January Thrift Finds

January was a fruitful month.  Let’s start with the finds:

Another plaid blazer from Merona, this time in cerulean – such a great combo of navy and bright blue to perk up cold days:

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I’ve worn this puppy several times already.  Here’s an example of it in action:

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I like including awkward outfit outtakes for your viewing pleasure. 

And again:

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More on the blazer here.

 

snow leopard vest from Old Navy, blogged more about here:

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So snuggly in cold temps!

 

Coach riding boots for one tenth of the retail price; more about them here:

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These need some inserts to make the hard soles comfier but so far I’m happy with them otherwise.

Ba-blam:

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I re-found these metallic pants by Rock and Republic which I had regretted passing up several months earlier:

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

They fit like a dream. Now I just need to concoct a date night where I can wear them with this:

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Bandolino metallic wedge sandals to replace my worn out Clarks (more here):

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I’ve also worn this chrysanthemum cardigan by Isaac Mizrahi Live! (yes yes, a QVC brand – surprisingly good) several times:

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After thrifting a muted red shirt for a friend, I’ve been looking for one, knowing it would go with pretty much all the clothes. This red Banana Republic shirt gets the color just right, is a great blend of linen/cotton and has a much higher quality than the Old Navy one I’d had my eye out for:

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Sorry about those undergarments showing through.  I should better coordinate my lingerie when thrifting.

Excited to wear this come spring (and maybe even a little bit before the end of winter!).

 

I’ve had the same two pairs of pajama pants forever – one since highschool and the other, preowned by a roommate, for almost 10 years.  They were both baggy and didn’t do a great job of keeping my legs warm.  One day I spotted a man wearing essentially sweatpants but cooler, and it dawned on me that I never felt cold in my childhood when wearing sweatpants with elastic cuffs.  Since these are now popular again (having been rebranded with the fancy moniker “joggers”), I figured I could pick some up at the thrift store and I was right:

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So cozy.  I love that they don’t ride up and feel like a sweatshirt inside and the marled fabric makes them cool.  Plus, pockets!  I promptly donated my other two pants to Le Goodwill (after thanking them of course).

 

At the tail end of the month a thrift-loving friend came to town and we blew through a few thrift stores, including St. Philip Cathedral Thrift House, where I found a perfectly blue casual dress that was just slightly too big – wanh wanhhhh – and this chic little jacket by Kenar:

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I like the texture (surprise) and the cut.  I haven’t figured out exactly how I’ll wear it (apart from over my casual red dress), but I’m sure I’ll think of something.  It may replace my snakeskin blazer…

 

I’ve been looking for a sleeveless denim dress and really dig this number…

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…minus the floppy pockets that add bulk to the bottom half:

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But yes, I got it, with plans to have my mother-in-law help my cut off the pockets and sew the seam closer to the shape of my body.  I don’t think it will be super complicated but her legit sewing skills will help make up for the fact that I can’t remember how to thread a sewing machine.  (Yes I could get it tailored but I’m going for some bonding time instead.)

 

 

 

Blooper Reel

A couple of also-rans in the search for a muted red shirt:

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I have a fondness for Lauren Conrad’s color palette and patterns (though not for her TV shows):

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Sadly, too big.

Looking for a top with some yellow in it since it would play well with the rest of my closet.  This marinière by Gap was not it – it hit funny at the waist.  Too bad ’cause it had a great split hem:

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Oh, how I wish this blazer in my favorite blue hue had been slightly less baggy:

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Oh PS, it retailed for $229.  Wanh wannnnnh.  I suppose I could’ve paid to have it tailored although I don’t know how expensive that would be… but sometimes when I find something expensive and pristine I just want to leave it for the next person whom it *will* fit to a tee.  You feel me?

 

I liked the color on this and the gorgeous buttons but oh hi, that split is getting a little close to my lady parts:

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The side view was pretty revealing in the bustal area as well.

