, the selection of fits and sizing was impressive. They had A LOT of different kinds of jeans.
Also, it should be noted that I was purposely and with difficulty fighting my love of the T-shirt. Gap is like T-shirt heaven. Both for solids and for designs. I'm beyond tempted to go back and get this "wild hair" t-shirt. But I already have SO MANY t-shirts OMG. So I resisted coming home with a T-shirt.
Oh, and I grabbed some cute panties, too, but sadly I did not have the chutzpah to ask Aaron to take a pic of me holding them up, ala BlogHer '08.
Speaking of BlogHer, I'm volunteering at BlogHer Business on the Thursday, and I am very glad to have this new jacket to wear. It's been a long time since I've gotten any new clothes (besides T-shirts!), so many thanks to Gap for a fun shopping experience.