Gwynnie Bee: Clothing Without Commitment

Do you ever see a company and think, “Why didn’t I think of that?” A company that has such a brilliant idea that is unique, inspiring, and helpful? I thought all that when Gwynnie Bee contacted me to let me know about their program. I was so excited about the concept I had to be a part and share it with you readers.

Three years ago after I had Emerson, I was hovering between a size 16 and 18.  While I embraced my new body and celebrated the hard work and pain it went through to deliver Emerson, it was really hard to dress it. I was unfamiliar with its new size and shape, and didn’t want to spend a lot of money knowing it would keep changing shape and size over the next year. Since then, I have been off and on Weight Watchers and have been everything from a 12 to a 16. If I had purchased a whole new wardrobe for each size I was during this time, I would be bankrupt. I know I am not alone in this – many women I know change sizes over a span of a few years – pregnancy, injury, business travel, diet and exercise… heck even your monthly cycle can have you wearing a 14 one week and a 16 the next.

I believe in having a wardrobe of staples – pieces that mix and match and get you through all of life’s events. However, every woman needs a few “fun” pieces to show her personal style. These pieces are hard to buy – you’re not sure of your personal style, you’re not comfortable at your current size, you don’t have retailers near you who offer quality pieces in your size, you don’t want to invest in pieces that aren’t traditional workhorses.

A peek of some of Gwynnie Bee’s offerings

What do you do when you want to feel beautiful today – not when you fit into half your closet? How do you “test drive” certain brands and styles when you live hours from a decent mall? Where can one find stylish and flattering clothing for women over a size 10? Where can you shop when you’re on the cusp between standard and plus sizing? What to do when you want to spice up your wardrobe without spending a bundle? The answer to all of these is Gwynnie Bee.

Gwynnie Bee’s motto is “Clothing Without Commitment.” It’s like Netflix for fashion sizes 10-24. You sign up for a subscription service and pick out clothing from Gwynnie Bee’s collection for your virtual closet. Gwynnie Bee will quickly ship pieces to you – when you return one (postage already paid, shipping materials provided), they’ll send another your way. You have a constantly updated wardrobe of quality brands who specialize in fitting and flattering plus size women (and “on the cusp” folks like me!).

Not just fun tops and dresses, Gwynnie Bee also offers pieces like blazers to update your work wardrobe.

No longer do you have to feel tied to your size – you can pick clothing from any size at Gwynnie Bee and place them in your virtual closet. They are already working with quality brands like IGIGI, Talbots, Michael Kors, Evans, J. Jill, Sejour, Kiyonna, Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, DKNY, and more. Gwynnie Bee’s stock is updated around every three weeks, so you always have a fresh selection to choose from.

Gwynnie Bee gave me a free trial membership to try out their program. Last week I went through their selection and added a few pieces to my virtual closet; Friday my first package arrived with one IGIGI dress, a top from Talbots, and a tunic from Soft Surroundings. There was the cutest little message when I opened it, every piece was wrapped carefully in tissue. Each piece had two hang tags – one with laundering instructions, another with the piece’s name and a feedback form (Gwynnie Bee really cares about user feedback – what you write helps determine which brands they work with and what styles to offer in the future). In the box were also several shipping bags and return address labels and simple instructions on how to send pieces back.

Each piece looks like new – if they had been worn before I surely can’t tell. You can keep each piece as long as you want – if it doesn’t look right send it back and you’ll have a new garment in less than a week. Gwynnie Bee takes care of laundering – you can wash when you have it to re-wear, but no need to clean to send back.

Gwynnie Bee often shows the same garment on two women of differing sizes and shapes so you can get a better idea of how the piece will look on you.

Gwynnie Bee hopes they can help women discover new brands and styles with less commitment. Plus size fashion options are limited and often hard to access if you’re not in a metropolitan area – Gwynnie Bee makes great brands easy to access and fashion fun!

A peek of my virtual closet – what I have at home and will be featuring on the blog soon, and what will be arriving.

Yes, I have a free trial membership, and yes I will get a commission if any of you sign up and mention me, but after experiencing Gwynnie Bee, I would recommend it even if I didn’t have these perks. The average American woman is a size 12, yet it is so hard to find fun, flattering, and well-made clothing when you are that size or larger. Gwynnie Bee knows that you likely have the black pants, the simple cardigan, the wardrobe staples. They are offering those pieces women don’t have the nerve to buy but are willing to try. I opened up my first box and thought how wonderful Gwynnie Bee would be for the woman planning a European vacation, attending her high school reunion, or packing for her honeymoon. That woman who is in the same place I was three years ago – wanting to dress her changing body well but can’t afford to invest in a whole new wardrobe. I feel for my friends and coworkers who have been hearing me babble non-stop since last week about Gwynnie Bee – how brilliant the program is, and how glad I am it is on the scene.

Want to know more? Visit their Facebook page or their site. Also feel free to ask any questions in the comments – I will answer them completely honestly. I don’t promote on this blog that which I don’t love and believe in, and I believe in Gwynnie Bee.

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  • http://heartprintandstyle.com/ Vivi N

    I like this concept! A lot. Just signed up. I put ‘Wardrobe Oxygen’ as the referral. I hope that was right way to do this.

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    Yep, thanks Vivi and be sure to let me know what you think of the program!

  • Halo

    This is awesome! I’m a plus size and I wear dresses almost exclusively, but they can be expensive. At the same time, I like to keep adding more looks to my wardrobe and this will help me test-drive new brands. I signed up with you listed as my referral–thanks so much!