 

This shirt dress with roll-tab sleeves by Speed Control was right up my alley but the color was a little intense and the fabric a little cheap:

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I was so sad about this simple, super-soft, casual dress in my favorite blue also being too big.  It would’ve been a great blue version of my casual red dress which has paired so well with so many things:
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That’s it for January.  What did you thrift/skip this past month?

 

My Style Icons

My style ranges from drapey cardigans over skinny pants to vintage dresses to oversized Liz Claiborne sweaters.

But if I were to describe my *ideal* personal style with an equation featuring stylish people of the world, it would look like this:

1/2 Inès de la Fressange + 1/2 Nicola Sturgeon + a dash of Luke Spiller.

Expressed visually, this would be:

style iconsSource; Source; Source

Let’s take a closer look at each piece of the pie.

 

Inès de la Fressange – Gentlewoman Chic

Model/businesswoman/muse/author Inès de la Fressange exemplifies the feminine side of gentlewoman chic with her fitted blazers, trim trousers, bold blouses, and always a touch of funk – see those two-toned shoes peeking out from underneath her pants?  And I count at least 3 patterns in this ensemble, maybe 4:

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Let’s admire the bold contrast here between the yellow and the monochrome jacket, with the whole look pulled together by that playful, yet ascot-like scarf.  And that superbly cut blazer!

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Also, brava to another poster child of gentlewoman chic, Garance Doré, for that incredible photo. Source

 

My take:
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Nicola Sturgeon – Stylin’ Power Dresses

Leading up to her election as first minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon started working with an Edinburgh dress boutique to create a wardrobe of solid-color sheath dresses with unique twists – what the boutique owners call “a soft power look” (check out the NY Times article on her wardrobe here – and then we can all talk about the politics of how women’s dress and physical appearance affect their electability as public servants):

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Shoulders!  She has this one in at least 3 colors – source

…for example, in orange:

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Hello asymmetrical neckline and slit on the side:

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Bonus: the completely fabulous, satin-y contrasting lapel on this blazer – that’s some edge, woman!  Theresa May, take note. (Or not.  Since, you know, how stylish or chic you look ≠ your ability to govern.)

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My take:

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While I do love a good plain dress for its versatility and the great canvas it makes for accessories, I really thrill to dresses like Nicola’s and the one above with its unexpected neckline and sassy gold chains.  Right now it’s the only one in my closet that fits the bill, as most of the rest of my dresses are solid-color and plain.  But here’s a throwback to a couple I loved that had to be sent on due to pilling:

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

Ahh, back when I did bathroom selfies.  Good times.

 

Luke Spiller – Glam Rock

Luke looks, sings, and moves like the love child of Freddie Mercury and Mick Jagger.  I’ve already blogged about his style here; suffice it to say that his boldly metallic, besequined allure is called to mind every time I spot a glitzy top I should say no to.

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My take:

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And… last week I found these exact pants I had long ago regretted not thrifting and I bought ’em without even trying them on.  They’re amazing:

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

Now to figure out where to wear them.

 

Who are your style icons?  Could be someone you know personally, a character in a movie or book (illustrations help), or a public persona.   Keep in mind that it’s not about emulating someone else’s look to a T, but rather helping you define your own style.

If you’ve never tried to figure it out before, I encourage you to give it a go.   Once you’ve identified a person or two or three, ask yourself: what is it about their sartorial presentation that sets your heart aflutter? How do they exemplify what you love to wear?  I’m willing to bet it’ll help you sharpen your own aesthetic.  Scroll down to share your thoughts!

 

Metallic Wedges and Making Room for the Pieces You Want

You’ve probably heard the idea that if you’re ready for something new to come into your life (a job, a relationship, a piece of clothing) but you’re holding on to the old one, what you’re really communicating to the universe is that you aren’t ready – not yet.

I don’t know if that’s true, but it sure seems to work as far as my wardrobe is concerned.

