Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Junior League Line Up


 

            Today, my mom and I took our first trip to our city’s Junior League. The Junior League mission statement is as follows: The Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc. (AJLI) is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. (http://www.ajli.org/)

            It functions as a second hand store. Community members can sell their items for a few dollars and the Junior League resells them at a reasonable price. I wasn’t sure what the pricing would be like compared to other charitable organizations like Goodwill, but I thought it was quite reasonable. I managed to snag 3 items for 13 dollars.

            When I spotted this polka dot dress (David Warren: New York) on the rack, I hoped it would be a great silhouette and my size- It was both. It’s classic and fun- words that perfectly describe my style. The teal v-neck is a Banana Republic top which could be dressed up or worn casually. It’s a great addition to my “work wear” tops collection. Finally, this 100% silk sweater by Ann Taylor is so much more special than this photo would suggest. It fits perfectly and the color looks great with everything. Can’t wait to wear it as a layer piece.

            I would definitely go back. There was a really nice representation of quality brands: Talbots, Ann Taylor, LOFT, Banana Republic, J Crew, etc. Everything I looked at was under $10. Some items were cheaper than they would have been at GW and some were more expensive, so for me, I would say it just about balances out. They are having a giant end of the season sale in the middle of August (Fill a bag for $1!) so I’ll be sure to check that out.

Tell me readers, Do you think the polka dot trend is here to stay? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,

B

Monday, July 30, 2012

One Blouse Two Ways



Black printed blouse- Ship N Shore (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Grey button pencil skirt- Ann Taylor LOFT (via Goodwill) ~ $5
White pants- Ralph Lauren (via Marshall’s) ~$25
Grey pointy flats- Nine West (via Goodwill) ~$5
TOTAL COST:
Outfit One ~$11.50
Outfit Two ~$33.50

            I love finding versatility in my clothes. My plethora of secretary blouses can be worn in both dressy and casual ways. In look one, I paired my blouse with this excellent find, an Ann Taylor LOFT skirt I thrifted. The original buttons were plain so I swapped them out for these beautiful silver crest ones. In the photo, both pieces look like the same color, but there is more definition and separation when you see it in real life. I went for a more relaxed look in my second outfit. I would have never thought to wear them untied until I saw this photo from a favorite blog of mine, Pink Peonies (http://www.thepinkpeonies.com/). 

I also love the white pants with the dark top. This blouse looks plain from far away, so I included a close up of the print. 

It’s an interesting one and I’m not sure what it’s supposed to be, but I love the incorporation of orange and blue as small detail colors.
Tell me readers, Which look do you prefer? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Don't You Step on My Pink Suede Shoes



Floral dress- Derek Heart (via Goodwill bargain bin) ~ $0.75
White and blue paisley cardigan- Old Navy (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Dark pink suede loafers- Talbots (via Goodwill) ~$6
TOTAL COST: Approx. $ 10.25

            I rarely create an outfit in which I have thrifted every piece- namely because I only own 3 or 4 pairs of shoes from Goodwill- but here I have managed to do it. Of course I went for a print on print pairing, it has become my new mission to learn the art of print mixing. I would say this effort is pretty good, maybe a 6 or 7. The true gems of this outfit are the shoes. These little babies are suede, in excellent condition and made by Talbots. My desire to identify my virtual savings led me to the Tablots web page to look for a suitable comparison item. What I found were $105 suede ballet flats. Well can’t you just image my surprise and glee (and slight horror) at that piece of information! Virtual savings of almost $100 on a single item! It’s one of my best thrifts to date.
            Tell me readers, Would you spend $100 on suede loafers? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Friday, July 27, 2012

Oops, I Did It Again (& Again)


            My favorite seasons for fashion are fall and winter. Shops like Goodwill and Salvation Army offer some out of season items at all times, which means I can be collecting special pieces all year round, regardless of the present season. At times, I find myself getting hooked on a specific type of garment. Recently, that piece is the secretary blouse. Three years ago, while participating in a Goodwill “up-cycle”/re-fashioned” fashion show, I was assigned this beautiful outfit…(check out that fabulous hat and those heels!)

I fell in love with the silk paisley blouse and purchased it (for $3.50) after the show. My sense of fashion was a bit different in 2010 and I hardly wore this top. However, it planted the seed for what has truly turned into an obsession with the secretary (or tie-neck) blouse. My interest in this garment really accelerated after I purchased this pink, purple, and blue paisley blouse.

I received many compliments on it and loved the special feel that only a vintage piece can give. I wanted more and so my collection began. Presently, I have 9 secretary blouses (varying sleeve length) that were all thrifted. These tops are on trend for the upcoming fall season, however, you’re not going to find them for a better price or more special looking than thrifting a vintage one.
Case and point?

