Talbots Friends & Family – My Picks

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collage image of Wardrobe Oxygen in various Talbots pieces

Talbots' Friends & Family event has started with 40% off your entire purchase with promo code FRIENDS. On top of this, Talbots is offering free shipping on all orders over $150. I am a big fan of Talbots; I appreciate their extensive size range (straight, petite, tall, plus, and plus petite) and high quality. Many find Talbots to be too conservative, preppy, or the clothing line for older women. As someone who is not any of those three things and has a huge quantity of Talbots in her closet, I am proof that Talbots has amazing clothing for all personal style aesthetics. Below I share my picks from Talbots and ways to style them. I'll also share the pieces I own, how they fit, and how I style them.

collage of Wardrobe Oxygen Talbots favorites for summer

Blazer | Tee | Shorts | Pants | Bracelet | Earrings 

Nothing like a linen blazer for pulling together an outfit. No need to keep it to summer; a linen blazer works three seasons, especially when a bold print like this gorgeous leopard. Pair it with the black scoop tee and black shorts and a soft metallic sandal for a night out (I have these sandals, they look great with shorts, dresses, and pants and come in widths), or switch out the shorts for these linen pants (I own them, I love them, they fit great and wash great) for the office.  With such a print, no need for a ton of jewelry; a bracelet and earrings adds shine and polish. When the temps drop, pair the blazer with your favorite graphic t-shirt and ankle jeans (I have these jeans and love the fit).

Wardrobe Oxygen in a Talbots fit and flare dress

Dress | Sandals | Similar Bag from Talbots

Clearly, I own this dress and love it; you can find the details at this blog post.  I wore it with these sandals, but I am using this opportunity to rave about Talbots shoes in general – they carry wide widths, they're comfortable, they're well made, and styles that look great for years to come.  And I have this purse and it's slim yet holds a lot, has an optional chain strap, and looks good as a handbag or clutch.

Shop My Picks for Talbots Shoes:

talbots dresses

Top Row: one | two | three
Middle Row: four | five | six
Bottom Row: seven | eight | nine

Talbots is one of my favorite places for dresses as I find them stylish, to fit well, and they're dresses I wear for YEARS. Above I share my picks of my favorite dresses from Talbots' current selection.  One of my favorites is the first dress.  Envision with metallic Birkenstocks and a straw hat, with nude wedge sandals and gold earrings, with a denim jacket and tan suede ankle booties, with gold flat sandals and plenty of bangle bracelets. The second dress in navy, I styled the pink version of it multiple ways at this blog post. The polka-dotted dress (number six) is so elegant and classic! Honestly, they're all great!


talbots suiting review 1

Blazer | Pants | Dress | Shell | Bag | Bracelet | Earrings | Shoes

Talbots is one of my favorite places to buy suits.  I think the cuts fit my curves extremely well without making me look frumpy or dated.  Go through my archives, you'll see me rock Talbots suits in a variety of colors and silhouettes, often with modern details.  I love that the pieces are sold separately so you can get a blazer and pants to perfectly fit your shape. I think this is a pretty perfect summer suit, but the kind of fabric and color that can work through most of the year. I love that the sheath comes in the same fabric to create a mini suiting capsule.  While I've styled it with black, this color would look amazing with colors like coral, teal, and navy but also pair with white or cream for an elegant mix of neutrals.

collage of Wardrobe Oxygen summer suiting favorites from Talbots

Blazer | Pants | Pants in Curvy Fit | Top in Similar Color | Similar Shape of Bag | Shoes that Would Look Better than My Choice

I own and love this pantsuit; you can see it at this blog post.  Here I wore it with a shell and pumps, but I've also worn it with a graphic tee and loafers or sneakers, and worn the blazer with white jeans. Seersucker feels cool in the summer… but do know it will stretch a bit so consider sizing down in the pants. 

