Monday, September 14, 2015

J.Crew Factory Reviews Part II: Quilted Puffer Vests, Quilted Jacket, and Wool Blazer

Here is Part II of my reviews from the weekend. See Part I here. Please excuse the incongruousness of me trying on outerwear while wearing shorts. It was hot on the day I visited J.Crew Factory. Anyway, onto the reviews. For fit reference, I'm 5' 4", 32C-26-34. My usual sizes at J.Crew Factory are 00 and XXS.

Steely Grey XXS

I'm not surprised that they brought back the popular herringbone vest again this year. I have last year's vest, which I reviewed here. The design remains largely unchanged. The vest is still made of 100% polyester filled with a minimum of 60% down, with the remainder being waterfowl feathers. The herringbone pattern is still printed as opposed to actually being textured. The fit is still boxy through the torso and gaps under the arms. I would recommend sizing down if possible. Anyway, the main change is that this year's vest is rendered in grey and ivory, as opposed to last year's oatmeal and black. I prefer last year's colors, but if you didn't pick up that one, this is a passable substitute.

Verdict: Meh. Runs large, so size down.

Black Grey XXS

I initially thought this was the plaid quilted puffer vest, but after checking the tags, it's actually the same vest as above in a new pattern. I prefer this one to the grey herringbone. It's a bit difficult to see the colors here, but they are charcoal and soft black. Otherwise the fit and feel are exactly the same as the herringbone. I tried it on over the Fair Isle sweater (reviewed in this post).

Verdict: Like. Runs large, so size down.

Quilted Jacket (Item E2004)
XXS - Front
XXS - Side
XS - Front
XS - Side
I've always liked the way quilted jackets look but never found one that fit well. This black jacket with gold snaps is a possible contender. The silhouette is reminiscent of the popular field jacket. Despite being 100% polyester fill, this little jacket is relatively warm. I could see wearing it into late fall in cold places and all through winter in warm places. Once again I'm in between sizes. I prefer the fitted look of the XXS but can only fit a thin tee underneath. The XS is much better for layering (here I'm wearing the fair isle sweater), but it looks a little too bulky. Since it's not perfect, I may have to pass since I have a lot of other in-between jackets.

Verdict: Like, but doesn't make sense for my wardrobe.
Runs small.

Wool Blazer (Item E0357)
Green 00

I'm not a big fan of wearing green, because I feel like it highlights the yellow undertones of my skin in an unflattering way. That being said, I love this heather olive color! It has flecks of yellow and maroon mixed in with the green, which somehow just works. This is a relatively thick wool blend (75% wool, 25% nylon) blazer best for late fall/winter. It features functional pockets, gold buttons, and a collar backed by grey felt. The body has a striped lining, but the inside of the sleeves is just plain black. That shouldn't be a problem though since I can't imagine anyone wearing such a thick blazer with the sleeves rolled up. The cut is similar to the new schoolboy from the retail side. I found the fit true to size. My main complaint about this blazer is that the wool is very scratchy! I wore this with a thin button-down and felt prickling through the sleeves. The problem might be alleviated by layering more heavily, but that limits the blazer's versatility. Just keep that in mind if you decide to buy.

Verdict: Like, true to size, but scratchy.

What's your favorite piece from the new J.Crew Factory roll-out?


  1. Thanks for the reviews! I've been curious about the herringbone vest since they brought it back again this season. Too bad it runs large!

    1. I wish they would introduce XXXS at J.Crew Factory! That way I wouldn't get sized out of certain pieces. It's too bad, because I prefer the pocket and zipper styles of the Factory vest to the retail one.

  2. I agree with your comments on the herringbone vest--I much prefer the oatmeal/black combination to this year's gray version. I wish I had ordered a size down when I ordered mine last fall, but at least it means there's extra room for layers underneath!

    1. I couldn't size down last year, because they don't carry XXXS yet. Hopefully they'll introduce it soon! Luckily it's not too noticeable if I layer.

  3. So glad you reviewed the vest! The reviews on the site were kind of mixed when it came to sizing and I hate having to order two sizes just to return one. :)

    1. I hate that too. Unfortunately, I just had to do it with the red stripe tee! Hope the vest works out for you!

  4. Thanks for reviewing the blazer - very good to know that it is scratchy. I have a couple of other blazers from J. Crew that are a bit scratchy too but it's a matter of wearing the right piece underneath. I was so disappointed when J. Crew got rid of the school boy so I'm very glad to see this similar fit still at factory.

    1. I really liked the schoolboy too. I wish I had snagged a herringbone or gray wool one before the style got discontinued. Since I already own a few blazers I really like, I'm going to be extra choosy about what to add next.