Shop with Me: J.Crew & Nordstrom

Hello and happy Monday! I am happy to report that we had a safe and uneventful trip home yesterday. We enjoyed a nice brunch with my mom and our kids before she headed home, and then it was nice enough to sit outside and read on the front porch. Maybe spring is on its way, after all! I’m looking forward to getting back to routine today.

Last week, I went to the mall to return a few things and I ended up coming home with more than I returned! Funny how that works. I started out in Nordstrom and ended up wandering into J.Crew, and I took some pictures so I can share with you.

SALE ALERT >> Today and tomorrow, take 25% off your J.Crew order of $125 or more OR 30% off your order of $200 or more with code MOREISMORE!

This striped cold shoulder top immediately caught my eye at Nordstrom. I tried on both the small and medium, and the medium is definitely the right size, so it runs true to size or maybe a bit small. I really like the length in the front — it hits right at my “sweet spot” to create a nice balance. The split back is a cute detail, and it’s made of a comfortable jersey fabric with a nice drape. It comes in grey, navy, and black, and I ended up purchasing the black. I wore this for half a day in Savannah, and it was great for a casual day when you want to feel a little more dressed up than normal but not fancy.

Bobeau Top

I didn’t like this slub knit cold shoulder tee nearly as much as the striped top. It’s too long, and the cold shoulder detail wasn’t as flattering. For size reference, this was a small and was plenty big, so this Bobeau brand is pretty inconsistent with their sizing.

The grey jeans I’m wearing are by Caslon. I like the released hem and the shade of grey, but I’m not crazy about the rear view. For size reference, these are a 28, so they run a bit large.

And speaking of bad rear views, these boyfriend jeans do me no favors at all. (These are also a size 28.) I like the ones from J.Crew that I styled last week better, although neither pair really does me any favors from that angle.

Yoiks! Needless to say, those did not come home with me.

Moving on to J.Crew… I love that Nordstrom carries a lot of J.Crew styles because you can earn Nordstrom Rewards on those purchases, AND you get the benefit of the Nordstrom free shipping and free returns as well as the in-store pickup option. For the items that are also carried at Nordstrom, I’ll link to both options.

This white ruffle sleeve top is cute, but I don’t care for how the ruffle on the sleeve is aligned with my chest. I try to avoid tops with sleeves that end there or draw attention to that area. I do like the neckline and the length of the hem. This top might be cuter on someone with a pear shape, as the volume on top would balance the hip area. For size reference, this is a small.

I felt like a clown in this ruffle stripe top (also at Nordstrom.) It’s cute, but I just couldn’t get on board. This is a size 6.

I debated this pink striped bell sleeve top and eventually decided to leave it in the store. It reminds me of a candy striper, ha! I think I might like it better in the blue and white, but I still don’t really think it flatters me. I would like it better if it had a more open neckline. Or maybe it just needs an iron, lol. For size reference, this is a 6.

I didn’t love this metallic linen tee (also at Nordstrom.) Maybe it would be better in the silver, but this gold is too close to my skin tone. I’m also wearing the slim boyfriend jeans (also at Nordstrom) that I styled last week.

I really don’t love the back view. This is why I live in skinny jeans, folks!

I wanted to love this pink tweed skirt, but it was a little too snug in the 6, and it was too big in the 8. The sales associate brought me this white tee to try on with it, but it’s definitely a size too small. I would need a medium in this, and I’d prefer the scoopneck version.

So let’s talk about this red shift dress (also at Nordstrom.) I saw it on the hanger and assumed the straight silhouette wouldn’t flatter me, but I loved the color as well as the eyelet detail, the tie closure in the back, and the elbow-length bell sleeves. After debating, I told myself that you never really know till you try it on, so I grabbed my size and headed to the dressing room. (This is the 6 by the way.)

