Monday, July 2, 2018

Everlane GoWeave Short-Sleeve Mini Wrap Dress Review


Today's review may be a surprise, as I've been upfront about being... grouchy about Everlane, thanks in large part to a customer service snafu last time I shopped there, years ago. Then came their underwear campaign. I detested their use of faux-feminist "this is what all women secretly wanted" messaging to market a product that was, just by looking at it, absolutely not designed for all women. (The idea of someone my size wearing their bra is laughable. While I'm a bit of a size outlier, it's not that rare a demographic!) 

Except that I also secretly knew that if they made an item that looked great and if I didn't think there was anything else like it in my general price range, I'd probably still buy it. If I never ended up finding that Cuyana Tall Tote, I totally might have tried the Everlane Day Magazine Tote as a substitute, despite having misgivings about the leather texture. Seeing photos of this Everlane GoWeave Short Sleeve Mini Wrap Dress elsewhere made me think it might also fit that bill.

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Does anyone else remember mid-2000s fashion magazines telling us that wrap dresses, particularly the silk jersey Diane von Furstenberg wrap dresses, were universally flattering? That turned out to be a lie. I think the implication was that the sizing was forgiving because the dress was so adjustable, and it'd be easy to size up to accommodate curves and tie it to make it fit at the waist and hide the extra fabric in how the dress wraps. I bought one on The RealReal (easy to find for good prices), and it is definitely not an easy item to wear. It's impossible to make it work-appropriate without a slip despite sizing way up for my chest and it's generally fussy and needs frequent adjusting throughout the day. I still like wearing mine out to a fancy restaurant or other special occasion (it's a fun, distinctive print), but wrap dresses are a challenging genre for me. 

Everlane's really hit it out of the park with designing this wrap dress, at least as far as I'm concerned. There's a separate inner tie that helps the dress stay put, and makes it easy to tie correctly with minimal fussing and effort. With the DvF dress, it takes a lot of adjusting and repositioning whenever I first put it on to try and figure out where I want the waist tie to sit and how to get it to cover the chest better. With this dress it's so much easier, and only takes one "try" or a few seconds. While I only tried this on at home and can't vouch for how it wears throughout the day, it feels secure and like it'd stay put. I also thought this was a very flattering fit, especially from the waist up, and this is extremely high praise coming from me for just about any dress, much less a wrap dress. The skirt length is work-appropriate on my 5'3'' height, hitting a bit above the knee. Between Elaine, Renee, and so very many others besides just yours truly, I think it's clear that this is dress can work well for a lot of different body shapes! (Some of those photos are of Everlane's longer length short-sleeve wrap dress, but from the waist up, it seems to be the exact same dress.) 

Sadly, I discovered this item long after it was released, and they don't have any size/color combinations left that I like. Yellow's not a great color for me, and they don't have my size left in blue or black. The material also doesn't feel breathable, which, to me, isn't a factor that's disqualifying by itself for a dress that I'd generally wear to the office. Most of my work dresses are synthetic blends that aren't particularly breathable, and it's not too bad even in summer if they're short-sleeved and a bit relaxed in fit, like this dress. So I didn't keep this dress because of size/color issues, though if I had the chance to get it in blue or black, I'd have seriously thought about it. I do think the $100 price tag feels a little high for the fabric, as I don't really love the GoWeave texture. The design is great, though, so I'm sad they don't have any size/colors left that I would want! 

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