Saturday, October 25, 2008

Grown-Up Hoodies

I decided a few years ago that I was going to stop buying sweatshirts, particularly comfy hoodies. First, because I already own a bunch (just counting the hoodies I bought at the camp I went to as a kid and teen, I have five--three almost identical blue ones, a red one, and a grey one), and second, because they're just not the sort of thing a young woman, trying to find her adult style and build a wardrobe for the future, should be wearing. When you're wearing a hoodie, you're saying to the world, "I'm not trying, and I don't care."

I know, I'm being harsh. Don't get me wrong-- when I get home after a really long day, one of the first things I do is change into pajamas and throw on a hoodie. Wearing a hoodie is like getting hugged all day long! And I will admit to wearing a hoodie to class twice this semester: once was to my film class (which I thought was held in some sort of freezer until I realized I was just always choosing seats underneath the air vents), and another was the morning after celebrating my roommate's 21st birthday at a place that gave you unlimited pitchers of beer with your all you can eat buffalo wings and rib tips, when I had to wake up at 7 to write a short paper before going to a 3 hour seminar at 9:30. I probably would not have made it through that day if I wasn't able to hide inside that warm, fuzzy hoodie.

Anyway, I have a point to this: when you're on the cusp of adulthood, trying to spend your money wisely, you have to walk a careful line with what comfort clothes you want to buy. Introducing the adult hoodie! Luxurious fabrics (no fleece!), more tailored fit, saturated colors and no team logos-- perfect for this fall, and next fall, and the next 7 falls (you'll have to reevaluate when you're thirty).

I'm obsessed with this cotton argyle hoodie, $49.99, from J.Crew. Argyle never really goes out of style-- it's a preppy classic, and preppies never change. The bigger diamonds in the center, changing to outlines on the side, and then solid black sleeves: it's a simplified, understated approach to argyle. And I really like that the exact same pattern runs down the back, so people walking behind you can also enjoy your awesome style. Also, three-quarter sleeves are always a cute way to show a bit of skin.

What I really want, though, is a cashmere hoodie. Cashmere is the ultimate cold weather fabric: even if you're sequestered in a classroom or office, you can rub your sleeve and feel like you're spending the weekend snuggling in front of a fire at your rustic cabin in the Colorado mountains. I love how J.Crew styled this zip-up cashmere hoodie, $188, to look a bit more dressed up than you'd expect. I mean, what a great outfit-- you could wear this to work, a date, a party, dinner with friends, shopping... the luxe but simple hoodie makes the silk cami, tweed mini, and satin clutch seem so much more versatile than they would without it. Even on its own, this zip-up hoodie is fabulous: I especially love the longer length and the side pockets. Also, J.Crew is offering it in over 20 colors, which means that by Christmas this hoodie is going to be so deeply discounted that J.Crew will practically be paying you to buy it. Oh, how I love J.Crew holiday sales.

But if you don't want to wait, Martin + Osa has a cheaper option. The cotton-cashmere hoodie is on sale right now for $59.99. It's only 5% cashmere, so it won't be as soft or as warm as the real thing, but I'm sure it'll be plenty cozy. I like the tunic length, and I absolutely love the double zippers. So fun to play with! Oh, sorry, I forgot I was trying to shop like an adult-- I meant to say, Yes, it's machine washable!

Has anyone ever shopped from Martin + Osa? They're the adult spinoff of American Eagle, which I was really into as a high schooler, but now feel too old for. Martin + Osa seems like it would be a good fit for me, but their stuff seems too boring, and I don't know if the quality justifies the higher-than-I-like prices. Also, they have such small collections, although maybe I'm just used to browsing and seeing 55 different sweaters. So to any readers that have bought something from Martin + Osa, do you recommend them?

I have to be honest and say that I don't know how much I would wear this Old Navy Shawl Collar Pullover Hoodie, $29.50, in the future, but I totally want it now. Faux-fur hoods are amazing-- pop that hood up and you feel like an adorable, snuggly Eskimo! The open shawl collar makes it a bit more sophisticated, although part of the reason I wear regular sweatshirt hoodies is because they completely cover whatever shirt you're wearing underneath, which is nice when I'm too lazy to change out of the ragged old tank top I slept in the night before.

This hoodie looks like the most comfy, toasty, cozy thing to wear on a weekend night when you just want to hang out in your apartment and watch a movie. From Splendid, this 100% cashmere hoodie is $299, which could be a month's rent if you live someplace reasonable, aka not Manhattan. It has the kangaroo pouch in front, cute drawstring on the front hem, and since it's Splendid you know it's softer than a puppy and a baby combined. And almost as cute! I love the sporty thick stripes and the deep V-- I never thought a hoodie could be sexy, but this one just about does it.

But if I was really going to drop that much cash on a hoodie, it would be something from Mike & Chris. This designing duo is Mindy Kaling approved, which is something I look for whenever I make a shopping decision. She wrote, "They are the most flattering, comfortable clothes, but they make you look like this insanely cool badass girl who lives on Rivington Street or in Echo Park or something with her gorgeous, aloof boyfriend (but you secretly live in Midtown or by the Grove or something, like me)." What more could you want in a hoodie? I really like their Sutton Hoodie, $202, even though it's sort of cheating due to the fact the hood is detachable. But the covered zipper, exposed seams, and asymmetrical storm flap (confession: I don't know what that last one means, but ShopBop includes it in their product description and it sounds cool, so I'm including it in my list of pluses) add up to a tough little jacket-- I think I'd feel fearless wearing it.

But it is a tad boring, so here's a Mike & Chris hoodie that I definitely couldn't pull off, but I think would be perfect for my favorite fashion maverick, Danielle. The Floyd Hoodie, $211, has this crazy scarf/bow thing attached to the neck, something I definitely wouldn't be able to pull off. Danielle, on the other hand, could rock it. I do like the oversized buttons on the pockets and lapel, though.

But you know what? I'm not a full, mature adult yet, so I absolutely plan on buying this overpriced, horribly unflattering, not at all stylish monstrosity before I graduate. Isn't it totally creepy how they posed it to look like it's being worn by a ghost? From the NYU bookstore, this Hooded Sweatshirt is $59.95 (like I haven't spent enough on tuition).

1 comment:

Emma Tanner said...

Nice hoodies really fashionable.