I had been thinking about upgrading my attracts-all-the-fuzzies navy blazer for a few weeks, but hadn’t let go of it yet because I was afraid I’d need it for an outfit.  Then I realized that holding on to it was probably clogging up my attempts to find a fresh one, so I thanked it for its service – this post is starting to sound very new age – and put it in the donation bag, and lo and behold, found my new (to me) blue plaid blazer on my next thrift trip:
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Since this bag’s straps now have split and are coming out of the body, I’ve been looking for a new (to me) leather bag for several weeks with no luck.  The bag in better days (and not just because of the wine):IMG_2393
I kept thinking it was such a great bag and that surely I’d need it for the rest of winter, but then I just started using my gold bag instead, which looks a little summery but works just fine.  I finally put the leather bag in the donation bag last week (yes, yes, after thanking it – it’s been through a lot!); I’ll let you know what turns up next.

And now, for the star of the post.

In the last few years these great Clarks metallic wedge sandals have been my go-to to dress up my summer wardrobe. (They’re thrifted! Still can believe my luck).   They’ve accumulated so much wear that, even last summer, I was taking pictures only from the bird’s eye view to obscure the wear and tear on the wedge heel.  But even here you can see the paint peeling off the sole:

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I thanked them awhile back and started keeping my eyes open for their replacement.  My criteria?  Moderate wedge heel for a dressier look than my more casual flat sandals; dull metallic to go with all my summer clothes; comfortable.

Last week I found them:

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I’ll miss the cool braided look of my old wedges but am happy with these.  What do you think of them?  And what’s your experience with holding onto things you aren’t really ready to let go of?

 

Gentlewoman Chic

You may have heard the terms “garçonne” and “modern gentlewoman” – most recently popularized by Navaz Batliwalla in her book The New Garçonne: How to be a Modern Gentlewoman. (Review here and interview here.)

The French word garçonne translates as “tomboy,” while the “new” or “modern” part of the equation refers to the grownup aesthetic involved. Instead of ball caps, ringer tees, and Chucks, we’re talking fedoras, menswear-inspired blazers, and brogues:

Navaz Batliwalla Kelly Alterations NeededGarance Dore women's tux
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I’ve noticed that women who are drawn to the gentlewoman look pay an incredible amount of attention to quality and detail.  And no wonder – menswear, well done, is a feast of texture, pattern, and line all in a pleasingly balanced structure. Looking at the above photos, particularly those from Kelly’s blog Alterations Needed, has me itching to collect more perfectly cut blazers (like this one), sumptuously textured fabrics, and sleek flats. I might even pull my grandpa’s fedoras off the hooks on my bedroom wall where they hang as heirloom decor.

Although I wear my fair share of dresses (and am not afraid of a skirt in summer), I frequently borrow a page or two from menswear, though not as nattily as the women pictured above:

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What is your take on the “modern gentlewoman” look or garçonne chic? Have you read the book? Scroll down to comment.

 

Preacher Style

In the comments section of my reader survey, someone asked me to write about this:

“Your evolving style as a preacher AND fashion lover. I’ve always loved clothes but I went through a very conservative ‘modesty’ phase back in the 90’s (think covered up shapeless, long denim dresses) and looked frumpy most of the time. Even my husband didn’t like it. Ugh, what can I say but that I felt convicted at the time. It took many years before I was able to dress myself with freedom. I’m curious about your personal experience :) ”

I love this topic – thanks for asking about something I wouldn’t have thought of writing about on my own!

Let’s start with a story:

One memorable attempt at dressing to preach involved a navy shift dress in something silk-like with half-rolled short sleeves and stripes of color along the bottom – pink, orange, red, green, and white, maybe? – in varying widths.  I felt desperately chic in it, especially since it was a thrift score and thus proved one could dress stylishly secondhand.  I was so enamored of it that I refused to recognize (despite my mom’s warning) that it was too short and wore it to my home church to guest preach.
50761908This gives you the general feel.  Source

My high school French teacher and mentor – Madame, we call her – came to hear me preach, and as folks gathered for worship, I greeted her in the pew before turning around and bending over the next pew to kiss the cheek of one of the elderly church ladies who have loved on me since I was a toddler.  A perilous move, turns out.

