Sunday, January 31, 2010

Gray Skies Are Gonna Clear Up

Yellow Angora-blend Cardigan - Old Navy ($5.99!)
Polka-dot Sleeveless Dress - Goodwill
Gray Sparkle Tights - J. Crew, gift from sister
Black Cutout Maryjane Heels - Bakers

This is what I wore today, another Sunday ensemble. I had been looking for a lemon yellow cardigan for ages and was finally able to find one on clearance at Old Navy a couple of weeks ago. I love it because it's super soft and the button are little rhinestones. Though it's not exactly clear in the picture, the piped trim on the dress is also yellow, which is why I decided to pair my new sweater with it.
I knew I wanted to wear tights today, but wasn't exactly sure which pair would work best. I always fall back on black tights or stockings when I'm in a bind, but that can be pretty boring. So I tried something a little out of my comfort zone with the gray sparkly tights. I've always found the yellow/gray combination to be appealing, so I kind of think it worked. I also wore a silver headband to try to tie the whole thing together. Not the most exciting outfit, but it sufficed.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Maybe I Need Some Rehab

So currently I am reading The Gospel According to Coco Chanel by Karen Karbo and loving it. I was pleasantly surprised by its mix of history, motivational advice and Chanel lore. Although it's more lifestyle guide than fashion guide, I have been inspired by it. As much as I love whatever is the newest trend, I've recently been trying to buy more classic pieces - items that I could potentially wear for the rest of my life without looking dated.

With that in mind, I hit up Goodwill Friday morning and came home with a few pieces that I feel are in keeping with my new shopping philosophy. Forgive me for the spotty mirror pics, but it was the best I could do at the time. And my head is cut off because I was not in anyway camera-ready from the neck up. Believe me, it was for the greater good.
This sundress was originally from Walmart. It's not exactly winter wear, but I can see me wearing it quite a bit come spring/summer. I'm a huge fan of empire waists and full skirts because they are always flattering on me. This fit perfectly.
So I knew I had to have this pink & purple sheath as soon as I saw it. I vaguely recall Jen from Jenloveskev wearing this same dress in a post a few weeks ago. It's originally from Target and fit great too. Sadly, it's a wee bit shorter than I like my dresses to be (I aim for nothing much higher than knee-length) so I will probably end up giving it to a friend.
Apologies for the blurriness. This is a vintage Koret Career sweater vest. While my photo isn't really doing it justice, the color is deep garnet, and I can't wait to work it into my wardrobe. It will be a nice alternative to my typical cardigan/blazer.
I have been looking for a knee-length shirtdress for a while now. I used to have a white one from Banana Republic, but I lost some weight and it got too big. This is a White Stag blue pinstriped shirtdress, and I especially like it because of the details - sash belt, pockets, button- cuff sleeves).
Now I realize this dress needs some work. When I showed it to my 12-year-old nephew he told me it made me look like an old lady. Agreed, but it has potential. I love the banded waist and pleated skirt. I'm thinking I'll either get the sleeves shortented or removed altogether. That should make it a bit less matronly. The real selling point for me, however, was the detailing at the back.
Buttons in the back are just always so dainty and ladylike to me. And this mustard yellow color is extremely flattering on my complexion. For $2, I will find a way for this dress to transition into something a bit more contemporary and wearable.
Though it's not coming across in my bootleg photo, this black sweater is pretty much the softest thing ever. It's 100% cashmere, so I know it's something I will be able to wear for many winters to come. The skirt I am wearing is also a Goodwill purchase, but from a couple weeks ago. It's a 100% leather pencil skirt originally from the Gap that I was able to get for just $6! I've been wanting a leather skirt for ages, but never dreamed I'd get such a nice one for so cheap.
I suppose this last item can be interpreted as an homage to Chanel. This vintage sweater was the first thing I spotted when I walked into Goodwill. It's soft and boxy with awesome engraved brass buttons. And even though I only paired it with my knit jersey strapless dress for the sake of this photo, I'm kind of liking the preppy/casual combo. Very modern lady-like.

So my grand Goodwill total was 7 items for $14, and they all pretty much seemed to work out. And that's good because I desperately need to start curbing my spending. If not to conserve money, at least to conserve closet space since I pretty much have none left. So here is my vow: no more shopping in February! My very own shopping intervention because I really need to save up for my New York trip in May. Here's hoping I have some willpower.

