I’ve reviewed quite a lot of Scarlett & Jo items lately, and that’s because they are a brand that make some really great pieces of clothing. They are committed to designing gorgeous frocks for us plus size ladies and so I can’t help but want to share them with you all.
Today I’m going to share with you the Scarlett & Jo Animal Print Fit and Flare Dress (£39.00; UK sizes 14-32. I’m afraid this is no longer available online but it may still be in stock in some Evans stores – probably in the sale section).
Image courtesy of Evans
Now, on the mannequin this dress doesn’t really look anything special, but I love animal print and so I ordered it anyway. I usually go for a size 14 or 16 in Scarlett & Jo but at the time of ordering my only choices were either 14 or 20 upwards, so I opted for the 14.
(For reference, in these photos I am wearing my Ewa Michalak S Pieprzyk 32KK/70KK bra, along with some tights from Matalan and a pair of black platform stiletto heels from eBay.)
The dress is made from an extremely stretchy and quite heavy fabric. It’s definitely too thick for summer wear, but it makes a great dress for all other times of the year! The material (97% polyester, 3% elastane) has a lot of give so it hugs my curves on the top half and the skater style skirt skims over my hips and bottom. The dress washes and wears pretty well (I am wearing it as I write this review, in fact!), although I have found it has developed bobbles on the areas that get the most friction, i.e. on the boobs and the hips. This doesn’t faze me though, as bobbles can be easily removed by running a razor over the fabric and then going over it with a lint roller or a loop of sellotape around your fingers.
The scooped neck is great as it gives the slightest hint of cleavage and nothing more, but the cut of the dress emphasises the bust and waist. I personally wouldn’t wear this to work as it’s a fairly loud print and so not suitable for my workplace, but I am sure it would be fine in a more relaxed working environment. It’s perfect for casual wear, though, or for a night out with the girls.
The elbow-length sleeves are very slim-fitting so I’d advise sizing up if your arms are on the bigger side for your size. Lengthwise the skirt comes almost to my knees, so it’s perfect for wearing with tights or leggings.
I really loved everything about this dress…except for one thing: the waist. I know it’s a common gripe of mine but it’s just too baggy for me! This means I have to wear the dress with a belt, which is something I often do to help make ill fitting dresses look a bit better on me. On this occasion, I added a red elasticated waist belt from Primark.
I love how the red contrasts beautifully against the animal print and highlights my waist. I find adding a red bolero/shrug also helps to bring the print alive, and indeed any colour of belt and/or bolero will do the same. It would be fun to try this dress with coloured tights as well.
Despite raving about this dress, I actually returned this size 14 as I felt it was too tight on my boobs and too loose on my waist. I immediately realised I’d made a mistake and promptly rebought it. This time the smallest size available was an 18, so I went for that and it actually works pretty well. My boobs are still a fraction squashed, but it’s a far better fit on the bust than the 14. Of course the waist is bigger, but again this is solved by adding a belt to cinch the dress in. I usually wear one of my belts from my Pinup Girl Clothing Heidi dresses, as they are easy to adjust and comfortable to wear, or my red or black Obi Belt from IGIGI.
If you like the Scarlett & Jo Animal Print Fit and Flare dress, check out another review from Naomi here.