While it’s cold AF here in NY, I’ve started to plan and shop for spring and summer. Not anything crazy, shorts are not yet on my list. However, pieces that I can wear with some layers and then wear with none are definitely on my radar.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed but Nordstrom has been collaborating with top fashion bloggers lately. They happen to be some of the fashion bloggers I love the most, like Arielle Noa from Something Navy or Chriselle Lim from The Chriselle Factor. So it’s not a surprise I like to see what they come up with. Last year the Something Navy collection for Treasure and Bond practically sold out in hours. I was going to write a post on the collection so I went to my local Nordstrom on the launch day. I got there 45 min after opening because I needed to drop my son off at school. There was almost nothing left. I was in awe.
This year the fashion blogger is Chriselle Lim. She designed a collection for J.O.A, a really fashionable line carried by Nordstrom. The initial plans didn’t include Nordstrom but when they saw the collection they loved it so much that they requested exclusively for them. It is a gorgeous and feminine collection, I loved every piece. At first I only ordered 6 pieces but after trying on I knew I needed to try more..
Corset Wide Leg Jumpsuit – Wearing size XS. I know jumpsuits are annoying when you need to go to the bathroom but I forget about that when I see how stylish and put together they make me look without me putting a lot of effort. As a mom of two littles who works from home, it’s not easy for me to find a versatile jumpsuit. Most of them are too dressy and honestly they don’t work a lot for me but this one is so versatile and easy to dress down or up. I can see myself wearing it to go out with my family for brunch but also styling it with heels and a clutch for date night. Not sure yet out what I want to do with the length. I’m only 5’2″ so I always have to fix the length of pants.
Another Jumpsuit Option
Wide Leg Jumpsuit – Wearing XS. It fits tighter than the red one on the waist. This one is supposed to be cropped but on me is not. Although I like the length like that. It is gorgeous and very flattering. The back is exposed but it can be worn with a fitted tee underneath, a strapless with a lace back or one of those sticky bras that let you show your back without going braless. One very important thing is that the straps have three buttonholes to adjust depending on the wearer and if you want them crossed or not.
Dress or Trench?
Asymmetrical Trench Dress – Wearing XS in green sage and S in terracota, runs a little small. This dress is gorgeous. The details, the flare, the versatility. It closes with big snaps something I found to be really cool. The belt buckle is really pretty too. Choosing the buttons, snaps, zippers are one of the hardest things for a fashion designer. I used to spend hours choosing those little things for my pieces when I was in fashion school. I loved all the colors available, sage green, terra-cotta and ballet white.
Sizing: I could say it runs a little small. I tried the XS and you can definitely see it pulling. In my case I don’t see the huge need of sizing up as moving the snaps is easy to do. They are hand-sewn so all you need is a pair of scissors, thread and needle to move the first two snaps.
Reading some reviews I noticed short people didn’t love the length, but I wasn’t really bothered by it. I guess you need to try it on to know.
Lim definitely though about versatile with her whole collection. This dress by itself is perfect for work or an event. Spring wedding? However when you just wear it opened it becomes a totally different piece. I see it layered over pants, a top and heels still appropriate for work, but also with jeans and a tee. I’m still deciding between the green and terracota color. Help me!
Wide Leg Pants
Chriselle can rock a pair of wide leg pants any day and I think you can too. The main issue I have with wide leg pants is that the waist is always tight on me. The number of pants I tried on last year were too many and none of them worked. Well, I didn’t have that issue with these and is the main reason I’m hooked. Most of these pants are styled with crop tops something that I love but sometimes I can’t do due to my stretched skin that goes over my bellybutton. The ties are actually covering it but you can see what I mean a few pics below.
Lace-up high-waist wide leg pants – Wearing XS. Putting aside the fact I have to crop them they are amazing. I love the lace-up details, the stripes and the colors. Fabric is 65% cotton and they are lined to avoid see-through issues. I can’t wear them with the matchy crop top but you bet I’m wearing a bodysuit with it.