(Left: Saks Fifth Ave, Right: Equipment {via Last Call: Neiman Marcus})
I like both of these blouses but with price tags of $69 & $139 respectively, I wouldn’t dare buy either. My entire collection of 9 secretary blouses (the remaining 8 pictured below) cost me around $32. If I have to choose between 9 different options for $32 or one blouse for $69 (or even $20 at a store like Forever 21)- it’s not really a fair fight :)


They’re silky and light-weight enough for late summer/early spring and with a cardigan, sweater vest or blazer, they work as a layering piece all winter long. I should probably stop buying them, but I could go for a few more in solid colors- as you can see, I only have one (the silky champagne blouse- all the rest are printed, though it’s hard to see). Maybe black or purple?
Tell me readers, What do you think of this trend? Do you have a favorite among my 9 blouses? What are your style suggestions for this trend? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Remix and Repeat



White Polo- Ralph Lauren (via Marshall’s) ~$20
Multicolored floral Capri- Jones New York Signature (via Goodwill) ~$5
Baby blue skinny belt- Goodwill (no label) ~$1
Rose suede loafers- Talbots (via Goodwill) ~$5
TOTAL COST: Approx. $31

            I have been searching and searching for the perfect pair of floral patterned Capri or crop pants as they are on my wish list. Goodwill and Salvation Army seemed like pretty hopeless options because new trends take a while to make it to thrift stores. However, my mother found this pair in our local Goodwill and I love them. The colors are lovely and vibrant. I’m also so pleased with how many different styling options these Capris give me! I did a quick once-over of my closet and found 6 additional pairings!  I chose to keep the accessories as consistent as possible (although I could have had a blast with different shoes, belts, and accessories) so that the focus is on the Capris and the different top colors and shapes I utilized.
(L-R top, then bottom) 
(Click to enlarge)

This orange (the color didn’t really photograph accurately) v-neck tee as well as the yellow tank top are both casual ways to wear these capris. I also wanted to find a print-on-print option. Print mixing is a true art. I thought that a wide striped top would be an excellent compliment to the random floral of the capris. Using colors found in the capris, I selected this coral and white, and this chartreuse and white tee. I am pleased with the pairing! I’m not sure that any other print, besides a stripe, will work though. Any ideas, readers? I finished up with a popular selection this year- the chambray top. Mine has ruffles (YAY) and a rolled sleeve. I think it the chambray was a bit lighter in color, it would be even more successful. Finally, I did an untucked look (GASP!) with this lilac button up. Even though purple is not in these capris, the tone of this top goes with the tone of the floral.
            Tell me readers, Which pairing is your favorite and what other ideas do you have? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Ebay Highlights


Dear Readers,  
            As you may know, my mother runs an Ebay store (http://tinyurl.com/eBayCraftmom). The main focus of our store is offering quality brands at affordable prices. I wanted to highlight some of the great stuff there right now.  (From top left, moving clockwise)

~These trouser-style gauchos are Banana Republic “Ryan Fit” and they are a size 2. They are a wool blend and feature a cuff at the hem. They are in excellent condition (just need a pressing). Seasonally, they are best for fall or winter with a heel or knee high boot. We are starting the bidding at $20. Banana Republic is currently selling pieces with a similar shape for upwards of $50!! Virtual savings of $30 if you buy from us.

~This Lilly Pulitzer blue gingham skirt is so preppy and whimsical with all-over ice cream cone embroidered details. It is a size 10. Great with a white polo or button up, it’s a classic. Seasonally, best for spring and summer. We are starting the bidding at $18. Lilly Pulitzer is currently selling similar skirts for around $90! Virtual savings of $72 if you buy from us.

~These fuchsia knee-length capris from J. Crew are a beautiful piece. Brightly colored and printed capris are on trend this summer. Great for spring and summer. Pair it with anything from a classic button up or a basic tee. We are starting the biding at $16.99. J Crew is selling similar capris for $60! Virtual savings of around $43 if you buy from us.

~This colorful skirt is by Trina Turk- size 6. The multi-colored stripes are whimsical and fun, perfect for spring and summer. Paired with a tank and statement belt, you’re ready for dinner out! This skirt isn’t even posted yet! You’re getting the insider scoop! We will probably price it around $35. Trina Turk is currently selling skirts for around $150. Virtual savings of $115 if you buy from us! That makes this piece the steal of the lot.

If you want more information, check the website for more detailed descriptions. So go ahead and look! We have a number of other pieces listed including excellent denim and vintage coats. Cash in on virtual savings!

Happy thrifting, readers.

