Suit of the Week

For busy working women, the suit is often the easiest outfit to throw on in the morning. In general, this feature is not about interview suits, which should be as classic and basic as you get — instead, this feature is about the slightly different suit that is fashionable, yet professional.
Women: Classic one-button pinstriped suit jacket - Charcoal pinstripeMaybe we’re crazy, but we don’t *think* we’ve seen this suit before from Banana. Either way, we really like it — the fact that it’s made of lightweight wool, as well as the double pockets on one side of the blazer and the high waist of the skirt.  Even the shoulders, which are slightly sharper than previous seasons (but not as sharp as the Balmain knockoffs that are everywhere this season) seem “of the moment” without being trendy. The jacket (Women: Classic one-button pinstriped suit jacket – Charcoal pinstripe) is $198, and the skirt (Women: Lightweight wool pinstriped pencil skirt – Charcoal pinstripe) is $80. Matching pants (Women: Jackson pinstriped wide-leg pant – Charcoal pinstripe) are $98.  (Note also that for today only, you can get free shipping with a purchase of $99 or more — use code SHIP99.)

Women: Classic one-button pinstriped suit jacket - Charcoal pinstripe
Women: Lightweight wool pinstriped pencil skirt - Charcoal pinstripe


  1. Great suit. I like it. I hope they’ve used the wide band at the waist to shape it better, not just for decoration. If my usual size was a bit snug, I’d buy it a size larger, to make up for the lightweight wool – a looser fit wouldn’t stress the fabric, so it would hang better and last longer.

  2. I own this jacket with pants. (BR was selling the same suit in the fall.) I think it’s well made. My friend owns the same suit, and she has been similarly pleased with the quality/style.

  3. Anonymous :

    Love the skirt. Like the pattern/style of the jacket. HATE the bi-level pockets. Am I alone on this one?

    • Anonymous :

      The pockets are my main complaint with this suit as well. I don’t really care for the two-pocket/one-pocket combo and prefer symmetry.

      That said, this wouldn’t be a great choice for me since I don’t do well with the one-button jacket. Does anyone else have this problem? I just hope we don’t get to a point where one-button is the only thing available since the fit is so poor on me.

      • I can’t do the one-button jackets either. I’m a little busty for my petite frame and the one-button just doesn’t do it for me. Unfortunately, I have to pass on this suit because it’s a one-button.

  4. Ooh, just ordered because of the 25% off. My black suit from BR is my absolute favorite — I love the way Jackson pants fit (good for those who have a curvier figure).

  5. I own a very similar jacket with pants that I bought from BR around six months ago. I am not a big fan – this jacket may be different, but mine has the European style with the back vents on either side of the butt instead of one in the middle – I think that looks really silly on my curvy butt. Also, the way the bottom front of the jacket cuts away starting right below the one button, instead of being relatively straight until close to the bottom of the jacket, means that when the jacket is buttoned it exposes my belt buckle.

    I am probably just an old fuddy-duddy, but I prefer my suit jackets to be fairly traditional. If want to look fashionable I can do it with shoes and accessories, or with a “fun” jacket that is a fun color and/or fabric rather than just a weird cut.

    • Oh and yes, I also hate the double-pocket thing. I once read that any pockets in that area emphasize the hips, and a double asymmetrical pocket must emphasize them doubly!

  6. I have this suit with the skirt, and I love it. As someone without major curves though, the pants with the jacket looked silly on me. The wide-leg pants weren’t sleek enough and thus gave the impression that I was playing dress up in my mother’s clothes.

    • I have the older version with the pants–it sounds like the same jacket as Karen–and though I don’t dislike the suit enough to stop wearing it, I have encountered a lot of the same gripes described by some of the other commenters. I do have a different BR skirt suit and the skirt is great, so it may just be that I can’t do BR pants.

      The pants don’t look quite right on a small frame (I am a bit too narrow for size 0 but too tall for the petites, so went with the 0). I am also not crazy about the one button feature of the jacket – I think it looks great when I first put it on and straighten myself in front of the mirror, but as soon as I move my arms, things get crooked and disheveled looking rather quickly. I second the description of feeling like I’m wearing someone else’s clothes – it just doesn’t fit me quite the way I’d like.

  7. I generally shop at Banana a lot for work (probably too much – but I work at a pretty informal law firm and don’t need full suits unless going to court) but I’m always annoyed when they have a skirt suit and don’t offer the pants in various cuts. One of the conveniences of this store is that I know exactly how each style of pant fits me, and only purchase Martin cut. I hate spending the money for a suit jacket if I can’t get both the skirt and pants to match.

  8. I can not find anything in Banana that ever fits right; does anyone else have this problem? It seems like everything is cut for an hourglass frame. The hips and butt are always 2-3 inches too roomy when the waist fits. J Crew seems better for straighter figures.
    Any one know of high quality lines which are cut slim?

  9. anonymous :

    I tried on this suit. I needed to go up two sizes to make it fit. I am not sure if the jacket looks better snug or loose. Snug is very form fitting, while loose doesn’t seem to hang right below the shoulders and through the bust, with alot of extra fabric, much like on the model above. Which looks better?

  10. to anon:
    I have that problem with most suit jackets, except Theory, whose material, and quality I dislike. For me, the problem seems to be that the bust is cut far too large and curvy for my frame. These jackets typically fit nicely, it seems, on someone with a larger chest than my 31A chest. Meanwhile, the shoulders are very snug, sleeves too roomy.
    Personally, I prefer to get the larger size, then get the jacket tailored.