The sales associate encouraged me to buy it and said that with shoes and accessories, it will be stunning. I actually don’t mind the way it fits through the body, but the neckline is doing something funky, and I couldn’t decide if I wanted to commit or not, so I left it in the store. I’m still thinking about it, though. It might be fun for the kick-off event at the conference I have coming up in a few weeks. The theme is Escape to Tulum.

I really wanted to love this one shoulder ruffle top (also at Nordstrom.) I just don’t know how I feel about all these ruffles, and I feel a little nekkid in the one shoulder style. I’m more comfortable in cold shoulder or off-the-shoulder styles. That said, after I left it in the store, I ordered it in the red. LOL! We’ll see how I feel once I get it home. I think I might like it with white jeans and nude wedges for a summer event or dinner out.

On my way to the cash register, I noticed this ruffle trim top. It looked like it would work for me, so I impulsively grabbed it and added it to my purchase. Since everything else fit so perfectly in the size 6, I figured I was safe, but when I tried it on here at home, it was a little tight across the bust. I styled it for an outfit we shot in Savannah, and I’m borderline on whether or not I like it on me — I’ll be curious to hear your thoughts. It would be super cute on someone not quite so busty.

Finally, this fringy lace sheath (also at Nordstrom) did come home with me. The final event at my conference is “black tie optional” and I think this will be perfect. I hope I made the right decision by getting the black. It also comes in a gorgeous yellow as well as white and coral, but I feel like the black is most appropriate for black tie optional. On the other hand it IS a fashion blogging conference, so maybe I should go for something more fun… What do you think? I could still exchange it for the yellow.

Shop the Post


So that’s a wrap. Do you like these Shop With Me posts? If you do, I might try to do them more regularly — maybe once or twice a month. You can also let me know some other stores you’d like me to try.

Have a beautiful Monday!

Join The Conversation

95 Responses

  1. Love the shop with me posts and love that you show things that aren’t perfect for you but could be for someone else, I like that you mention what body type might look good in a particular item. Great job!

  2. I love these shopping expeditions with you Jo-Lynne!!
    Since you asked our opinion—I think you should opt for the last dress in another color (yellow is my fave, but the coral or white would be different also). Then you’ll really stand out since you’re so amazing!!

  3. Always enjoy your posts because I think my style preferences are very similar to yours. Laughed at your rear view references – I agree – boyfriend cut not usually friendly there. I have had luck with girlfriend jeans – always partial to WHBM jeans for flattering fits.

  4. Love these shopping trips! I agree with all of your purchases, and I think the black dress is perfect! The boyfriend jean pics made me giggle. They are so hard to pull off.

  5. I love these posts too so please keep them up! They are fun and it’s so helpful to read why things work for you or not. Love the black dress at the end but it is a fashion blogging conference so another color would definitely show your adventurous sense of style! With that said, you will look fabulous in black if you decide to keep that one!

  6. Love this post, learned a few more things???? Love the first top, last dress and the one shoulder top on you. I actually wish I was daring enough and had an occasion to wear the one shoulder top.

  7. I like the black fringe dress instead of the yellow for your black tie event. I do like the red dress that the clerk encouraged you to get. I also like the one shoulder top on you and the “candy striper” top. I also like that you put the “not for me” clothes, as well!

  8. I LOVE your shopping expeditions- once again I learned so much as you worked your way though each item. . I would have bought every outfit as they all looked good on you. However, when you pointed things out it was obvious that a particular item wasn’t a good choice. Thanks for helping train our eyes. Now if I were only trim and curvy like you.

  9. Such a fun, honest post!
    Get the dress in yellow….it would give it ,and you, such a “wow” factor at a fashion blogging conference.

