"We are what we believe we are."
C.S. Lewis

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Quilted Denim Jacket

J Crew Quilted Denim Jacket
 The feeling of a quilted jacket is so soft and cozy, and in a light cotton can be perfect for summer.
I liked this one in particular, with the soft denim colour and touches of light red it reminded me of something...
Les Miserables
 It brought to mind the wardrobe in Les Miserables, in particular this jacket.  Have you seen the movie? I resisted going as sitting down for three hours doesn't typically agree with me, but I loved it, loved it!  The tears streamed!

So I was very excited to wear my Les Mis jacket over my spring and summer frocks, most of which are in various shades of blue and red.
 I liked the fit very much, the soft denim was indeed soft and just the right shade, the trim a faded red, the buttons a good quality.
Why J Crew didn't line this entire jacket in cotton is beyond me.  How am I supposed to wear a polyester lining in the spring and summer?
Body lining: 80% cotton, 20% polyester.
Sleeve lining: 100% polyester.

The exterior of the jacket is just what I wanted.
Like the trim and the buttons.

The navy body lining has a slightly uncomfortable feel, due to the polyester content no doubt.

The sleeves are lined with a slick and clammy polyester fabric.
The real kicker here is the lining in the sleeves, it's the worst kind of polyester you can imagine, shiny and slick, cold and uncomfortable.  You could never wear this jacket with a sleeveless dress.
I'm quite disappointed as I like the look of this jacket so much.  Where during the design process are these things going wrong?  Is there no thought put to the comfort of these items, or is it a matter of cost-cutting measures that the designers think we won't notice?
I'll be sending this jacket back of course.  I have a couple of smaller items to review this week.

How do you like the jacket?  Have you been to see Les Mis yet?
Enjoyo your Sunday darlings!
xoDani

58 comments:

  1. DENIM THE MENACE Oh no Dani, more PTTO. That jacket is pretty and detailed in the JC of yore way - externally. "Jean" toppers aren't a fave of mine, surprisingly. What I miss is all the cute but substantial spring and summer cotton topper jackets JC used to do, with great buttons, belting and other special details.
    (Only keep what you love that loves you back and all that.)

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    1. GF I love that Denim the Menace kid, very spunky. More PTTO when will I learn. Am done now promise.

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  2. Aw I am sorry that didn't work out, it looks really cute on you. I think that J. Crew is betting that most of its customers don't care about a polyester lining. They must be winning that bet when it comes to the bottom line or they would quit doing it. I admit that I am not bothered by polyester linings, but I completely understand why they bother you because I have my own particularities. My latest is my J. Crew denim that has no stretch. All of a sudden I can't bear it, particularly the Matchsticks in the classic rinse wash. The denim feels awful, too, rough and scratchy. Well that's a different problem but similar enough. I can understand it in their regular line of clothing, but it is certainly questionable to line Collection items in polyester or to even designate an item as Collection when it is polyester all around.

    I have not seen the recent Les Mis movie but I have an older one on my DVR that I've been meaning to watch. I don't get to the movies much either and will probably wait until it's available to watch at home.

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    1. cate thank you for understanding the poly thing!
      The only denim I like: Goldsign jeans, love them.

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  3. Oh I'm afraid there's something about that jacket I just don't like - forgive me! It is loved by others though, it doesn't need me in its fan club. Les Mis - no can't,won't I loathe musicals with a passion. Weirdly, I love the opera though, hubs once took me to a musical when we were dating, I was aghast that he hadn't mentioned we were seeing a musical and left at the intermission.

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    1. I'm in the same boat Tabitha, musicals make me cringe but I adore opera. Husband took me to a musical on one of our first dates and we were out of the theatre in 30 minutes!

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    2. Funny, isn't it? My toes curl at musicals.

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    3. Tabs that's funny, I love opera too but MrBP finds it very boring indeed. I once made my whole family sit through a 4 hour opera, they still talk about it.
      I'll watch a musical or anything, I love all theatre.
      The jacket is gone from my life don't worry, it's in a box in the hallway.

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  4. well, once again you've saved me from a frustrating waste of time. Pity, because we're talking about heading somewhere warm in a few weeks, and this could have worked. Coulda, shoulda....

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    1. Fred, If I've had to waste time I'm glad at least you don't have to! Somewhere warm, that sounds nice, though I have to say I am enjoying our winter right now.

