Monday, September 5, 2011

Building a work wardrobe: Loft & Ann Taylor

Over the past year, I've been building up the professional side of my wardrobe, as some presentations and events require business formal / business casual clothing. Full time recruitment also starts this month until the end of my program next May, so having outfits on hand is quite important. Usually, for business clothing I hit up Banana Republic when they have their 40% off sales online/in-store. However BR stocks a pretty mediocre selection of summer tops, so what I get from them are mostly the button down shirts and tailored pants.

Due to my petite stature (I'm almost but not quite 5 ft), I've been frequenting petite fashion blogs, and as a lot of them frequently mentioned Ann Taylor and Loft clothing in their posts my interest was piqued. These brands unfortunately do not have stores in Canada, but I visited their stores 2 weeks ago during my trip to NYC. At full price, the clothes are pretty expensive, so its too bad my trip wasn't long enough (or timed adequately) to make use of online coupon codes. However I was able to visit the Niagara Falls outlets in Buffalo when driving back to Toronto, and discovered some great finds at the Loft Factory Store and Ann Taylor Factory Store.

Loft had a wide selection of things that were 25% to 40% off. At this time my selection of professional looking tops consists of mostly boring button down shirts so I wanted to get some nice tanks for a change. I ended up picking up two tanks, both 25% off, with some interesting crease detailing around the neckline.

Grey and red floral tank in their petites sizing.

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Purple tank, regular sizing. You can see above that it is slightly wider and about 1-1.5 inches longer than the petite version, but since I plan to tuck these blouses in anyway the longer length is almost a bonus, as it will stay tucked in better. Some XS tops tend to have armholes that are too big but these were still almost like the XSP so no issues there.

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At Ann Taylor they had 40% off on many items, which was great since their prices were a bit higher than Loft's. This time I picked a burgundy tank with chiffon flower details, and navy blue butterfly sleeve top. Both are darker colours but they seemed fitting for fall.

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As Loft is also made by Ann Taylor, there is minimal differences in sizing. When comparing the same size tanks (regular, not petites) both are almost the same, with maybe <1cm longer length on the Ann Taylor top.

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Hopefully Loft and Ann Taylor will eventually make their way to Canada, or at least their factory stores, because I really like the style and quality of these tops!

11 comments:

FB @ FabulouslyBroke.com said...

LOVE!

Cinnabunnie said...

I'm around 5ft too ^^ Looking for the right jeans with a short inseam is such a pain >< Thanks for dropping by my blog :) here is my reply: HK is the best place to get good food :) They have a little bit of everything! The animal cakes are to cute to eat~ they were from one of those bakeries that are franchised.

Shop N' Chomp said...

Oh my gosh, I have the same last blouse (but in a different color)! You make a good point about the differences between regular and petite sizing. Sometimes I get lazy and just shop in the regular side when the petite size is really where I should be.

Jamilla Camel said...

Your new blouses are very pretty!

M.A.C.nunu said...

Haha I also totally hit up the Anne Taylor and Loft outlet when I was in Florida. For work clothes I tend to prefer Mexx. As always I have to get any pants I buy shortened but their prices during their 50% off sales are pretty good.
I've never really been a Banana Republic shopper, their prices make me wince

cushy said...

the pink satin top with black flowers are so pretty. shopping for work clothes is hard for me as they tend to be less colorful/trendy and i always divert.

Paris B / Pink Parisian said...

I love your blouses! I haven't seen anything similar here but if I do, I'm sure I'll pick them up. They'll look nice and different under a blazer for work and when you take off the blazer, it won't be boring either!

rasilla said...

AT is a store I do miss. I bought two pairs back in 2001(?) and I still have them. I have a pair of slacks that really wore well too~
I miss that store :(
Hence another reason why I need to make a trip across the border!

Shop N' Chomp said...

Aw, I hope you return there soon! :)

Rinny said...

You got some great tops! I looove AT and LOFT for work clothes. I've been shopping there nonstop lately for all my work wardrobe purchases. I love how they have sales often too. I rarely buy anything full price :P

Beauty Basics said...

Great tops! I am a BR regular as well but I started to get bored with the clothes that they offer. I live in Canada too. It's so sad that we don't have Ann Taylor and Loft here in Canada.

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