What’s The Deal With Free People’s Matching Sets?


I know some of us are still rocking our pandemic loungewear sets, but others (cough — TMEI, you know who you are 😉 — cough) are decidedly over it and dying for some dressy sets. I’m a proud owner of a casual Madewell set (hoodie, shorts) and wasn’t quite sure dressy sets were for me.

6 Free People Matching Sets That Aren’t Loungewear

I was recently drawn to the wide array of Free People sets this year that looked secretly comfy and decided to give them a shot. Here’s the scoop on 6 Free People “dressy” sets…

1. The Free People Set That’s Festival Ready

We're checking out Free People matching sets that look secretly comfy. Warning: it's not loungewear. Here's the scoop on 6 (somewhat) "dressy" sets.

Free People Secret Garden Set

Clearly mama was feeling herself in this Free People Secret Garden Set. All that’s missing are a pair of Vegan Leather Sandals and a flower crown and I’d be Coachella ready….or ready to watch Beychella again on Netflix from my couch (let’s be real). The tiered skirt is lightweight and flowy, and the crop top has trumpet sleeves and a ruffled hemline adding to the “frolicking in the fields” feel. I like it because it’s not constricting and shows just a sliver of stomach. It’s definitely a set you can dress up or down.

Fit: This set is TTS (I am wearing a large). The top is maybe a smidge loose on me (I’m a 40C, broad-shouldered) but I prefer my clothing on the looser side.

2. The Free People Set That Needed to Come with Instructions

We're checking out Free People matching sets that look secretly comfy. Warning: it's not loungewear. Here's the scoop on 6 (somewhat) "dressy" sets.

Free People Aloha Set

When I tell you this Free People Aloha Set took multiple attempts to get the on top right — not a great sign. The Free People model looks cool; I look like I just had extensive surgery and left with a fancy set of bandages. The skirt is cute, the color is fab., but not for me.

Fit: When you figure out how to properly wear it, it’s TTS (I’m wearing a large).

3. The Free People Set to Channel Your Inner Angelina Jolie

We're checking out Free People matching sets that look secretly comfy. Warning: it's not loungewear. Here's the scoop on 6 (somewhat) "dressy" sets.

Free People Jannine Set

This Free People Jannine Set feels a bit more forgiving except for one caveat that I’ll get to in a sec — and no, it’s not the fact that it needs to be steamed. The pull-on skirt has twist-front detailing that helps to mask any loose skin or post-baby pooch (I tend to carry my weight on my stomach because I’m short-waisted, so I appreciate this detail). The skirt also has a fabulous slit that instantly made me think of the 2012 Oscars when Angelia Jolie wore that black gown with the high slit. The Jannine Set gives great leg. My only issue is with the top. Love the cap sleeve and twist-front detail, but the neckline opening is so deep! I don’t think it’s a non-starter, but it needs a snap closure added or a very cute bralette worn underneath.

Fit: TTS (I’m wearing a large).

4. The Hilarious Fail Set

We're checking out Free People matching sets that look secretly comfy. Warning: it's not loungewear. Here's the scoop on 6 (somewhat) "dressy" sets.

Free People Good Vibes Set

I was furious trying on this Good Vibes Set. No good vibes here. The only nice thing I can say is the shorts are soft and have pockets. The top was nonsensical, gaping holes in weird places, a front-tie that wouldn’t stay tied….and then I looked online and realized I wasn’t wearing it correctly. It should be worn with buttons down the back, BUT OF COURSE. Honestly, it is probably cute when worn properly, but I was over it.

Fit: TTS? I’m wearing a Large. Do with that what you will.

5. The Back in Black Set

We're checking out Free People matching sets that look secretly comfy. Warning: it's not loungewear. Here's the scoop on 6 (somewhat) "dressy" sets.

Free People Morningside Set

This Free People Morningside Set is ready to go back…back to restaurants, back to travel, back to pre-pandemic life. It’s an easy, well-made, super-soft black set. The top and skirt have smocked waistbands and the crop top allows for a little skin to peep through. The top has an opening in the back, so again, cute bralette time!

Fit: TTS (I’m wearing a large).

6. The Free People Set That’s Actually a Thong Bodysuit

We're checking out Free People matching sets that look secretly comfy. Warning: it's not loungewear. Here's the scoop on 6 (somewhat) "dressy" sets.

