Last Friday, I took my oldest daughter to the mall. It was the first time in over a year that we shopped in person. We arrived as the stores opened, grabbed a coffee, and set out with a list of things we needed, like shoes for graduation, a party outfit for me, and some summer basics.
We left with lipgloss.
Macy’s was ransacked. Bloomingdales had four hangers-on on each rack with size options from 00 – 2.
And J.Crew was filled with useless, overpriced pieces. Do I need a see-through bathing suit cover up for $150? I don’t think so.
Since before I turned 40, I’ve found shopping for myself frustrating. Finally, at a place in life where I can comfortably buy whatever I want (within reason, of course), I find myself leaving store after store empty-handed.
Online is a better option since many stores are limiting their in-store merchandise, but generally speaking, there are only a few retailers that I would call my go-to. And while I can’t give my money away at J.Crew, I have no problem spending it at their factory store. This probably makes me the most basic of basic, and I am just fine with it.
The trick is to keep it casual, skip their jeans or dressy options. J.Crew Factory is an ideal resource for a casual weekend, loungewear, fun accessories, and easy basics.
J.Crew Factory is always having some kind of sale, right now, online is 40% with an extra 15% off if you sign up for their (free) reward program.
Below are some options worth checking out.
What to Buy at J.Crew Factory
These posts are inspired by my years as a personal stylist. Before a client arrived at our shopping appointment, I would spend hours going through stores, selecting only the best pieces, and filling up her dressing room. It was such fun for me and immensely helpful for our clients, who worked with us because they didn’t have the time or patience to shop independently.
Think of this series as just that; these are the pieces I would put in your dressing room, based on everything I know about our readers who are looking for help creating a timeless, classic, modern wardrobe on a realistic budget.
Please note, prices are subject to change.
Striped Sleeveless Popover Tunic
If you’re tired of the ruffle-puff sleeve trend we see on almost every single top in stores, you may love this sweet and simple sleeveless tunic. Its classic style will work with any casual warm weather bottom. Add a statement earring or layer delicate necklaces under the collar.
Sleeveless V-Neck Midi Dress
Sleeveless V-neck midi dress, $44.50
This dress is ideal for extra hot days, or afternoons when you get off the beach late and you want to slip into something light and airy. I’d wear this out to dinner on vacation with my hair pulled back and an oversized earring.
Top Puff-Sleeve Pintuck
Puff-sleeve pintuck top, $26.50
This top won’t be for everyone, but there is something sweet about it. I love the fresh green color (it’s also available in white), and the pintuck detail on the sleeve adds an extra touch of femininity. I’d pair it with white bottoms and tan sandals.
Easy V-Neck Tank
Easy V-neck tank top, $14.50
A great basic in six colors (including black and white) and fits well and pairs with any causal bottom. Available in all sizes up to a 3X for under $15. Easy-peasy.
The quality of these two shorts sets is impressive. You can wear them together or separately. They are great for vacation, summer mornings or sitting outside with a glass of wine after a long day.
Crewneck Beach Sweater
Crewneck beach sweater, $39.50
I look forward to our time at the shore every summer. I love everything about it, especially the slower pace and laidback attitude. My beach uniform at night is a pair of comfy shorts and a lightweight sweater. So I grabbed this crewneck option in white to wear with my favorite cut offs.
Printed Tunic Cover Up
Border-printed cover-up tunic, $44.50
Still need a swim cover up? I love this pretty printed tunic. It’s perfect for sitting pool side when you want to relax but feel finished and it looks more expensive than its $45 price tag.
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Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers
Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers.
Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail.
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