Somehow We Keep Marching On

Black Sunglasses - Kenneth Cole, Optometrist
Red Peacoat - Old Navy Outlet ($12!)
Striped Shirtdress w/detachable bow tie - Vintage, Goodwill ($2!)
Black Over-the-knee Socks - Forever 21
Black Sliver Wedge Flats - Madeline Wickham, Ross

Just another average Saturday. This red peacoat is another recent purchase. I found it a few weeks ago on the clearance rack at an Old Navy in the Lake Elsinore Outlets. It was marked down to $22.99 and was an additional 50% off! I'd been looking for a coat in a bright color, and while I would have preferred a more exciting color (i.e. green, pink, yellow), it was too good of a deal to pass up. I've got no regrets because it complements a lot of my clothes really well.
I have come to realize that I am at my best and most confident when I am wearing a dress. If my friends wouldn't think I was crazy, I would probably wear a dress every day. This particular dress was bought on black Friday and is one of my favorites. Every time I wear it I get compliments from strangers. Today, for example, when I was walking through Forever 21 an older gentleman stopped me and told me that he liked my dress better than anything else in the store. It's nice to get a little outfit validation every now and then.

I bought a few items from yesterday's $2 sale at Goodwill and hope to have some photos (albeit, bootleg ones) put up later. I didn't spend too much, but I did get a few things I think have some potential.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Like A Bolt Out Of The Blue

Had a ball with the children at Disneyland today. Apparently the Octomom was there today too, but we had no sightings. Just good, clean, child-like fun. We didn't get there until about 12:30 pm, but that gave us more than enough time to hit the main attractions at both California Adventure and Disneyland.
Being there with four kids 13 and under really took me back to my childhood. All they did the entire day (between rides) was eat junk food - churros and cookies and icees and french fries and ice cream. Oh to be young again with a superb metabolism. Although, if I'm being honest, I probably was bigger as a teen than I am now. So here's to eating a granola bar while the children gorge on high fructose corn syrup!

So even though I go to Dland pretty regularly, it is still so difficult for me to figure out what to wear. The daytime in Anaheim is pretty much always warm, but winter nights get into the low 40s, which is quite chilly for a beach girl like me. So I always try to layer (and carry a jacket and/or scarf) for the cooler nights while not wearing too much so I'm not sweating during the day. I think I did alright today.
Black Leather Jacket - Vintage, Goodwill
White "Hidden Mickey" Scarf - Disneyland, gift from nephew
Sparkly Black Tank top (not pictured) - Ross, ages ago
Neon Green Deep-V Tee - Nollie, PacSun
Leopard/Checkerboard Print V-neck Sweater - Volcom, PacSun ($5!)
Medium Wash Skinny Jeans - Levi's, Ross ($8!)
Sneakers - Nike, FootAction

So the jacket and scarf didn't come on until the sun set, which meant I was able to showcase my new sweater that I love! Surf/skate brands are pretty much the be all and end all for people who live in my area, and though my tastes have matured, I'm still a sucker for certain brands. Volcom is my favorite, and this sweater was marked down from $49.50 to $5 at PacSun. Besides the price, I loved the quirky pattern combo so I couldn't say no.
Also, in case anyone's wondering why I layered a neon green tee under it, the sad (but honest) truth is that I wanted to match my shoes. The sneakers I wore today are one of my favorite pairs. I used to wear them to the gym, but about 4 months ago I changed from aerobic exercise at the gym (treadmill, elliptical, stairmaster) to pilates twice a week and at least one outdoor bike ride. I only wear flip-flops to pilates so my beloved sneakers have been neglected. At least they got to go out for a bit today.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I Got Caught Out in the Rain

Black Rain Hat - H&M
White Linen Sheath - Isaac Mizrahi, Target
Silver Bow Elastic Belt - Charlotte Russe ($2!)
Gray/Black Dot Sweater Tights - Charlotte Russe ($2)
Black Leather Boots - Zigi, Wild Pair
Black Rain Coat (not pictured) - H&M

If I'm being honest, I didn't really wear this outfit today. It's actually one of many outfits I wore (but didn't necessarily photo) during the freak storm we had last week that brought an unprecedented amount of rain to my unsuspecting beach town. Not gonna lie, I enjoyed dressing for the rain, but had no motivation to pose for pictures. Every day when I got home (sometimes soaking wet) I opted to immediately change into pjs, instead of quickly taking an outfit pic.

