Hey, hey, HEY! The 2018 Anniversary Sale – arguably the biggest sale of the summer – is upon us, and so is my yearly giant review, in the form of….drumroll please…dressing room selfies!! This is where I go in-store, and try on all of the Fall sweaters, boots, jeans, etc that are part of this epic Fall pre-sale.
In case you’re wondering what the heck I’m talking about, in July of each year, Nordstrom celebrates its anniversary with a sale. But not just any sale: instead of marking down old merchandise, Nordstrom gets an early delivery of Fall stuff, and marks it down – for a few weeks only. Once the sale is over, everything goes back up to full price.
Over the years, we’ve learned that this sale often carries the pieces that we really do end up wearing on the daily. But each year is different. So. How does this one compare?
This year’s sale was pretty tricky. As I mentioned in my strategy article: How To Shop The 2018 Nordstrom Sale, online is always the best bet*. The in-store inventory was light on the designer pieces, and much heavier on the Nordstrom in-house brands (Halogen, Caslon, BP, etc.) Furthermore, the sale reflected the changing (and confusing) denim trends so I spent wayyy too much time trying to figure those out. And if we can use this sale as a trend predictor (and we typically can)….pointy-toe shoes are having a serious moment, and 70’s vibes are everywhere.
*We’ll be pulling together a round-up of all of our favorite pieces – including those only available online – in our 2018 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Page. (Also found via our dropdown menu.)
So. If you’ve been longing for photos of my messy hair, intense stares, and yellow lighting…you’re in luck! Here we go.
1. Start With a Fuzzy Jacket (Sherpa? Faux Fur?)
First of all, go and order that stupidly expensive Vince jacket (below, left). Seriously, go now. I’ll wait. That thing is going to sell out by noon. If you can swing the $398, even if it’s the only thing you buy….you won’t regret it. It is insanely fabulous. However, if $398 on sale is too pricey (and I totally get that too), then try one of the other two. They’re all pretty darn great (and affordable), and will likely be the only thing you want to wear allllllll Fall.
I’m wearing a small in the Vince hoodie because it was the ONLY SIZE LEFT IN STORE. But I actually ended up loving how it fit. I’m going to order the XS just to see, but I’ll be happy with the small.
I’m also wearing a small in the white Thread & Supply sherpa hoodie (doesn’t come in xs)….it fits a bit bigger than the Vince hoodie.
Alo runs true to size. I’m wearing a small.
2. Update Your Fall Uniform: Sweater, Skinny Jeans, Shoes, Bag, DONE
I typically use this sale to inject new life into my daily Fall uniform. I keep thinking that, maybe, someday, I’ll wake up wanting to wear a skirt…but it hasn’t happened yet.
A. Found A Replacement For My Infamous Taupe Booties
I mean obviously, I’m going to talk about these two Vince sweaters (they’re cashmere!!). And these Frame skinnies that are insanely comfortable, and whose inky dark wash feels so fresh for Fall – I mean of course I am. But the big, HUGE news is that I have – finally!! – found a replacement for my old Lucky Brand taupe booties. These perforated tan booties by Dolce Vita are super comfortable, not too hot, and look amazing with denim or bare legs.
B. Plaid Boots. (For A Bit of An Edge)
Things you need to know: Both sweaters are 100% cashmere, and the one on the right is under $100. After the sale, that black-and-green Rag and Bone backpack will retail for $695. And these plaid boots make me feel like the lovechild of Twiggy and Mick Jagger.
C. Basically Me, 2.0
My AG Legging Jeans that I wear on the daily? They’re in the sale. Cute sneaks? In the sale. A replacement for my taupe boo– C’MON! We’ve already talked about this! In. The. Sale. And….like I predicted [smugly pats self on back] the Nordstrom Signature line was at it again this year with the cashmere sweaters. I like the navy dongeal one – see the up-close? So good. (ps. the gray sweater is Vince. Just to be clear.)
Outfit 2: sweater – S | jeans -25 | shoes – TTS
D. More Boring* Gray Sweaters That We Will All Love And Be So Happy About
*Just kidding. Cashmere is never boring.
We are what we are. And what we are…are people who love a gray sweater. Actually, you guys love gray sweaters so much that it’s become an inside joke at TME headquarters. As in, ‘we got some negative feedback on our latest post…we should probably post some gray sweaters to appease them.’
Other notes: These are the AG Farrah jeans!! Exactly like my fav AG leggings, but with a more modern, higher rise. Love them. And the two sweaters facing off are at very different price points: Vince (left) with a v-neckline vs. Halogen (right) with a bell sleeve. Both are 100% ribbed cashmere (for her pleasure). HA! Couldn’t help myself.
E. Basically Me, 2.0 Again (But With Affordable Sweaters This Time)
These really speak for themselves. They’re all under $60, are insanely cute, and are so easy to wear.
THREE SPORTY FAVORITES
THREE SLOUCHY, OVERSIZED OPTIONS
On the left is the sweater from my IG stories yesterday (@shanachristine). It’s deliciously oversized. But one word of caution: it’s not a Vince cashmere sweater, even though it looks like one.
