Off the Rack ~ Reviewing the Miss Candyfloss “Sia-Katalin” Tuxedo Dress

Just time for a quick dress review this week. It’s another Miss Candyfloss frock, this time with a very different neckline than any I’ve reviewed before.

As usual, my measurements are 37”-29”-41” and height 5’6”, with bra size 28G – 30G (UK) depending on brand. I bought my usual Medium here.

This is the “Sia-Katalin” dress. MCF produced several of these tuxedo-style dresses this season, including navy/red, red/red stripe, navy/white/navy pinstripe, navy pinstripe/pale blue, and black pinstripe/white. To be honest, I wasn’t really into the look until I saw this bright teal/light pink colorway, and then I was smitten. Teal and pink is one of my favorite color combinations and it’s rare to find them in one garment.

In this case, my photos are a little dull, but MCF’s photos are more saturated than the fabric is in reality. So imagine the color is somewhere in between. Additionally, while the manufacturer photo shows a pink belt, it actually comes with a teal one. I personally prefer the pink one, but it’s not really a big deal. Plus, how hard can it be to find a pink belt if I really want one?

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Off the Rack ~ Reviewing the Pinup Girl Clothing “Jenny” Dress

This week, I’m writing a long overdue review of the Pinup Girl Clothing Jenny dress. I bought this beauty a year ago and only wore it a couple times for some reason. I’ve been hankering to wear it again for ages now, but the cold weather kept me from doing so. But then I picked up a perfectly coordinating bolero, and finally made it comfortable enough for the unusually cold spring we’ve been having in New York City. I completely forgot how much I loved it, and it seems to fit even better now, after sitting in my closet for several months, than it did when it was new!

Though I usually buy PUG in size medium, this time I went with a large. My measurements are 37”-29”-41” and height 5’6”.

When the dress first arrived, I posted a photo and described its fit in one of my Facebook pinup groups, and I managed to dig the picture back up to compare fit when it was new to fit now:

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Here’s what I wrote at the time:

“I got a large. I’m normally a medium in PUG. My waist is just over 29” and my bust is 37″. The waist is slightly snug and the bust is perfect. Since the size chart says large is supposed to fit waist 29.5”-30.5” and bust 38”-40”, I’d say the size chart is running small, at least for this size. I think a 30.5” waist would be rather uncomfortable and a 40” bust would be squashed. Works well for me, though! My only complaint is it makes me look smaller-busted than I am since it doesn’t really curve under my boobs. But maybe it will flex closer to my shape as I wear it more.”

The founder of Pinup Girl Clothing, Laura Byrnes, later commented on the post: “Take into account that the sateen is similar to jeans fabric in that it loosens up considerably with wear. So you should expect snugness at first zip, if you wish your fit to be “comfortably form fitting.’”

I still tend to agree with my initial assessment that it runs on the small side. I measured the waist tonight, and it’s 14.5” flat—so 29” total. That’s perfect for me, since I like a slightly snug fit at the waist, but I still have a hard time believing a 30.5” waist would feel comfortable in it. While the sateen may have give, it’s fully lined in a satiny fabric, so there’s not substantial stretch by any means.

As for the bust, I was also correct in assuming the boning would conform to my shape after a few wears. The couple of times I wore it last year were weekdays, so I was sitting at my desk at work all day, and the boning really did conform to my curves. And even after being squished in my closet for 6 months, the curve is still present. Let’s get to some photos, and then I’ll give more details and fit advice below.

Here’s how I styled it on a cool day—Trashy Diva “Bonnie” bolero in magenta stretch satin (purchased on eBay for only $18!), belt, and a pair of low boots.

Here’s how I styled it on a cool day—Trashy Diva “Bonnie” bolero in magenta stretch satin (purchased on eBay for only $18!), belt, and a pair of ankle boots.

Here’s how it looks on its own.

Here’s how it looks on its own.

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Compared to the first photo, I think my boobs are substantially more visible here, with none of the sports bra flatness of the first look. Additionally, whereas I was initially skeptical that a 40” bust would fit well in this dress, now that it’s got a permanent curve, I think it looks like there’s plenty of room to spare. Moreover, I expect the boning to curve deeper under my bust the more I wear it.

Many women remove the boning from these dresses, but I would definitely recommend against doing that, at least until you give the boning a chance to meld to your shape.