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  5. I adore the look of it, but it doesn't appear to be cut for tall girls. The model looks like hers shrunk in the wash.

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    1. Raina it does look that way. And I'm not particularly tall either. It looks like it belongs to my 10 year old.

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  6. It looks much better on your good self than it does on their website. I like the buttons and trim, but it's not a shape I could wear easily. I won't be able to watch Les Mis without being arrested for trying to stab Anne Hathaway off the screen. I cannot stand her. She is SO desperate to win that Oscar, it's stomach-churning. I need to interview this fame-chasing hussy!

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    1. Please do Sulky, your fans await this one!!

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    2. Hilarious Sulky! I think I might kidnap Hugh though, I watched him on TV last night, major crush brewing.

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    3. Sulky this interview is a must! With all of the oscar-chasing I'm sure her publicist will agree, oh we wait for it!
      Tabs stand in line for Hugh! Berna is completely in love with him now, I don't think she'll ever be the same!

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  7. Dani, if you really like the jacket, as you seem to, and the only problem is the lining, I would suggest to cut it off. I did it for my summer blazers and worked like a charm. Unless you think the denim is going to be too rough on the skin or it is quilting in this case is a problem.
    I am with Tabs on the jacket though, personally I do not like it at all.

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    1. Ema the quilted stuffing would pop out if the lining is removed, and since no-one likes it I think it definitely isn't worth any commotion whatsoever!
      I remember you did that with your blazers and it worked well, see you also have my poly aversion.

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  8. J. Crew should be renamed Shrunk Store. Everything it is too short, to shrunken and too oddly shaped.

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    1. DesertFlower LOL it has a new name!

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  9. Personally, if you really like this style of jacket, think about taking the Les Mis picture to a great dressmaker and have one made to your exact specs. I like the jacket myself, though I could never wear it!

    You know I love musicals, which means that Tabs will ensure that there is a padded room in Bags End where I can watch Gene Kelly and not disturb her!

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    1. WMM, you can sit with my husband!

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    2. WMM I'll watch them with you, can we have wine in the padded cell?

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    3. There is always wine in the padded cell!

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  10. Too bad the execution was unsuccessful. That jacket isn't "me" but I was looking forward to seeing it on some of the JCAs.

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    1. Hexicon I do look forward to seeing others wear it, I still find it attractive and it reminds me of the young Les Mis fellow!

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  11. Too bad! That jacket suits you so well, from a look perspective.

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    1. LPC, I have so much red and blue I thought it would be a fetching little topper, ah well.

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  12. Saw Les Mis and loved it. Could have sat through it again, if the next show hadn't been sold out. Don't like the jacket much either - when J.Crew starts to do their "Chanel" jacket stuff, it just never works. They're classic denim jackets are still great though.

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    1. Kathy I will be buying it when it comes out on DVD, I can't wait to see it again and I never have patience for that!

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  13. It looks quite lovely on you Dani, no one would know you are cringing from the poly lining. I thought the design of this one was kind but curious whether it would work on my 5'9" frame. Not to bother now, I could not stand the poly sleeve lining especially.

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    1. xoxo Isn't that poly sleeve lining quite something? I couldn't believe it. This would be really really short on you, as DesertFlower would say from The Shrunk Store.

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  14. I agree, the jacket looks better on you than the JCrew model. Using a polyester lining is a cheap, cost cutting measure that ruins the drape of the sleeve, comfort for the wearer and expectations for future purchases.
    Can't tolerate musicals. I think the last one I saw was West Side Story with Natalie Wood and could only tolerate it because I was too young to go home by myself.

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    1. AWSL, so much cost-cutting, future purchases are not looking good!
      I guess I really do like musicals, saw WSS at Stratford a couple of years ago and loved it. Natalie Wood, she was a beauty!

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  15. I think it's time to shop like Parisienne women. Buy only a few very good pieces (NOT made offshore) and damn the expense. It is a quality not quantity mentality that is the essence of European elegance. We North Americans have far too many mediocre clothes- most of which we regret buying. For a real eye opener read "Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion."

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    1. Lil Margie I'm with you completely and I'm buying that book, I'm nearly done reading "Deluxe" so I'm ready for another on the subject, thanks for recommending it. Some luxury brands make their things in China and "finish" them in Europe in order to get the label, can you believe it.
      Most of the clothes I really love are either older pieces or are from Brora, they make their clothes in England and their cashmere in Scotland. Unheard of these days.