Now that the horrendous weather is over, however, I'm hoping to get back on track. Despite my best efforts at curbing my shopping, I have quite a few new (to me) purchases to share, and I am hoping to post photos of them sometime tomorrow. I went to the outlets in Lake Elsinore two Fridays ago and to the Long Beach Flea Market two Sundays ago, and I got some really nice things at both places. Not to mention a few super bargains I've snagged at my local mall and/or Goodwill recently.

Speaking of Goodwill, tomorrow is $2 day at all the local Goodwill stores in my area and I am pretty psyched. I am legitimately trying to curb my spending because I have SO MANY clothes, so this excursion has to be my last for a while.

I shouldn't go too crazy, though, because I am also taking my nephews (four, under the age of 13) and cousin (13) to Disneyland tomorrow! You may wonder, "why would someone waste time going to Goodwill in the morning if she's going to Disneyland?" Well, I can do that because we all have season passes to the Magic Kingdom. I probably go at least twice a month (don't hate me!), and was even just there last Sunday. Just another perk of living in Southern Cali.

Monday, January 11, 2010

California Love

Clear Wayfarers - Gift via Hermosa Beach fair
Vampire Weekend Cali T-shirt - Purchased at VW concert
Skinny Black Embossed Belt - Claire's
Cyan Pencil Skirt - Amanda Smith via Goodwill
White Studded Ballet Flats - Soda, Reflection
Black Bag - SAS via Rose Bowl Flea Market

I totally forgot I owned this skirt. I rediscovered it during my move and finally got it cleaned. The color makes me happy just by looking at it. Also, I was glad I was able to wear my VW tee since I felt pretty guilty about buying it in the first place. But their new cd comes out tomorrow (who knows when my copy will come from Amazon, however) so this was my little tribute to them today.

Discounting the color of my skirt, today was pretty boring. I went to the movies with my cousin in the morning, and we saw Leap Year. It was cute (particularly the dashing Matthew Goode), but not the best ever. Then I went to work a mid-shift at Urban. Mondays are notoriously slow shopping days, so nothing really happened and I even got to go home early.

Really, the most fun I had today was listening to my new CDs. I finally broke down and bought the new Phoenix CD at Target yesterday since it was on sale. It's so good. I can't believe it took me so long to jump on the bandwagon. I also just got my Fool's Gold CD in the mail today. I had my ipod on shuffle last week and "Surprise Hotel" came on. I had never heard it before (and who knows how it even got onto my ipod), but instantly fell in love with it and ordered the CD from half.com that day. It's just so catchy, and yet it sounds like nothing else out right now. If you can get past much of the lyrics being in a different language (Hebrew, I think), you're pretty much guaranteed to love their album.

From A Mess To The Masses

After coming back from the flea market yesterday I was so tired I had no motivation to post anything. Even worse, I was so enthralled by the whole excursion while I was there that I neglected to take any photos of anything. Not even my super cute outfit I wore. I may re-enact it later this week. Still, it was a blast. We stayed from 9 am to 2 pm, and I didn't even look at everything that was there.

While I took quite a bit of cash (in case I found something amazing I couldn't pass up), I was very good and didn't spend much at all. More importantly, I got a few items I've had on my wish list for a while, so I felt my purchases were very purposeful.
The first thing I bought was this great Guess watch. I've been searching for a large menswear-ish gold watch for ages, but never really wanted to pay too much money. This watch is in pretty great shape and only cost me $10. I also knew I had to have it because the leather band was able to fit my wrist. My wrists are exceptionally small so I pretty much always have to get watch bands adjusted to fit me properly.
Next, I bought this black purse. I have a go-to oversize black bag I have been using for the past year, but it's faux leather and is definitely on its last leg. I've been searching for a replacement bag for a while, but hadn't really been able to find something nice enough in my price range. This vintage SAS bag is just the right size and is leather, so I know it will be durable. It only cost me $5! I am so in love with it already.
My only other purchases where this skirt and dress. I can never resist a cute pencil skirt, and this wool one also came in my fave color combo of black/red/white. While I can't say I really needed another skirt, for $5 it was a no-brainer. The dress is a sheath that I am pretty sure someone made at their home since it has no tag. It's a bit too big for me so I will have to get it taken in, but I couldn't resist the golden mustard color and silky material. Plus the top has really beautiful pleating. Again, it only cost me $5.