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Long & The Short of It



Star print wrap dress- Episode (via Goodwill) ~$5
Gold beaded necklace- Old Navy ~$5
Gold pointy toed heels- Nine West (via Bon-Ton) ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $30

            This is an all silk dress I thrifted recently. Buying an item for me generally means that I find it to be versatile. However, this dress is not. It’s not seasonally diverse. And as a single piece (rather than separates) its overall look can’t be changed too greatly. The pattern and style (a wrap) grabbed me but the strange combination of short hem and long sleeves as well as the “Dry Clean Only” label really made apprehensive. However the mental image of me wearing this dress strolling along Hampton’s beaches in the evening possibly wearing this necklace…

convinced me to buy it. Honestly, for $5, I bought the fantasy.
            I’m going to try and restyle this dress in the winter with black, opaque tights- Interested to see how it goes…
            Tell me readers, How would you restyle this look for other seasons? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Star Piece



White and black print tank- Ann Taylor (via Salvation Army) ~ $3.00
Off White cardigan- Vera Wang for Kohl’s  ~$5 (sale)
Black capris- Old Navy ~$10 (sale)
Red braided belt- H&M ~$5
Gold slip ons- Toms (gift, retails for $54)
TOTAL COST: Approx. $23.00
           
            When I saw this shirt at Salvation Army, I immediately hoped it would be my size. The print really spoke to me- it’s a common design on woven cane chairs and I’ve never seen it printed on any fabric. The collar is a bit different from a regular tank top, which I like- I think it makes it a more special piece. Ann Taylor for a couple of dollars is nearly unthinkable. Salvation Army offers a promo every day of the week. Items are tagged with colored price tags. Each day, a specific color is 50% off and every Wednesday, all items are 50% off. This shirt was purchased on a day when pink tags were 50% off.
            A note on styling: I generally do not wear so much black and white in one outfit, however, I felt this shirt was more likely to be the “star” piece if I wore understated bottoms. I actually wish I’d had a white belt when I put this together, but alas- red belt.
            Tell me readers, What do you do to make one piece pop in an outfit? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Literally Literal

Sheer navy floral tank- Liberty for Target (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Pink shorts- Tommy Hilfiger Outlet ~$25
Pink flower earrings- Forever 21 ~$5 (multipack)
Brown sandals- Target ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $53.50

             I wore this outfit to visit the University of Tennessee Botanical Gardens. Seeing flowers and wearing flowers. I can be extremely childish in my dressing habits. Going to the zoo? Wear something zoo-y. Seeing Arabian Nights? Tunics and harem pants. It's silly, but it's the theater kid in me. I'm certain my excellent (and literal) outfit went unappreciated by fellow floral fanatics, but you, dear readers, will see the thought I put in :)
            This shirt was a long ago Goodwill purchase. It's clearly supposed to be lingerie and I bought it with the intent of using it as a beach cover-up, which is also why I packed it. However, it was very hot the day we were heading to the gardens and it seems like an excellent selection, especially when one also considers the floral print. It's not a very versatile piece but I bought it years before I was more conscious of what I was buying, even for $3.50.
           Tell me readers, Do you ever get creative and use lingerie in your everyday wardrobe? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B


Saturday, July 21, 2012

50 Classics



White and navy striped t-shirt- Tommy Hilfiger (via Marshalls) ~$15
Navy cotton skort- via Boscov’s ~$10
Map print scarf- Thrifted (no tag) ~$6
Gold slip-ons- Toms Shoes ~(gift, retails for $54)
TOTAL COST: Approx. $31

            I simple, chic look and thought, what better way to accomplish that than to go with preppy classics? My style is flexible, but I do enjoy the classics. All women should build a wardrobe based on their personal tastes, however, I find this list of classics to be pretty helpful. In this picture, I’m working a few of the items- can you spot them?
            Here’s the checklist and a link (http://www.bellechantelle.com/2011/02/50-classics-for-your-closet.html) to a pictorial version. 

           Currently I have 42 items (although some, like the trench or blazer, are variations of the piece rather than what is stated). The missing items I’m currently searching for are: Classic Oxford (in blue) and Black Cigarette Pants.
            Tell me readers, How many items on the list do you have? or Which are you still searching for? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Friday, July 20, 2012

Jellies For Adults



Black tank top with thin white stripes and collar- Ralph Lauren POLO (via Marshall’s) ~$20
Pink, white and black striped skirt- Dana Buchman (via Goodwill) ~$5
Glitter rose earrings- Totally forget, probably Target or Forever 21 ~$3 (possibly?)
Pink jellies- Delia*s ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $48

            I was going for a “retro-housewife” look today. While I am not thrilled with how it looks in the picture, I did get a few compliments from classmates and I thought in person that the prints somehow worked better. This skirt is one I’ve long had from Goodwill. It’s a good length, it's pleated and there is pink in it- a winning combination. I truly wish the black parts of this skirt were navy, as pink, navy and white is another winning color trio in my book. Ah well, for $5, it’s still an excellent deal.
            Are you thinking, “Jellies are being made for adults?!” the answer is yes. I bought these from Delia*s a number of years ago and barely wear them. Why? They are not comfortable for nearly any amount of walking and if your feet sweat even a little, forget about keeping them on at all- it’s like a Slip ‘N Slide. I was headed to class (read: MINIMAL walking), wanted to wear a flat and thought a pink shoe would be nice with this outfit, so here they are! Adult jellies.
Tell me readers, What childhood fashion trend to you miss? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Separates Have More Fun



