Secret Santa Reveal & H&M Gingham / Flannel Shirt

This year I participated in a secret Santa exchange organized by Jessy (thanks for setting it up!). I drew the sweet Elaine from Toronto Beauty Reviews and immediately knew to get her Ann Taylor stuff (which she loves, but is not available in Canada). I first got a leopard top, then remembered Elaine doesn’t wear animal print. Oops! Next, I exchanged that for a sweater, then remembered she was allergic to wool. Silly, forgetful me. I hope my last exchange was a winner : ) Head on over to Elaine’s post to see what she received!

My own secret Santa turned out to be a thoughtful reader (and now a new blogger) – Ying. I had stud earrings and makeup in winter shades on my wishlist, and Santa did an amazing job picking out gifts (and wrapping them so beautifully). Thank you so much, Ying!

Shirt: H&M; “L.o.g.g.” sz 2 – $19.95, comes in green, pink, and blue, item # 029601
Shoes are no-brand leather boots scored from eBay.

On a separate note, here are some photos of an affordable gingham alternative from H&M.; I would’ve never tried on this shirt if Kelly didn’t point it out, because it’s part of the “l.o.g.g.” casual basics department which I usually pass right on by. Continue reading for my review…

Material: This is sort of a cross between a gingham and a flannel shirt, leaning more towards the latter. The print is check but the 100% cotton material is warm, soft, and feels completely like flannel. An interesting feature (and surprising for a $20 garment) is that the entire shirt is double-layered (see bottom left pic). The outer is check and the inner is a striped material. At first I thought it was just double-sided fabric, but no – you can actually pull apart the two layers.

Pattern: Blue has larger checks than the green or pink.

Fit: Sz 2 is a slim (but not too fitted) on me and a little long both in total length and in sleeve length. It measures 14″ across the shoulder, 16″ across the armpit, 15″ across the waist, 24.5″ sleeve length, and 25.5″ total length.

Verdict: I brought the green one home with me, but after trying it on with some items, I just don’t love it as much as my other (albeit much more childish and ill-fitting) Gap boys shirt. That shirt is made of a stiffer gingham material that allows for a crisp, clean, preppy look which I love. This one is more pliable and cozy, and is good for casualwear if that’s what you’re looking for. I ended up returning this one.

PS – H&M; is currently giving out $5 gift cards (useable January 5-15th, 2012) with purchases!
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  4. Erica wrote:

    When did gingham become popular again? It makes me think of the 90s.

    Posted 12.30.11 Reply
  5. @Anonymous
    The earring is from a little shop in Coronado called The Attic.

    Posted 12.30.11 Reply
  6. Anonymous wrote:

    I like those black earrings (the ones on the vitage photo), Ying where are they from??

    Posted 12.30.11 Reply
  7. Annie wrote:

    i didn't get a giftcard and i shopped there yesterday 🙁

    Posted 12.30.11 Reply
  8. Lisa @ MMT wrote:

    Love that top and the colors. Looks good!

    New follower 🙂

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  9. Anonymous wrote:

    I love the pink H&M; shirt on you! can you please let us know about your brown boots your wearing in those pics? thanks!

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  10. Ping wrote:

    jean– i do love all the colors and fit is pretty good! hmmm, but you made a good point about it being more casual.

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  11. Hi Jean! I loved the SS gift you picked out! How considerate! Besides, I hurried to my local H&M; to try on those shirts. They fit very well on me(I am a little bigger than you are but still a size 2).The problem was that all three colors make my Asian skin look dark (not in a good way) so I passed. They look good on you though!

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  12. Claud wrote:

    Now I'm wondering if gingham is same as plaid or what is the difference between the two?

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  13. Claud wrote:

    Hi Jean! Santa exchange how nice 🙂
    I like to buy the plaid shirts from abercrombie & fitch. Right now they have 40% off but if you wait until January you get them much cheaper.

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  14. Love the gifts you got from Ying!

    The H&M; shirts remind me of the Old Navy gray gingham shirt I bought last year. I love it but it is a more casual shirt.

