A few weeks ago Francesca and I were asked by the fine folks at IGIGI –the company most known for dressing Hairspray star Nikki Blonsky– to select an item or two from their most recent collection, wear it and write an unbiased review. I’m not sure they knew what they were in for.
I chose the Navy Trench Dress
Beautiful no? But beware friends, this is a lot of dress. The material is heavy, the skirt is full and there is a lot of interest going on what with the buttons and the belt and the wide lapels. I am 5’10″ and I just barely carried it off. La Blonsky wore the same dress on Regis and although she cannot by her very nature do anything but look adorable, this particular ensemble makes her look mumsy.
And yet sadly it’s the mumsy-ness –that look somewhere between Mary Poppins and an Edwardian Matron– that makes this dress is an “almost.”
It almost works. It is almost superfantastic. I cannot complain about the quality of the workmanship, it’s beautifully made (in the USA!) and meticulously finished. Even the material which I did not particularly love was substantial and not cheap.
So what went wrong? Well first, there are the puff shoulders. Oh you can’t see them, but trust me, they’re there and much more noticeable in person. I do not find a puff shoulder becoming in general, but it muddied up a dress whose lines were struggling to stay clean and precise. The lapel is overdone, although just barely and the double breasted buttons are set a bit too wide to flatter. The skirt is good, but needs hemming on anyone under 6 feet tall (La Blonsky needed to lose a good 6″ off hers. I would have benefited from 2″) to capture that New Look feel.
If IGIGI comes out with a more streamlined, stylized version next year I’d consider adding it to my permanent rotation, but as it is my life is too short for an “almost” to play any part…and so, by the way, is yours.
Want to try it yourself? Use code WRAP at the checkout for 10% off the sales price.