The Perfect (Off-)White Cable Sweater (+ Banana Republic & Ralph Lauren Sweaters Review)

December 18, 2013

My ongoing search for a crewneck off-white cable sweater is one fraught with disappointments, as my demands for a certain level of comfort, fit, and price compounded the difficulty of the search. And after ordering and returning some ten sweaters this year, I had an epiphany: could it be that the perfect off-white cable sweater has lived in my closet all along (but normally looks like this)?

The thought of wearing this cardigan as a sweater has crossed my mind on a few occasions but I would always discount those thoughts as being too silly to actually implement. Well, it turns out a tiny leap of faith can be really rewarding.
Polo Ralph Lauren Cable Cardigan (similar) | Ann Taylor Estate Shimmer Necklace | Ann Taylor Chain Bracelet (similar) | Marc by Marc Jacobs Rose Gold Watch | Tote via Etsy | Juicy Couture Dress turned into Skirt | No Brand Shoes
And a few words and pictures about some sweaters I ordered recently (last sweater post, on Zara, can be found here; I decided to move L.L.Bean further down the queue).

Banana Republic's Textured Turtleneck is available in six colors, including two brights and four colors I consider standard fare. This partially wool (fabric content: 40% Wool, 38% Acrylic, 22% Viscose) sweater reminds me of waffle fabric and is comfortable and soft despite the amount of acrylic found in its composition. The turtleneck, about ten inches in length unfolded, is slightly overwhelming on my shorter neck which is to be expected on a one length fits all design.

Measurements of the sweaters reviewed below can be found wedged between pictures.
Banana Republic Textured Turtleneck in Byzantine Gold | size XS
Total Length: 22.5" | Sleeve Length: 23.25" | Turtleneck: 10" | Underarm to underarm: 17"
Stock photos of the Heritage Cable-Knit Pullover in Classic Navy made it look irresistible. I liked the cable pattern on the front and along the sides but was surprised to find that the back was plain. On comfort and fit, the volume of the turtleneck again proved overwhelming (other reviews of the sweater echo my complaint) on me which made more apparent issues concerning comfort; the fabric was somewhat stiff which caused some discomfort.
Banana Republic Heritage Cable-Knit Pullover in Classic Navy | size XS
Length: 19.75" | Sleeve Length: 21.5" | Turtleneck: 9" | Underarm to underarm: 16"
I really wanted to like the Heritage Chunky Cable Crew in Saucy Red; it was not too itchy for my mildly sensitive skin but the material felt pill-prone and the boxy fit emphasized my equally boxy torso and was overall a dowdy fit for me. I also thought the price--$98--was excessive for the fabric content--76% acrylic, 13% wool, and 11% nylon.
Banana Republic Heritage Chunky Cable Crew in Saucy Red | size XS
Total Length: 23" | Sleeve Length: 23.25" | Underarm to underarm: 16.5"
As I've mentioned before, I've always been pleased with the quality and comfort of Ralph Lauren sweaters (see above, my cream cardigan-turned-sweater is also a RL product) but the ubiquity of the polo logo has really diminished the brand's allure for me.

I ordered the Lauren Ralph Lauren Cable-Knit Cotton Crewneck Sweater in Moda Cream because I thought it was logo-free (turns out there is a tone-on-tone Lauren Ralph Lauren logo that is hard to detect but nevertheless still there). Moda Cream has more yellow in its composition than ideal but I kept it because of how reasonable it was in quality and price (even more reasonable now at $26.24; I bought mine for slightly more when sizes were plenty).
Ralph Lauren Cable-Knit Cotton Crewneck Sweater in Moda Cream | size XS
Total Length: 23.75" | Sleeve Length: 22.5" | Underarm to underarm: 18.5"
If you ordered the Cable-Knit Cotton Crewneck Sweater when I did (from this post), you can contact Ralph Lauren by e-mail and request a price adjustment.

And the three Banana Republic styles reviewed above are 40% off today with code BRGIFT40.

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