  10. I love your “shop with me” posts, too. Trying on clothing on in a dressing room is so overwhelming for me that I rarely do it. Seeing your posts reminds me that it’s okay to try on a bunch of things and reject most or even all of them. I have become the queen of internet shopping. Places like Nordstrom and Banana Republic, with free ship in both directions, have made that possible. Have you noticed a lot of high necklines this season? With a large bust and short waist, I always look better with a V or scoop neckline and it seems as if the trend is going toward high necklines. I see so many cute tops with them, but have vowed to stop buying them because those are the tops that end up hanging in my closet and not getting worn. I tell myself that I’ll just wear a necklace to balance it out, but it’s still not as flattering on my body. Also, what’s with all the sleeves ending at the bust line? Again, not so flattering for those of us who are well-endowed. Happy Monday, Jo-Lynne!

  11. Enjoy going on these shopping trips with you! Nordstrom however…should think about cleaning their carpets! lol

  12. I recently signed up for your daily posts and you have given me inspiration to update my wardrobe – not sure my husband is to happy about it 😉 …….but I sure am having fun! I also like the fact that you show things that you don’t care for in your posts –

  13. Really enjoyed shopping with you. I identified with all the “considerations” when choosing an item. Part of the secret of your success is that you are so relatable and the dressing room experience is something we all love to share. I would definitely look forward to future similar shopping adventures…….great going, JoLynne!

  14. That black dress is stunning! Love these posts! (Keep the black for the conference, go back and pick up the yellow for Easter!!!!)

  15. I am new to your blog and I am loving it !! I really enjoyed your shopping post and would like to see more of these. Thanks for the awesome info 🙂

  16. I LOVE you in the black fringe dress.!! I like the red fringe dress in general but I don’t think it is as flattering on you as others as it does not show off your amazing figure as it has no waist. think you did the right thing not making that purchases. That one shoulder ruffle top is beautiful…can’t wait to see you style it in the red one you bought. I really like shopping with you posts. I have been eyeing the top you felt like a clown in and now not so sure I would like it either.

    1. I totally agree with Sandy–the black dress is FAB but the red doesn’t do you any favors. I suggest the dress in either white or yellow (though the black is more practical, and I live in Southern California so we wear light colors all year round!

      Nonetheless, the black is a keeper for practicality and future wearing.

    1. I’ve mentioned it a few times – I did lose 7-8 lbs late last summer and I’m working hard to keep it off. After the last weekend away, I need to buckle down and get back on track. 🙂 I’m basically eating real food/low carb.

  17. These are my favorite posts! I give you credit for posting the maybes as well as the nos! So refreshing AND instructive, I appreciate that you’re willing to keep it real ????

  18. I love the shop with me posts! Not necessarily fashion related, could you give me the details on your eyewear? I’m scheduled for new frames next week and love the look of yours!

  19. I love these shopping posts because my body shape is similar to yours and it gives me great ideas/tips. I LOVE the candy striped shirt though I know I probably stand alone in this! 🙂 I just like pink in the spring. However, the low cut front, though it is closed makes me think I wouldn’t be able to get away with it at work. What do you think? Don’t think I could bear a cami because it is too hot here already in GA. I love the last dress and think you could wear that in any color. If you wear black you could always add some color in shoes/bag–as you are excellent in showing us how to make things pop!
    So glad you enjoyed Savannah…I grew up near there and spent many summer weekends on Tybee Island and eating all the wonderful seafood!

  20. I learn so much from your shopping trip posts and appreciate them so much!

    You look extraordinary in the black dress but I love to see you in a pop of color as well. The brightly colored pieces you have selected since I have been following your blog are stunning on

  21. Hi! I do love your shopping posts! Honestly, it’s nice to see some of these items ‘in real life’ and read your evaluation of why it works for you and your body type or not. I think you should do one of these posts with WHBM or Lucky Brand. Have a great day!

  22. I don’t really like the black dress. The neck-line and how the shoulders cut in doesn’t look right.

  23. I really enjoyed your shopping experience. I’m crazy about the one shoulder top. I think it will look great in red with white jeans. Can’t wait to see it all put together.

