MM. LaFleur Revives Their Best Pieces

Jan 24, 2018

MM. LaFleur is my favorite shop for work attire.  When I find a staple dress or top, I buy it in multiple colors.  Recently, they brought back some of the most-beloved styles from their past.  Here are the best pieces from their collection.

I love MM. LaFleur because the pieces are well-made, come in a great selection of colors, and they’re designed for working women.  Many dresses have sleeves.  Some have pockets.  The styles are tailored, flattering, and forgiving.  And most styles also come in plus-sizes.

It’s incredible to me how far this female-founded company has gone since I met Sarah LaFleur five years ago.  I remember standing with her in a hotel kitchen at the St. Regis talking about her goals for the brand. So much hope, so much hustle, and every season, her vision continues to come to life.  From a few ladies in a tiny studio to an empire.

This style is the Akiko.  The pencil skirt bottom is wool and the slightly draped top is crepe.  And it’s my favorite.  I own it in three colors.

Take this black dress, add a cool belt, and suddenly it’s a cocktail dress.  I’ve worn it on dates.  I’ve worn it to court.  I’ve worn it to funerals.  There is nothing this dress can’t do.

The Taylor 2.0 dress is the perfect layering piece.  I own it in green, and I just bought it in this berry hue.  It is so slimming and chic.

Add a blazer or a long jacket for serious work days.  I’ve also worn it over gauzy, long sleeve tops.  When I wear it solo, I add a brooch to one of the shoulders.

The Casey dress is what you need if you carry your weight in your middle.  The gathers conceal and define the waist.  The v-neck looks great under a blazer.

Like the Akiko, the Casey can be worn for many occasions.  It’s also very comfortable.  I wear it when the last thing I want is to dress up, but I have to.  My one caution would be to size up if you’re pear shaped.  The skirt is a bit snug.

I’ve posted the Morandi sweater a half-dozen times, and I’ll keep singing this song until I’m hoarse.

You can wear it open or belted.  It drapes beautifully.  This sweater is so very warm and versatile.  I’m actually wearing it right now with leggings.

The Beverly top is the perfect layering blouse.  It comes in ivory, grey and pale mauve (the mauve is my favorite).  The neckline looks great under a blazer, and the voluminous tie gives you a lot of options.  It’s the blouse you’ll reach for day after day.

This Gates top can be worn cowl neck, draped dramatically or off-the-shoulder.  It’s an elegant work look with a wide-leg trouser or a pencil skirt.  For a night out, add a pair of dramatic black earrings.  I haven’t bought this one yet, but I feel that day coming.

This post contains affiliate links that may generate commission for the author.  I found MM. LaFleur years ago and wrote a post about them.  They found me because of that article, and we developed a partnership.  I’ve received a few free dresses, but I’ve purchased more dresses than I’ve been gifted.  But I don’t promote them for free things, I promote them because I love them.

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Style, Work

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  1. Kathryn says:

    I second all of this! Their bento boxes are a great way to start trying things on. The stylist picked out items that I wouldn’t have picked out for myself and they were all so flattering on my 5’2″/0P frame. I also love that most of the pieces can be machine washed–ain’t nobody got time or money for the cleaners.

    Yes, the initial cost of the dresses is a little higher than I usually spend (J. Crew + Banana Republic sales usually keep me under $100/dress), but these are the pieces that I keep reaching for when I get ready. I can’t be the only one who is experiencing this, but Banana, J. Crew, Ann Taylor, LOFT, etc. keep making petite dresses with busts that aren’t exactly consistent with most size 0P women… This hasn’t been an issue with mm LaFleur. Thanks for sharing, Abra!

    • CaRly says:

      Hi Kathryn! I’m curious which dresses worked for you. As a fellow 5’2” petite person, I’ve previously shied away from mm LaFleur because the dresses did not seem like they’d be petite-friendly (despite the “petite” filter)

      • Kathryn says:

        I have the Etsuko, Sarah 7.0, and Aditi. I also have the Noho skirt, which hits a little below my knee. I usually wear flats for my standing desk but heels would definitely be required if I kept it as-is. I hope this helps!

        • Kathryn says:

          TBH the Aditi collar hits a little higher on my neck that it does on the model but I like that it gives it a more modern look.