Free People Emmi Florals Set

I’m not sure how I missed the memo that the Free People Emmi Florals Set is actually a bodysuit and pants, but alas. Not just a bodysuit, a thong bodysuit. Y’all, we need to stop doing this to ourselves. I’m convinced the panty line controversy is just a scheme cooked up by Big Thong to get us to buy underpants with less fabric for more money. We deserve better than floss. When I run for office one of my platforms is going to be the normalization of panty lines. You know, the important stuff affecting everyday Americans. I love the floral pattern, the pants are comfy and the top of the bodysuit is cute, but it’s also way too big (besides the thong situation). If this were a keeper, I’d exchange for a smaller size.

Fit: If between sizes, size down. I’m wearing a large and I should have purchased a medium.

Am I ready to ditch my loungewear sets in favor of dressier sets? Never. But I’m definitely not opposed to dressier sets, especially the Free People Secret Garden Set and the Free People Jannine Set. And if you’re looking for something a bit more loungey, try any of the gorgeous FP sets that Amy recently found here.

Ready, get “set”, go!

x, Meredith


  1. All of those sets look fabulous on you. Ok maybe not that last set. (I even like the “one that needed instructions” once you figured it out hahaha) But if you will accept one pilates instructor’s opinion, you look to be slimming down (especially through your hips) and you will soon see that things might not be fitting you “just right”. (How old is the baby again?) And the whole cropped top thing could be your total jam this summer. Have a great day!

    • My baby is 10 months old, so my body is definitely still healing. I’m trying to buy things that fit me now and, if I love them and they become a little looser, I can always get them tailored. And yes, what was fun about this try-on is I discovered that sets can work for me!

  2. Oh my friend, the video you did on these was the best! You struggling into the mint top was epic! And you look great in all of these! Maybe try on the shorts set again with the top reversed?

  3. Ooooh can I volunteer for your anti-thong campaign?? I’m learning I’d better read your posts whether or not I’m interested in the clothes, just for the lolz.

    • You’re in luck. I am currently accepting applications for my Anti-Thong Campaign (crusade? We’ll workshop it). Also, I totally appreciate anyone that reads purely for entertainment value. I aim to please! Happy Monday 🙂

  4. ‘We deserve better than floss.’

    Now THAT is my battle cry. I’m so the you in this 100. Thank you for braving the world of matching sets – love all your posts!

    • Aw thank you Annie! Yes we definitely need slogans, shirts, radio ads. The whole thing. I’m bringing pantylines BACK! lol 😉

  5. I’m always happy to see regular people in Free People clothing because when I look at their models I want to scream, “JUST STAND NORMALLY! Stop sticking your leg out like that! Who squats in a dress?!” I have no idea what their clothes actually look like on a non-contorted human frame.
    Anywho, I like the “sliver of stomach” look with the forgiving waist lines. More of that please. And since I’m also anticipating the hot, humid madness of a 6 month Texas summer, I’m looking forward to seeing how you dress for that. Personally, I’m all about the loose, thin, cotton fabrics.

    • LOL this is such a good point. I should do a spoof blog where I just try and stand like all the FP models. It might be hilarious. Thanks for your comments! I’ll keep an eye out for other breezy pieces for our hotter than you know what summers down here in TX!

  6. What I don’t understand especially is the thong bodysuit. The point of the bodysuit is unrelated to panty lines – it’s just to make sure you don’t have accidental crack exposure right? And so that you don’t have to tuck in a bunch of fabric. Is there some other reason for bodysuits I’m overlooking? So if I’m just trying to avoid fabric lumps and crack exposure — two practical considerations having nothing to do with butt floss— then why does Free People think that the Venn diagram of someone wanting to buy a bodysuit includes thongs as well? I also just think it’s so bizarre to have your shirt attached to something that goes actually up your butt.

    Anyway I love these posts and all the sets look great on you. I had given up on Free People because of the super thin, ridiculous contorted models – like another commenter pointed out – but I’m loving these on you and I’m going to try the black skirt and top!

    • Truly excellent points. I “think” it all goes back to panty lines, but also the idea of that much, erm, pressure, pulling up on your behind sounds very unappealing. Again, I am #propantyline and it has made life a lot easier. I know what you mean about fabric and the weird model poses. Now you can just enjoy my weird poses! LOL. Let me know what you think of the black skirt and top! I think material-wise, it was my favorite set. Very soft and stretchy without being too thin.

  7. I always enjoy TME try-on sesh posts. This one was especially appreciated because of the Free People factor. Thanks to you Meredith now we know what a real human looks like in these sets and that they are (mostly) tres cute. Thank you for willingly taking one for the team.

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