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  16. Not Les Miz, it's a knockoff of the band jacket that Stella McCartney did for Gapkids. In 2009.

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    1. Fred, it absolutely is, well spotted.

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    2. Fred oh gosh you're right. I should have bought that one, probably wouldn't be as shrunken!

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  17. Dani-you can do so much better in the denim jacket category. I'm not a fan of this one, though it looks great on you. Last year Anthropologie had a lot of denim jackets in a variety of cuts and washes.
    I love a musical-we just saw Book of Mormon and it was hilarious-Tabs might even like it. I saw Les Miz during my first trip to NYC over 20 years ago, but it is a blur in my memory. I do want to see the film and will go equipped with tissues. Rocket Arm and I saw Parental Guidance on Friday - a wonderfully funny and touching family film-you'd love it.

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    1. Julie I've been meaning to see Parental Guidance, thanks for letting me know it's worth the trip to the cinema. I want to see Book of Mormon, we thought of getting tickets when we were in NYC but saw Wicked instead.

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  18. Hi Dani-Agree with you about polyester linings, kind of like lining your clothes with something that feels like pond scum! But it is the way of the (fashion) world these days, along with crappy buttons, skinny arms, too short dresses, the list goes on. Not a fan of the jacket, but it does look great on you. I think I just have a serious case of denim fatigue. Haven't been to see Ms Hathaway in Les Miz-saw a clip of the film on one of the late night shows and I wanted to cry for all those tremendous voices that did not get the part. I guess that is the producer's "polyester" gift to us, looks good on the outside, but overall execution is sacrificed. Me, I am enjoying eating lots of carbs, trying out a new perfume and catching up on season 3 of "Justified" before new season's premiere on Tuesday.

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    1. David I've thought of watching "Justified" good to know you like it. I also have denim fatigue but I did like the faded look of this one and the quilting. Ah well, another item fooled up!
      Enjoy your day, it sounds perfect right down to the new perfume.

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  19. Too bad about the lining - I think the jacket looks really good on you! I know you said it wasn't worth the trouble, but it is too bad you can't just get the lining replaced.

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    1. Hi Merry Wife, Thanks I think I'm just saturated with stuff anyway, though I did like the look of this and the Les Mis aspect.

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  20. I'm glad you enjoyed but unfortunately, I remember suffering through Les Mis. It could be the only live theater I've ever not enjoyed, I could not wait until it was over so I could leave. Maybe I was cranky that day but I thought Les Mis was just miserable. ;)

    I think the jacket looks really good on you too. I'm thinking it's lined with slick fabric so you don't stick if you're already wearing long sleeves putting your arms into the sleeves. But I also often wonder why silk or other natural fabrics are ruined by unnatural lining. What's the point if you're only going to feel the yucky poly against your skin?

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    1. Hi Tiffany Rose, well it's a cheapening of clothing, it's standard these days. I can't tolerate synthetic fabrics at all anymore, I'm having some issues with my skin. And you know even really high-end stuff is lined in poly.
      It's okay I have enough clothes, as long as my body doesn't change too too much!
      I never did see Les Mis at the theatre, this was my first time. One cannot underestimate the charm of Hugh Jackman!

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  21. that's a cute jacket. maybe they put the poly in the sleeves so it'd be easier to wear with long sleeves? i don't know what anyone is thinking these days.

    i've only seen les mis as a play several years ago. like tiffany rose i could not wait for the thing to end. it was awful. glad to hear you like the movie though. xo

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    1. Hi Janet, I guess you're definitely not going to the movie then! I don't know what anyone is thinking these days either.

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  22. I love the comparison of the jacket to Gavroche's in the movie! I thoroughly enjoyed the movie (after having loved the musical for the past quarter-century; I was lucky enough to see it live in London in 1992, shortly before my 12th birthday. I read a review that suggested that if you first heard Les Mis between the ages of 8-14 (as was the case for me), you almost certainly love it. I was obsessed with Eponine for most of my adolescence. Her angst is VERY identifiable for young women, and, much like the world thanks the Harry Potter books for making kids excited to read again, Les Mis and Phantom made a musical-theater fan out of a middle-schooler in my house. (Even my younger brother got into Miss Saigon and saw it in London in 1995 with us - a helicopter in the theater! Cool.)