  24. Love the shopping posts! So helpful to see someone else’s take on items… like shopping with a friend from home:)

  25. Lots of cute stuff! Loved both dresses, but the coral one was doing something weird at the neck/shoulders. The fringy one is darling!!! Love the one shoulder top too and can’t wait to see it on you in red. I want to try one of those as well, but haven’t yet worked up my nerve.

  26. I love these posts! Please keep them up! I love when you style Old Navy clothes. That is my go to place and I have purchased several pieces once I saw how you styled them. I even reordered the strawberry jeans you styled. In fact I ordered the grey cardi from Express as well!! Keep up the good work!!

  27. Love the shopping posts. I’m older but built similar to you, shorter but deal with the bust issue. Seeing you try and reject things helps me keep an eye out for what to even bother trying on. I so want a new top with the new sleeves with ruffles but again most of them make the bust look wider. I’m also having a hard time finding one that doesn’t stick out and make me look pregnant. I shop mostly at Talbots and Chicos and would love to see something from there. Although you have introduced me to how easy it is to shop Nordstrom’s. Mostly shoes bc I have to try on everything. You have a great eye and I love your posts. First thing I look at every morning.

    1. Thanks, Wanda. I can try those stores. I don’t usually see a lot that resonates, but it might be interesting to try some things and see how I do. 🙂 I think the key with tops not making you look pregnant is to make sure they have good structure. I sometimes compromise on that feature, and I always wish I hadn’t.

  28. I love “shopping with you”. Thought the pink top was flattering and really like your hair pulled back. Suits your face shape. I’m lots older than you but find many of your choices are things I like.

  29. Love these shopping trips! I JUST bought the J crew dress this weekend in white. I’m a straight but planning to have my tailor nip it in. I think it will be perfect for an upcoming trip to Mexico with my kate spade pink tassel necklace. I adore the fringy dress. I agree that the black does seem like a safe choice for a fashion conference. I looked at the yellow version but it was too neon for my taste. Maybe you can rock the black one with some incredible shoes? You always look great and I love seeing all the things you try on even if you don’t buy them.

    1. Good idea to have the dress tailored! It was also weird on me around the neck – where it tied in the back. I think the black dress probably needs incredible shoes but I was planning to go plain jane and wear my nude strappy sandals. Maybe I need to rethink that…

  30. Please keep the “Shop With Me” posts coming! I love them! I can so relate to the points you make because I have a similar shape. An earlier comment mentioned WHBM as their go-to place for jeans and I have to agree! Maybe you could take us on a “shop with me” there! ???? Thanks for all you do Jolynne! I lenjoy your blog so much!!

  31. I really like the shop with me posts. Keep them coming. The one-shoulder ruffle top is cute and looks great on you. I do like the black in the fringy dress, but the coral and white are pretty and very spring-ish!

  32. I love your blog and especially enjoy your shop with me posts. I agree WHBM and also Banana Republic. They have great quality and great sales! 🙂

  33. I think the one shoulder top would look nice for a date night. Very pretty. For the J Crew Boyfriend jeans, how was the sizing? I’m usually an 8, do you recommend sizing down?

  34. Love the Shop With Me post! It is so much easier to see how something looks when it is tried on rather than hanging on a hanger. Keep ’em coming!

  35. Love the “Shop With Me” posts. Let’s go to WHBM soon. I’m 59, never shopped at Chico’s ~ is it for the “older” crowd!? LOL!

    1. Yeah… I’m not a huge fan of Chico’s, but I LOVE WHBM and I’m happy to take y’all shopping with me there! The main issue I have with shopping there is the sales people start bringing you TONS of stuff to try on, and I get overwhelmed, plus it takes an AGE to get out of there! But I always find great stuff.