Black, white and red silky tie dress- WD NY (via Goodwill) ~$5
Silver gladiators- Bongo (via TJ Maxx) ~$5
TOTAL COST: Approx. $10

            Ah this dress. Silky to the touch (though not silk) and easy to wear. Only, it doesn’t make for an interesting outfit post. (That’s kind of the thing about dresses. Separates are much more fun!!) I did thrift this dress at a GW a number of years ago, which fits my blog’s mission statement. It’s a little big for me, but it ties in the back so I make it work. I had never heard of WD NY as a brand of clothing and the tag is super boring, but a Google hit reveals that it is a brand sold at Lord & Taylor (no wonder we haven’t crossed paths) and the retail price for dresses is in the $60 range. WOAH! Virtual savings of $55. Do I think this dress is worth $60? NO! Maybe $20- MAYBE! Alright, end rant about over priced clothing. Side note, don’t these gladiators go with everything? What will be my go-to winter shoe?
Tell me readers, Have you ever heard of WD NY? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Sal-Val Scouting

           Mom and I decided to pop by the local Salvation Army for some thrifting. Our local GW is quite small compared to others I’ve visited, so when we’re really in the mood to search the racks, it is best to hit the Sal Val as it’s at least 3x larger. We did A LOT of picking and trying on. I came out with 6 pieces for a total cost of $23.00. Mom also added a few new pieces to our eBay account (http://tinyurl.com/eBayCraftmom).
            My favorite snag of the day is an item that was on my Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/ladypsychology/) wish list- a removable fur collar for a winter coat. I had pretty much given up on finding one in the stores I visit, so I was perusing Etsy for something well priced that didn’t look like a bad rug. I had found a few nice, real rabbit fur collars and some nice faux’s for anywhere between $15-$30. The price I paid for this little gem…?

$7.50. It’s faux, its lush, it ties at the bottom, it’s excellent. Another item off the Wish List!
             The remaining 5 pieces are all clothing: 2 (more) vintage secretary blouses (black with orange and blue accents {Ship ‘N Shore}, and the red, white and black vertical stripe {Knitmakers}), a Land’s End deep red with white cherry blossom print cardigan, black and white print Ann Taylor tank top, and a white Ann Taylor poppy printed skort. I will admit, I have a serious addiction to tie-neck, secretary blouses. With the addition of these two, I now have 8 of varying sleeve lengths (Perhaps it’s time to stop…). Not all of the pieces I bought are summer season clothes, so you’ll just have to wait to see how I work them into my fall/winter wardrobe. I’m sure the poppy skirt and black and white printed tank will be working their way into some up coming posts! I have a hard time waiting to wear my new pieces. 


Tell me readers, What item of clothing do you have multiples of? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
Thriftfully Yours,
B
~P.S. Check out this thrilling polyester number I tried on. Sadly it didn’t fit (wouldn’t zip up in the back) but I got a picture of it! Mom says its very “Laugh In.” I loved it. Don’t know where I would wear it, but what a piece to have around for parties or a photo shoot!


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Virtual Savings



Lilac sleeveless button up- Eddie Bauer (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Green embroidered chino shorts- J Crew ~$30
Pink flower hair clips- Target ~$4
Brown leather belt- Vintage (from mom)
Green & navy sandals- Lands End ~$10
TOTAL COST: Approx. $47.50

            You may remember this lilac top from my “Heapin Haul” post. Well here it is, all clean and ironed. I love it! It’s in excellent condition- I doubt it was worn more than a hand full of times before it was donated. The fit is great and the style is classic. It seems like this shirt can go with anything- denim, khaki, black, brown, etc.
I always like to check out current pricing on pieces on similar pieces, especially when I find an item to a certain quality. For this top, I hopped on over to the Eddie Bauer website. What did I find? A top like this sells, full price, for $50. Can I say that, although it’s a lovely top, I would never pay $50 for it. Part of the reason I like it is because I got it for such a great price (can’t beat $3.50). Virtual savings of $46.50! That price is partly based on the label but also based on quality. The stitching, detailing and quality of the fabric and buttons is part of what a $50 price tag is based on.
Tell me readers, Do you ever look at comparable prices for your Goodwill snags? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.net

Thriftfully Yours,
B           

Challenge Accepted!


