Trying out Stitch Fix: Style and Surprise


The fact that I started using Stitch Fix when we lived in Alaska has always seemed a little funny to me. Alaska is not exactly known for style or high fashion. In fact, Anchorage was voted the worst dressed city in the United States in 2012 by Travel and Leisure. I lived 6 hours north on Fort Wainwright, a few years after 2012, and I’m not sure how much fashion has changed there since then.

When I first tried out the clothing subscription box, Stitch Fix, my spouse was deployed, and I had two young kids. I wouldn’t consider myself a fashionista now, but then I felt pretty lost and wasn’t sure what my style was. In Fairbanks, Alaska my clothing store choices were Fred Meyer (which I sincerely miss!), boutique stores, Walmart and Old Navy. I hate trying on clothes in-store, so I figured I might as well try a subscription box. 

I’ve used Stitch Fix off and on for the last few years and here are three things I learned while getting their boxes: 

First and foremost, never underestimate the power of the algorithm. It seems like they analyze your style, body shape, and that questionable outfit you wore to your cousin’s graduation summer. It makes me chuckle when I see someone who looks around the same age/style as me who has the same sweater, dress, or pants I was sent. I try to compliment them on their good taste and luck! Ha!

When I first started, my preferences were almost wide open. Leather? Sure! Animal print? Why not! My first box made me think “Wow, they nailed it!” and the second was more like “Wait, what were they thinking?” Overall, the more input I give on the pieces and styles I like, the more like me the fix seems to fit.

Secondly, just like regular women’s sizing in person, your sizes are still about as predictable as the weather. Stitch Fix operates in a world where size charts are rewritten by fashion genies and because they have many brands, you might find a favorite with more consistent sizing. The discrepancy in sizing feels a little less than in some stores/brands, but I’ve learned to keep my measuring tape handy and check to size if I get a particularly wonky-sized fix.  

Lastly, brace yourself for some surprising fashion choices that make you question if you accidentally signed up for a secret fashion cult. My stylists have sent some daring picks and pushed me to try new things I would have never picked out myself in the store. Hey, they might throw in a classic little black dress, but don’t be surprised when they tell you to wear it with tennis shoes and a polka-dotted hat. Sometimes I’ll keep a wildcard item and sometimes it’s a not-for-me style, and send it back! Returns are easy, you can just ship them back at the Post Office in a prepaid envelope that comes with your box.  You also have the option to keep or change stylists at any time!

Stitch Fix can feel like going on a blind date with your wardrobe. Sometimes it’s a match made in heaven, and other times it’s a strange mess that leaves you wondering if you accidentally signed up for a masquerade-themed clothing subscription.

Thanks to Stitch Fix, I know I love rompers and really hate bat-wing cardigans. Whether you keep it or mail it back, Stitch Fix is a box full of style and surprise delivered right to your front door!