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Rachel Pally Dress Review: Barrett and Doreen Dresses

I first discovered Rachel Pally when I was pregnant a few years ago and looking for chic maternity dresses that didn’t look like maternity dresses (if you know what I mean!). I was drawn to Rachel Pally pieces because they looked effortless and comfortable. So far I have two Rachel Pally dresses in my closet – the Barrett and the Doreen. Here is my Rachel Pally Dress Review ft. the Barrett and Doreen dresses!

Rachel Pally Dress Review

Neutral GIngham Dress Rachel Pally

About Rachel Pally

I love Rachel Pally because the pieces are ethically made in LA! The clothes are designed, manufactured, and shipped from Los Angeles. Rachel Pally specializes in easy, breezy dresses made from jersey, gauze, linen, and crepe. They are conscious about the types of fabrics they use and fabric waste. They choose deadstock fabrics when they can and donate fabric leftovers and scraps to local schools.

I first discovered Rachel Pally when I was pregnant because a couple years ago they had maternity versions of most of their pieces. I bought this gorgeous stretchy gold dress and it was perfect for around the holidays. It looks like they no longer have a specific maternity line BUT you can still find their maternity friendly styles here. Since the Rachel Pally aesthetic is very loose and flowy, most of the pieces do work with a bump even if they aren’t technically maternity.

Rachel Pally Gingham Barrett Dress

In the summer I’m always drawn to gingham patterns. While I love a classic blue and white gingham pattern I find myself drawn to a subtle neutral gingham more nowadays. So when I saw this neutral gingham dress from Rachel Pally I knew I had to get it!

Rachel Pally Gingham Barrett Dress with flats

It also has all the features I love – a smocked bodice, puffed sleeves, and pockets! It’s made from a lightweight, slightly textured rayon/linen blend so it’s breathable and comfortable.

My Measurements: 33-28-38, 5’7″, 120lbs, 30D

I’m wearing the size XS but my usual size is a Small. I sized down because years ago I tried a dress from Rachel Pally in size small and it was too big. So I’ve been ordering size XS. However, I think I could have taken a size small in this. The elastic on my arms is pretty tight and the elastic on my waist is also pretty snug. You’ll notice on the model that the puff sleeve sit further down on their arms and mine are higher up. The smocked bodice feels good though and so does the elastic around my shoulders. So I still think the size XS works for me. I kind of feel like I’m a little in-between Rachel Pally sizes – I’m not sure if the size Small would be a little too big.

Overall, I really like this dress. It’s very comfortable and I love how neutral the gingham is. It looks SO CUTE with a straw hat. I can also wear this dress with flats or heeled sandals. I also want to mention that the smocked bodice is tight enough that I don’t need to wear a bra. I’m wearing sticky cups instead! That way you don’t see bra straps because the neck line is very wide. Because the bodice is smocked, you can wear this dress off-the-shoulder. It’s actually more comfortable for me like that because then the elastic around the arms doesn’t feel as tight!

Comfortable summer dress. Neutral gingham dress with puff sleeves

Linen Doreen Dress

I bought the Linen Doreen Dress last spring because I can’t resist a cute puff sleeve dress. It seemed like a great dress to transition from winter to spring. As you can see below, I took these photos in late winter/early spring when it was still pretty chilly out.

Rachel Pally Dress Review: Linen Doreen Dress

The fabric is pretty similar to the Barrett dress. It’s a rayon/linen blend with just slightly more rayon. I’m wearing the size XS again. This dress has a zipper down the back whereas the Doreen dress doesn’t have any zippers or closures. Because the bodice of the Doreen dress isn’t stretchy, this dress feels tighter around the bust to me. I don’t wear a bra with this dress either because if I do, it feels too tight. The arm elastics are also kind of tight on me – similar to the Barrett dress. I definitely think I should have taken the size small in this dress.

You can read my original blog post where I featured this dress here!

So I think the moral of the story is I should take my usual size (a size small) in Rachel Pally dresses…lol. I do love both of these styles though and the material in both is really comfortable. I think for my next Rachel Pally purchase I’ll choose one of their looser fitting styles – like the Adelaide or the Mae which are part of their Core Collection.

Are Rachel Pally Dresses Worth It?

I think the Rachel Pally Dresses are worth it. I always love to support small, ethical brands. Obviously, they are a little pricey. But that’s because they are made in Los Angeles at factories where people are paid a fair wage in safe working environments. Rachel Pally is also a small brand so I think their prices reflect that they can’t/don’t purchase things on a large scale to bring costs down.

If I were to compare these dresses to dresses I own from similar ethical, California-based brands like Doen and Christy Dawn I would say Rachel Pally comes in third place for me. I prefer the more feminine/fancy designs from Doen and Christy Dawn. I also think those brands fit me a little better. But if you are looking for laid back, comfortable basics then I think Rachel Pally is a good option!

Keep in mind that Rachel Pally does have sales occasionally! So you don’t have to pay full price. You can get 15% off your order for signing up for their newsletter. And their average sales usually offer 20-25% off (even more during the black friday holidays!).

I hope you enjoyed this Rachel Pally Dress review! If you have any questions, just let me know in the comments!

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