Ditsy floral tiered dress- Express outlet ~$20
Peacock and blue feather earrings- Forever 21 ~$6
Baby blue vintage skinny belt- no tag (via Goodwill) ~$ .97
Brown sandal- Target ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $46.97

            Recently in the Northeast, we had a horrific heat wave. Beating the heat in a fashionable way can be a challenge, but as Barney Stinson often says: Challenge Accepted! I’ve had this dress for a few years and rarely wear it. The dress is tiered and without a belt, I end up looking slightly like a Christmas tree because I’m pear shaped. My new-to-me baby blue skinny belt was the perfect choice for a pop of color, which breaks up the busy pattern, and gave the silhouette a better shape. What may not be obvious in the photo is that the fabric used is actually a stretchy-mesh, which is highly breathable, making it perfect for hot weather. I wore this dress out to dinner, so I added my feather earrings. I’m not sure if this trend is “over” but I’m not ready to let it go.
Tell me readers, How do you stay cool and fashionable when the weather gets hot? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

So Bad It's Good


Black scoop neck t-shirt- Old Navy ~$7
Red iris maxi skirt- No tag (via Goodwill) ~$5
Vintage gold pendant necklace- Flea market ~$5
Silver gladiator sandals- Bongo (via TJ Maxx) ~$5
TOTAL COST: Approx. $22

            Dear beautiful vintage skirt- Why are you tagless? I can’t research you and find other pieces who look like you. I can’t locate the shift dress version of you on Etsy. Le sigh. These, dear readers, are the pieces I shop thrift FOR. The rare, the one of a kind, the “it’s so old, it’s new.” These also happen to be love-it-or-hate-it type pieces, or the ever popular, “it’s so bad, it’s good.”
When I saw this skirt, I hoped it would fit and I got lucky. It’s polyester, which means three things: it’s machine washable (awesome), it doesn’t wrinkle (a plus), and it’s not a natural, or breathable fabric (i.e. bad in the heat). I’m not really sure what season it’s meant for, so I intend to pretty much wear it year round. The negative aspect associated with such a piece are factors such as versatility— What else can I wear it with? Additionally, I can’t wear this piece more than once a month (if that) because of its bold appearance. It’s a statement piece. I have a number of pieces like this (also including an abstract spotted leopard pair of skinny pants and a baby blue, cherry blossom and bird printed vintage dress). As an outgoing girl, especially in fashion, these are pieces I’m drawn to naturally. However, one needs balance in her wardrobe and that need for balance leads to the purchase of basics. Basics like this scoop neck black t-shirt. I think they pair well together. The neutral top leaves all the attention of the beautiful print on the skirt.            
Tell me readers, Is this skirt “so bad it’s good” or a unique snag? Inbox or email me your opinion at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Pastel Princess or Easter Egg?


White, frill collar tank- Ann Taylor LOFT outlet ~$20
Purple shorts- Land N Sea (via TJ Maxx) ~$15 
Light green ¾ cardi- No tags (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Silk scarf- Vera Bradley (gift)
Pink sneakers- Keds ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $58.50

            I want to wear these purple shorts weekly but I have restrained, dear readers, so that you can see more of my wardrobe. That has been a very happy side effect of documenting my outfits- I am wearing much more of my collection. Even with hundreds of choices, I have favorites that I feel pulled to wear again and again. I never know when something I buy, new or thrifted, is going to become a favorite- I mean, I liked it enough to buy it, didn’t I? I hate to boil it down to only a few factors but I assume versatility, wearibility and flexibility are all important to consider. These shorts are definitely all three!
            I look a little like an Easter egg, which I gracefully accept. This isn’t a color palate I wear a lot, I prefer bold or deep colors, so it’s refreshing to pair a few pastels together for a new vibe. Something is missing though— frilly socks that all the little girls wear to church. Do they sell these for adults? I guess I should Google that…
Tell me readers, Do you think wearing multiple pastels automatically makes you look like your fashion inspiration was the Easter bunny? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Looks Good Standing Up...


Pink button-up dress- Issac Mizrahi for Target (via Goodwill) ~$5
Paisley cardigan (swatch pictured)- J Crew (?) (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Bow earrings- Forever 21 ~$5 (multipack)
Green faux-suede skinny belt- Target (via Goodwill) ~$1
Brown wedges- Target ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $34.50

            See how good this dress looks standing up? Yeah, I know, such a pity that my hips and the extra small nature of this dress didn’t become better friends. I found it out the hard way, while at school where I’m supposed to be looking professional… Eek. My dressing room routines are going to need to expand to trial sitting. This means I’m now pursuing a replacement of some sort, likely in a solid color, but maybe polka dots.
            The cardigan, although not pictured, is one of my favorite GW snags, which is saying a lot considering the number of pieces currently in my wardrobe from GW is around 100. The tag has been cut out, but the quality of the fabric and buttons leads me to believe it’s a quality brand. The pattern and style make me think J Crew, but who knows! Regardless, it’s a wonderful addition to my (large) cardi collection.
            As my recycled/upcycled/refashioned wardrobe grows, I cannot wait to see how low I can get my outfit costs. This is a good indicator. I’m going hunting tomorrow with my mom, so perhaps I’ll find my replacement dress or a new-to-me vintage gem.
Tell me readers, What are your thoughts on the button-up dress as a trend? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Heapin' Haul



