Eye Candy: Anthropologie June 2012 catalogue

This top is not going to flatter 80% of the Anthropologie shopping population.
It’s pretty, but it may as well be artwork rather than clothing.

Anthropologie has officially unveiled some of the looks from the June 2012 catalogue on their website…and I’m dying over here, in ways both good and bad.

Let’s start with the good: the photography is just gorgeous. And the clothes are once again mostly center-stage, with a few randomly placed cats blocking the view. In the store itself, I’m noticing improvements in materials. Aside from sheerness which still seems to be an infectious disease among Anthropologie designers, I’m seeing rayon used in ways that make sense for summer clothing; more real cotton and silk as opposed to their poly-whatever doppelgängers and better stitching at the seams and hemlines. And as I walk around the stores I’m finding designs that make me really excited. I just purchased a couple of work/weekend tops I’m really happy with: We Love Vera’s Split Narcissus Shell ($78) and Myne’s Sahuarita Blouse ($158) both of which will get the review treatment shortly and the latter of which will see OOTD love over on my tumblr this week.

And then there’s the catalogue which is….confused. Or confusing at the least. I found myself flipping through these images going oh, no…oh no…oh no no no! I don’t understand the duality. In-store, Anthropologie seems to be experimenting with proportional balance. Wavy tops with stem-like pants, skirts with pouf paired with sleek tops, etc. And while these stylings are still challenging for a curvy girl like me, at least I can pick and choose a wardrobe from that. The catalogue meanwhile seems to be stuck in 1970s California. Loose, easy and kicked back is a nice lifestyle to aspire to but these clothes aren’t practical! Worse, while the photography is beautiful these clothes do not speak to me. So if I lived far away from an Anthropologie I wouldn’t be enticed to make the trip. I have always loved the way Anthropologie’s best catalogues tell a story. I am not confident in the catalogue voice right now though. It is not speaking the same language as either the website or the stores. They’ve gone split-brain.

My biggest frustration is that the majority of the catalogue stuff is not going to look right on me. I’ll try some pieces anyway but I will be shocked if the proportions work. It makes me a little mad to be honest. I don’t want the catalogue to go away but I’m still left wishing for the days when nearly every corner was dog-eared. This post is pure reaction to the photos and I hope you’ll share your thoughts in the comments. Maybe I’m just way off.

Openwork Army Jacket ($148)
This is one of the pieces I’m eager to try, 
though I have doubts about the cropped silhouette.
It’s just gorgeous.
Notice the tricky photography with the model jutting out her hips
and leaning back to make the jacket look longer than it is.
It’s another challenging shape for anyone with curves.

A potentially fun summer party dress.
The rounded neckline and high seam will be rough on larger chests.
Notice how the model shots on the product page never show
a straight-on shot. It would showcase how wide you can look.

Love this dress a million times over. More like this please!

Adorable dotted print; good dress length.
With all respect to the model, this shot does not look flattering.
And if the model is having issues, how will the rest of us do?

A great styling idea is shown here — tucking chambray into a gently pleated skirt.
The sleeves of this top look like a challenge.
Still, I’m excited to try it on.

The festival-lover in me thinks this top would be great.
The rest of me wonders about a split top parting 
over the great expanse that is my hips.

The top was so exciting to me on the hanger but didn’t hold up on my form.
Review upcoming…makes shoulders look broad.
The skirt has a lovely mix of patterns and I can’t wait to try it.

The color is right but the shape is more maternity than eternally flattering.
The suggestion of a thick belt (not part of the top) is helpful.

Another tough neckline for most busts, but a stunning dress worth a shot.

Easy, light and pretty. One or two of these dresses is a wonderful thing.
Too many leave me with nothing to wear to work.

So community, I turn to you. How do you feel about these preview items? Did I just wake up cranky this morning? Any wishlist additions for you? What do you think about the stores vs. the catalogue?

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