Friday, March 7, 2014

Stitch Fix: on jeans. and sweatpants. and motherhood.

Less about Souls today, and more about Life's-Nitty-Gritty.

Although, they are soooo very connected.  Aren't they?

I am battling a chest cold today,
seems my husband likes to share.
Which kinda makes me smile...

Ahem, anyway.

So, when I became a mommy...
my time for "me" became less.
To the point where I didn't even notice.  Partly pure glee.
And every errand is blessed by the pitter-patter of little feet.
Or, like last night at the tile store,
blessed by an acrobatic-like-bull-in-a-china-shop.

So one day, when I saw a friend post on Facebook about this little
web-based business called "Stitch Fix,"
I started to wonder...
You mean.... someone.... would shop clothing racks for me,
and really not charge me to do so?
And ship what they selected FOR FREE?
And I wouldn't have to spend time online--
searching all over for "my style" out there in the great beyond?
(I gave up clothing shopping years ago,
you know--when my little bulls came along).
You mean to tell me, therefore,
no more looking for free shipping sites... and coupon codes...
wondering what will fit (those models are all so-opposite-of-me).
No more getting items only to find that I got all the WRONG sizes...
and then having to somehow drag myself to the store to return all those items
that I didn't want to go to the store for in the first place...
to save on the blasted return shipping charges of course.
Ok. --I'm fibbing.
Want to know a secret?
I send my husband to the stores with my giant box of returns.
Because he is sweet, and he doesn't mind it.
(One time the clerk scolded him and told him he should make his wife shop
in-store, because online returns really mess up their inventory.)
Yes, sign me up to stand in line with a big box of returns while holding
a wiggly toddler and listening to my son ask why
none of the models are really wearing pants,
while you try to match up sku's 
and I wonder if

It's no wonder that most moms survive in sweatpants.
And that a good day is wearing a clean pair.


I'm not saying I'm giving up sweats.
But I will tell you--when my Stitch Fix box arrived,
I ran out there wearing those sweats and a smile to grab it.
And then I locked myself in my bedroom for some alone time
while the kids watched cartoons.


If you are anything like me,
you think it sounds neat but you wish you could walk alongside
someone to see how the process works.
And what kind of financial stuff this involves.
Because you've been burned before
by things that just sound too good to be even-close-to-real.

(I am writing this, in fact, in my favorite pair of sweats...)

1.  You set up an account online.
Answer questions about your style preferences,
including what colors you like/dislike. Tell them
your honest measurements.  Answer what parts of your
body you like and what you prefer to hide. They will
ask you what price point you prefer to stay below for each piece.
You can even link them up to a pinterest board.  They
truly desire to get to know your style--not to change you.

This is not a sign-up-or-else program.
You call the shots.
They won't send you a THING unless you tell them to!
And, for special occasions you can hop online and tell them...
"I need a fix for this wedding that I'm going to...on this date."
And they will send you a specific fix.
Or you can tell them:  "In this box I really need some starter pieces
to rebuild my wardrobe beyond sweat pants--
but please know my days consist of children and basketball games."
(this was similar to what I told them...)
But bottom line--they will never send you a fix unless you tell them to!

2.  Pick a date for your "fix."
They charge $20 when your fix is packaged 
and shipped to you.
(This happens about a week or so before your box arrives)
However--this $20 is credited toward anything
you choose to keep from your fix.

This is the pair of jeans they sent me, by Kensie.  They knew my body type and sent a pair of jeans
geared for curves.  I told them to send me somthing that I could wear with my favorite boots.
They did NOT send me skinny jeans, bless them.
This pair of jeans, which I never knew existed--even prevent "plumber butt."
Which you would only understand...well...if you are curvy.
The "cheat sheets" that come with each piece they send you, showing you what items will go well with each.
So--they sent me (5) pieces, so I have (5) cards--one for each piece.
My box did not include EVERY item you see here.  Just the main piece from each card that is listed at the top.
I clarify this because I don't want you to think they send 35 pieces in each box--leaving you overwhelmed!

--oh wow, this is the best day ever--
--and I am totally setting myself up for a box every month--

Try on your items.
They give you a cheat-sheet showing you 
what will work well with each piece,  
how to dress it up, or down.
And a clear list of each item's price.
{{and yes--they ship that fun little box to you for FREE}}
Whatever you don't want?
Put it into the prepaid, pre-labeled plastic bag
that comes right inside your box,
and put it into the mailbox.