Wardrobe Oxygen wearing a seersucker suit from Talbots

Shirt | Pants

Some of my favorite linen pieces are from Talbots.  They have easy-care that resists wrinkles (like the shirt above) and even their traditional linen pieces are high quality and don't wrinkle like crazy.  I wore this look to a meet and greet where I was the guest host and it held up nicely through sitting, walking, and yes, sweating!  I have the pants in 14 petite and I didn't have any alteration; the top is a 14 and fits my curves nicely. I also had these pants and LOVED them; see them at this post.  I only got rid of them because they no longer fit otherwise I'd be wearing them all summer. Below I share my picks of linen from Talbots that will work for the office, weekend, and special occasions.

Shop Talbots Linen:

This isn't everything, but I hope this helps you see how versatile, stylish, and quality Talbots is and how GOOOOOOD this friends & family sale is!  Have a great time shopping, and if you have any questions on fit, quality, or styling ask in the comments!

Shop the Looks:

A woman with curly hair wearing a plaid blazer holds a green fur coat over her shoulder on a city street.

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  1. I bought the Talbots Seersucker Suit from your first post – looking back, I wish I had bought the Nordstrom 1901 suit you featured too, which sold out quickly. In any case, I find that the knitwear/boho wear I love is looking sloppy on me these days, so I am trying some looks that are a little more tailored and structured. I enjoy the way that you use a suit as a springboard for a look and I enjoy the creative challenge of a new look for myself. However, I hate long sleeves (it’s a sensory thing), and short-sleeved jackets look dowdy on me, so I need to find an answer here beyond pushed-up or rolled-up sleeves.

    Also, this is a btw to a long-ago post, you have no idea what it meant to me when you posted on your “new body” and revealed that it was regular exercise responsible for the change. I had noticed that you were looking different in your posts, and when you fessed up to – gasp – regular time at the gym, it kicked me into gear as well. Sort of like the first time I saw Michelle Obama’s arms. It’s amazing how much better I feel about how my body when I take care of it regularly with exercise.

    1. I’ve done so many diets and I lose weight and my body changes, but the change on my body but also my sleep, my attitude, my self that happens with exercise… it’s so awesome! And I’ve had the same a-has before with blogs!

  2. I love Talbots and love the local store. I like to shop in the store because their associates are helpful. Because I have hard time believing that I am “smaller” than I think I am, I tend to go straight to the size 14s. Recently, I was looking at jeggings and the associate persuaded me to try a smaller size and brought me size 10. I scoffed but I decided to try them. They are perfect. Had I ordered them in 14, I may have returned them but more likely I would have worn them big and baggy and convinced that my body sucks and jeggings don’t work for me. Instead, a helpful associate sussed out my real size. FWIW, I bought 2 pairs of jeggings that day.

  3. I buy many of my work clothes from Talbots, esp the classic seasonless wool pieces that last forever — with that said, I have to order Tall pants and size 10 or 10.5 shoes — I wish the stores would carry Talls and larger size shoes, and I really wish Talbots had not discontinued size 12W, which was a perfect fit for me. I don’t get it! They lose SO MUCH business by not having a full range of sizes in the store. But, as long as shipping and returns are free and easy, I’ll keep ordering, trying, and returning until I find what I love.

    1. I read an article recently about plus sizes. Stores don’t carry it because it doesn’t sell as well as other sizes. But which came first, the lack of sizes which stopped us from shopping in stores, or the desire to instead shop online? I think from decades of being frustrated at malls and boutiques women over a size 12 gave up and moved online for selection. And retailers don’t give us enough time to know the sizes are in stores before they pull them out. And like you said, when shipping and returns are free and easy, why drive to a store when you can have good lighting, a nice beverage, a full selection of shoes and underpinnings right in your bedroom? Brick and mortars are failing because they failed us for far too long.

      1. >>when shipping and returns are free and easy, why drive to a store when you can have good lighting, a nice beverage, a full selection of shoes and underpinnings right in your bedroom? Brick and mortars are failing because they failed us for far too long.

        Absolutely correct! In fact, my local Talbots has the WORST dressing rooms I’ve seen. The carpet is stained, dirty, and torn; the air conditioning does not work, so there are several huge fans blowing air around; the cubicles are tiny; the hooks are torn out of the wall; the paint is in bad shape; and oh by the way, I can try on a far better selection of pristine clothing from the comfort of my home, with, as you perfectly said, better lighting, less stress, more time, an array of shoes, and yes, a beverage of my choice!