Pleat high-waist crop wide leg pants – Wearing XS in yellow and S in ballet pink. I’m not a fan of pleats on me as I need something that helps me flatten and keep my tummy more controlled. Other than that I loved the pants. They are LINED! They are also very easy to wear right now with a turtleneck and heels or flats.
Blazers and Power Suits
Have you ever tried wearing your husband’s blazer to get that “boyfriend fit”? I can’t cause I’m so tiny so I swim in my husband clothes, but I do have tried on a ton of oversized blazers with not much luck. I don’t really like an oversized back and this is what she addressed. She said that she was keeping the masculinity of the blazer while making it more feminine regarding fit. The only objection I have is that they are too long on petite women.
Plaid Blazer – Wearing XS. It’s a little long but it doesn’t bother me. Love that is fitted on back and shoulders but then gets looser without being too oversized. It has two slits in the back and the window pane is just too cool. Fell in love with the buttons. Really pretty. It comes in a light sage color too. Unfortunately I didn’t see it at the store.
High-waist ankle skinny trousers – Wearing XS. I loved all the details on these pants. They are also lined. Again I personally don’t love the pleats but I know they look great on many other people.
Boyfriend Blazer – Wearing XS. I loved the stripes and button. Unfortunately this is one that looks huge on petites. I bet Cams could rock it.
So, crop tops were the main reason I decided to head to the store to try on more pieces. I didn’t order any because again…lots of stretched skin that goes up my bellybutton, but I kept having FOMO specially after I saw all the many ways they could be styled. So what do you do? You get your kid from school and drive to Nordstrom to tried them on and see if you can recommend them to other moms. My verdict? Most don’t work if you have anything against showing midriff skin. They are really pretty but I think I missed some more inclusive tops in the collection. Not everybody has a flat and toned stomach.
Asymmetrical Peplum top – Wearing S. I could have gone with the XS but there weren’t more. The ruffle is what makes this top wearable by more women as long as you’re wearing high-waist pants. It’s not constricting at all and the back is smocked which gives it a nice stretch.
Tie front crop top – Wearing XS. I gotta be honest. I love this top so much but I can’t wear it!!! Well , maybe with my higher waist jeans. The ties are amazing and make this top incredibly versatile. If you don’t make a bow on the front and wrap it around you can make it a little longer, however I wasn’t able to cover my bellybutton.
Yellow tie front crop top – Same as the one above, just different fabric.
Ruffle front high-waist shorts – Wearing XS but really needed an S for some looseness. I think the shorts and top look really cute together and it’s a perfect look for vacations.
Tie waist top – Wearing size S. This is the other one that kind of worked because the ties are longer which gives more room to play with length and coverage. I was bummed because I couldn’t find an XS as the S was clearly big on me.
Tiered Sleeve Mini Dress – Wearing XS. Pretty dress if you like volume on bottom and sleeves. I liked it more as off-the shoulder than the way Nordstrom has it on the website. The pink gingham is adorable.
Yellow tiered sleeve mini dress – Wearing XS. This dress surprised me as is really pretty. The back is longer then the front and is very flattering. I did find it to run a little tight. So I recommend trying on two sizes.
Cocoon Sleeve Dress – Wearing XS – For some reason I didn’t find this dress to be petite friendly. It’s like it was made for taller people only. It was also too tight on the waist.
This was it! I can say that I loved the collection. As an aspiring designer, because yes, creating my own line is definitely a long-term goal for me, I loved how true to herself she was while still thinking of the woman who would wear it. Chriselle’s main goal was to give a lot for your money and she clearly did. The quality was good, all the attention to detail was AMAZING and the price? Well pieces like these at this price are not easy to find. I definitely missed some longer tops and the waist a little looser on dresses. What did you like the most?
If you like feminine fashion with a mix of power and masculinity this is for you!
Shop Chriselle X J.O.A. Collection from Nordstrom
Find me over on Instagram (@theunbosom) for a lot of tired-mom style and rawness about motherhood. I believe in being real and vulnerable on social media.