So even though I only spent $25 altogether, I definitely think my trip was a success. I got some things that I love and didn't break the bank. I will surely be going back next month now that I know what I've been missing all this time.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Concrete Jungle Where Dreams Are Made

Leaf Print Wrap Dress - Speechless via Goodwill
Black Slip (underneath dress) - Simply Vera via Goodwill
Black Suede Flats - Kimchi Blue, Urban Outfitters ($6!)

Nothing much to see here. My $2 dress from Black Friday is pretty much amazing. It's so comfortable and light that I could wear it all day. And while I didn't need another pair of black shoes, these flats were too cheap to pass up. They are leather and suede, so I figured it was a good investment.

On a more exciting note, I just confirmed plans for a trip to New York in May! I am super psyched. Last time I went was the summer of '07, so I'm long due for a return. I'll be with a big group of friends too, so it is sure to be a blast.

Tomorrow is also sure to be an awesome day. I am going to a massive flea market with my friend and her husband. It's at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, and we're going to get all dressed up. Supposedly there will be just piles and piles of vintage items of all sorts for bargain prices. The possibilities are endless! Plans are to have a bunch of pics for tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

I'll Be Fine, Once I Get It

Brown Imitation Wayfarer - Urban Outfitters
Goldtone Heart Necklace - Forever 21
Black Cutout Shoulder Bodysuit - Silence & Noise, Urban Outfitters
Cream Boyfriend Cardigan - Had it for ages, don't remember from where
Houndstooth Skirt - Express, Goodwill
Black Over-the-knee Socks - Forever 21
Off-white Suede Perforated Oxfords - Deena & Ozzy, Urban Outfitters

Not exactly sure how I feel about this outfit. I put it together last night (in an effort to get myself out of the house on time this morning - still failed, however), but I exchanged a planned blazer for this slouchy cardigan.

My biggest issue is probably the off-white oxfords. I bought these shoes at Urban because I love oxfords and they are suede and were super cheap with my discount. Still, I've had them for almost two weeks and haven't really been able to find a way to wear them.

Normally when I buy something new, I wear it immediately. So it's a bit disheartening that these shoes aren't working as I hoped. I'm not giving up on them just yet, but I'm hoping for some oxford inspiration. The other problem is that, in this pic, they kind of look like orthopedic shoes. I swear, they really are cute in person.

Having listed the items in this outfit, I've come to realize that my wardrobe is slowly being taking over by Urban Outfitters clothing. Perhaps I went a bit over board with my discount during the holiday season, but I've gotten some amazing bargains. No regrets.

While this post is already becoming extra long, I wanted to show a few pics of some items I acquired over my blog hiatus. And of course, they are all from my fave stores - Urban Outfitters and Goodwill.

UO Black Friday Steals

Black Studded Bow Cloche - Kimchi Blue, UO ($5!)
Navy Blue Flower Cloche - EEK! by Eugenia Kim, UO($5!)
Double-breasted Cream Blazer - Silence & Noise, UO ($10!)
Suede Leopard Pumps - Deena & Ozzy, UO ($10!)

Goodwill Black Friday Steals (each piece was only $2!)
Red Cable Knit Cardigan - no tag
Cream Silk Tie-neck Blouse - Vintage
Purple Silk Tie-Neck Blouse - Merona
Beige Polka-dot Cardigan - Old Navy

Coral Tank Dress - Gap
Striped Bow-tie Shirtdress - Vintage
Black Ruffle-trim Slip - Simply Vera
Black Leaf print Wrap Dress - Speechless

Most of this has already been in rotation for the past month, so expect them to make their online debuts in posts to come.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

I Think I'm a Contra

So the fall-out from black Friday leading into the month of December left me in a whirlwind of so much stuff I had to do, that my burgeoning blogging fell by the way side. I had been debating whether or not the blogging thing is really for me, but hadn't really come to any conclusions by the time the new year arrived.

That being said, Vampire Weekend started streaming their new album on their website today, and I love it so much that I was inspired to blog about it. So I guess I'm back in the game. Yes, this is still intended to be a predominantly fashion driven blog, but the other loves of my life (see: music, movies, books, etc) will make appearances for sure. With that I say: Listen to Contra! It is good clean fun.

And if you are yearning for more entertainment consider seeing both Nine and The Young Victoria. I saw them both (on Christmas and New Year's Day, respectively) and think they were amazing. Nine is kind of light on plot, but the musical numbers make everything worth it. And Young Victoria is just plain superb. It's funny and sweet and tragic. Plus, Emily Blunt is really amazing. I never realized how talented she is.

Outfit photo tomorrow for sure!

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