No cost for you to return anything.
No lables to print.
No packaging tape to hunt down.
It is a self-sealing envelope all-ready-ready.
Blew my mind.

Return it within 3 days,
and meanwhile hop online to "check out."
Tell them which items you are keeping, if any.
They charge your card only for those items.
Deducting the $20 you already paid.

If you keep it all?
You get the entire box for 25% off.
That, my friend, was tempting.
And yes--I checked up on them.
Their prices are very realistic.
The jeans they sent me sell online for the very same price.
And many of the items actually were LESS expensive
through Stitch Fix by quite a bit.
Not to mention that 25% discount temptation!

If you have time, tell them briefly online why you are sending
back the rest--so that they can make your NEXT fix
even MORE tailored to your style.
The fixes, in theory, should get better and better!

My box as an example:
They shipped me: 3 blouses, a skirt, and a pair of jeans.
I kept the adorable skirt, $58.
It cost me zero to have this box shipped,
and I already had paid $20 when the box was packaged.
So, today I put 4 items in the prepaid bag and went online to
tell them I was keeping the skirt.  I was charged $38.
Had I kept everything in my box,
I could have gotten 25% off which would have
been an investment of $285,
for 3 shirts, a skirt, and a pair of jeans that retail at $400 total.
(Yes, truly I looked up each item--it retails for that much, Stitch Fix was not inflating anything.)
Maybe not the same as shopping the clearance rack at Old Navy
or American Eagle--but the value of having items
that were hand selected for me and shipped for free?
I consider it quite worth every penny.
And trust me, I'm a momma on a budget.
But the one piece I kept will fit nicely with whatever
clearance rack items I find during those once-a-year times I find myself without kids,
shopping with my sisters or a friend.

I am set up for them not to send me any items over $100.
That is the lowest price tier they offer-- the $50-100 tier.
And I was impressed at the wide range of prices they sent.
Yes, one shirt was close to $100--and I may have kept it had it been less $$.
And when I returned it, I clicked a little button that told-them-so.
So that next time, they will be less apt to send me blouses that would blow my budget.

What about sizing, did the items fit??
I know your mind.
I was soooo worried about this, considering my history of online shopping
and how hard it is to fit things to my body.
You see, Stitch Fix has your measurements.
They know what works on you.
So--in my box even the JEANS fit.
Two of the shirts were a bit snug in the arms, but not terribly.
Now I know to go to my profile and adjust my size for shirts,
and my designer, Joannie, also knows b/c I filled out the online survey
telling her which shirts fit too snug.
She does this as her career, after all.

The entire process of going online and plopping my package out for the mailman
took 5 minutes.
I won't tell you how long it took me to try on the 5 items
and dance around like a princess in front of my mirror.

You are worth it.
Your time is precious and scarce, I know.
When you open that closet and wonder which of two outfits to wear,
and you have a little money saved up...
that you didn't use on coffee drinks...
remember the blog you read about Stitch Fix.
And that Stitch Fix is the real deal.
A real blessing to some of us mommas.
And send yourself a gift!
And then tell me all about it :)
How this perfect skirt ended up on your doorstep
while you were busy doing life.

Stitch Fix has a referral program, which means that if you decide one day to
purchase a fix, and you tell them that I sent you using my code, they gift me with a credit.
This had no bearing on my review of their services,
I blogged this simply to share this wonderful little service with friends.
Part of me didn't even want to include this credit link--
because I don't want you to be skeptical that this swayed my writing.
If this service blesses you, I want you to try it even if you forget all about me.
Because I blog simply to encourage your heart.
And sometimes to make your Nitty-Gritty a little less...gritty.
Had my experience been terrible instead of skippingly-thrilling,
you would never have read this.
Because I wouldn't have taken time out of my day to write it.
I could, after all, be quilting!
Quilts don't mind coughing and sore throats.
{{Thank you for using my referral, bless you!
And enjoy your adventure!}}


Kelly said...

I so want to do this, I hope they expand their size range, or I hurry up and lose weight. :-)

The Mueller Family said...

Kelly, have you contacted them? I am not a tiny girl myself, and I know that they tailor to a wide range of sizes. Don't give up until you've contacted them! And don't wait until you've lost weight! I failed miserably in my weight loss goals for Jan/Feb -- but that doesn't mean I am any less worth a fix. So many times I have held myself hostage until I "make my goals" -- meanwhile living in misery and feelings of defeat. The skirt I kept will forgive my failures and also be workable when I am tinier. Tell them where you are in life :) May you be blessed beautiful!