Madame shrieked my name (at a moderate volume) and when I turned around, the look on her face was one of complete mortification; though this happened several years ago, I can recall exactly how high her eyebrows shot up.  “Leah, that dress is REALLY short!” she exclaimed. I still wonder exactly how much she saw, but I have never had the guts to inquire.

By then it was too late to do anything about it – the prelude was starting and I was leading most of the service and in any case I didn’t just happen to have a backup dress hanging up in the narthex.  Calling to mind the lesson imparted by another mentor who once chided me for failing to network at an advocacy event because I had felt self-consciously underdressed, wearing flip flops and a billowy summer skirt in a crowd of suits, I took a deep breath and went for it.

But why was this such a problem, you might be thinking, since preaching doesn’t involve turning around and bending over backwards in front of the congregation? (Now THAT’S a visual.)  Well, friends, you have not thought through the logistics of giving a children’s sermon while sitting on the chancel floor in the shortest shift known to humanity and trying to angle your sidesaddled knees such that your confirmation sponsor, jr. high social studies teacher, mother, and the parents of the kids you babysat for years don’t see your underwear, all while wrangling preschoolers who don’t really want to sit still while you tell a story.  Let’s just say I have a lot of sympathy for Lindsay Lohan and anyone else who’s accidentally flashed the paps.

 

Although I have a mad amount of respect for people who dress in a way that expresses their faith, dress has never been a way I’ve expressed my own faith. (This directly correlates to my liberal Christian upbringing and current progressive Christian faith.)   In grad school, when a classmate took on a nine month modesty project – head covered, shoulders covered, knees covered, no makeup, no pants – to see how it affected her sense of self and her relationship with God, I felt no impulse to experiment with the same.

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Me, dressed in shorts to lead worship next to Lauren doing her modesty thing at the time.

Neither has dress ever been a way that spiritual authority figures in my life have tried to moralize or shame me, which does often happen with clothing choices (particularly for girls and women).  For that I am profoundly grateful – in my book shame and religion shouldn’t mix.

That being said, I did grow up with parents who had some ideas about what constituted appropriate church clothes – particularly a mom who was not happy with anything too tight, too short, or too midriff baring.  I chafed against this (literally?) in junior high and high school, but a few years into adulthood I sort of naturally grew out of spaghetti straps and skintight glitter pants, and the memory of my mom’s chastisement softened into helpful parameters: if something pulls, it’s too tight; if something rides up all the time, it’s too short, etc. etc.

As the story above illustrates, though, I didn’t grow out of more “risqué” (my mom’s word) dressing all at once. As I began to dress less casually in my work life, the too-short-shift experience helped redraw the line for me about clothes for leading worship as well.  If it’s cute/trendy/chic but makes me feel distracted from or self-conscious about the task at hand, I’ll save it for the dance floor, not the pulpit.  If it passes the get-on-the-floor-and-play-with-kids test (dress/skirt hems) along with the raise-your-hands-high-to-give-the-benediction test (that one’s for midriffs) and the crouch-down-to-rescue-the-fallen-hymnal test (visible crack for pants), we’re good.

As for level of formality?  I have seen so many people shunned for what they wore (or failed to wear) to worship that I would rather dress down to help people feel welcome than impose rules on what is respectful enough for a house of faith.  I was raised in a wear-your-best-to-church environment, but I’ve also pastored an informal church start and a homeless community, so I learned a long time ago that you can worship God no matter how formal, groomed, or skin-showing you are.