        1. The Talbots I shop at is lovely. Clean, nice dressing rooms, helpful associates. However, it’s in an upscale area (Annapolis, MD), and I believe gets a good amount of traffic.

          All of that said, I do a lot of online ordering from Talbots as well!

        2. I wholeheartedly agree with your assessment of Talbots, Alison! I am not a “preppy” dresser – more eclectic/edgy than anything these days, but I can find ALL KINDS of things at Talbots. I just bought the leopard print blazer and it is fabulous. Not so much linen that it looks a wrinkled hot mess, but just enough that it doesn’t look too heavy in the middle of summer. And the petite version fits me perfectly (I’m 5’4 so right on the cusp of most petite ranges.)

  4. Thank you again, Alison, for yet more inspiration! Today, I tossed on a jersey dress (slight A-line; black; short sleeves with the cold-shoulder cut out; maxi length with a side slit) that I tend to “save”, and thinking of your ideas, I wore it with my tie-dyed sneakers and a white Panama Jack hat. I felt absolutely fabulous and adorable, just running errands! I’m in my early 50s, and have had insecurity/body issues all my life (life long curvy girl), and your blog has inspired me so many times. I save the emails to a folder to keep them so I can find them again!

  5. I haven’t ever really shopped at Talbots, but remembered your fondness for the store last week when I was at the outlets, desperate for some dresses for a weekend conference (leaving the next day!). I found some really nice dresses, and I was impressed with the quality. I’ll definitely go back to the outlet, and I plan to check out the mall store soon, as I’d really like a pants suit, and the outlet doesn’t carry. Thanks for always giving such great recommendations!

  6. Hi Ali, I subscribe to quite a few fashion blogs and I must say yours is the best. You are all inclusive to age types and body types. As a woman of a certain age, I find you quite refreshing . I feel as if you could be a fabulous friend and/or daughter. I am sure your family and friends are very proud of you. Your ability to communicate is wonderful. Have a great life!

  7. You always do a great job of showing how Talbots can work for a variety of women & our styles! I grew up in a very small town (no Talbots, much less anything else there) and was a babysitter for a doctor’s family. The wife always had Talbots catalogs and I’d look through them once the kids were in bed. I remember loving that “look” and couldn’t wait to grow up & wear those kinds of clothes. Over the years, I’ve gone through phases of buying & not buying at Talbots. I’ve not shopped there lately but need to do so soon!

    1. I remember when I worked for Express after college, a few coworkers jumped ship and went to Talbots. I couldn’t figure out why they would leave such cool clothes for that kind of fashion. Then I visited their store and found cute things, higher quality… and also Talbots treated their staff better! But it’s how I found out about Talbots and have been a fan since!

  8. You rock Talbots clothing! I have had great luck with Talbots purses and costume jewelry. And my favorite white jeans are from the Talbots outlet (always worth a visit when at the outlets). Unfortunately, I rarely find tops there to work for me. Their straight sizes are too long in the torso for me, yet the petites are too narrow in the shoulders and a smidge too short in the torso to hit the sweet spot. It is really a shame, as they do such a good job of dressy tops that are so perfect for dressy casual parties and dinners out.

    And business feedback: the “pick up in store” feature of their site doesn’t seem to work (at least not from a Mac). Free shipping and returns are pretty much required these days, especially if your stores are not going to carry the full range of products and sizes. (rant over)

    1. Thank you for sharing this feedback, I think it’s important to let brands know especially in this day and age where brands in general are struggling to maintain loyal clients.

  9. I am a fan of Talbots, especially their plus size offerings. That said, I am 38 y/o and a size 8, and I rarely shop there anymore. Their pencil skirts are too long (a pencil skirt is not a midi skirt) and I feel as though their shirts are just too boxy (and this is coming from someone who’s apple-shaped and consequently doesn’t mind boxy stuff that much). I’m only posting this here with the hope that someone from Talbots is going to read it and maybe take it into consideration as they evaluate how they cut their clothes. I’d love to shop there again and the price point is perfect for me, but I was just sending everything back after it arrived and I eventually stopped trying.

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