The Gwynnie Bee Review: A Psychological Experiment — Month #2

Heading out to work, minus a leather jacket and short boots

Heading out to work, minus a leather jacket and short boots

Gwynnie Bee Review for Month #2:

Total items:  22 — 20 dresses, 2 tops (including 4 special event dresses)

Total worn:  13;  3 returned unworn due to poor sizing, 5 not flattering to my frame so not worn, 1 special event dress saved for Christmas event after the month; 1 worn twice

Total bought: 0

Plan:  3 items

Upgrades: 1 item increase for 1 month as a loyalty bonus for renewing; 1 item increase for 2 weeks from previous month as consideration for defective dress.

Grade:  B+

The Good, the Bad, and the Unflattering:

This experiment with the Gwynnie Bee subscription service for clothes  continues to surprise and delight me in ways I wouldn’t have dreamed.   I’ve had a few glitches but overall, the experience has been extremely positive, particularly in how I have begun to change some long-held negative viewpoints.

Gwynnie Bee Subscription Service

One of my fav Gwynnie Bee dresses and something I would never have chosen–a Coldwater Creek dress in a color that brings out my eyes. End of the day and run ragged but I still felt pretty.

In the course of the second month, GB shipped a total of 22 items to me from my “virtual closet.”  Of the 5 I didn’t wear because I thought they were unflattering, they were actually very pretty and stylish dresses but just didn’t suit my frame once I put them on.  I have never had a defined waist–ever–even at 22 and 105 pounds.   That means that I may end up wearing a much larger size to make sure the cut of the garment fits my waist.  It also means, as I discovered only through this experiment, that I sometimes must wear a dress size that is 1-2 times larger than the size dress a much heavier woman with a different body type might wear. It always, until now, struck me as odd that a friend who has 50 pounds on me wears my dress size.  It’s all about the cut.  Hmmmm.

This discovery has gotten me away from even thinking in terms of dress size and now looking instead at a measurement chart to make sure a garment is loose enough in the waist, tight enough in the hips, not too loose in the shoulders.  I dress myself by the chart now, not the tag.  Folks, that has been remarkably freeing.  I’m no longer hard on myself or lacking confidence because of a number on a tag.

Bundling up for cooler weather but the dress underneath was super comfy and practical.

Bundling up for cooler weather but the dress underneath was super comfy and practical.

I’ve also learned to read reviews from other Gwynnie Bee subscribers on the site.   They’re quite helpful in determining if the item–in spite of the size chart–runs small or large or even in how to style the item for maximum impact.  Where I’ve gone astray and had to return 3 dresses that were 1. too big by 2 sizes, 2. too small by 2 sizes, and 3. too big in the bust but perfect elsewhere was that these were new offerings without any reviews yet.   I’m surprised that, with over 200 items in my virtual closet, about half of the items I’m sent are newly announced additions.  That means I’m getting dresses that have never been worn and are the newest trends from Gwynnie Bee, but sometimes they don’t have the reviews I need to choose a better fit.

The absolute best part of the Gwynnie Bee subscription service that makes it worthwhile is that I can rent special occasion dresses.  With the holiday season upon me, I was able to select probably two dozen fancier dresses, including some of the pricier dresses that would be 3 to 5 times my monthly subscription if I were buying one dress for one mandatory party for work or for a date’s work party.  I’ll have photos in next month’s review of some of these.  I still have party dresses of this type in my physical closet from the last 5 years, and most of them were worn just once because I needed variety for the different holiday events with the same audience and by the next year, the dress was out of style.   I was very pleased with the selections I received from Gwynnie Bee and kept a couple of these dresses out for several weeks just to wear to a specific event.

My only complaint about Gwynnie Bee this month was that shipping was a little slower than in the first month.  I don’t mean the time it took in transit to me but the time it took for Gwynnie Bee to put the next selections in the mail to me.  All was well until the weekend before Thanksgiving but the next week, they seemed to be on top of it again.   The same happened as I neared Christmas but I’ll cover that in next month’s report.

Surprises in Month #2:

This dress worked great for work, paired with pumps and a dressy jacket.  Relaxed, loosed, practical, and comfortable was just what I needed for a frantic work day.

This dress worked great for work, paired with pumps and a dressy jacket. Relaxed, loosed, practical, and comfortable was just what I needed for a frantic work day.

Besides the previously mentioned surprise related to sizes and no longer beating myself up over “just numbers,” I had several more surprises.   As my body is reconstituting on this ketogenic diet I’m on, I’m finding the some brands will soon no longer work for me, and I’m hoping that as I shrink out of Gwynnie Bee sizes, they’ll expand their service to include the smaller sizes.

I’m surprised at how much I enjoy wearing looser clothing.  Not LOOSE but…well, interesting insights here into how I think.   Before, I would have hated to buy anything in a larger size.  I’ve even stated emphatically that certain sizes would never again be allowed in my closet.   That means that I’ve been forcing myself to wear clothes that don’t have the extra room to move that I like just so I’m not in the next size up.   Sure, it’s looser and more comfortable but it’s a size up!  Now I don’t think about it and I really don’t care about the number–just how it looks, how it feels, and how I feel in it.   Weird, huh?  I’m wearing the biggest sizes I ever have and yet I feel the most confident and the sexiest ever in some of those dresses. Yes, I’m having FUN.

This one just plain felt good to wear and went from work to a casual after-work meeting.

This one just plain felt good to wear and went from work to a casual after-work meeting.

I’m getting more compliments than ever before, too.   I’ve dressed professionally all this time, but I’m more likely to try styles I wouldn’t have if it’s just another dress on the Gwynnie Bee subscription plan and not one I’ll buy retail and then fear to wear because it’s edgy.  If it’s edgy and too memorable to wear a second time, so what?   Back in the bag it goes.

I’m getting a lot more attention when I wear these dresses.  I have a particular group of colleagues who greet me every morning now to see what I’m wearing.  They know they’ll see it only once!

The funniest surprise came during the weekend after Thanksgiving.  I was complaining about not having enough time to do chores.  My workout clothes were in the washing machine when I went to my dry cleaning bin to launder the clothes I’d worn to work and to Thanksgiving events–and there were none!  No dry cleaning to do.  No dry cleaning packets to buy at the store.  Little to no monthly expense, either from the store, the dry cleaners, or the electricity of running the dryer at home.   Gwynnie Bee was helping me with my laundry!  A couple of work friends have caught me walking to the post office at lunch with a blue bag.  The joke is, I had to go to the post office to drop off my laundry.

The best thing of all about this experiment is that I’m loving the different dresses and I really am feeling sexier than I ever have in my life.   I’m having a blast with the different clothes, styling them, the compliments, the lunch dates, the dinner dates.   Nice, folks.  Very, very nice.