On my last trip to Goodwill, I had an excellent haul for the menial cost of $27. Did I mention I bought 6 pieces of clothing and two belts? WOWIE! One dress, a grey private school style romper, is not pictured (it’s getting dry cleaned). I’m always so impressed with what I can get for the regular price of ONE new item. As I mentioned before, I am building my belt collection and these two are great additions. The baby blue one is a vintage piece I snagged for 97 cents! I’ve already worn it a handful of times, it’s so versatile! The emerald green faux-suede belt was a new with tags Target belt. Original price? $12.90. Goodwill price? $1.00. Virtual savings of $11.90. HOLLER!
My favorite clothing piece I snagged is definitely this red iris print vintage maxi-skirt. It’s a print that isn’t a pattern, which I find interesting. The black and white print short sleeve secretary blouse is also vintage (tag reads: Ship N Shore). The silk star-print wrap dress is not very versatile seasonally speaking as it has long sleeves but a shorter hem, but I look forward to the perfect opportunity to wear it. Maybe a date?
The lilac button-up is a perfect condition Eddie Bauer. The pink button up collared dress is sadly, a post purchase regret. It looks lovely standing up (I have one outfit post in this dress) but sitting down, it’s a bit too tight and the buttons gape a bit, making it inappropriate to wear out. Luckily I have a more petite friend (My designer friend, Monica- check out her site here http://monicatulay.foliohd.com/) who I’m passing it along to. I have been told that you can make returns to GW but I’m not sure that I would. I either donate it (again) or find a better-suited friend.
Can’t wait to find ways to incorporate these items with my existing closet!
Tell me readers, Ever had a particularly good haul? Tell me about it! Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

No Bras Shall Be Worn


Tropical bird print romper- Department store (sorry, don’t remember) ~$20
Straw cloche- Disneyland ~$25
Orange cummerbund- borrowed from another dress
Silver gladiator sandals- TJ Maxx ~$5
TOTAL COST: Approx. $50

             My apologies, followers, no thrifted items in this outfit. I loved this look too much to leave it out from my blogging. This romper was purchased during my “romper phase” (about 3 summers ago). I loved the print (and the pockets!) so much that I bought it despite its backlessness (see other photo).
A backless romper or dress presents a problem- do I wear a bra? No. Error, error, mayday. NO BRAS SHALL BE WORN. If you’re a busty gal, or just not comfortable going braless, just ignore this daring trend.
Even though I had purchased this piece, I ignored it for the first year almost entirely. It’s taken me time to realize that bold style choices do not have to ruin my life or stop me from changing my later fashion choices. I won’t lie, I do a lot of checking when I wear a piece like this. Am I covered? Am I comfortable? It can be a challenge. But I’m not going to get any younger, and therefore, any more appropriately aged to wear a piece like this. While some pieces, like cardigans and pencil skirts can follow me for years, this romper’s life in my closet is limited and it should be worn now. The outfit served me well for an evening concert in the park- lightweight to combat the heat and the casual setting made the revealing nature of the dress perfectly acceptable.
Tell me readers, Would you ever wear a daring backless romper or dress? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Bermudas: Two Ways


Outfit #1
White polo- Ralph Lauren (via TJ Maxx) ~$20
Black and white print Bermuda shorts- Old Navy (via Goodwill) ~$5 
Straw cloche- Disneyland Park ~$25
Light blue skinny belt- Vintage (no tag, via Goodwill) ~$ .97
Green slip-ons- Toms Shoes ~$54
TOTAL COST: Approx. $104.97
Outfit #2
Black scoop neck t-shirt- Old Navy ~$7
Black and white print Bermuda shorts- Old Navy (via Goodwill) ~$5 
Silver necklace- Flea market ~$1
Red braided belt- H&M ~$5
Black wedges- TJ Maxx ~$10
TOTAL COST: Approx. $28

Same Bermudas, different outfit AND different price point. What a difference the cost of accessories can make, right? I could really go on and on about this cloche and these shoes, but that would go against the mission statement of this blog- I strive to provide information about the purchasing and styling of thrifty clothing.
These Bermudas, on the other hand, were an excellent deal. I call them my Betty Draper’s. They are versatile despite their bold appearance. In fact, it’s reminding me of Grease with “Sandy 1” and “Sandy 2.” Sandy 1 is conservative and clean cut whereas Sandy 2 is more sexy- tighter outfit and higher shoes.
That light blue skinny belt in outfit one? EXCELLENT find at Goodwill. 97 CENTS for a belt?! That’s unreal. I’ve got to check those belts out more often. For a girl who hates belts- I now have 6 and could use a few more basic ones.
            Tell me readers, Which piece of clothing in your wardrobe do you find to be super versatile? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com
 