    I also bought the GAP gingham shirt for Alex's nephew for Christmas. Lol

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  15. I love the gingham shirts! They all looked great on you. Think I need to head over to H&M; to pick one up for myself. 🙂


    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  16. I leke the blue one, maybe because the squares are bigger! But you look great with all of them!

    The Life After

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  17. Coco Ain wrote:

    i bought yesterday the red one 😉

    Cocoain from Germany

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  18. @SewPetiteGal Thank you, you're so sweet.

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  19. @Michelle
    Thank you for your kind word =)

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  20. Tam wrote:

    Jean, thanks so much for the review on the gingham shirts! I think I will see if they have any at my H&M; tomorrow–they seem to be decent quality for the price. I have a double-layered plaid/gingham shirt I wear constantly, so these seem right up my alley.

    @Jen @PhD Style: Historically, I have had success with Nine West boots (wearing an old pair here). They seem to always have some narrower styles available. My most recent boot acquisition was a pair of Zara riding boots. They are less fitted toward the top due to the style, but they fit my calves pretty snugly. Also, a non-petite friend who had ordered some different Zara boots complained that they were tight in the calf area. Good luck with your search!

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  21. Jenn wrote:

    I do love all three of those colors. If I were you I'd have a very difficult time deciding between the green and blue. The flannel is an interesting idea, because most shirts I've seen have been on the thinner side.

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  22. Wow on the beautiful wrapping Ying did for your gifts – just gorgeous!

    It's a shame that the gingham shirt material is more like a flannel because I do like the colors / style (esp. the big blue check – I need one of those LOL) they had to offer.

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  23. LOVE. I am completely obsessed with check fabrics. Just ordered a set of Chelsea Textiles dining chairs upholstered in check. I need to add some checks to my closet too.

    Posted 12.29.11 Reply
  24. Michelle wrote:

    Ying did a wonderful job! I love the wrapping! So sweet!

    I never did find my gingham in 2011! Thanks for the review!

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  25. Jean or any of the other ladies,
    Quick question about your boots (or any boots, really!) What brands can you recommend for small calves? Most boots look like galoshes on me!
    Thank you in advance.

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  26. Jackie wrote:

    Interesting seeing you in a different style. I'm not a fan of gingham but I agree that the green looks best out of the three.

    Is the print larger on the third one? Or is that just a trick of the camera…Hmm.

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  27. Katie wrote:

    Wow, those shirts are just what I have been looking for!

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  28. love this blouses.


    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  29. Esther E wrote:

    Hi Jean! I loved how the shirts looked on you so I went to H&M; and picked up the blue and the green! 🙂 Unfortunately, I think only select H&Ms; are givng out the $5 gift card or its while supplies last-the H&M; I went to didn't give any out 🙁

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  30. The short-sleeved pink one I got 2-3 years ago was of much cheaper quality. Single layer and a little sheer. $20 is such a great price for this double-layered long-sleeved version!

    I'm so glad you were finally able to pick up your packages from your apartment strike. 😛 And it was so nice of you to exchange Elaine's gifts multiple times after remembering her dislikes/allergies. LOL

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  31. CynthiaC wrote:

    love your gifts, Jean!!!

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  32. Those outfits are so cute! I love the blue gingam 🙂

    XX Kathryn

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  33. you are sooo pretty! i love all the shirts on you!

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  34. Jean, I'm so glad you love the gifts. I was nervous. I hope the lip color works out for you. You did a wonderful job on Elaine's gift. I'm officially no longer just a reader. I have started my own blog. =)

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  35. OMG I didn't realize all the trouble you went LOL! I never though of myself as "picky" but perhaps I am LOL!! Thank you soooo much Jean I LOVE the blouse, you are always so kind of thoughtful <3

    And I'm LOVING those shirts! Off to H&M; I go! After seeing how Cee always gets so much wear out of hers I thought I would give it a try too 🙂

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply
  36. so pretty:

    Posted 12.28.11 Reply

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