About the Author: Criss is a full time mother, public servant and artist. She has 2 kids, four rescue dogs, a rescued fiance, a rescue horse that she can’t ride and 27 and counting chickens. She has a passion and love for preserving history and storytelling.
Confession time…. I am 32 years old and I don’t know how to dress like an adult. It’s sad I know. I have a closet FULL of clothes that looked really good on the rack, or you know in that dressing room, pouring sweat trying on outfit, after outfit, AFTER OUTFIT and finally saying screw it and buying something.
I have an average body size that also happens to be an inverted triangle shape so a football player’s shoulders and chest with the no ass/hips at all syndrome. Only 5% of the female population has this shape so YAY me….not… Also average… size 10-14 M/L but above average height at 5ft 8inches. Which means most “normal” clothes are made for women smaller than me and curvy girl clothes are made for women with, well, CURVES, which I decidedly lack. If you would like to have a cry for me now that’s okay, It’s pretty much all I did when shopping after I shot above my size 7 after having children. Let’s just say I’m built like a man….
I know I have talked before about how I learned to put make up on via YouTube, so after some serious personal reflection I set out to see if there was such a thing as a “reasonably priced” online personal stylist. The only think I’ve ever worn for 10 + hours a day since I was 17 is a uniform and those were provided for me (but not very stylish).
Enter Trunk Club. I had heard of stitch fix, which is a subscription service that charges you $25 a month (and you either use the money for a purchase or lose it) but had never heard of TC.
What is Trunk Club (TC)? It’s a styling service for MEN and WOMEN that costs $25 per trunk (not month) as of October 3rd 2016 and you can request a trunk whenever, it’s not a subscription service. HOWEVER, that $25 is an account credit to use on any purchase in any trunk. You have a personal stylist, my stylist’s name is Maddy and she is awesome! Your stylist will pick outfits for you based on your needs, body type, likes etc. She will even tell you how to WEAR the said outfit.
You’ll get a trunk notification, review and approve (or disapprove an item(s), then the trunk full of clothes/shoes/jewelry (approx 12-15 pieces) will be delivered for FREE to your front porch!
Returns are also free; you just request a pick up via your handy dandy app. You don’t have to purchase anything from the trunk and you have five days to review your trunk for anything you want to keep. It’s like the world’s best game of dress up except you don’t have to stand in those stupid dressing rooms with the employees tapping on the door every few minutes asking, “Are you okay in there?” I think they hear my huffing and puffing away. Or maybe crying…..
Now here’s where you have to be completely honest with yourself and your stylist. You have to tell her about your body shape (Which I don’t think Maddy realized at first how much I wasn’t exaggerating about my shoulders for the first trunk) your size, colors you like or don’t like, budget etc.
When I first talked to Maddy, I told her that as a business woman I was in need of business clothing that would be appropriate for me when I was photographing weddings. I also needed nice business casual clothing for networking get togethers and conferences that I have coming up. I ALSO had a requirement that I must be able to move in the clothing ie: squat, bend over, etc AND that since it’s 100 degrees in E.TX until October the items can’t be hot. That’s not a long list of requirements right? You see my struggle. Also, no black. Or at least not all black colors. I want to step outside of my “black makes me look slimmer” comfort zone.
Maddy informed me that my first trunk would be for her to get to know me and my tastes and not to expect perfection on this one, it would be followed up with a second trunk.
Trunk Club is owned by Nordstrom so this is high end clothing that is going to last. It also means that these clothes aren’t Old Navy cheap. However, you can advise your stylist of what your budget is. I DID NOT do this for the first trunk but Maddy and I had a talk about budget for the second trunk. She did include items with a wide range of price for my first trunk though. You review your trunk and approve it before it sends. So if there’s something you really don’t like you can just ask her to change or remove it.
Without further ado, here’s my first trunk!
This was my favorite outfit by far. I really didn’t think this color would work for me but it did! But what you can’t see is that this dress is not totally zipped in the back (football shoulders & chest remember). The poor zipper completely stopped right about my shoulder blades. And this super awesome blazer, yeah it wouldn’t button (stupid boobs) But hey the shoes fit and were fabulous! Look at my legs! Maddy did warn me that the heel was high and we could go with something a little lower next trunk. After about 30 minutes of strutting around in them for this shoot, the balls of my feet were KILLING me. So I sadly put them back in the trunk.
