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Uniqlo does it right. When a crowd of devoted Jil Sander fans showed up for today's +J spring launch despite today's wintry conditions, they let everyone wait indoors, apologized to each person for the delay, and even opened their doors early. And the general awesomeness didn't stop there. Inside, we found a crisp, minimalist collection that was already disappearing rapidly.
For women, the mandarin collar pleated skirt shirt dress ($129) is really crisp and chic, especially in blue. The belted tucked cotton skirt ($59.90) seems to be a popular item, too, with taupe being the most common choice. The cotton waist coat has an interesting zig zag threading pattern on the collar, and the cashmere knits are super soft and thin enough for spring. A very helpful staffer named Phillip showed us the military parka and pointed out the cinched back, which is subtle and cool and gives, to quote him, a "great silhouette." We also eyed a double-breasted coat ($229.90) in black and khaki, but the parka is cuter.
Phillip told us that the cotton is all Egyptian, and that they've used 100% cotton in some of the pieces, taking out the poly blends. And he confirmed the rumor that the red dress won't be out until the end of March. Neither will the electric blue cocoon dress, the zip-front jumper (in black and white), or some of the other more colorful items.
Over in men's, we found a bunch of guys fighting for mirror space to model their army jackets. The cotton twill military parka from the ads ($179.90) comes in khaki, a darker khaki, black, and navy, and the darker khaki seems to be the big hit. The military jacket for men ($197.90) is also flying off the shelves, and the lightweight down puffy vests were popular for $149.90. Our new friend Phillip pointed out that the vest is reversible and there's a tucked-in hidden hood, sans the usual zipper pouch. You just tuck it under the collar and snap a few buttons. Voila—no bunching!
It's still coming down outside, so there was no line when we left. But things are disappearing fast, so if you're in the market for a parka, don't dally.
· A Little Snow Can't Keep +J Fans Away from Uniqlo [Racked NY]