Thriftfully Yours,
B

Fashion, Fit & the Fourth




Red top with white detailing- Calvin Kline (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
White and gold pencil skirt- JC Penny ~$7 (on sale)
Earrings- Local artisan ~$5
Light blue skinny belt- no tag (Goodwill) ~$ .97
Sandals- Lands End ~$10  Nine West (Via Bon Ton) ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. ~$26.47/36.47

            I love dressing with purpose and holidays often provide me with an opportunity to do so. Here’s my not-too-costumey Fourth of July ensemble. This post may be a good time to talk about sizing. I don’t put a lot of stock in women’s sizes. Each manufacturer does it differently and aside from that, the type of garment effects sizing too. For example, a tight, body hugging dress would require a larger size (for me) than would an empire-waisted dress, as I have a more pear-like shape. When shopping, especially true while thrifting, it is more important to look at the garment itself, and don’t get hung up on what the tag says about size. This Calvin Kline top was labeled extra-small, but it looked more like a medium and the print was so excellent that I had to try it. As I mentioned in an earlier post, it takes only a few moments to try something on. So when we look at gain v. loss, it’s a fabulous top to gain, and only a few seconds to lose. This skirt, while not from a thrift store, was so classy and versatile (and cheap! $7 is an excellent deal) that despite it’s Petite sizing, I tried it on- and voila! Instant wardrobe staple.
            You might notice I am wearing a different pair of shoes than I featured in the detail box. A good friend of mine who is also an excellent style blogger, (http://sugarandspicebyavb.blogspot.com/) said that while my outfits are stylish, my shoes are lacking, and recommended my gold heels, so here they are! While we’re talking about SugarSpiceStyle, she is also a talented nail artist (she’s tried tricky techniques like water marbling). I decided to do something patriotic for Independence Day!
            Tell me readers, Have you ever used a holiday to inspire your look? Inbox or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Instant Inspiration


White Button-up- Express (via Goodwill) ~$3.50
Denim Bermuda shorts- via JC Penny ~$20
Navy, white and green nautical square scarf- local consignment shop (no tag) ~$6
Pyramid spike post earrings- H&M ~$5 (multipack)
Yellow and brown leather bag- Perry Ellis (via Goodwill) ~$2
Green slip-ons- Toms Shoes (gift, retails for $54)
TOTAL COST: Approx $36.50

            You might remember this shirt from my Wish List post (http://bsgoodwillhunting.tumblr.com/post/26160395305/my-fashion-wist-list)- I really couldn’t wait to wear it and whilst reading Pink Peonies (http://www.thepinkpeonies.com/), I came across this photo:
Instant inspiration! I don’t often try to recreate a photo, but I needed a semi-casual way to wear a white button up shirt and this fit the bill. Of course, I dressed it up with the scarf (Feels so Hampton’s/Ina Garten-y) and today’s photo is the end result.
            Speaking of that scarf, in a previous post where I wore my other newly thrifted scarf as a gigantic hair bow, I mentioned that I had found an excellent graphic on Pinterest (Follow me! http://pinterest.com/ladypsychology/) all about ways to tie triangle scarves and here it is:
            Now that I have a few scarves in my collection, I plan on trying out and incorporating all of these styles into my outfits! Can’t wait to share them all with you.
            A note on the other accessories: These are the other earrings I was talking about! They’re understated but different. The purse is one of my few accessory finds from Goodwill. It’s leather, has a snap closure and is highly portable- LOVE IT! And for 2 dollars, what a find!
            Tell me readers, What is your favorite way to wear a scarf? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

The Skinny Cargo



Grey crest t-shirt- J. Crew ~$15 (on sale)
Denim cargo pedal pushers- Ann Taylor LOFT (via Goodwill) ~$7
Brown leather braided belt- Vintage (mother’s)
Ship & map printed triangle scarf- Local consignment shop (no brand) ~$6
Gold chevron slip-on- Toms Shoes (gift, retails for $54)
TOTAL COST: Approx. $28

I don’t wear denim often- not even in the winter. I own quite a few pairs of jeans and the ones I wear the most are two dark-wash skinny-cut pairs. These denim pedal pushers were thrifted at the GW a number of years ago and I barely wore them-in fact, they were in my own donation pile before I had the wherewithal to rescue and keep them until my styling’s were a bit more on the mature side. The fit is great, the wash is dark and the length makes them workable for spring, summer and early fall. They even have these great cargo-style pockets that became significantly more popular after the “skinny cargo” was unleashed upon the fashion public two seasons ago. Ann Taylor LOFT was totally ahead of that trend- who would’ve thought!
While many looks I post here on BGH could be classified as “casual,” this seems even more so, and I attribute it to the denim. The heather grey tee and pedal pushers were alright, but needed something else to make the outfit more attention grabbing- thus the scarf bow. I’m not sure that it was the right choice for this outfit, but when I get something new, I can’t help but feel the intense desire to test it out as soon as possible. This fashion-impulsivity causes me to do some weird things, like wear out of season clothes or mix style genres. This scarf is one of two I recently purchased at a local consignment shop ($6 a piece!) and I am already obsessed with all the ways I intend to tie/wear it. I found an excellent graphic on how to tie square scarves all sorts of interesting ways and I will post it with another entry I’ve got on deck. My fashion muse for this scarf/giant hair bow is the lovely Blair Waldorf (of Gossip Girl, naturally). While I doubt this ensemble en total would be appealing to her, the vintage hair adornment is a classic-Blair.
Tell me readers, Do you take fashion inspiration from a TV/Movie character? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Going Postal