Eliza J Ruched Sleeve Blazer $78 Size L
Eliza J Sheath Dress $148 Size 12
Kate Spade NY ‘infinity and beyond’ knot necklace $58
Kate Spade NY infinity and beyond knot earrings $48
Splendid Jayla Ankle Cuff Sandal $157.95 Size 10
Total Outfit Cost $489.95 which is a pretty penny BUT the blazer, necklace, earrings, and nude shoes are essential pieces that can be worn numerous ways and with numerous outfits. I would definitely say that those are worth the price.
I liked the fit and look of this Adrianna Papell dress but it was a little TOO dressy for me. I couldn’t kneel in it very well so it wouldn’t really be good for much of anything for me. And at $145 it’s not worth the price. I did love it though and this one did fit. It wasn’t very lumpy girl friendly though. Strategic lighting is the only thing that made this dress look well fitted on my frame. BUT THOSE SHOES!!!!
This was cute AND the skirt was swingy. Made me want to twirl around in it like a kid. Unfortunately, again, this wouldn’t zip all the way up. Which made me sad because the shape really balanced out my shoulder to hip ratio. The top was a crop top. The ONLY thing it would work with was this skirt because I am so not going to be running around with my not so flat belly hanging out. So not an essential piece.
Eliza J Pleated Faille Midi Skirt Size 12 $138
Kate Spade NY open stitch sleeveless sweater $118
This outfit didn’t really flatter my shape and made me look boxy and short (which it may not have if I could have buttoned the blazer) but those BOOTIES omg they are to die for and so so comfy. Unfortunately, they are also Vince booties and are $395 so unless I hit the lottery I don’t play or I beg for them for Christmas from my fiancé back in the box they go. Also these pants were super comfy but that hole….. Yeah I can’t wear anything with holes. They last about a month before the holes are ripped open even further from all the squatting. I liked the print and color of the top but again with the boobs. It didn’t fit very well. I did love the jacket & jean combo. Although with my body shape, dark on top and light on bottom works better for me. This would make a great business casual outfit without holes.
Rag & Bone Jean Destroyed Capri Skinny $225 Size 12
Kate Spade NY Hydrangea Print layered silk tank $228 Size L
Vince Harriet Block Heel Bootie $395 size 10
I Loved this linen top and it draped just perfectly on my frame. But JESUS again with my chest. The top button gaped and leaving it open like I normally do showed way too much cleavage to call it business anything. Except maybe business strip club wear? I don’t think my clients (95% female) would appreciate consultations at the local strip club. So I guess I’ll have to buy one size bigger and have it tailored because….genetics….
Can you tell yet why I need to someone else to do all the clothing hunting for me? You ever get so frustrated that you cry in a dressing room? No? Only me huh……….
Equipment Adalyn Linen Sleeveless Top $94.80
So my take on TC? I think it is absolutely perfect for dressing yourself (and your man) up for special occasions in quality clothing that will last. (Like that family/Engagement photo shoot coming up) It is also convenient as there is an app from your phone that you can do all of this with. You can even take photographs of your own wardrobe and add it to your wardrobe on the app so your stylist can assist with matching clothing items to clothing you already have. Isn’t that awesome!
Maddy says to style your whole family for a photo shoot (including your adult sized child(ren) just create a different account for each person using your sharing code on the first account. Using the same stylist for each account will ensure that she can put together trunks with clothing colors & styles that will compliment each other and any colors you need for your shoot. She says they’re used to wives creating accounts for husbands…go figure!
Would I use it for my everyday blue jeans and t-shirt wear? No, I can’t see spending that kind of money on something I will wear while digging around in my garden.
I confess, since this trunk, Maddy has given me some great tips for my own cheaper every day wardrobe purchases. I have been looking at cheaper places like Poshmark to purchase items that Maddy inspired me to wear. However, I will still be using her for my very important styling needs like the conference I’m attending in January!
My Philosophy : Pictures are our way of capturing a sliver of time, a moment, so that we can tell it back to ourselves later. It’s my job to capture that moment for you in all its intensity and beauty so that you can hold onto it through times both bad and good. My passion is storytelling, I just use a camera instead of a words.
Criss can be found floating around on her Website, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter accounts when she’s not running around the house in her cape or digging in the dirt in East Texas.