On the right – the green sweater – is too big. I’m wearing a small. However, if you order, xs and even petite sizes are available.
Sometimes I go crazy and swap my sweater out for a sweatshirt. I KNOW. It’s like a whole new me.
The Joie sweatshirt (pink, left) is fancy enough to feel like a sweater – it’s pretty fab. And the Adidas one is perfect with high-rise denim.
Outfit 2: hoodie – XS | jeans – 25
3. Attempt To Make Non-Skinny Jeans Work
Ugh. I can style skinnies, flares, and boyfriend jeans with my eyes closed. But these strange hybrids – the cropped flares, the short straight legs, the 3/4 kick flares – are driving me nuts. It’s partially a height problem (I’m 5’3″), and partially because deep down….I know….the answer is heels, not sneakers. UGH. Annoying.
A. Veronica Beard Jeans
The key? Plaid boots. It wasn’t the plaid, per se, but the heel and the sock-like shaft. These slide perfectly under cropped flares. The jeans are still too long on me – I’d have to cut them off a couple of inches to really work…but you get the idea.
B. Paige Hoxton Vintage Jeans
These jeans came home with me. They fit almost exactly like my GRLFND jeans….but are much softer. They’re some of the most comfortable jeans I’ve tried on. Still tricky to style (how cropped should these straight legs be???)….but I’m working on it. These actually looked OK with the tan flat boots, but a bit of a heel is still a winner. Here are the outfits I came up with:
PAIGE VINTAGE + LACE TOP
Outfit 2: Top – XXS | jeans – 25 | shoes – TTS | jacket – S
Outfit 3: top – S | Top – XXS | jeans – 25| shoes – TTS
PAIGE VINTAGE + FUZZY JACKET
PAIGE VINTAGE + PRETTY TOPS
C. Frame Studded Jeans
I put these on and immediately swooned. They’re soft, hug (not squeeze) and look so freaking cool. Except…the legs are too long. So I tried turning them under (didn’t stay – the denim is too soft), and I tried cuffing them (meh). So…I left them at the store. Someone can rock these jeans….I’m trying to decide if this someone will be me + scissors….or someone else entirely.
4. Go Get a New Jacket
Ok, now it’s playtime. If you’ve already shopped your fluffy, sherpa jackets from the verrry top of this article, you may proceed. Here’s what I came up with:
A. Blank NYC Olive Green Moto Jacket
This is shockingly good. I was surprised by how soft it was, given the price. The color is perfect for Fall – I think olive is one of the most under-rated neutrals – it even makes even blues and purples pop (see pic below), and I liked how the detailing was updated this season to be less aggressively moto.
WITH THE COZIEST SWEATER + SCARF
WITH MIXED PRINTS (AND GREENS)
WITH LADYLIKE PIECES IN PURPLE AND BLUE
B. Vince Wool Moto Jacket
This is a sweater jacket that feels like wearing a big hug. One caveat: I found the fabric a liiiitle too scratchy to wear with bare arms. But I tend to be pretty sensitive about itchiness. Over a shirt (even a suuuuper thin one) it was fine.
WITH DARK JEANS AND PATTERN
OVER A COZY SWEATER (CAUSE YOU CAN)
C. J.Crew Blazer
J.Crew always does these so well, and this one in particular is really, really good. Also in navy or pink. Which…after trying it on….the pink might actually be kind of amazing. Hmmmm….
OVER A HOODIE
OVER A SPORTY CARDIGAN-AS-SHIRT
D. This Cord Blazer
This cord blazer is a little too long on me – it really should come up an inch or two – but other than that, it’s a really fun piece. Perfect for all of the 70’s vibes I’ve been feeling. And that tee? One of my new favs. It says SUPER WOMAN. My kids are gonna freak.
E. This Little Ruffle Plaid
I only tried this on because in 2003 there was an ad for a Chanel blazer that looked like this and I swooned. Because the 90’s were basically just over, it was paired with a pair of super low-rise jeans with rips and distressing. It was glorious, and that image has stayed with me forever. This blazer is not nearly as glorious as Chanel…but it sure is fun.
6. Let’s Talk PANTS (Joggers and Trousers, Specifically)
I’m typically a denim-all-day-every-day kind of girl, but there are two pieces that are worth talking about. Both are casual enough to get a nod from me.
A. These Joie Joggers
OBSESSED. These are insanely comfy, and look cute with sneakers AND heels. They’re perfect for travel, too. (I’m 90% sure that our home director, A, also has these pants. She’s 6′ tall, and they obviously hit way higher on her leg, but still look good.)
CASUAL, WITH SNEAKERS AND FLATS
WITH SLEEK NEUTRALS
WITH HEELS AND A COZY SWEATER
WITH A SILK TOP
B. Trouve’s Side-Snap Trousers
These are obviously way too long on me, but I’d either hem them for flats (for my current lifestyle) or for lower heels (if I had to work in an office). Either way, these trousers have some serious work-to-weekend potential. They’re basically pull-on track pants…but in a fabric fancy enough for work (and your skin does NOT peek through on the side).