Light blue short sleeved button up- Banana Republic (via Goodwill) ~$5
Black skirt with tiny white polka dots- BRIGG (via Goodwill) ~$6
Metallic pointy toed kitten heel- Nine West (via Bon Ton) ~$20
Pearl necklace (gift)
TOTAL COST: Approx. $31

            This outfit has a total clothing cost (excluding accessories) of $11! Would you ever know it? I don’t think so! This shirt was found on one of my most recent excursions to Goodwill and I was thrilled to see the Banana Republic label. Okay, yes, it looked a little “postal service” to me but I know that it’s all about styling! So I took it home, washed and ironed it, and decided that it would pair well with my black polka dot skirt.
            Over time and through lots of practice, I have developed an eye for quality and often find myself picking through the racks and flipping right to well known labels- it’s my super power. Of course, I see plenty of items with good labels that are U-G-L-Y. The visual appearance is also important. Now, I don’t want to come across as a label snob, because it just isn’t true! To me, a label can be important because, for many brands, it is synonymous with quality. The difference between buying a Banana Republic silk skirt at Goodwill for $6 and buying a poly-blend skirt from Old Navy (same parent company!) for $6 is not equivalent. I’d rather pick through the racks at Goodwill for these quality pieces.
            A brief note about the shoes. For this outfit, it would have been easy to wear a black shoe. Black skirt. Black shoe. It makes sense, right? NO WAY! Black shoes would have been way too bold and distracting from the more subtle nature of this preppy outfit. It seems like everyone is so into “the nude shoe” but why wear a shoe that blends in? That’s not my style. A light gold metallic shoe is also a neutral! It pairs well with many colors and keeps the focus on the outfit. (I also have pale legs, so a black shoe would be especially distracting)
Tell me readers, What labels do you swoon over when you find them at thrifty stores? Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

Thriftfully Yours,
B

Matchy-Matchy


Black button-up dress with small floral print- I Heart Ronson (at JC Penny) ~$20
Red braided skinny belt- H&M ~$5
Black, tan and red messenger bag with Aztec stitching- Mossimo{Target} (via Goodwill, NWT) ~$6
Tan sandals- Target ~$20
TOTAL COST: Approx. $51

            What an excellent find this bag was! It’s hard to tell from my small photograph how lovely it is and for all of $6, all I have to say is, THANK YOU to whoever donated it. The strap to the purse is easily adjustable to a wide range of lengths- this makes it easy to go from shoulder bag to cross body bag in seconds. I also like a bag that closes well. This bag closes using a fairly strong magnet/snap system. Easy enough to get into (as the owner) but not too easy. The bag also features a host of inner hiding spots (which I call “comparticles”), which, as a lady, I enjoy! Finally, my favorite feature is the size- not too big, not too small. My prerogative with a purse generally revolves around its ability to hold a bunched up cardigan. I am really beginning to believe that I am part lizard, which means if I’m out of the suns direct rays, I feel the need to cuddle under a blanket. Blankets are not highly portable, but cardigans are. I’ve been carrying this bag for a few days now and I am really pleased with how smooth, silky and real the faux-leather feels. It’s a far cry from the “pleather” of my youth (What’s up 90’s?). As a thrifty lady, I’m all about faux, because it errs on the less expensive side, however, a faux-anything is not worth the reduced price if it looks or feels comically fake. The whole idea of faux (in my opinion) is that it should be passable for the real thing by “walking around society members” (e.g. not connoisseurs of the real deal).
            A note on styling: For many years I’ve been hearing Stacey and Clinton try to help WNTW participants “unlearn” the idea that “matchy-matchy” is bad and unnecessary. Although I don’t go out of my way to match this closely every day, I like the level of coordination in this outfit. The reds in the belt and bag match well, as do the tans in the shoes and bag. Finally, the geometric straps on the sandals pair well with the angular-Aztec inspired stitching on the bag. It may be matchy-matchy, but I think it looks damn good!
            Tell me readers, Do you think this outfit is too “matchy-matchy?” Comment or email me at BsGoodwillHunting@gmail.com

As ever-
Thriftfully Yours,
B