  • Rosiland

    I am where you were three years ago. With a two month old Ive been trying to build my post partum wardrobe. Seems like Gwynnie Bee will make the building process easier for a busy mom like me.

    Is this the same company that offers the wittlebee bee monthly subscription for kids?

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    Wow, never heard of Wittlebee, cute program! From what I can tell they are not associated, just two cool programs!

  • Shoeaddict 17

    I can’t wait to go see what they have. Perfect for dieting woman who are changing sizes and plan to keep changing!

  • ES

    I like the idea of it, but I’m not sure if it’ll work for me…I’m not crazy about most of the styles on the website (just not my personal taste), and I’m towards the low end of their range (currently a 12), so if I lose weight (fingers crossed of course) I’d have to cancel anyways.

    But like I said, I love the idea!

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    I asked them if they planned on going with smaller sizes and Stephanie from Gwynnie Bee said they’d probably add petite sizes first since they really want to cater to the sizes who can’t shop any store in the mall. I also found a lot of the pieces not my type, and wondered why all the prints and such. Then I realized they offer the cherry on top fashion for a wardrobe – prints for a closet of solid basics, fun sleeves and details for those who usually wear simple pieces. Gwynnie Bee has also only been around since March and they’re constantly adding to and refining their collection – feedback like yours is really helpful!

  • Erin

    SO happy you shared this!! I can think of ten great reasons why it’s brilliant!! I just signed up, can’t wait to try it out for myself! I just want to add too Allie, I really trust your endorsements and appreciate your honesty!! Thank you for all that you do! :)

  • crtfly

    Allie,

    I haven’t looked at their website as yet, so perhaps my question is answered there. But I’ll ask you anyway. If you decide that you like a piece and want to keep it,

    -can you purchase it from them?
    -is there a discount on the purchase price, since it is “used”?

    Thanks,

    Chris

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    I know that Gwynnie Bee’s customer service is phenomenal, so if you do find something you like, contact them and see what they can do. But at this point you cannot purchase pieces that are available for rent. :)

  • Holly Haley

    What a great idea! I just signed up and can’t wait to get my first piece!

  • Anca Mihai

    It’s fun to say you are a little put off by prints, since I see so many prints in your wardrobe recently ( printed pants come to mind, also shoes :) Not saying to criticize, it’s just the last two seasons have been heavily print-oriented and I think everyone who shopped constantly has a decent amount of prints in their wardrobe. I’m getting off topic here, but I really love prints. And if you keep to a color scheme/s you can mix and match prints with solids really easy :)

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    I’m not put off by prints, and thought the same thing you did this weekend when putting clean laundry in my closet. :) Just in general at first glance the pieces they have are not the styles or types of clothes I am usually drawn to at the store. But I think prints are important to add some personality to a wardrobe and you’re right… it’s hard not to own prints if you shopped the past few seasons!

  • Sarah7500

    Sweet Jesus. That’s brilliant. If I ever get a new job outside the home, I know where to turn!

  • Marina

    This is amazing. I’m jobhunting at the moment (and pregnant – terrible combination) but if / when I ever get a legitimate income I am USING this wonderful site! Definitely the best way to get myself out of that post-partum-nothing-fits-or-all-is-drearily-familiar slump. Wonderful!

  • Ellen

    Wish someone would start a similar concept in Australia! Would be a fantastic way to have a few ‘trendy’ pieces in your wardrobe without blowing the budget. Love the idea!

  • http://twitter.com/kristinhodnett Kristin Hodnett

    I just signed up and can’t wait! I work from home but have to attend events or visit offices about once a month, so this is a perfect way for me to keep my professional wardrobe fun and up to dat without spending a ton.

  • G P

    Do they have petite sizes? I’m petite and on the cusp (size 14-18), and most “plus” clothes are too long/ big for me! I need petites – thanks! (and I don’t want to sign up w/o having that option)

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    No petite sizes… yet. But this is something they would like to have in the future so check in a couple months :)

  • Kathryn

    I recently found your blog and am really enjoying the advice and outfits – gwynnie bee sounds like a fab idea… Pity I’m in Northern Ireland!

  • http://profiles.google.com/bridgetwall Bridget Wall

    What a cool idea!

  • Kristen P

    Oh, THANK YOU. Being plus-size is such a PITA, and it’s always a relief to find anything that caters to us. I am signing up for this immediately, and have already credited Wardrobe Oxygen. Thank you again!

  • Christina S

    Just got my first package :) One of the tops isn’t for me but it was a great way to try a new style and got me out of my boring comfort zone. I’m really looking forward to spicing up my wardrobe with the bright colors and great prints. My mom can’t wait until they start offering petites. Thank you for the invitation!

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    Awesome! Yes with my first box one top wasn’t right for me either, but it was a brand I hadn’t tried before and a new silhouette; I loved that I could try something new without buyer’s remorse and in my home with my wardrobe. Can’t wait for my next box! Have fun with it!!

  • Jen

    Thank you so much for sharing this service. I got my first package yesterday, and I am thrilled with all of the items. I’ve been in a rut, and this service really allows me to take some risks without a huge expenditure of time or money. I’ve been wearing dark colors and solid prints for YEARS and realized yesterday that bright pink actually looks good on me! I’m also getting acquainted with brands I never would have taken the time to seek out. I owe you, Allie!

  • http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/ Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen

    Hooray!! Oh this makes my Saturday! This is what I love about Gwynnie Bee, it let’s women get outside their comfort zone and find new flattering brands and silhouettes without commitment!

  • ejmurn

    I just signed up and filled my closet- picked out a few things I normally wouldn’t have, so I’m looking forward to trying them!