(I especially like them with the sporty vibe of this sweater….)
7. Consider Buying This Suede Skirt
There’s something about a leather or suede skirt that is just so darn chic. And because of its heavier weight (and texture), it’s a pretty fool-proof piece to warm up with tights (or even leggings) once winter comes around.
A. To Wear With….Slouchy Boots? WHA???
There’s something very 80’s about these slouchy Sam Edelman boots (the Weitzman version is even more so). At this particular point in time, I refuse to wear them over jeans, but with dresses and skirts….IDK. I….kind of….love it?
WITH ALL OF MY NEW FAVORITE COZY PIECES
WITH A TURTLENECK AND SCARF BECAUSE THAT IS MY COMFORT ZONE
B. Or…Sneakers (They Totally Work, Too)
8. Look at These Dresses
There weren’t many dresses in-store, but I did find a few worth considering….
A. Rebecca Taylor’s Pretty Little Silk Dress
The photos don’t do this one justice. It’s the kind of piece you could wear to work under a blazer, dress up for a night out, or casually wear on a weekend. Perfect for traveling, too.
B. Madewell’s Pretty Little Parisian Dress
If I were going to Paris, I’d snap up this little Madewell number in a heartbeat. It’s one of those almost-fancy pieces that always reads casual (even if you try to dress it up). V. French, and perfect with sneakers.
C. Leith Midi Dress
This one is fabulous, but totally and completely body-con. Layer under a tied tee for days you’re not feeling va-va-voom.
D. Blank NYC Suede Shift Dress
These suede shift dresses are kind of amazing year-round. (I did a whole video about how to style these things year-round). This one is great…and matches that Blank NYC moto jacket perfectly.
9. Find Cute Tops To Wear With Jeans and Heels
If your idea of date night involves jeans and heels….this is for you.
A. The Top That’s More Like An Art Piece
DYING over this 3.1 Philip Lim top. It literally made me swoon. So incredibly cool. (And there’s the rear view on those Frame skinny jeans – good, right?)
The shoes, however, are comfortable yet…not super walkable. I mean…OK YES. If you are used to walking in high heels, you will likely have no issues. But if you attempt to walk like you do in sneaks [S raises hand] then the back strap might come down and annoy you. The leather is soft, tho.
B. The Crowd-Pleaser
If you just need a fancy top for sometimes…this one. It’s affordable and pretty and what’s not to like about that?
C. The Casual One
I loved the fit of this baseball tee. I went with an XXS to really keep things fitted.
D. The Fancy Silk One
This Vince top is just so pretty on. And you can wear a normal bra with it! I especially like it with light-wash denim.
10. Think About These Two Expensive Sweaters
The Vince hoodie still gets my first nod…but these two pieces are both unique, yet practical. They’re on the pricier side, so I put them through the styling paces…and really liked the results.
A. Rag and Bone Pearl Button Sweater
This one feels like it’s wrapped around your body, rather than just on. And the pearl buttons are such a surprising detail…gorgeous. I’m wearing a small, for reference.
B. Helmut Lang Cardigan
I didn’t want to take off this slouchy gorgeousness.
11. Score Some Summer Tops and Dresses (To Wear Right Now)
While this sale is a Fall pre-sale event, this year’s included several pieces perfect for right hot now.
A. This Boho Top That Looks Exactly Like A Knock-Off Of One I Own
Remember this cool, detailed peasant top? This one is very similar (and breezy and cool).
B. Madewell’s Tie-Back Top
Madewell is making my life lately, and I LOVE this thing.
C. A Few More Fun Summer Pieces
So. The sunglasses are insanely affordable yet really good (like Le Specs, but not)…and the little red tee is much cuter in person. (I think I was just getting tired.) The jeans worn with the red tee are those Frame trouser jeans….which I hated. I tried on three different sizes and they all fit weird.
D. Sundresses? YES.
The striped one is by Rails – easy and cute. The burgundy midi dress? It’s by Zella. And is made out of some sort of super thin technical fabric – like something a sailboat sail would be made out of. Quick drying, super soft and silky. Is it flattering? I couldn’t decide. At times I thought I loved it, other times I thought it made me look pregnant. But it IS, admittedly, a realllllly practical piece. Thoughts?
12. Buy This Loungewear
Ok, maybe I should’ve led with this….but these are basically my VERY FAVORITE pieces. We’ll just consider this nugget a little reward for those of you who have managed to read this far. (Seriously, thank you. I know exactly how crazy I am.)
And I cannot state enough: the workout set in heathered gray? Is the MOST COMFORTABLE THING I’VE EVER PUT ON MY BODY. I almost cried tears of real joy. No joke.
Shop The Pieces From The 2018 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale
Jeans & Pants
Workout & Loungewear
Good luck shopping!!