  36. What fun it is to “shop” with you! I adore that striped cold shoulder top and it looks great with your skinny jeans and rain boots. I thought that the white ruffle sleeve top was cute and I appreciate how you educated us on why it didn’t work for you but may work for others. I’m glad that you left the red shift dress. The color was amazing but imo, it didn’t do anything for your figure. Now that black dress was made for you! I’m not sure what the yellow would look like, but you look great in coral. (Maybe the yellow dress with blue accessories.) I’m looking forward to seeing which color you decide and how you style it for the conference. I agree with an earlier post…that carpet in the dressing room was gross and I think you were brave to go in bare feet. LOL! These “shop with me” posts are a keeper as they are so informative. Thanks Jo-Lynne.

  37. Love these posts & your facial expressions! Thanks for pointing out how jeans look from the back. I’m going to have to learn how to take back selfies so I can see how my jeans look from the rear. 😉

    1. Usually I just use the dressing room mirror, but I was trying to show you guys with my phone. 🙂 That said, for some reason, looking at pictures of my outfits on my phone (or the computer when they save to iCloud) is always more helpful than looking at myself in the mirror. I take selfies a lot to determine if I like something or not. 🙂

  38. I pretty much agree with all your comments on what you tried on, (love you in that first cold shoulder top and the one shoulder looks great on you!!) although I actually liked the metallic tee on you. And that last dress with the fringe..awesome!!! .I just bought a dress for a black tie optional event but am seriously thinking of going to Nordstrom and looking for that black dress!! I actually don’t own a black dress and while it may make more sense to get a basic black sheath dress for my LBD , this one is so cute and modern!! love your posts!!

  39. Love the “Shop with Me” posts! The black off shoulder top and black dress are both stunning! I have never worn anything from J. Crew so what size did you get in the black dress?

    1. It’s a 6. Everything there fit very well in 6 except the pink tweed skirt was snug – and that blue and white striped top is also a tad too tight in the bust.

  40. I love the pink/gold? tweed shirt..so casual but you shine! 🙂 that black off the shoulder shirt looks really sassy and it would look so great with white capris. you’ll probably be keeping a lot of these items…pretty!
    happy Monday to you,

  41. Love your shop-with-me posts! I like reading about how you decided to keep it or leave it. I also think I would feel “nekkid” in the one shoulder top. That said–it is really flattering on you! I like the dress in black – I can see your dilemma with the color. I always think if you go loud, then it is too memorable to wear again. However, black might be safer for a second time around.

    1. Good point about the yellow dress being memorable, although it’s not like I hang out with fashion bloggers very often, lol. Still, I think there is more chance of getting to wear the black one again.

  42. Love your shop with me posts! Please keep them coming. I also love the striped cold shoulder top and the one shoulder top as well. Believe that I am going to order both of those as soon as I’m done with this comment. I really love your blog as you give me such great ideas. Thanks again and please keep the posts coming.

  43. I also love these shopping posts! The red dress, I think, just does not fit you. Shift dresses can look really cool on a figure with curves, but this one seems to be too large for your overall frame. I think it fits in the bust, but has too much fabric below and it comes up off your shoulders the same way a men’s suit jacket that is too large would do. As for the fringe dress, I love the black with your dark hair–very dramatic look! I have had a yellow cocktail dress before, but figuring out the color shoes to look right with it was a little challenging, so be warned if you switch!!.

    1. Good point about shoes with the yellow. I wanted to wear nude strappy sandals with the black, but I know that is so plain jane. I just got the Stuart Weitzman ones, and they’d be perfect with this dress, but maybe I need a color for this event. If I do nude shoes and black dress, I’ll definitely do a bright color for the bag. And I agree with the red dress, I think I just WANT it to work so badly I was trying to talk myself into it. 🙂

  44. Love the Shop-with-me -posts. Keep them coming. Thanks for sharing. The black dress looks super cute on you!

  45. What jeans are you wearing with the striped cold shoulder top? I love that top. It does hit at the right spot. Also, I actually liked the boyfriend jeans on you and think you could pull them off but I know what you mean, I am just not a big fan of them.

