Taupe & Tweed featuring Ann Taylor Grecian-Inspired Dress


Jacket c/o Uniqueen (review), Ann Taylor Factory dress, style #286554 (similar w/ great reviews)

During Labor Day weekend, I accompanied my friend to the outlet mall with no intention of buying anything. The stores were a blur to me, (with the exception of Theory, at which I pet the soft leather jackets for an extended period of time) and the merchandise quality and deals were underwhelming. I passively tried on this drapey dress at the Ann Taylor factory to kill time, and ended up really liking it.
If carefully assessed, the dress is not exceptional in quality nor fit. However, there were many aspects of it that I loved individually and saw potential in.

Fit: The outlets carry down to XXSP, of which the overall fit was roomy on me. I planned on taking in the sides from the chest and waist down to the bottom hem, however the garment construction made it more difficult than I anticipated. The skirt half of this dress is lined, and the lining is connected at the waist. I decided to leave the torso alone (and address it with a waist belt), and only slim and taper the bottom half: taupetweed5
Recently, I’ve been going back to a number of my skirts and dresses and finding myself unsatisfied with the shape at the bottom. A straight-cut skirt like this one looks fine, but after a tiny bit of tapering, the resulting pencil silhouette is more feminine and shapely. I leave the excess material just in case tastes change in the future. And oops, I really need to shorten the sleeves on this jacket versus hoisting them up with large safety pins.
Quality: The material of this dress is a thin rayon/metallic fiber blend, and as mentioned previously, only the bottom half is lined in polyester knit. A slip or shapewear bottoms may be necessary despite the lining, as I noticed seams and contours showing through. I’m wearing a mid-thigh length slip in these photos and you can still see the outline of the slip hem slightly. Tag says dry clean, but I plan on hand-washing in cold water.

I’ve worn this dress to work a few times and the material does not wrinkle after a day of wear, but it does form creases when folded up in a drawer. The material is stretchy and comfortable for long work days.

Price: Factory retail was $99, marked down to $64.99. I purchased it on a 40% off day (seems to happen quite often there) and I had an extra 10% off coupon. Total paid was $35. Factory stores do take orders over the phone and ship to homes, if you have the item # (286554).
Other details: What really drew me to this dress was the Grecian-inspired draping, and the soft taupe color (with just a hint of metallic) that pairs easily. I also appreciated the not-too-low cowl neck, the dolman sleeves, and the small pleats on both shoulders. I love the silhouette of a slightly loose upper balanced out with a more fitted, tapered bottom. Cinched with a waist belt, the overall vibe of this dress feels almost glamorous.

taupetweed4Readers – Have you also been loving the drapey dress?

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  1. Olivia wrote:

    Hi Jean – Just another note in support of you and your blog. Even though others may constantly try to copy you, they CAN'T copy your creativity and individual style! Thanks again for sharing all your great ideas and advice – as one of many many readers of your blog, I really appreciate it!!

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  2. Anonymous wrote:

    It's beyond copying though. What about all the lies? Oh I got this jacket from my parents' garage? Really?! Why lie when we can see you bought the thing on eBay!

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  3. Anonymous wrote:

    I agree that Annie copies, but I don't think Jean is so innocent. Her gingham shirt with lace skirt outfit is a copy of Blair on Atlantic-Pacific (I guess jean couldn't find a sequin skirt). Although Jean looked like a picnic and Blair looked so glam. Jean also copies a lot from Anh and Wendyslookbook. Anh, Wendy, and Blair are the real deal, the rest are amateurs at best.

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  4. Anonymous wrote:

    I, too, want to praise you for standing up for yourself and against plagiarism! I support you 100%!

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  5. Anonymous wrote:

    Thank you so, so, SO much for taking a stand against the plagiarism. It puts a cloud over the entire petite blogging community and it's been bothering me that so many people were enabling such poor behavior. You have lots of supporters who have noticed but had no way to say anything because SP/RP deletes any comments that point out the problem, even tactfully. Something needed to be said, especially since other bloggers are affected too.

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  6. Anonymous wrote:

    Good job standing up for yourself Jean.

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  7. Anonymous wrote:

    Jean, how did you shorten the Stella & Dot necklace? I noticed that the chain is quite a bit longer on their site. I'm sure everyone would love to know your nifty tricks! Thanks in advance!

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  8. Such a great find and love the way you styled with the tweed!

    A Little Piece of Fashion and Beauty

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  9. love the belt


    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  10. Eliz wrote:

    beautiful dress! it's a really lovely tone for autumn 🙂

    Posted 9.18.12 Reply
  11. Michelle wrote:

    Great find, Jean! You styled this so well. Your J. Crew purse is turning out to be a great pairing for your LouBoutins!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  12. Chloe wrote:

    I'll always love a good draped dress, especially in a shimmery taupe hue. I live near an Ann Taylor outlet and always forget to hit it up–looks like I've been missing out! You look beautiful, Jean.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  13. Absolutely love this! Very classy outfit.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  14. Chi Nguyen wrote:

    Hi Jean, I really love your lipstick color. What shade is that ?

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  15. Sheree wrote:

    Love the belt! Did you buy it at a boutique or is it vintage?