    There are definite quality issues with J Crew on some items lately. The problem I have is that the prices keep going up while the quality keeps coming down (and the sizing becomes more difficult for bodies that aren't 5'8 and 110 lbs - even petite items). I think part of the issue is the demand for new and innovative styles ALL THE TIME NOW PLEASE YES, which means that many consumers aren't looking for "investment pieces" (outside of shoes, handbags, and overcoats), and companies aren't encouraging you to see their items as investment pieces... for me J Crew is too expensive to be trendy and often too trendy (and increasingly, too cheaply-constructed) to serve as investment pieces. I end up watching the final sales for good prices on basics (in which case the cost issue is mitigated) or for deals on special items.

    Specifically, I bought a Warm Sienna Suit (one of the summer-weight wools) and was *horrified* to find the pants were unlined. I think wool suiting should always be lined. I did keep the pants, because the cut was 95% right, but a year later, I find the seat to be saggy, I have to be very careful about the undergarments I wear (lest I risk VPL), and wool against the skin is always just a little bit itchy. I had another lovely pair of pants purchased in 2005 (in a cut no longer available) that fit and felt like a dream. I finally got rid of them a year ago, having worn them until they were no longer presentable... these were part of the replacement suiting, and far from their equal.

    I remember when most of J Crew was cotton and when the prices were only 1.5x the items at the Gap (and were so much better quality). I grumble and miss those days often. (Is this were I demand that the young whipper-snappers get off my lawn? Haha.)

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    1. Rebecca thanks so much for your comment. DId they really have a helicopter in the theatre? That's amazing! This was the first time I ever saw Les Mis! I am a huge theatre fan, I love plays, musicals, opera, anything really. I grew up near Detroit and I didn't see much theatre though there was a trip up to Stratford with both my grandmothers when I was 12 or so and it was a very big deal.
      We are benefactor members of Stratford now and I always think of my first experience there as it was truly life-changing.
      Hmph J Crew quality, it's really disappointing. I think they were a great brand for so long but they need to take a look at what they are producing. It's all bottom-line these days but I'm old enough to notice everything and be crabby about it!

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    2. Yes, a real helicopter! However, it inoperational, and was strung up like the chandeliers in Phantom of the Opera (with helicopter sounds). I'm in St. Louis, and we have great live theater here that I should take better advantage of.

      I have read your subsequent posts about J Crew shoes and other items (belt, shirt), and couldn't agree more. I really hope they will realize they are losing their customer base (and pricing themselves out of reach of the "disposable closet" set - H&M and Forever 21 have acrylic and polyester versions of what they sell for a fraction of the price). I keep thinking about that "made in China but sole glued on in Italy to be able to say 'made in Italy'" bit, too.

      Clothing shopping has become so difficult for those of us who want something made well in a country that pays its workers a living wage and provides for safe working conditions.

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  23. Dani, I think I've said this before--you have outgrown the poor quality of the J Crew clothing. It's time to peruse the offerings of a better clothier. Try Lafayette 148.

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    1. Susan I have outgrown it and very well put I might add. I have looked at Lafayette 148 (today after your suggestion), I like the clothes very much, they are modern and clean. I find them quite pricey, though I understand this is a less is more approach! I like the dresses they do in natural fabrics, thanks so much for leading me to the site. I might do a post on the designer and the production of the brand!

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  24. It's a cute jacket, and the poly lining in it is no different than in other jackets I have from JC.

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    1. Hi Rose, I know, though there was a day when a jacket like this would have had a full cotton lining. I have found since Tom Mora came on as women's designer the poly has increased tenfold. Perhaps he likes the way the fabric drapes and slides, exactly the qualities I don't like about it!

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  25. Or perhaps Kate Spade is more your style.

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    1. Susan, I do like some Kate Spade though I think it's overpriced and should only be bought on extreme sale. The finishings are nice and they use better fabrics than J Crew, though still with the polyester on most things.
      My best bet is Brora, they make their clothes in England (and Burberry doesn't even do that anymore) and they use natural fabrics on almost everything. SIlk linings, wool, cotton, cashmere. Luxury fabrics and British tailoring, I never regret anything I buy from Brora.

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