Outfit: Live and Learn

AG Stevie ankle jeans
James Perse long sleeve top
Club Monaco sweater (sold out)
NO6 Clogs
Lizzie Fortunato jewels necklace
Jas M.B. bag (mine has different hardware and is quilted, but is the same style/size as the one in the link)

You may remember seeing this sweater a million times here in sale posts, etc. When it went on sale and I had my $100 voucher for Club Monaco that I got via R29 shops, I decided to get it; I’d been obsessed with it for a while, and thought it would be perfect for our not-so-cold winters here in Texas. It actually would be, if it was at all wearable. Yes, I should have paid more attention to the fabric content (wool, acrylic & alpaca), but I didn’t. Anyway, I’m not sure it would have swayed me from buying it, I honestly don’t have enough experience with alpaca/acrylic to know that it’ll be SO itchy and shed-y.

And to be totally honest with you, I fell for the allure of seeing something on a blogger. Yes, occasionally I’m subject to that kind of influence too. But “fellow blogger” didn’t mention anything about how itchy and shed-y this sweater is, and she wore it with black leggings. Only from wearing the sweater for a few minutes, the strap on my bag is COVERED with long white hairs, as is my black t-shirt. She couldn’t have managed to snap SO MANY PICTURES without having alpaca all over her pants – me thinks she went through a whole lint roller in her photoshoot. Really, I’m mostly disappointed in myself for falling for her nicely composed photos in the woods with leaves and a steaming cup of Starbucks (wink), but I’m also disappointed in “fellow blogger” for not disclosing a bit more about the nature of this sweater. She didn’t mention that she received it for free, but she does wear a lot of Club Monaco, and she does get a TON of stuff for free, so she might have. I’m not judging. Only wondering why she wouldn’t say something – anything about the negative aspects of the sweater, because there are many.

Oh well, that’ll teach me to buy things worn on “fellow bloggers” πŸ˜‰ No not really, I love a lot of my fellow fashion bloggers, and know that they are always 100% honest in their reviews and when talking about what they wear. I just doubt that this one was/is. Again, I’m not surprised, and I should have known better, given her position as an A#1 super-fabulous-fashion blogger and book author…

Sorry, I’m getting a bit carried away with my frustration at pretty pictures and little/no substance. I started my blog(s) to be helpful and provide a service to you guys, and that’s my ultimate goal – I would be absolutely mortified if I suggested you buy something that’s completely unwearable. Maybe I’m a little extra-sensitive to the fabric content, maybe not everyone with this sweater experiences severe itching even AFTER removing the sweater, but the shedding is crazy; I don’t know how anyone could wear it.

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  1. Mamavalveeta03 says

    I love the sweater but I always appreciate the inside buzzs. And that YOU are honest. And that’s what counts to me and why I trust your opinion. You’ve never steered me wrong yet! And I don’t expect you to. It’s the personal integrity that counts. Well, that and the fact that you have amazing style! πŸ˜‰

    I recently had a very negative experience with the J Crew Cambridge Turtleneck. I used to purchase these back in the day, and they’ve changed the makeup of the knit. It shed like CRAZY. I thought, “I didn’t spend this much to have it pill and shed all over, so I’m returning it.” I got some flak from the SA, but in the end, she returned it because I’m a good customer. (you should see the inside of our car, just from me sitting in the car! Fuzz city!)

  2. says

    Frankly, I appreciate your honesty. I also always try to disclose problems I’ve experienced, whether fit, material, quality, etc. It always makes me disappointed when bloggers don’t disclose something was free (or stop after the first wear–c’mon. It went from a c/o to you buying it with one wear)?

    So thank you. Thank you for not sugarcoating the bad with, “but it’s good in this way!” (something I’m guilty of) and just giving us an unabashed opinion.
    Ashe @ Ash in FashionΒ΄s last blog post ..Holiday Outfits for Gals of All Sizes

    • says

      if there had been any good qualities of this sweater, i would have mentioned them, but there really aren’t. it’s HUGE, and i got a size medium, it’s ridiculously shed-y (as i mentioned), and i swear, my neck is still itching from having it on just to take the picture. i do love the style and the “idea” of the sweater, but it should have been made from cotton/wool/cashmere instead…

      and seriously, don’t even get me started on bloggers who don’t disclose stuff. what on earth is the point? if you have editorial integrity, and you have built up a trust with your readers, what’s the harm in saying that you were given something from a brand? they’ll still believe that you’re giving your honest opinion.

      • Mamavalveeta03 says

        Amen to that! (and itchy is a deal breaker for me with my eczema and sensitive skin. Something I like to know before shelling out hard-earned cash!)

        • says

          i know! maybe i’m extra-sensitive…leo tells me that all the time πŸ˜‰ …but i can’t imagine that sweater not being at least a little itchy to anyone.

  3. Jen says

    Ha ha ha, I knew exactly the blog post you were referring to when I read this.

    Thanks to your feedback, I’ve taken this sweater off my Club Monaco wishlist, but it definitely looked appealing on that other blog! πŸ˜‰

    • says

      oh! i was trying to be discreet πŸ˜‰
      it’s just funny, because i don’t even read her blog, i just ended up there following a link from another site, and saw the cardigan!

