Gala Darling Loves American Apparel!

Gala Darling loves American Apparel


Disclaimer! I did not pay for these items. American Apparel sent them to me for my appraisal, which was incredibly lovely of them. At the time, I told them about my policy (more information here) of not advocating products that I wouldn’t spend money on myself — otherwise known as “If you’re sending this to me on the proviso that I’ll write about it, then I’m not really interested, thanks”. They were still happy to do it, so it went ahead. As it turns out, I am delighted with everything they sent me, so I’ve written up my thoughts as further data points for anyone who is considering buying these things themselves! I’ve said what colour & size I bought too, so that you can compare yourself to me & work out what size would be best on you. Oh, & for your information, I am 169cm — 5’7″ (thanks nicOla!).

I am currently on a major kick of what I call “clean dressing”. I’ve been reading style books & closely examining the sort of look I like on other people, & am discovering the fabulousness of simple pieces. When I say simple, I mean pieces with classic lines & solid colour. No pictures or patterns or gee-gaws. Just nice, clean items. I used to really dislike this kind of thing, thinking it was incredibly boring. Why buy a plain white t-shirt when you could buy a green t-shirt with STUFF on it? But now I’m realising the value of having simple pieces. They’re fabulous because you can put them together & layer them up without looking overdone, & then add a bit of excitement & individual style to the mix via magnificent accessories.

Another thing I’m learning is that my hair is so major that it really makes a statement all on its own. I don’t need a neon pink backcombed beehive plus an insane dress plus crazy sunglasses plus huge platform boots plus a kimono or something. I mean, I can, but that doesn’t mean I should all the time. So I guess I am on a bit of a mission to pare things down — refine my look, appear a bit more sleek (& consequently, chic). Thus, my American Apparel items arrived at just the right time.

Unisex Sheer Jersey Short Sleeve Deep V-Neck — White / S

Mary-Kate Olsen owns the same one, you know. Surely that’s selling point enough?! Oh, if you insist…

A plain white t-shirt has never been the sort of thing that appealed to me. It always seemed a bit “French starlet on her day off”, if you know what I mean. You know those effortlessly gorgeous movie stars who wear a t-shirt & jeans on their day off but look impeccable? I am not one of those types. When I dress down like that, I feel like a soccer mother. So when American Apparel offered to send me one, I was a bit thoughtful about it, but happy to step up to the challenge & see what I could do with it.

The deep v-neck is a great shirt, even to people who don’t “get” white shirts, like me. It is a fantastic length — more than long enough to cover the waistband of your jeans. The sleeves finish at the middle of your upper arm — none of this cap sleeve nonsense, which is chronically unflattering. It’s incredibly versatile too; much more than I thought it would be. I have worn it more ways than I care to document — with jeans & heels, thrown over frocks to dress them down, with a maxi-skirt & sandals, tucked into high-waisted skirts, with shorts, etc. I thought maybe the deep v-neck would be too deep for me, given I am not Miss Cleavage 2007, but it actually doesn’t make me feel like I’m trying to show myself off, so I’m happy.

Also, I have to say, this t-shirt is one of the softest, most comfortable things I’ve ever owned. If you’ve never actually felt one of their fine jersey shirts, you are really missing out. They are delicious to the touch. If American Apparel made sheets, I would be all over it like a rash.

I was sent the Fine Jersey Short Sleeve V-Neck (ash/white, XS) as well, which I love to death. I ordered an XS because it’s a unisex size, & it was about right for me. It’s loose but that’s the fit I’m most keen on at the moment! The stripe is very subtle as you can see from the pictures, & again it’s very soft & a great cut. My delight is palpable! Both of these items come highly recommended. I hang mine in my wardrobe, which is an accolade usually reserved for my best things. I want these to last!

Fine Jersey Racerback Tank Dress — Royal blue / S

Okay, I cannot begin to tell you how much I love this dress. It is a top contender for favourite thing in my wardrobe. Why?

It is a fabulous blue. Not too pansy, not too deep — just a perfect, rich, sexy royal blue. It is mind-blowing soft; like wearing pyjamas. The arm-holes are cut properly so you don’t get that crazy armpit bulge thing that some dresses give you. It is the PERFECT length. Not too short, not too long. It hits my thighs at the slimmest part, so it is totally flattering. It is long enough that I don’t have to wear leggings or stockings underneath it, but it’s not so long I feel dowdy or like I am about to go to an office. As well as being the perfect length, it is also the perfect layering piece. The fabric is thin enough that you can wear things over the top without feeling like the Michelin man, & if no one knew any better, they’d probably just think you were wearing a skirt. I am VERY tempted to buy this dress in several other colours (black, teal & asphalt) because I know it will get worn over & over again. Oh — & the racerback cut is totally sexy.

One thing I would say about this dress is that it isn’t a small fit. I ordered a small & it’s probably a bit big for me. Thankfully I wasn’t looking for something tight, but this gives you some idea as to the size. You can see on the model on the website that the sizing runs quite large, so keep that in mind if you want to snap one up yourself!

I have been wearing the hell out of this. I have been wearing entire outfits of American Apparel, which is kind of naughty but thankfully I think there are very few people in Australia who could spot it, so I forgive myself. My favourite outfit involves the aforementioned striped short sleeve v-neck, royal blue racerback tank dress & matte black lamé leggings. Yum. It’s so comfortable & I feel perfectly put-together in it. It makes me so happy.

Lamé Legging — Matte black / S

I’ve owned a pair of purple lamé leggings from American Apparel for a while, & while they’ve had some use, they haven’t had loads. The reason for this is, of course, that I don’t own a lot of purple. Here, I can count the pieces — I have a purple scarf, a purple Lacoste jersey & purple striped fingerless gloves. That’s it! Of course, this is very limiting & so I guess if I could go back in time, & was only to buy one pair of fabulous leggings, I wouldn’t have bought purple, I would have bought black.

Of course, I love the black leggings. They are brilliant. Just like normal black leggings, except shiny & futuristic. They add interesting new texture to an ensemble & are the perfect thing for converting a plain dowdy black outfit into a hot stylish fashion look.

That having been said, I recognise that lamé leggings are not for everyone. Hell, normal leggings are not for everyone! “Oh my god, LEGGINGS! Bad! No please don’t do it!” I’m familiar with the anti-leggings league. They roam the internet, casting judgement on legwear from here to Perez Hilton! That’s okay, though. I’ve discovered a secret about leggings.

If you wear leggings with boots of any kind — sexy Frye pull-ons, gawthyck New Rock buckle-ups, delicious Christian Louboutin booties — they are no longer leggings. They are stockings! No one knows the difference! Even people in the anti-leggings league will ask you where you got your fabulous “stockings” from. Ha ha ha! Then you can laugh mirthfully & pull them up to show the lack of foot & they will turn away, face aflame. Aflame with shame. So there.

Regardless of what the anti-leggings league thinks, I love my black matte lamé leggings like they were my own child. They are gorgeous & completely unexpected, especially if you wear them with something vintage. Three cheers!

P.S. Dear American Apparel, I think you should make a long black maxi-skirt. I love mine but the fabric is crappy & pilling which drives me nuts. I know an American Apparel version wouldn’t have this problem. Please consider it! I will make you cupcakes.