Give me the simple, I’ll provide the extra

I was flipping through the newest LL Bean catalog yesterday during lunch. I love LL Bean, the quality is always good and the lines are quite simple. Not a lot of frill or flounce or gawdiness from these folks. Sure you have to be careful not to pick out the dowdy stuff, but I can manage that (most of the the time). Yesterday there was a problem though.

During the winter I love to wear simple solid colored turtleneck sweaters. A lot. Almost daily some would say. They’re easy to dress up with a scarf or shawl. They look great under a blazer, a sporty jacket or my barn coat. They go nicely with jeans, cords, or skirts. If you’re tromping around in wellies, they’re good. If you go out to dinner and a movie, equally good. What’s not to love?

LL Bean has all of their cotton/cashmere sweaters on one page in the new catalog. (Page 4 if anyone is interested.) Along the left hand side of the page are the color selections. I briefly scanned and picked out Coffee Bean, Camel, and Black Current. Scanning the colors again to see if there was anything I liked better I saw that there were two navy’s. I thought to myself, “what’s up with that?” I already have the navy, I bought it last time I ordered, but still why offer two?

That’s when I saw that the top half of the colors were for the women’s sweaters, the second half for the men’s sweaters. The bright pink, fiery red, marine green, and turquoise are way more bright than I would wear – in a sweater that is. Sure I’ll probably wrap a colorful scarf or shawl – with beads even – around my neck or shoulders, but I’m just not comfortable in a bright top. I let my knitting provide the jazzy stuff.

Does this mean I’m boring?  Should I question my clothing color palette to insure that I still appear feminine? Or should I maybe write a nice little note to LL Bean explaining that women like a good brown too?

PS Two new designs in the works, both with beads. One triangle shawlette is done in a lovely natural llama yarn in a soft beige with hints of gray (Blues Traveler for those who are familiar with the llama names). Chris picked out the perfect dark green beads at Bead Merchant for this one. It would have been fabulous with that Coffee Bean turtle neck from LL Bean.

I was flipping through the newest LL Bean catalog yesterday during lunch. I love LL Bean, the quality is always good and the lines are quite simple. Not a lot of frill or flounce or gawdiness with these folks. Sure you have to be careful not to pick out the dowdy stuff, but I can manage that (most of the the time). Yesterday there was a problem though. During the winter I like to wear simple solid colored turtleneck sweaters. A lot. Almost daily some would say. They’re easy to dress up with a scarf or shawl. They look great under a blazer, a sporty jacket or my barn coat. They go nicely with jeans, cords, or skirts. What’s not to love? LL Bean has all of their cotton/cashmere sweaters on one page in the new catalog. Page 4 if anyone is interested. Along the left hand side of the page are the color selections. I briefly scanned and picked out a nice Coffee Bean, Camel, and Black Current. Scanning the colors again to see if there was anything I liked better I saw that there were two navy’s. I thought to myself, “what’s up with that?” I already have the navy, I bought it last time I ordered, but still why offer two? That’s when I saw that the top half of the colors were for the women’s sweaters, the second half for the men’s sweaters. The bright pink, fiery red, marine green, and turquoise are way more bright than I would wear – in a sweater that is. Sure I may wrap a colorful scarf or shawl – with beads even – around my neck or shoulders, but I’m just not comfortable in a bright top. Does this mean I’m boring?  Should I question my clothing color pallete to insure that I still appear feminine? Or should I maybe write a nice little note to LL Bean explaining that women like a good brown too? var gaJsHost = ((“https:” == document.location.protocol) ? “https://ssl.” : “http://www.”);document.write(unescape(“%3Cscript src='” + gaJsHost + “google-analytics.com/ga.js’ type=’text/javascript’%3E%3C/script%3E”)); var pageTracker = _gat._getTracker(“UA-xxxxxx-x”);pageTracker._trackPageview();

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5 thoughts on “Give me the simple, I’ll provide the extra

  1. I plead guilty to the same–both the habit of wearing turtlenecks every single day from late fall to early spring, and of liking the “male” colors. But does that make us un-feminine? Absolutely not! For me, one of the reason I love the turtlenecks (aside from the side effect of covering up at least a couple of my chins) is that they are a perfect plain palette for my jewelry. Necklaces, chains, and long-hanging fancy earrings. Because I do love natural stone jewelry and have managed to collect quite a bit over the many moons I have lived.

    My latest juju is from my friend and teacher Lunaea Weatherstone–a Goddess rosary custom made for me featuring a green wise woman figure. (www.lunaea.com/shop) And I can get away with longer earrings when i have on a turtleneck.

    I look forward to learning how to knit well enough to have shawls and scarves to wear over my turtlenecks!

    So yes, I say write to them and complain about the colors! Also check out Lands' End. They have good colors, too. 😀

    Jan

  2. I totally agree with you. The women's colors in LL Bean and Lands End can be just awful, too trendy. The men's colors will last season after season, and that is why I order men's turtlenecks. Love the browns! I love clothes I can dress up or dress down.

    I'm not so much into beads with my knitting. May try using them someday. You may convince me, yet!

  3. there were LLB outlets all over Maine, but I did not go inside one of them.

    in the past two years, if it's not grey, natural white or black, it probably hasn't come home with me… excpet for shawls and scarfs of course!

  4. LOL! My mother was always very fashion-conscious and referred to me as “The LL Bean Poster Child”. I do like a lot of their stuff, but don't like all the pink/blue/seafoam green they tend to have in women's clothes. I like primary colors and earthtones not “pink is for girls”.

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