      • JD says:

        As a fellow 5’2” petite, I can say they definitely need a DEDICATED size range for petites. I have purchased a few MM LaFleur dresses that were supposedly “petite friendly” and still had fit issues. It’s not necessarily overall length, but the proportions are just off.( I wear a 0p or 2p in most other retailers.) For example, love the concept and styling of the etsuko, and so I kept it even though the pockets end up hitting at the widest part of my hips, which they wouldn’t do if one were a standard height— the torso length is sized for a standard height woman. Anyway, I will probably sell my etsuko and another dress I got from them because something feels close but not quite right. Also the shoulder height to bust is off, per the earlier point about not having the torso length right for petites. I’ve tried multiple sizes and fits, the 0, 2, and 0p (which isn’t actually a “p”, just more like a 00) and I just can’t get it to work 100% so far at my height. Also, I love the concept of machine wash structured looking dresses, but what it means for many of those dresses is that they are unlined. Honestly, these dresses way cost too much to be unlined. Ponte is ok unlined as is some jersey but not the dress fabric that the etsuko and several other dresses are made from. The fabric sticks a bit to some tights as a result and In my experience is prone to wrinkling at the stomach/waist with extended wear if you sit at a desk a lot during the day like I do because it’s missing the lining. I love what MMLF is trying to do but I’m not spending more money there until they offer a legit petite line like they’ve done with plus sizes and I’m going to be much more discriminating about which pieces I would buy. The great thing is free returns if you want to try anything and it doesn’t work, although I find having had to formally request a return label via email to be a real annoyance. just let me log into my order and print one.

        • R says:

          I’m short but not “petite” in the sense that I’m a size 12, not a small size, but I definitely agree that petite sizing is needed! Everything in my bento box fit me strangely in a way where I felt like I was getting lost in the pieces, even when it seemed like they were likely the correct size. Alterations would have been ridiculously expensive. I was really disappointed overall. I live in DC where there’s a showroom, so I do plan to give them another chance by checking it out in person, but I’m afraid their dresses just aren’t cut for my body type.

    • Amy says:

      I am 5’1″, size 2 and I own the Etsuko in 3 colors, the Aditi, the Annie, the Emma in 2 colors and a few other pieces. I love my MM pieces and all of them have worked out perfectly for me without any alterations whatsoever. I agree with you that the bento boxes are probably the best bet for petites who may not be sure if the sizing will be right.

  2. Laura says:

    I second this. I started receiving Bento boxes (like a Stitch Fix/Trunk Club box, but all MMLF products) a few months ago and I’m hooked. I am right between straight and plus sizes (I’m a 16 regular if it runs sort of big and a 14W if it runs sort of small) and I find that their sizes all run a bit small, so if you’re in between sizes, I’d size up. But the quality is lovely, many pieces are machine-washable, and the styles are very elegant.

  3. Heather says:

    Did you see they are now offering maternity as well?

  4. Virginia says:

    It’s really a shame that they will not ship to Canada.

  5. Kat says:

    I second this! I have a long day today (8:30a-9p) and I’m wearing the Foster Pant. They are literally the most comfortable work pants I’ve ever owned. They’re machine washable. They don’t wrinkle. They’re comfortable. They look super professional. MM isn’t cheap, but for the quality and versatility they really can’t be beat.

  6. Katrina says:

    LOVE MM LaFleur, and I’d love to see more reviews of their products,which are pretty sparse on the web
    I think the Taylor 2.0 dress is just perfection by itself, but I’ve been hesitant to pull the trigger because it seems to me it wouldn’t be nearly as stunning with anything covering, or partially covering, the knot that makes the dress so visually interesting. For instance, would a cardigan worn over it be a mistake?

  7. Christine says:

    What color blazer/ jacket do you wear with your green Taylor dress? I struggle with that. To me the Taylor would be 100% perfect if there was a slit in the back of the skirt – I find getting into/ out of cars a bit awkward at times.

  8. Rebecca says:

    I completely agree, they have become my favorite place to buy work clothes. I love the fact that so many of their pieces are washable. I do wish they would incorporate more of their items into plus. 3 of the items listed here alone are not available in the extended sizes along with several others I have had my eye on. But, I am so happy they have as many options as they do. I will also do a plug for their in person styling process if they have a location or pop-up near you. I went to the pop-up in Chicago (now they have a full store) and it was a great experience. my stylist really help me think about how the pieces integrated into my wardrobe and suggested pairings I never would have thought of.

  9. AK says:

    Can someone share their thoughts on the fabrics? Many, if not most, of their pieces appear to include made-made fabrics (polyester as opposed to cotton or wool). I love the aesthetic but am wary of wearing pieces that don’t breathe or can’t be worn most of the year, if not in all four seasons. I live in humid Washington, DC, so I am especially interested in how these items feel on in the summer.

