I had a personal Pride & Prejudice moment a few days ago.  The L.L. Bean catalog arrived in the mail.  I've only mentioned L.L. Bean on this blog one other time, in this Top 5 Banned Wardrobe Items post. And I used them simply as an example of style-assassinating mom jeans. Even though I have never ordered anything from them, the catalog has continued to arrive. And the other night as Mr. Darcy and I lay snuggling in bed, I pulled it off my nightstand to have a good snark-session and chuckle at the unflattering pants and boxy shirts.
Until I got to page 9 and saw this.
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Double L Rib-Knit, Elbow-Sleeve V-Neck Tee
Now, this may not be earth shattering to you. You might be thinking, "What in the world would make her pause on this?" Well let me tell you. A v-neck shirt with elbow length sleeves is extremely flattering on my particular shape. I think it's extremely flattering on many women, if not most. The v-neck draws the eye up to the face and opens the neck space to lengthen and slim much better than a scoop or crew neck tee.
But the sleeves are the real kicker. I greatly dislike t-shirts with short sleeves that cut across the widest part of my upper arm. That would be nearly ALL t-shirts that aren't long sleeve. It's infuriating. And yes, with all my recent weight loss my upper arms are much slimmer than they were a few months ago but there is still some under-arm waddle I'd like to keep under wraps.
So I stalk elbow-sleeve v-neck tees with great vengeance. If you also prefer these tees, then you know how difficult they can be to find! Hence, catalog pg. 9 stopping me in my tracks.
The next morning, I went to the LL Bean site to order one of these tees.
And lo and behold, I found a few other cute things.
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L.L. Bean Signature Rayon Wrap Dress


If L.L. Bean can do this...



(This dress is so mine. A wrap dress with vertical stripes?! Express shipping please!)

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Vacationland Blazer


... and this.






(Really cute edging on this blazer.)

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L.L. Bean Signature Stretch Denim Flare


... and this!









(I'm wanting to add a gray jean to my new wardrobe and these look good!)

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Then why do they also put out THIS?!?

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and this?!?
Elastic waistband. Shudder!

Maybe the key is to shop in the Signature section, though the pink blazer is from the regular side.  One thing that L.L. Bean is known for, and I'll be putting it to the test shortly, is their quality. At my old company when we were choosing company logo-embroidered shirts for conferences, several people wanted to get L.L. Bean Double L polos instead of the generic corporate versions. That didn't get approved but they raved about the quality of them and I do need a good polo shirt. I've shrunk out of all of mine.
So I put aside my prejudice against the Bean and placed an order. (They offer free shipping, no minimum order. That's nice!)
If the t-shirt fits the way I'm hoping, I'll be getting it in multiple colors. I'll let you know as soon as my things arrive. Keep your fingers crossed!
 
 
My curiosity was piqued when I saw this photo in my InStyle magazine. 
And I mean piqued big time!
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I liked the funky "lacing" on the Chanel stockings but the dress instantly spoke to me.  I liked everything about it and, unless the thing is backless, it is a very modest dress from a high-end designer, which doesn't happen too often.  Truly. 
The designer was naturally credited in the magazine and so I hit the net to hunt her down. Along with Nannette Lepore, this Sophie Theallet may just be my new favorite designer for my romantic girly side.  Here's the 411 compiled from her website, the wiki, and Style.com...
Born in the South of France, (living in the US), Sophie Thealletfell in love with fashion when she discovered Vivienne Westwood and the punk fashion scene in London in her early teens. At 18 she attended Le Studio Bercot in Paris, from which she graduated one year earlier after winning the National Young Designer Award. She was then commissioned to designed a collection for the prestigious department store le Printemps in Paris. She worked with  Jean-Paul Gaultier where she learned and discovered the basis of creating coherent collections and the audacity of Fashion ideas and statements. A few years later, she moved on to Azzedine Alaia where she would come to truly mature has a designer. During her 10 years as Alaia's right-hand women, she was fully immersed in the world of haute couture. She worked on the main collections, accessories, and knitwear, learning directly from the couturier. In the Spring of 2006 she launched her Sophie Theallet label in NY, which was immediately recognized by the Fashion insiders and is now sold in the best specialty stores in the USA and Europe.  Sophie recently won the big CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund purse!
So let's take a look at my favorite looks so far.
This dress, naturally, that I somehow must have in my life.  Different color from the blush pink SJP wore above.  I like the pink.
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So summery!!  And still modest.
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That deep neckline would need a cami but who cares!
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Unexpected colors done in a reserved way.  Nice.  I'm in love with all these elbow-length sleeves and knee-length hemlines.
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Another cami needed but I love the bronze and dark, shimmery gray.
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The long dangling ties are fun! Perfect sleeves and hem length!
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Simple and so wearable!
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Love it!!  I know exactly the necklace and earrings I would wear with this!
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Muted pink and green.  Soft and lovely.
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Begs to be worn while dancing!  Even if only in the kitchen.
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Triple tiered skirt takes a wrap dress up notch.  Love it and love the wide waist tie.
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Column dresses are so often sleeveless this was very refreshing to see. 
Hoping it's not backless!
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