Now that Awards Season is over, I can finally concentrate on my own life, rather than the lives of Hollywood’s A-list celebrities. Since I haven’t had a second to shop since before the holidays, but my closet was crying out for some newness, I jumped at the chance to try Frank And Oak’s Style Plan, a monthly subscription box service that curates a mix of basics and trendier wardrobe pieces depending on your profile.
Let me start from the beginning. My name is Gwen, and I’m a shopaholic. I love window shopping, I love internet browsing — and ordering! — and I love wearing fresh-from-the-tissue-paper brand-spanking-new clothes… but this year, an extra-heavy work schedule eclipsed my favorite extracurricular activity. The time had come to admit I needed help. While both of my sisters swear (and I mean seriously, hardcore swear) by StitchFix, I’ve never given it, or any subscription box for that matter, a shot. In fact, I’ve balked at the notion that any algorithm (or ‘stylist’ on the opposite end of my web browser) could correctly guess what styles would work for my actual real life.
Enter Frank And Oak, a Canada-based fashion brand for women and men that uses high-end materials, including a cool, sustainable denim, and chic tailoring. They sell several styles a month ‘a la carte’ or you can sign up for their Style Plan subscription service, and opt to get a wardrobe boost of three curated items once a month for a $25 styling fee (or opt to skip a month if you’re not into the items.) But you only pay the $25 if you decide that you don’t want the items in your box; if you do, the styling fee is subtracted from the cost of the goods you decide to keep. Basically, it’s like having a celebrity stylist on speed dial, who you don’t even have to pay if they get it right!
After answering a very brief series of questions, they got a sense of my style preferences, budget and general desires and suggested three items I might like. The cool part is that once your box is “ready,” you have the option to go online, check it out and swap items for others that are available that particular month. For instance, for the March box, my ‘stylist’ suggested a relaxed denim jumper, a trendy spaghetti strap printed camisole and a boxy v-neck t-shirt. Since I didn’t love the cut of the shirt, I chose a slim-fit sleeveless crewneck instead from the options available. A word about said options: Frank And Oak’s selections tend to be what I’d call luxe basics — think striped sweaters, high-waisted cropped khakis and well-made tees — the look is vaguely French Girl with an old school J.Crew feel.
The pieces that I received all fit nicely, though they were a bit long for my petite (5’2”) frame. I couldn’t get over the “expensive” feel of all of the materials: the tee-shirt and cami both draped beautifully, the denim felt substantial. I sent back the crewneck tee because it was simply too long, but the other two items are keepers in my closet. Check out the floral print camisole below — cute, right?
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