Casual style from my new church plant days:

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I figure God doesn’t really care, but on the flip side, I understand that people do.  A lot of folks were raised to believe that the way you dress for worship shows respect for God. That’s why, practically speaking, I wear a) what makes me feel comfortable and b) what shows general respect for my parishioners’ sensibilities but c) nothing too fancy so as not to make less formally dressed people feel uncomfortable.  (This is also why I breastfed in church but often in the back pew.  I assume not everyone is comfortable with nursing in public.)

Reflecting the surroundings, I started off like this in my current church:

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Until I realized that all the other women in the congregation, save one, wore pants:

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Then we moved to a less formal space:

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On a related tangent, I don’t feel any compulsion to dress a certain way at other events because I am a pastor – if I’m going to work out, or go dancing, or go to the beach, I’ll don what I personally feel comfortable wearing in those situations (which, admittedly, is really not that edgy to begin with).  My spouse once wondered whether we should buy alcohol at a liquor store further from home so we wouldn’t run into our neighbors or seminary classmates – nope.  I’m invested in reminding church members and the world at large that clergy are people, first and foremost – called to a specific ministry, yes, but not necessarily any more pious than anyone else.  And most definitely allowed to express themselves through clothing!

For weddings/ordinations/formal worship services I add the oatmeal-colored robe, cincture (rope around the waist) and a stole:

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Or if I’m marching in the rain, here is the super-chic water-repellent outfit I wear (same stole as above, better view):

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What have been your experiences with spirituality and dress, modest clothing, or shaming around clothes?  If you grew up in a faith tradition or currently participate in one, what are your thoughts on what’s appropriate to wear to worship?  There are such a wide array of opinions and experiences out there – I’d love to hear yours!

 

 

What I Wore: Cerulean Plaid Blazer

You may recall my first foray into plaid blazer territory:

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Last week I found another plaid blazer by the same brand (Merona), same size, featuring some gorgeous blues:

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It came home with me, of course, although I wasn’t exactly sure how I was going to wear it. Those are some pretty striking hues:

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It’s hard to tell but some of the skinny lines are pretty much purple.

But I figured I could use it in place of the lint-collecting navy blazer that had lost its shape in the laundry. (Yes, I know, not a good idea to wash a blazer. Sometimes I am lazy and foolhardy.)

My first attempt at creating an outfit with it turned out rather Dionne and Cher from Clueless:

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The high contrast plus the turtleneck made for a very 90s vibe. I wasn’t really feeling the throwback look and figured I could fix it with a crew neck top, but I was already dressed and was feeling the late-to-work look even less.

I tried again on Sunday, a grey and cool day that practically shouted corduroy and plaid – style notes as you scroll through:

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Why is it that Merona blazers fit me better than most fancy-pants brands I find at the thrift store?  Not that I’m complaining…just curious about their spot-on fit, which I associate with higher quality stuff than Target brands.

 

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Sweater: Gap Designed & Crafted, thrifted
Corduroy pants: Style & Co., thrifted and tailored (waist taken in)
Blazer: Merona, thrifted
Socks: Target, retail
Ankle boots: Lucky Brand, gift from The Sister
Necklace: DIY from Goodwill finds

This time I think the softer oatmeal shade and the crew neck on this Gap sweater made things a little less eye-popping. The marled texture and split hem on the sweater also gave it a more current feel:

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As did the snakeskin print ankle boots:

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Next time it’s truly chilly I’ll be excited to pair this blazer with my navy turtleneck sweater to see if tamping down the contrast but leaving the high neck will work as well as I imagine.

 

How would you wear this bold blazer – if you would wear it at all? Was Clueless a cinematic touchstone of your youth?  If not, what’s your favorite stylistic movie reference? Scroll down to comment.

 

Friday ReBlog: Bits & Pieces

This isn’t really a ReBlog (although it is on Friday).  It’s more of a random assortment of stuff I wanted to share with you.  I enjoy reading this kind of mishmash on other blogs and hope you enjoy it here!