    • Crystal says:

      I live in Washington, DC, too, and I adore MM’s products. I believe I own one sweater, one pair of pants, 2 belts, 3 skirts, 5 blouses, and… maybe 10 dresses (though a few don’t fit at the moment). They’re comfortable, breathe well (IMO), and many are machine-washable. I wore the Taylor 2.0 — a machine-washable dress (with pockets!) — to a friend’s wedding! For the more summery cuts and fabrics, I’ve had good luck layering them with tights, blazers, and/or my new BFF, Spanx Arm Tights. Good luck!

    • kate says:

      Could just be my funky body, but I think their fabrics hold onto smells!! I’ve bought two dresses (one dry clean, one machine) and a jardigan. All are unwearable now. I’m not a particularly stinky person, but all smell like BO, even after washing properly and spraying with vodka/water. I haven’t had this problem with any other brand of clothing. From a non-personal stink problem standpoint, their fabrics are okay for DC humidity.

    • Avalanche Lake says:

      I also live in DC and own 4 pieces (3 tops and 1 pair of pants). I’m not thrilled with the fabrics. I didn’t notice it when trying on the pieces in the store, but they don’t feel good on. Also, the hem in the sleeve of one of my tops unraveled after 2 wears. I wanted to love this brand so much (love the mission and the aesthetic), but I’m leery of buying more.

  10. DCX says:

    Years ago, I went to an MM trunk show at the Jefferson Hotel. It was the first of many at the Jefferson and later, the DC showroom. I remember the MM gals asking me how I heard about the brand, and I mentioned your blog. You’d just recently left DC for law school, and they all said the same thing back then – “She’ll be back, we cant imagine DC without her.” How prescient!

  11. MK says:

    I’m getting very close to being persuaded to try an MM. LaFleur dress. One question — I know they have a showroom in D.C., and I noticed they have hour-long appointments. What’s the buying expectation at a session like that? I’m used to spending $60-80 for dresses from AT and Banana on sale. Realistically, I’m only going to buy one MM. LaFleur piece at a time. Maybe two or three dresses in a year if I end up loving them.

    • AP says:

      I’ve been to the pop-up three times and never felt pressured into any purchases. A word of caution – you might fall in love with how these dresses fit once you see them on, so it will be hard to resist.

    • Belle says:

      I know most of those ladies. If you go in, and buy nothing, they won’t take it personally.

      • Beth says:

        I just did an appointment in DC this afternoon and had a fantastic experience. I purchased several pieces but didn’t get the sense that it would have been awkward had I not done so. Huge thanks for sharing this brand on your blog – I don’t know if I would have found it otherwise!

    • Mo says:

      Agreed. I have not felt pressure at any pop-up. I usually have them put several things on my wish list so I can remember what I tried/loved, and then I can make decisions when I get home and have time to evaluate my specific needs. The Etsuko dress and the Winfrey Top/Soho skirt combo get worn at least once a week. (Also, 5’2″ and no issues with fit although I am long in the leg.)

  12. JZ says:

    I haven’t purchased from MMLF, but hear about it quite a bit. Do they ever have sales?

  13. Kelly says:

    Of all the great things the blog has introduced me to, MM.LaFleur has been one of the best. Any suggestions for a really good dress to wear to a wedding? I was thinking the Aditi or Sarah, but now I’m thinking maybe the Taylor?

  14. C says:

    Love MMLF! I have so many favorite pieces but struggle with some of the more form-fitting dresses like the Aditi and the Sarah–what does everyone wear underneath? I sized up in both but the fabric is so clingy that it shows everything!

  15. Sarah says:

    I own 2 dresses from MMLaFleur and can vouch that they are comfortable and well made. I always get compliments on them. I’m thinking about going to one of their pop-up shops. Has anyone tried that?

    • Kelly says:

      So I did the Bento, then ordered some items, then did the pop up (well, the perma-store in DC). It was so worth it. You can try on WAY more clothes in the hour than can fit in the Bento, and I had them add just about everything to the Wish List feature so I know what sizes to go for when I see something in a color I want. I’m planning to go to go back to the Chicago store this year to try on more things and get some help working pieces into my weekend rotation.

  16. Anon says:

    I am REALLY busty (32H) with a short waist, but otherwise am average/tall and an hourglass shape; between an 8-10 in most brands we talk about here. Is there anyone our there who can comment on how MM LaFleur might work for me? I’m tempted but have a hard time finding brands that fit well. I keep circling trying to decide

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