Here’s my Sunday night outfit; this top is from J. Crew Factory Outlet. Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s talk about J. Crew’s factory outlet merchandise.


Do you shop at J. Crew and/or J. Crew Factory Outlet? I remember buying a J. Crew coat while I was in high school, and I spent $125 on it when it went on sale; I still have it in my closet. While I was in college I thought I’d save some money and buy a few shirts at the factory outlet store. Boy, was I wrong! I didn’t save any money–I wasted it! After two washes those 3/4 length cotton tees were done for. It was then that I realized that many outlet stores sell poorer quality clothing and jack up the prices.


Over the years I’ve found some pros and cons with shopping at one of J. Crew’s factory stores:


  1. You can buy items similar to regular J. Crew products at a slightly cheaper price. I really like the fun and playful prints J. Crew Factory offers. I bought the top I’m wearing when it was marked down to about $20. I’ve only worn it twice and so far it’s doing alright.
  2. J. Crew Factory has new markdowns weekly; you can take advantage of sales both in-store and online.
  3. Number 2 leads me to number 3. Most outlets are brick and mortar stores and you have to physically visit them. I tend to do all of my J. Crew Factory shopping online. It’s convenient!
  4. The 15% teacher/college student discount that can be used at J. Crew stores can also be used at Factory stores.


  1. QUALITY. You can actually FEEL the difference between any J. Crew and J. Crew Factory item. I didn’t believe it until I tried it myself–especially with the shoes. I have a pair of J. Crew flats and a pair of Factory flats and the difference is totally obvious. The same thing with my sweaters and blouses.
  2. Expensive price for the quality. I’m not going to sit here and pretend that my closet is filled with nothing but quality clothes because its not. I shop every where. However, I just cannot drop $85 on an acrylic sweater.

Some tips:

  1. If you want the higher quality product but can’t shell out the cash, shop on eBay or Poshmark.
  2. When shopping on eBay or Poshmark, make sure the seller lists the materials. Factory items tend to be made of acrylic and other cheaper materials.
  3. Make sure the seller shows the label of the item. There are SO many eBay/Poshmark sellers that try to get the best of buyers. They’ll post an item as “J. Crew” when it’s actually a Factory item. Why do they do this? They want to make more money! If a seller doesn’t show a label, or they refuse to, beware. J. Crew Factory labels have two dots (see this post from J. Crew Aficionada).

Wearing*: J. Crew Factory Charley Sweater (similar here, here), Target polka dot blouse (sold online, check in store! Look at these other polka tops here, here, and here.), MikaRose skirt, and Ivanka Trump Carra pumps ($55 and only a size 8 left!)

I posted this outfit on Facebook (Friday) and the blouse can be found here. Oh! I’m also wearing Factory Emery flats. I cannot believe how well these  things have held up. I bought them last summer and have worn them at LEAST three to four times a week. I bought them when they dropped to $30 and I’m hoping the price drops again soon. I also have them in black!


*affiliate links were used in this blog post

17 Responses to Sunday Best: Let’s Talk About J. Crew Factory

  • Jen Lord says:

    Great outfit!

    My only J.Crew purchase is my beloved Biennial satchel, purchased via EBay! Oh, and a belt from Salvation Army 🙂

    I seriously want the Emery flats but I’ve been wary of the Factory store after reading others who have said the same thing about the quality. I think I’m willing to give it a shot now, thanks to your review!

    • Chandra says:

      I say give the shoes a try; wait until that price lowers and pounce. I’ve got flat feet and have never been too much of a fan of “flats”, but after I started teaching I realized I needed them. The Factory Emery flats have proved to be comfortable and they have held up very well!

  • Ashley says:

    Wow! This was a great post. I honestly thought the items that I purchased from the J.Crew Factory store were just products marked down from the actual J.Crew store. I had no idea that it was completely different. All in all I love love the pieces from the J. Crew factory store. I love the sales and I plan to use these pieces for years and years to come. I recently shopped at J. Crew’s sale these past two weekends and I purchased items for 60% off clearance. Winning!!

    You look great in your pieces by J. Crew by the way 🙂

    With Love,

    • Chandra says:

      As a kid it was so exciting to go to outlet stores because it was a HUGE deal to find actual merchandise from the regular store in the outlet store for a cheaper price! Welllll, the outlets have changed a lot since then. BOO! I do like J. Crew Factory, but now I try to think long and hard about a purchase there. Most of the items are just not worth their above $30 price tag!

      Thanks for commenting, Ashley!

  • Yokasta says:

    I don’t shop at J.Crew Factory. I’ve been inside quite a few times. Since they’re at the same mall as the Nike Factory, I usually end up shopping there. I end up not LOVING the things at J. Crew. I may grab a few items, walk around, and then wonder how many times I’m actually going to wear this and end up putting it back. I’m more of an workout wear type of girl.

    I need to step up my game with “anything other than workout gear” :/

    • Chandra says:

      You sound like me at the Nike store! LOL I think it’s good that you know what works for you; you have the ability to decipher what you need/how you will wear it and if it doesn’t work you put it back. A lot of people can’t do this! I’m getting better about it. When I was younger I’d buy stuff just because I could, and then I’d end up with over-the-top trendy items that I couldn’t wear after a season or, too!

  • DWJ says:

    I feel you on the J Crew Factory outlet. I bought the pencil skirt in that print and their skirts to be hold up and are worth it. I only buy dresses if they’re on sale for 50% or more. I was in a J. Crew store the other weekend and drooled over a dress but it was $168 (made out of neoprene and fantastic) but seriously it’s just too expensive for my blood.

  • Tiffany G. says:

    Last summer I went on a mini shopping spree at a J.Crew Factory store. I was so excited to get the styles I liked for a fraction of the cost! Well, when I wore one of my new blouses I noticed stitches were unraveling after one wash and the fit was a little off. I realized getting J.Crew clothes on clearance or second hand was a better way to save.

    • Chandra says:

      Ahhhh! Experience is the teacher of all things–good ol’ Julius Caesar. I feel you! After I had a similar experience, I knew that J. Crew would be my go-to brand of the two (whether by clearance or thrift stores).

  • Lisa_alamode says:

    I love those emory flats!! And good to know about the outlet versus the store. I don’t shop at either places that much, but I tend to buy more jewelry at the outlet than clothes! Great post!

  • Adanna says:

    I love J Crew for sweaters and skirts. They usually have really good sales in my local store. I completely agree that the quality at the factory store isn’t the same even though we associate the brand J Crew with quality. I was disappointed at the quality of the clothing at Banana Republic as well. These two outfits are amazing btw I really love your look in the second picture.

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