Review: Madewell Petite Curvy “Perfect Vintage Jean” in Sumner Wash vs Fitzgerald Wash

Decided to do a quick standalone review for the Madewell curvy petite perfect vintage jean in Sumner wash since I got that over the holiday sales and I also have the “same” style Fitzgerald wash. Not as comprehensive photo-wise compared to some other review posts I’ve done, but figured it’s more helpful than nothing ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Please note: this post contains affiliate links.

My measurements

  • 29″ waist
  • 39″ hips
  • typically 29 or 30 in waist sized jeans, or US size 8
  • 5’1″ height and I think I’m pretty average in torso/leg proportions. I can’t be bothered to provide an actual inseam measurement and crotch-to-navel measurement.

And if TLDR for the rest of the post, here’s the fit gif for the petite curvy size 28 (this is different from just petite, or just curvy):

madewell petite curvy perfect vintage jean in sumner wash.gif

The sweater I’m wearing (Free People “softly structured tunic” in small) actually comes down to right above my knees and I had actually taken this originally as a fit check for the sweater, but I figured a jeans review would be more useful. So there’s some material contributing to the bulk making the second curve on the waistband. Given the amount of fabric stuffed in there I’m not mad about the extra lumps.

Here is what Madewell has to say about the Fitzgerald wash ($98.00 full price)

stock photo, model measurements not provided

  • We recommend getting these in your usual size—they’ll feel tight at first but stretch out juuuuuuust enough after a couple of wears.
  • High rise, fitted through the hip and thigh, full-length tapered leg
  • 27″ inseam; 14″ leg opening; 12 1/2″ front rise; 17″ back rise (size 29)
  • 100% cotton
  • (Nordstrom website additionally lists for the REGULAR cut Front rise: 12 1/2″; inseam: 25 1/2″; leg opening for size 25: 13 1/4″)

For a more extensive review of the sizing of the Fitzgerald wash and more fit pics, see Jeans Shopping is Terrible: A Comparison of 12 Pairs of Madewell and ASOS Jeans


And the Sumner wash ($115.00 full price)

stock photo, model measurements not provided

  • We recommend getting these in your usual size—they’ll feel tight at first but stretch out juuuuuuust enough after a couple of wears.
  • High rise, fitted through the hip and thigh, tapered leg with cropped inseam.
  • Front rise: 12 1/2″; inseam: 24″; leg opening for size 25: 13 1/2″.
  • Nordstrom says for the REGULAR cut 26″ inseam; 15″ leg opening; 12 1/2″ front rise; 16 1/2″ back rise (size 31) and generously gives the full fabric content “94% cotton, 5% polyester, 1% elastane” instead of the bullshit that the Madewell website tries to pull off not listing the other 6% or sometimes not putting percentages at all

I find it super annoying that Madewell made these sound like two washes of the same jean, when one is 94% cotton vs 100% cotton, so they feel entirely different. The similarities end at the straight leg high waist cut.

  • I found that I had the best fit in curvy petite 28 for the Sumner wash and 27 for the Fitzgerald wash. Not sure what the website description is going on about. When I initially tried on the Fitzgerald wash in store the employee said most people have to go down 1-2 sizes. Neither has waist gaping.
  • Due to the high stretch, the Sumner wash was comfortable new, while the Fitzgerald wash required a couple of wears for the thighs and waistband to stretch a little. The Sumner is generally much more comfortable. I would wear the Sumner ones on a plane but not the Fitzgerald ones.
  • Sumner wash def just looks like a trendy cut super stretch jean, not as much of a vintage look as the Fitzgerald.
  • Both are truly high-waisted (about 2″ above the navel). Sometimes this feels too high for my taste but I like that they still come off as high-waisted even with a belt.
  • Sumner wash is cropped (hits above the ankle bone) with no cuffing, Fitzgerald wash needs cuffs.
  • Also due to high stretch, Sumner wash will be lumpier if you tuck in long/thick tops into it.
  • Even with the stretch, still seemed better quality than the jeggings you’d find at Target / Old Navy / Forever 21, but I would still wait for a sale before springing for these (I got them 37% off in the Cyber Monday sales) because they still feel like the type of jean where the crotch will get a hole in less than a year if your thighs touch when walking and you’re wearing these a few times a week.
  • I found the yoke of the Sumner wash tends to pucker. I think this is because the waistband and the pockets are significantly thicker than the main jean fabric so all the give ends up in the yoke. It’s not enough puckering I think a random person passing by would notice, but it is there. I notice that the Madewell website has a close-up of the model’s butt in the Fitzgerald wash but not the Sumner wash so maybe they know this.
  • I machine washed the Sumner ones on cold once and air dried. They came out fine.
    • Fitzgerald ones have been doing well even after 29 wears and a few machine washes (always air dried), though the color has faded substantially and is now less of a light blue and more just “light wash” if that makes sense. I’m not terribly hard on my clothes since I have a desk job, although I do probably walk more than the average American since I don’t have a car.

Anyway hopefully that’s helpful to someone out there. I also left a review on Nordstrom but I just don’t want to make another account to leave a review on the Madewell site.


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