First up, a couple of real-life fashionistas I’ve spotted in the last few weeks and wanted to share with you.

This woman at Costco was wearing several shades of “red,” from pink to mulberry to purple, and pulling it off with aplomb – I think because she married so many shades.  Two might have looked off, but several made it obvious this was intentional.

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Even her bag trim is mulberry!  Style note: the lighter colored shirt (blush pink or white? hard to tell) worked to balance out the intensity of the other shades.

 

This gentleman browsing the book section at the Goodwill had the plaid/vest combo down.  And that short scarf gave it some verve!

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I would not have thought to pair yellow-toned cords with the deeper shades above, but it works – the light mustard leavens the heaviness of the other tones while the texture still says “cold weather.”

 

Here’s a sparkly top I couldn’t resist buying that would fit in perfectly with my fantasy style (and that I will likely never wear in real life):
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Sequined fabulousness by Jean for Joseph le Bon.

Why do I buy these things (occasionally, but still)?  I try to stick to the maxim “you don’t have to own to appreciate,” but sometimes I get so smitten with something that I am not successful in resisting.  I enjoy looking at it hanging in my closet for several weeks or months, maybe wear it once, and then redonate it.  I guess if the money is going to a worthy cause, it’s not that bad of an occasional habit.

 

Here’s a great piece by someone who uses thrift stores as her family’s primary source of clothing out of financial necessity and has some thoughts on what folks with more resources should donate.  It made me think of our discussion on whether thrifting contributes to gentrification (part 1 and part 2).  The author echoes what I heard mentioned by several financially strapped folks and employees of thrift stores – that people with more means shopping at thrift stores means their doors can stay open for people with fewer means.

Another secondhand shopping option has just gone live: ReStitch, the online thrift store run by Goodwill of North Central Wisconsin.  They have tens of thousands of items up, so go check them out – and if you decided to buy anything, come back and let us know what you think!

Last but not least, the spouse and I are headed to Ireland next month so I can officiate a friend’s wedding.  We’ll be flying into Dublin and the festivities are in Co. Clare.  Any suggestions for places to see/things to do?  I’ve already noted addresses and opening hours of three charity shops (aka thrift stores) in Ennis (surprised?) but the only other thing on my list are the cliffs of Moher.  I need help.
PS Get excited for a travel wardrobe post before the end of February!

 

Have a great weekend, Thrifters!

 

How Are Riding Boots Supposed to Fit?

I’m asking the question in the title because I found tall boots (one of the things on my current thrift list) at Goodwill the other day that were flat, cognac-colored, had gold accents, had toes that were not too pointed and not too rounded, and were leather. (I’d be happy with high quality vegan options but usually anything not leather in the boot section is cheapo Target ware.)  In other words, they were perfect.

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Except.

My image of riding boots includes a fitted shaft:

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But the shaft of these boots was rather wide relatively to the circumference of my calf:

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This pretty quickly turned into a mental battle over whether the “must buy” reaction I had outweighed the less-than-ideal width.  In my experience, saying “yes” to a less-than-ideal find, out of fear that another version won’t crop up, often leads to thrift regret – and wasted $$ when eventually a better find appears.  But with such a rare find, I was finding it hard to say no.

So I made a list:

In the “must buy” column: these babies, made by Coach, retail for $200 but were priced at only $20.  They were also my size, if a little wide in the foot.  I *never* find quality cognac/brown, heel-less boots in my size at thrift stores.

In the “less-than-ideal” column, that wide shaft had me feeling like:

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I admit I don’t pay that much attention to riding boots, having never intentionally shopped for a pair. Can you wear riding boots more loosely and have it look purposeful, avoiding a sloppy or dated feel? Not to be a slave to fashion trends, but there’s a difference between knowingly working a non-trend look and unintentionally invoking 1979 (above).

