our rowena dress comes with a few advantages.
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Customer ReviewsWrite a review
I just got Forrest Night and Storm Grey, and I love both colors. They are both dull green colors that match my eyes. I prefer the Long length because it's not as wide in circumference as the regular length, and I like my knees covered.
I ordered down a size based on other people's reviews. I loved the Storm Gray color and the length on me (just a hair above the knee), as well as the drape and feel of the fabric. Unfortunately, the cut made my short-waisted hourglass figure look a good 15 lbs heavier, and something about the pockets seems to emphasize my hips. The Rowena in M looked much better on me.
I really, really wanted to love this dress. I *obsessed* over sizing before buying. I have an Old Navy swing dress that I love, so was really hoping to replicate that fit in something I could wear every day. I obsessively measured myself and that dress, trying to glean the best fit. I emailed other 100 days participants to find out what size they were wearing. I wanted a dress that didn't look too loose, and hit right about the middle of my knee caps. Based on all of the published Rowena measurements, I decided on a medium long Rowena. I knew I could send it back if it didn't fit, but I was THRILLED to have it come and hit exactly where I thought it would. I did notice that the front panel is was cut very slightly on the bias, so a little crooked, but I decided not to worry about it.
I immediately submitted my 100-days challenge email, and began wearing it! I have 4 kids and a dog, so lead a pretty active life - AND I started in the middle of an Indiana summer. But I never felt overheated, and AMAZINGLY it really didn't smell!!
However, after a few days, I noticed that it was starting to reallllllly stretch out. Where it once hit me mid knee-cap, it was now stretching to nearly mid-calf in the back, and an inch or two below my knees in the front. Even my husband noticed - "wow, did you get the wrong size, maybe?" I emailed wool&, and they said I could try lightly ironing it, and to make sure to roll it, not hang it, at night.
Unfortunately, rolling it vs hanging it at night meant it was wrinkly every morning, and lightly ironing it every morning didn't really change the size issue...and was a giant pain. It really negated the ease of being able to throw on the same thing every day.
I do find that if I wash it and hang dry it until about 90% dry, then dry it on delicate in the dryer for just a few minutes, it bounces back to its original shape. But that shape only lasts for a day or two. So then I have to either wash it again, or wear with a belt. Having to wash to maintain shape is a bummer, since it really doesn't smell or otherwise need to be washed.
I kept up the 100-day challenge for about 40 days, but I finally had to give up. I never felt hot with *just* the Rowena, but in order to make the shape look reasonable, I found myself using belts and layering shirts on top. Which was fun and looked cute, but was too hot in the summer, and not the shape profile I was hoping for.
Maybe I'll try again when things cool down, but I really don't want to *have* to layer it or wear a belt in order to make it not look like a giant sack.
In the end, I wish I had known it would stretch out. A small / regular length would probably have fit *perfectly* when stretched out a bit, and I probably could have got a few weeks in between washings.
I am 5'9", 160 lbs, with a pear shape (big butt and hips and smaller up top). I ordered a large and a medium in this dress to try both sizes. While the material is beautiful, the dress was not flattering at all on me. The medium was the best fit, but it did not fall well around my waist or hips and made me look much larger than I am. For the price point, I expected there to be much better shape to the dress. I returned the dress.
Hi Marin, we're so sorry to hear that our Rowena Swing Dress didn't work for you. We recommend the Fiona Fit and Flare if you're looking for more shape! Thanks for letting us know.
I admit, I was a bit of a skeptic going into the 100 day challenge. I figured it would be something to do during my new normal of working from home and it would give me at least a work "uniform" to wear that might help define my day a bit. I am on day 92 and I am happy to report that I was so wrong; this dress has been so much more than just a work uniform. I love it and I plan on continuing to wear it everyday for work for the foreseeable future - although I may mix a few of my other clothes into the mix on the weekends moving forward just to justify the existence of other clothes in my closet!
Most importantly; the fabric is easy. It is lightweight and thin - but not the kind of thin that you can see your cellulite through the fabric (we've all had clothes like that). Even though it is a knit fabric, it doesn't get misshapen and weird over the course of wear - no baggy butt after 8 hours at my desk on zoom meetings. And, if the sleeves get slightly wrinkly when I push them up to 3/4 length for a few hours in the afternoon, the wrinkles don't last and hang themselves out way better than any other dress I've had. I bought this dress in black because I WILL spill everything on it and I didn't want to ruin the dress because I'm incapable of drinking coffee neatly. I've had to spot clean a few places when I've made a mess, but it's been super easy to do and I somehow don't have any stains on my dress after 92 days. I was able to get few drops of sap from my pine tree came out with some rubbing alcohol/hand sanitizer even! I've washed my dress six or seven times over the past three months; usually because I've spilled something all over myself or didn't think about the fact that I was wearing it when I went out to mow the lawn and sweat for an hour. Although, even sweating in it isn't all that bad when it comes to odors.
I've worn my dress in my home office, out shopping, into the real office, to the beach, playing with dogs, on a boat, you name it. I've looked appropriate in every situation and been totally comfortable all the time. Plus, since it's a basic black dress I can wear any color shoe with it to dress up or down and get a pop of color. I don't think I have a situation that this dress isn't appropriate for; I might not wear it to a glamorous Black Tie affair, but considering the number of those happening now a days is pretty slim. Then again... with some heels and good accessories you never know...
I'm already eyeing my next purchase!