So let’s talk about some of the other great features. First up, there are fabulously generous pockets in this dress. I can confidently carry my iPhone around without worrying that it’ll slip out. Even better, the pockets are slightly toward the front of the skirt instead of exactly at the sides of my hips, making them much easier to find within all that gathered fabric.

And speaking of the gathered skirt, it looks pretty limp in these shots since it was crushed between other garments in my closet for so long. But if you hang it upside down and fold the skirt over, it poofs back up. Or you can wear a petticoat, which this skirt is just made for. I was actually a little relieved to see it had lost so much volume, since a giant poofy skirt is a bit much for work.

Another great thing about this dress is that the straps are fully adjustable. This was excellent news for me, because I have rather high-set boobs, and most strappy tops and dresses need to have the straps shortened in order to fully cover my side-bra and not have indecent levels of cleavage.

Even better, the strap placement amost perfectly lines up with bra straps! In these photos, I’m wearing a Cleo Lily bra in 30FF. The straps of the dress are the exact width of the bra straps. Ordinarily I would have worn this dress with a strapless bra, but I skipped it this time because I knew I’d be wearing the bolero all day. But seeing as the Cleo Lily matches so closely, and the straps are a coordinating shade of pink, I may skip the strapless altogether!

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All in all, I would say that the Jenny dress is a surprise big-boob option. The waist runs smaller than the size chart would suggest and the bust runs accurate.

 

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Off the Rack ~ My First Miss Candyfloss Wiggle Dress, the “Sabine-Katalin”

Recently, I tried my very first wiggle-style dress from Miss Candyfloss, so it’s time for another review. Due to the wiggle shape, this time I’m assessing the fit at both the top and bottom halves of the hourglass.

The dress is called “Sabine-Katalin,” and comes in a vibrant turquoise with mint green accents with a removable mint belt. It’s made of 63% polyester, 32% viscose, and 5% elastane, resulting in a soft and moderately thick fabric that’s (yet again) machine-washable.

This dress features MCF’s signature pleated bust (and darts too! I never noticed them before), but with a mini-peplum and a folded over collar. There are darts up the back for shaping, and a pair of seams up the front and back of the skirt, plus a small slit in the back of the skirt for ease of movement.

With my measurements of 37”-29”-41”, I took a medium. At 5’6” tall, it just covers my knees.

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Off the Rack ~ Reviewing the Freya Freestyle Crop Top

This week I’m reviewing the new Freya Freestyle soft crop top. The Freya Fancies bralette (my review here) gives enough support for what it is, but it’s so difficult to get over my shoulders that I barely ever use it. So I’m still on the hunt for a bralette that gives enough support that I’m comfortable walking the dog or going to the corner store in it, yet it’s easy to get on and off.

The Freestyle crop top is the answer to my prayers! It’s super soft and comfy, gives slightly better support than the Fancies bralette, and has a hook and eye band closure that makes it a breeze to get on and off.

Now that the weather has turned warm and I no longer need a jacket in the morning, I’ve been putting this top on every day under a tee shirt to walk the dog. There are always tons of people out and about in my building and on the sidewalk early in the morning, so I’m just not comfortable going bra-less.

On the front side, the Freestyle top is made of one large piece of mesh that’s gathered on the side seams (instead of at the band), to give three-dimensional volume. Then there are stretchy, somewhat firm panels that cross over and provide additional support.

The back side is a racerback lined in your standard micro-mesh, with a single layer of fabric over top. The shoulders and sides are the same grey stretchy fabric as the front panels, and the center of the back is mesh for breathability.

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I’m wearing a size medium. The Freestyle top uses the same sizing scheme as the Fancies bralettes, so my 28G/GG puts me perfectly in size medium.

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However, I find the neckline awfully low, and the band, which when laid flat stretches from 13” to 19”, a little on the loose side. When I first put it on, I have to aggressively swoop and scoop to make sure my boobs don’t fall under the band (which of course creates more cleavage and makes it look even lower-cut).

That being said, while I wouldn’t go running in this bra (and probably wouldn’t even do yoga in it for fear of falling out), it is sooooooo comfy, and just perfect for walking around the neighborhood early in the morning, or lounging at home on a hot day. It gives enough lift that I don’t have underboob sweat, it breathes beautifully—and it’s just plain cool-looking! Seriously, I’m obsessed with this heather grey-turquoise combination.

A-plus, Freya!!