I was drawn to a corner of the store because there was a small Lululemon Lab capsule of muted colors with different textured fabric. When I approached, I felt the material and was very interested in the fabric. An Ed approached me and said, “You’ve found our Lululemon Lab collection! We’re the only other store in the United States carrying it.” Apparently, Lululemon Lab can only be found in Vancouver or New York City. During my Google search, it was hard to find official Lululemon links describing Lululemon Lab. The main page only lists the two locations. The Ed told me that Lululemon Lab is a collaboration of high-fashion designers and Lululemon designers creating athleisure wear in the “lab”. The collection is NOT technical athletic gear. It is purely streetwear. She also told me the special fabric, Cupro, is exclusive to the Lululemon Lab collection. You will not find the fabric in any other Lululemon gear. The capsule in Santa Monica was very limited. I believe I tried on everything except for the regular length tank. It didn’t seem interesting enough to me.
GENERAL LULULEMON LAB CAPSULE COMMENTS
The Lululemon Lab collection is TTS and consistent with Lululemon’s athletic gear sizing. So, if the item looks like a roomy, relaxed TTS, pick the size you’d wear in similar Lululemon styles. The collection looked like urban athleisure streetwear because of the colors, which was pretty much shades of black and grey. The Cupro fabric is silky soft and has a very nice hand feel. It is lightweight and something that feels nice against the skin. There is some elasticity to the fabric but no compression at all. So, don’t try Lululemon Lab thinking you’re going to get the same compression as Full-On Luxtreme. The stretchiness feels more like regular leggings or pantyhose. One thing I noticed about Cupro was it did not slide on as easily in form fitted items. It sort of stuck to your skin so you had to pull and smooth.
I could not find any links to purchase Lululemon Lab online directly from Lululemon. It appears these are in store items only. So, if you are interested in any of the items I tried on, you will have to ask for a phone sale or go to Santa Monica (for the limited capsule) or the Lululemon Lab stores in Vancouver and NYC. I did find several Lululemon Lab items on eBay. Here’s the link to the eBay Lululemon Lab page, or see Lululemon Lab eBay selection at the bottom of this post.
Aside from the fact that this collection is not athletic gear, the most shocking thing to me was the price point. I could not believe how expensive they were! For the price point, you could get designer athleisure streetwear with more style. In all honesty, I don’t really understand the collaboration with fashion designers and Lululemon technical gear designers. It didn’t have the clear design of fashion and it didn’t have the value of technical fabric and design. I thought is was a melding of the weakest attributes from both worlds.
The reason why Santa Monica got a small capsule of Lululemon Lab items was to test the market. I’m not sure how well it will do, even in a fashion city like Los Angeles. I approached the section because it looked different than the usual Lululemon. Once I saw the prices, I wanted to walk away. The only reason why I grabbed anything was to try them on for you! If I was going to spend that much money on fairly simple pieces, I’m going to buy designer clothes. I think the fact that several of the Lululemon Lab pieces (brand new with tag) were priced below retail is an indication of what the general Lululemon connoisseurs feel about it. It’s either that or the capsule Santa Monica received were items priced at the high end rather than low or mid-range. I was surprised to see low markups, if any, considering the pieces are hard to get items unless you live in Vancouver or NYC. Then again, the Lululemon Lab pieces on eBay may reflect a broader spectrum of offerings than what I was privity to in Santa Monica.
SWERVE TIGHT AND UNION TANK
I was drawn to the tight because of the mesh detailing and when I felt it, I wanted to try it on. Cupro is very soft and silky feeling. This tight was TTS and slightly long. I had difficulty pulling them on because the fabric was sticking to me. I had to do a lot of pulling and smoothing to make the tight look nice and even on my legs. And even then, it still bunched in areas. It’s not like pulling up regular Lululemon tights. The waistband was slightly higher than the usual high rise tights. The seam details were typical Lululemon but the location of the mesh insert had a different “fashion” feel to it. More like the edgy streetwear-ish designs of Alo Yoga. It’s sort of a cross between Alo Yoga’s Coast Legging, Elevate Leggings and Set Leggings. These leggings felt like I wasn’t wearing much but different than the “naked” feeling of Nulu. I think because the fabric pulled differently than Nulu; it didn’t move with you as seamlessly. These tights will definitely not hide any lumps and bumps. I was surprised with the $158 USD price tag considering it was made from Cupro, which is found in many clothing items. The one nice thing is that Cupro is made from recycled cotton waste.
I picked the Union Tank over the regular length tank (which was a relaxed fit and simple scoop neck design) because it was a mesh tank. It reminded me of a designer mesh tank I purchased. I thought since it was Lululemon, I’d be able to wear it to my sweaty workouts. Unfortunately, not. This tank was TTS. I think I would have preferred it in a regular length rather than cropped length. I liked this tank because it was a true mesh, like the Mesh on Mesh Jacket reviewed by Cristina here and the Mesh on Mesh Pop Over reviewed by me here. But the fact that it’s not technical fabric, wouldn’t work for me. And the $88 USD price was outrageous. (Please excuse the odd look I created because I wasn’t wearing a better bra. I wanted to be comfortable so I wore a bandeau top under the tank I wore shopping).
The Mitra Parka was the reason why I went to the Lululemon Lab corner of the store. I was drawn to the color of the fabric. Imagine military camo with all the colors mixed to create a single color — not quite brown or green or tan. (My pictures don’t really capture the color well). It was also an uneven pigment with splotches of brownish black. The color had a really nice texture to it. This jacket is oversized, as a parka should be. This is my TTS and I probably could have sized down. But the shoulders and sleeve length seemed to fit right. Although I don’t think there would have been much of a difference in a size down. I thought the front of the Mitra Parka looked overwhelming and boxy on me. It’s probably because of the big square pockets from my waist to my hips. There is an inside drawstring to cinch in the waist, which I did but was un-noticeable from the front. The Mitra Parka looked much better from the back. I actually thought it looked cute. When I looked at the price tag I gasped! It was $428 USD!!! Obviously, it’s a definite no for me. If I’m going to spend that kind of money, I need something that’s more functional for Los Angeles. Now, if Lululemon made an asymmetrical, cropped moto jacket with this fabric and color, I’d probably be all over it.
I was interested in the Enfold Short because it was a short that looked like a skirt. Ahhh . . . remember the skort days? Although at the time it was popular, I wasn’t interested because I thought it was for *old* ladies. I guess I’ve become an *old* lady now. LOL. This short is TTS. It was ok; nothing special about it. If I were to wear casual shorts, this wouldn’t be a style I’d pick. And if I wanted a skirt look, I’d just wear a skirt. Although I think there’s definitely some ladies out there that could rock this short and style it well. Perhaps if I had another top (nothing in the store would have made it work) I might have liked it better. But for an odd short, I definitely wouldn’t pay $108 USD.
The Atlin Dress had potential if I could make it into another dress. Hahaha! What I liked about it was the looseness, length and fabric. What I didn’t like was the mock turtleneck. What’s the point of having a mock turtleneck on a sleeveless dress? If it’s warm enough to wear sleeveless, I don’t want anything covering my neck. I think this dress would have been much better if it was a v-neck shift dress with the shoulders cut in a bit. The Cupro fabric drapes really well. Even though I think I should have sized down in this dress, I didn’t think it looked overly big on me because of the way the fabric draped. For $168 USD, there are much better casual dresses out there!
Find More Lululemon Lab Items on eBay Right Here: