Is it worth it to spend a bit more?
My friend biologist Rachel Willard decided to do a roughly scientific comparison of the two. Rachel picked a basic she wears all the time--the black cardigan--& ordered one from Old Navy & one from J. Crew Factory.
Here are her findings:
I wore it one day over a dress, & it was OK wearing it. I had a hard time figuring out how to button or unbutton it to wear it--having it partially buttoned meant that it flapped in strange ways, rather than lay flat.
When the J. Crew one arrived about a week later (how's that for taking a while to ship?), I pulled it out of the bag. Immediately, I noticed that the buttons were much higher quality, with an antique look to them. The sweater actually had 3/4 sleeves, rather than full sleeves, which was fine with me, although I didn't see it on the website. It seemed a lot smaller than the Old Navy sweater, despite the fact that I ordered a medium from both places. The waist was a bit shorter, it was more fitted, & the best part...the material was thicker & silkier. If it were sheets, I'd say that it had a higher thread count & was made from Egyptian cotton, rather than just run of the mill cotton.
I was still skeptical, despite the cute buttons & silky material. (Both are 100% cotton.)
"If it were sheets, I'd say that it had a higher thread count & was made from Egyptian cotton, rather than just run of the mill cotton."
So, the tally.... the Old Navy sweater (on sale with free shipping) was $15. The J. Crew sweater was (on sale with free shipping) $20. I was happy enough with the Old Navy sweater until I wore the J. Crew one. It made the Old Navy one look cheap, less flattering, & the washing machine told the tale of the lesser fabric. I think that the Old Navy sweater is probably OK if you plan to just wear it once or twice. I feel like a lot of their clothes are practically disposable.
The J. Crew sweater will last me years, I'm sure. Definitely worth an extra five bucks."
Postscript: Rachel returned the Old Navy cardi because of the fading. The cashier said that they get a lot of their black items returned for that reason.
Where do you buy your basics?
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