  46. I love the fringe dress! The black would be more suitable for an evening event with a pair of smashing heels and long earrings.
    I did like the pink stripe blouse on you but the boyfriend jeans don’t seem to fit you nicely through the butt.
    I like these shop with you posts. You do all the work for us. Lol

  47. I love going shopping with you !!Yes u should get the yellow dress for something fun although u look Fab in the black !????

  48. I agree with you. I love my skinny jeans
    Those boyfriends and girlfriends jeans dont fit me right. Im also still on the fence with all ruffles not sure how i feel about them. I like this post. Its like going shopping with a friend. Glad your back safely

  49. Hi Jolynne, we’ve chatted about jeans before. I’m still struggling… but what is wrong with the rear views of the jeans you wore in this post? I love when you take us shopping!!


    1. I feel like they make my behind look wide and flat — which it sort of is, haha! — so I have to always pay attention to the rear view. It would be more helpful if I posted a picture of myself in jeans that I like to compare side by side. I’ll do that next time!

  50. For the black tie event, definitely keep the black one. I don’t like the bright yellow. Thanks for the fun shopping trip with you. Fun to have you do. 🙂

  51. I LOVE the black fringe dress!! It’s super cute, classy, yet different too. I’m going to go try that one on.

    OMG I cannot take that pink/white striped poofy bell sleeve top! There is really waay too much going on in one top!! So glad you didn’t buy that one. 🙂 (You disappeared in all that material.)

    Recently, I’ve seen some other bloggers on Instagram wearing really poofy, “over-the-top” bell sleeves, strange necklines or plunging off-the-shoulder sleeves that are sliding down the sides of the girl’s arms, and it looks interesting in a picture but I can’t imagine anyone walking around town like that.

    1. I agree — sometimes I see things that I want to photograph for the blog b/c I think it will make cool pictures, but then I think, would I actually WEAR this? I feel like I have to do a gut check sometimes b/c I assume y’all don’t want to see things that aren’t practical for real life. 🙂 Like the pumps with the boyfriend jeans – I wanted to style them that way b/c I knew they would look better, but I also know I wouldn’t have anywhere to wear a getup like that, lol.

      1. Well I’m sure it’s challenging in your case with running a fashion blog and all and trying to stay on top of the latest trends for your readers. And I’m sure it’s fun to buy and try lots of different styles! (Kinda like an interior designer who gets to decorate in a multitude of styles for different clients).
        I think you do a good job of embracing the trends, but keeping them at a level where most women can try it and make it their own as well. Also, many of the current styles can’t be worn to work, so women need options. For example, no matter how common and fashionable distressed & ripped jeans have become, I cannot wear them to work (but I like them and have several pairs for weekend activities).

        I had to laugh at your comment about shoes w/ the boyfriend jeans. I like the look of heels w/ the boyfriend jeans in pictures, but then when I put them on I feel like I should be wearing skinny jeans or a nicer boot cut jean instead.

        Anyway….sorry to ramble. I need to spend more time writing on my own blog!! ???? (Educational blog)

  52. Love when you take us all shopping with you! I don’t get to do much shopping other than online so love the fact that I get to see what’s new without having to go to the mall myself!!

  53. I like the black dress you can always do bright accessories like a purse or shoes to give it a pop of color. I think I recall you .styling fushia or hot pink sandals?
    Thanks for sharing

  54. Jo Lynne, I’m considering the dress from JCrew in coral for a wedding–the reviews say it runs short. I’m 5’1 and normally buy petite. How did you find the length of the dress? In your pics it looks to hit you perfectly above the knee.

  55. I love these posts. We assume everything you try on will look perfect and it doesn’t. These posts show that you too “struggle” (I use the term lightly because almost everything looks good on you) with finding clothes that look good on and the finding the right size. These posts show us we have to keep trying and not to get discouraged. Thank you for bringing us along!!

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