Pinup Girl Clothing fans and retro blogger fans alike were thrilled when it was announced not too long ago that Laura Byrnes, PUG Supreme Overlord and head designer, had created a full line of pieces inspired by stylish and adorable blogging duo Junebugs & Georgia Peaches, aka Amanda and Katie, aka Modern June Cleaver and Amelia Jetson. Katie and Amanda have differing body types, with Amanda being short and curvy while Katie is tall and willowy, but both are gorgeous little muffins and, of course, huge vintage fans.
The collection features a lot of peter pan collars and rounded necklines, slightly shorter skirts than some of PUG’s longer pieces, pockets galore, and a lot of adorable gingham, cute colour combinations and some new colourways of old classic PUG prints such as the birdcage and squirrel prints. As such the collection on the whole is sweet as sugar and a wonderfully themed line…which just happens to not be my kind of style. I love gingham but don’t wear many pastel colours, peter pan collars don’t work on me, even rounded collars are a tricky one for me, and cutesy prints don’t gel with my personal preferences. So, considering this, when I saw the collection there was only one dress that hit me in the solar plexus like a well aimed style-kick: The Amanda Dress.
Amanda’s namesake dress is a colour blocked summer classic available in 3 colourways–red, white and blue, black and white, or black and pinks. It has a rounded demure neckline, a gathered skirt featuring pockets, is fully lined, finishes with a back zip, and comes with a matching 1 inch wide grommit belt.
The black and white version was originally the only colourway that spoke to me, and boy did it do that; a perfect embodiment of simple, chic and classic feminine stylings, it was a flawless and timeless piece I could not wait to own. The more I saw Amanda looking downright perfect in the red, white and blue version, though, the more I came around to that colourway, too. I’m a huge red, white and blue fan anyway, but I was originally put off by the fact that the blue was royal and not navy. That royal blue looked brighter in some pictures than others, and I wasn’t sure about it. Still, when the dress was released a little voice at the back of my head told me it knew the dress would be just what I wanted it to be in person; that voice is my shopping demon, and though it spends all my money it generally knows exactly what it’s talking about, so I trusted it. I ordered both. And the shopping demon was right. They’re both wonderful.
In the bright sunlight of these pictures the blue of this dress looks just as blue as it had first seemed to me online when I wasn’t sure about it. In reality, the blue is actually much darker, and this picture below is a more accurate representation of the colours for anyone who is unsure about them.
After I had ordered the dress I was excitedly lingering in a thread all about it on the PUG Style Pinups Facebook group when it was mentioned that this dress is shorter than usual PUG dresses. I hadn’t noticed the length before and I immediately began to panic; I’m 5 ft 7 to Amanda’s 4 ft 10 so I had visions of it sitting above my knee, something I am not on board with in the silhouette I like to sport. However, while the ladies are right that the skirt is shorter than your typical Jenny dress/skirt, and much shorter than some of their longest pieces, like the Hawaiian Hideaway dress, for a lady around my height it will still cover your knees and doesn’t look noticeably shorter.
In terms of volume of the skirt, it’s gathered like a Jenny but feels a little less voluminous than one. This might purely be because it’s shorter, but I was still able to fit my Malco Modes Jennifer petticoat underneath and a cheap ebay slimmer petticoat as well in order to achieve my usual preferred max floofiness, so it easily passes my puff test.
Let’s talk sizing and fit. PUG sizing typically runs 30-31 for a L and 33-34 for XL, missing out 32 waists on the chart completely. Interestingly with this dress, the L sizes the same as usual but the XL runs from 32-33. Even though I’m currently a 33 waist, I compress easily thanks to my nice squishy torso and I’m not uncomfortable in tight waistbands, so I size down almost exclusively into L for PUG dresses unless the size chart states there is no stretch and reviews confirm it sizes true and has no wiggle room. I have an XL in my Sea Siren dress, which is boned with no stretch, and it fits me well. My Jenny dresses, despite being boned and having minimal stretch, fit me in an L but just barely these days, with someone zipping me into them a necessity.
Had the size charts not been specifically revised to move the size boundaries to 32-33inches for the XL, I would have sized down. However, I trusted that these dresses had been produced in such a way that the sizing department felt the revision was necessary and I followed the revised chart. I chose an XL, sizing for my waist even though my bust would be a bit roomy, and it worked well.
I wore shapewear under the dress in the pictures above for a nice streamlined waist and no visible bumps or lumps from bra bands, etc, as these are more obvious in the white of the bodice than on a coloured dress. As a result, being suctioned in made the dress fit looser for these pictures, but in this mirror selfie from the first time I tried the dresses on you can see that un-spanxed the dresses fit me tighter (and that I should have loosened up my belt.)
The XL 32-33 waist is accurate; it fits me well, fairly snugly but not tightly. I have a 40inch bust when in my bra so the 42-43 inch bust in this dress is a little loose on me. That doesn’t look awkward or noticeable, but the difference I believe it does make is that it allows the neckline to fit a little looser on me and not to sit as flush to the collar as I’ve seen it look on some women, like Amanda herself. The arms on the dress have ample room and don’t feel tight, and there’s nowhere the dress pinches or sits oddly.
I think following the size chart is the safest way to ensure a fit due to the minimal stretch, but if you don’t want any visible looseness then you might have to do some more size comparing and thinking. If you’re a 32 waist, for example, this XL would fit you a bit loosely, more like it does in my main picture set where there’s some excess fabric from wearing shapewear. If you like a looser fit or don’t mind the excess fabric, then sizing true will work in that example, but if you want a snug fit and your bust measurements will allow, then I think you could squeeze down into the L.
The pictured colourways of the Amanda dress are already released, with the pink and black version due out this week. All three colourways cost $142 and are available in sizes XS-4X.