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Jil Sander's latest round of affordable sportswear for Uniqlo was inspired by "the ever-changing sky," according to a friendly staffer at today's launch, and it's definitely the most colorful of her +J collections so far. Looking around the cordoned-off +J room, you'll catch all sorts of sunrise shades, from inky pre-dawn purple to mustard and pea-green to all sorts of soft blues and pinks. And we're not just talking about the womenswear: If you're a man who's been dreaming of a magenta windbreaker, Uniqlo can hook you up.
The women's side of the room was dominated by sleek shapes and tons of outerwear. Unlikely-sounding but surprisingly cute paperbag-waist pencil skirts were $39.50, as were pleated pants in a similar waterproof-feeling cotton/polyester blend. The same price applied to collarless tunics and long button-downs. Silk-cotton cardigans ($49.50) and matching shells ($29.50) seemed less expensive than the sweaters and tops from last time around, and narrow pleated shifts seemed utterly reasonable at $79.59. There were trench coats, of course, in nylon for $99.50 and in a sturdier, tougher blend for $189.50. Basic blazers were $99.50, except for an impractical but highly desirable cream jacket in Japanese sizes for $79.50. (The subway system in Tokyo is much cleaner than the MTA; maybe white blazers work better over there.)
Men also had a plethora of jackets to choose from, including a white blazer of their own ($129.50), a seersucker blazer with a stand-up collar and narrow lapels ($79.50) and a timeless navy zip-up coat for $179.40. Those magenta windbreakers, which we kind of loved, were $59.50 and also came in teal. Jil Sander seems impervious to trends, but if you need something that assertively states "I bought this in spring 2010", go for the denim shirt ($39.50). If you want the opposite, try the timeless and incredibly soft clingy tees, $15.50 or $19.50 depending on sleeve length.
We didn't see a line when we left, leading us to believe the 50 or so people waiting this morning were true +J die-hards. Further evidence: The woman waiting in front of us was greeted with a hearty "Welcome back!" and a "Good to see you again!" from Uniqlo staffers. Clearly, this is a collection that inspires commitment.
· Jil Sander x Uniqlo, Just In Time For Spring [Racked NY]
· +J's Spring Denim and Jackets Make Us Wish It Was April [Racked NY]