  4. Sophie says

    Actually, I’ve had some very bad experiences with Inhabit NY’s cashmere sweaters and have been meaning to ask you about yours. I bought a few over the past 3 or 4 years, partly influenced by you:) but all but one of mine has pilled terribly. What’s going on? Yours don’t look pilly at all and I’m sure you would have said something by now. The only one in good shape is a kind of flat cashmere that they did for the summer. That one is great. The rest … welll, let’s just say that when I wear that with some ripped jeans (ripped the old-fashioned way through wear) and my beat-up boots, I could pass for homeless.
    What’s your secret, or did I get a bad “batch”?

    • says

      SO amazing that you’re mentioning this now. i’m writing a post about what i took/wore to amsterdam and one of the pieces was an inhabit cashmere turtleneck that i’ve had for 4-5 years – one of the stretchy cashmere sweaters (89% cashmere, 9% polyamide and 2% lycra spandex). i honestly haven’t worn it at all since we moved to austin, but when i got it out to wear it, i noticed how pilly it looked…not unwearable, but i remember thinking that i need to get one of those sweater shavers, but i’m nervous because i don’t want to rip it. anyway, i was going to mention in my post that i was a little disappointed in the pilling. although as it was one of my first cashmere sweaters, and i did wear/wash it a lot, i’m not sure what to expect – i’ve heard that sweaters pill, i just wonder how much is normal?

      other than that, all of my other inhabit cashmere has held up really well, but i only have that turtleneck and a henley sweater made from the stretchy cashmere. i have a couple others sweaters that are all cashmere and several others that are newer, and also not stretchy that haven’t pilled at all. my big cardigan has minimal pilling, but nothing like the turtleneck sweater. i really think it was the cashmere blend sweaters that pill so badly. i do have a couple lighter weight stretchy VKOO cashmere sweaters that definitely haven’t pilled. But they’re also not as old as my Inhabit ones.

      my oldest cashmere sweater is a v-neck by theory and it’s as pilly as the inhabit one. Also i have a t-luxury cashmere sweater that’s so out of shape and pilled i really can’t wear it anymore. maybe also it’s the way i washed them? i used to wash all my cashmere in cold water and lay flat to dry – that could have contributed to pilling, now with my cardigans, i throw them in the dryer with dryel.

      i used to get pretty frustrated with inhabit for their mis-representation of color, and even that the sweaters were labeled on the website as 100% cashmere, but they ended up being that blend i mentioned above (this one looks like the one i have, which is clearly not 100% cashmere…). in general though, i’ve been really really happy with all of my inhabit – not only the pieces i’ve been gifted – i’ve purchased many pieces over the years – and still feel like they’re worth what i paid for them.

  5. Lala says

    @ Sophie- I completely agree with you re: Inhabit sweaters! I have bought several over the last couple of years and personally I think they wear terribly. The stretch cashmere blend in particular is super prone to pilling. It’s harder to keep looking neat, as the artificial (not cashmere) fibers don’t come off as easily. Personally I don’t think Inhabit is great quality. Yes, pretty much all cashmere will pill…but in my opinion, Inhabit doesn’t quite cut it. Like many other designers, I feel the quality has only gone down over the years.

  6. Sophie says

    Hi girls! Thanks so much for your feedback. I checked my labels, and yes you are both right — the pilly ones are all the cashmere-stretch blend. So if I get back on that horse — or should I say goat — I will choose 100% cashmere. I also read somewhere that in the past, cashmere could only be labelled as such is it came from the chin hairs of the goat, but they’ve reclassified cashmere to mean anywhere on the goat. (Actually, France has recently done the same thing to Champagne and Bordeaux wines. Ha!) So I wondered, Grechen, if maybe the sweaters that look so good in your pics are older and therefore of a different quality. Good to know about the 100% vs blend tip from both of you! I was thinking I might try Autumn Cashmere, as their designs are looking really nice lately. Any experiences with them?

    • says

      besides my cotton inhabit pieces, i’ve really only worn my cardigan & new turtleneck (i think). The cardigan is about three years old, and the turtleneck is brand new. They’re both 100% cashmere, and since i’ve only worn the turtleneck a few times, i don’t know what will happen with that, but the cardigan has held up extremely well, and i literally wear that every day for hours at a time when it’s cold.

      i really do think the problem is with the stretchy blend, none of my 100% cashmere sweaters have ANY problems at all. but as i mentioned before, my older cashmere from theory and t-luxury is also extraordinarily pill-y, so it’s definitely not only inhabit. and honestly, you can get inhabit cashmere for less than $100 most of the time, so it’s a great value anyway IMO.

      i do have one autumn cashmere cardigan that’s several years old, and it’s held up really nicely. it has pills, but not a lot or enough to notice.

      i’m interested in trying equipment and 360 sweater cashmere, but i also have pretty low expectations nowadays with regard to clothing quality. but more on that later πŸ˜‰

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