Shop it first: Milly for Banana Republic

Banana Republic wants to take all my money. Year after year, the brand comes out with versatile, covetable pieces I can’t help but buy. I’m the girl with every dress from the Mad Men collections in my closet. OK, not every dress…but that’s not due to lack of effort. The special collections tend to sell out in the first week, some items in the first day. Banana Republic’s latest capsule collection created by Milly embodies summertime in the Hamptons and features Milly’s iconic brights and patterns.


Featuring over 60 items for men and women, the collection is chock full of accessories – think statement necklaces and metallic and printed bags – and perfect prints. The Milly for Banana Republic limited-edition capsule collection launches on May 30 (mark your calendars!), but Toronto media got a chance to pre-shop the collection on Tuesday evening. I managed to do a few laps around the store, sipping on lemonade with a pink striped paper straw, before I filled a dressing room with goodies. My acting life partner for the evening, Toronto relationship expert Jen Kirsch, played the role of both helpful boyfriend and personal shopper…maybe a little too well.

Stephanie Fusco and Jen Kirsch - Milly Banana Republic Summer 2013 - Leopard is a Neutral

Milly for Banana Republic - capsule collection - Leopard is a Neutral


Milly for Banana Republic - tote bag leather and print - Leopard is a Neutral


Milly for Banana Republic - lookbook - elephant print shorts medallion blouse metallic clutch

I loved pretty much every piece in the collection. The black and white printed skirt, above, was the first thing that caught my eye when I saw the collection online and I ended up purchasing both the beaded tee ($55) and skirt ($110). I sized down with the skirt but I’m finding it’s still not a great shape for me, since I tend to wear fuller skirts at the natural waist and this one is meant to sit lower.

I’d also spotted a fit & flare dress on Zoe Saldana, but wasn’t sure of how the print would translate on me – hello, horizontal stripes across the bust! It was a happy surprise to find the dress also came in a solid navy ($185), perfectly paired with a stunning statement bib necklace ($87). I have a wedding this weekend so I picked those up as well. The dress fits incredibly well (photos to come) but I did have to size up.

Milly for Banana Republic - Teal Bib Necklace - Leopard is a Neutral

After meeting Michelle Smith, the designer behind Milly, I’ve decided another trip to Banana to shop this collection is in order. How stunning are the medallion print dress + white blazer on her? She’s also wearing the statement necklace I picked up but in the yellow. The necklace also comes in coral. Yes, I wanted one in every colour.

Milly Banana Republic Summer 2013 - Stephanie Fusco Leopard is a Neutral, Michelle Smith Milly, Deanne MyFashAvenue, Nicole Dainty Girl

Say hello to Deanne from and Nicole from Dainty Girl!

Overall, this is a solid summer collection. I’m probably going to swap the tee + skirt combo I purchased for either the medallion printed roll-up shirt or the dress and I’d love to try on the blazer as well. As I mentioned before, the collection drops on May 30, but you’ll want to be in-store that day for the best finds. I have no doubt that this collection will sell out pretty quickly – word is the teal necklace I purchased sold out on Bloor during the preview – so run, don’t walk!

Thanks to Denise from Banana Republic for the invitation! I had the best time and my closet thanks you.