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  16. Suzie Q wrote:

    I love that taupe colored sheath dress, it's so perfect for Fall. It goes great with the blazer. I wore the same Uniqueen jacket in an outfit post recently. Love!

    Suzie Q

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  17. jules wrote:

    I'm so glad you purchased this dress, it looks fantastic on you!

    xo julesinflats.com

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  18. jules wrote:

    Rachel, instead of doing a search, why not just select past months that you are interested in ?

    xo julesinflats.com

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  19. Anonymous wrote:

    I love that you actually have useful information on your blog. Not just a "look at me" blog showing off designer things.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  20. Amy wrote:


    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  21. Amy wrote:

    Hi Jean~

    Silk blouses are now on sale in petite sizing at J.Crew! I remember from your previous post that you were looking for a black or white silk blouse.


    The white "alabaster" colour is available in 00P

    🙂 enjoy!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  22. You are so right about the skirts with pencil fit being more body friendly. Check out a textured black dress I am very proud of at wichifashionblog.blogspot.com

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  23. Love the jacket, very nice ensemble.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  24. I also love the gentle cowl neck, as some of them are overwhelming! Great piece!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  25. stai veramente bene! anche io ho un blog, che ne dici di passare? mi farebbe molto piacere!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  26. Jackie wrote:

    I think that dress looks so chic! And I love how you styled it. I've always been a fan of neutrals with a pop of color.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  27. Rachel wrote:

    I have a suggestion for overall site navigation: organize the outfit posts by season (perhaps tag them as such, in the short term). In my case, I thought "Hmmm, weather's getting chilly. I wonder what Extra Petite has come up with for fall/winter looks in the past?" and seasonal archiving would answer my question at a glance. 🙂

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  28. The dress is absolutely stunning! And yes .. I love ANYTHING (except pants) that drapes. It adds more curves to my slight curves. =)

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  29. beautiful dress and what a great deal.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  30. I'm usually not big on the drapey dresses but with the jacket i'm diggin'


    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  31. LOVE LOVE the dress and shoes!


    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  32. Anonymous wrote:

    Love the color on you..looks so elegant..esp. with my favorite belt!!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  33. This is such a simple dress, yet you make it so gorgeous. Love the belt and the tweed jacket.

    xo, Yi-chia

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  34. Kira wrote:

    The dress looks gorgous on you! Beautiful color!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  35. Anonymous wrote:

    You are so beautiful! I am also Asian (Korean) and really appreciate your confidence that I see in your pictures.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  36. Zoe wrote:

    The dress looks great always impressed by your tailoring! – after ordering some pants (inspired by your post last week from Express – the Editor pants – not 100% satisfied with the fit) I really need to go find a good tailor / learn how to sew.

    Question regarding this outfit – have you ever found slips either in Boston or online to fit? There are definitely some items I own that would benefit and an extra layer come fall.

    Also – wearing tights/stockings with heels – any solutions to stop ones foot slipping in the heel and rubbing all the skin off ones foot. ? Does anyone have any good suggestions – such as those extra thick tight foots ?

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  37. GEMMA wrote:

    Yes, I have been loving the drapey dress!



    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  38. love the drapey look –

    this is so pretty on you!!

    xox P

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  39. Eva Wu wrote:

    fantastic, so stylish and elegant

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  40. Megan wrote:

    I love your factory-store finds! But, I always fall in love with them and then I'm always calling around frantically trying to track down the dress in stores around the nation. It's totally worth it though 🙂

    Now, this dress is probably next on my list…

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  41. I love how you chose a red bag with the outfit! I'm not particularly into drapey dresses, but I've said that about a lot of things and someday I suddenly fell hopelessly in love with them 😉


    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  42. Anonymous wrote:

    Hi Jean, I like the drape of the dress too. This
    post make think of autum

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  43. Phoebe wrote:

    I love how that looks on you! Great price, and the draping is so lovely.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  44. Mary Ann wrote:

    The dress looks fabulous, Jean! I agree, the draping is very pretty. If it were floor length and bias-cut, it would look like a 1930s movie star dress! (Can't believe the $99 price for thin rayon – lucky you got it for only $35!)

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  45. lin wrote:

    great find at the outlet. it's nice that it's partially lined. i've noticed that half the time, the dresses aren't lined when they should be due to the thinness of the material. you have a great eye on what would look good on you and what you need to do to make it work for your body type. thanks for the review and you look fabulous as always!

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  46. LOFT and Ann Taylor always have amazing sales! you look great in that dress!

    btw, i just love how you always include camera phone pics along with your real camera pics! =)

    xoxo, jenn
    the stylish housewife

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  47. Sheila wrote:

    You look absolutely gorgeous!! Love this dress with the Hermes belt. 🙂

    xo – Sheila


    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  48. trang wrote:

    Loft Outlet and Ann Taylor Outlet often have 20-40% off sales weekly and if it's a holiday, most sales will start as early as wednes/thurs if you like avoiding the crowds. I think closer to the holidays, you may see 50% off, but it's typically 40%. I believe shipping is free if you carry a loft/ann taylor card, otherwise it's about $8?

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  49. Carla Krae wrote:

    The draped bodice is lovely on you.

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply
  50. Anonymous wrote:

    You make the dress look gorgeous. You are so adorable

    Posted 9.17.12 Reply

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