Surprisingly, the internet has a lot to say about how you can wear your boots, including ample visual evidence that the wide legged look is just as acceptable as the fitted look:

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Source, source, source, source.

Convinced I wouldn’t look completely unhip and clueless, I bought ’em, and promptly wore them the next day:

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Same boots, different Goodwill.

Scratch that one of the thrift list!  Bonus: my spouse thinks they look nice.

 

What do y’all think of the wider shaft?  Any styling tips from those of you who sport riding boots on the regular?  Scroll down to comment!

 

Exploring New Clothing Territory: Vests

This post is about quilted/puffy vests.  Sorry if you got all excited for 90s-era or tuxedo-style numbers!

In college I had a red, slim, quilted vest by Caslon.  I remember it being the first piece of clothing my mom convinced me to spend $50 (!!) of my own money on.  She explained the concept of investing in a quality piece you’ll wear for years – and she was right.  It was quite chic and a great color, and I wore that puppy on the regular for 6 or 7 years, easy:

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College me, posing in said vest at an Olympique Marseille football-watching club in France.  I have no idea what Che is doing there.

I haven’t gone in for quilted vests much since then – mostly because the styles available now tend more toward the sporty (not my style), and it’s hard to find a silhouette that doesn’t add a lot of visual volume.

Indeed, my next vest wasn’t purchased until 2012, when I picked one up last minute from Costco for a family trip to Scandinavia. (Judge away.  I was thrifting 95% of the time but got seduced by the bright, inexpensive clothes at Costco and the idea that you need to buy new/specific clothes for travel. Lies, I tell you, lies!)

And then, ironically, I wore it thrifting at the Salvation Army shop in Oslo:
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What, you don’t thrift on vacation?

It packs down to almost nothing and is filled with down, so it’s a great layering piece. But it’s been stashed in the back of my closet pretty much since 2012.   If I had to say why, it’s – again – because of its rather sporty style and the unfortunate volume added where none is wanted.

Two of my coworkers regularly wear puffy vests and manage to look chic, though. (One thing that appears to help the volume problem is not zipping them up.  Who knew?)  So lately I’ve been kicking around the idea of giving quilted vests another try.  Luckily for me, picking up a vest from Goodwill costs about $5 instead of the $25 at Costco (or the much higher price tag in retail stores).

Here are my two picks:

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Old Navy – thrifted

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Nau – my version is taupe.  This is 850 down and retails for $185!

The liner on this vest is 100% recycled polyester, and the down inside is also re-used.  I love the asymmetrical zipper which takes it a little more in the direction of everyday chic rather than camping chic.

My spouse laughed when he saw the Old Navy one – “You’re still on that leopard print thing, aren’t you?”  Yes, dear, I am.  It is NEVER going out of style, so get used to it!

I know, I know, I just said no more winter clothes – but although I didn’t showcase them in my winter wardrobe post, I did indeed write that proclamation after I’d bought these.  And I’m hoping these babies will help me get more wear out of my existing wardrobe by pairing with my turtlenecks, which I have neglected rather severely this winter.  Additionally, I think the taupe vest will transition quite well to spring, for those days when it’s still a bit chilly but I don’t want a full blazer/coat/thick sweater.

What’s your take on quilted vests – do you wear them or no?  For those who do, any tips for styling them in business casual appropriate ways?  Scroll down to comment!

 

Friday ReBlog: 12 Months of Thrifting Challenge & Mile High Thrifter

Links fixed – thanks Caitlin!

Dina from Dina’s Days is at it again with another 12 Months of Thrifting Challenge.  The idea is to build a comprehensive wardrobe by thrifting a specific item each month – e.g. this month is a cashmere sweater in a neutral color.  (Here is last year’s challenge if you want to mix and match categories depending on your style/what’s already in your closet.)  You can get inspiration and share your finds on Instagram using the hashtag #12MonthsofThrifting.

What I like about this challenge is that it encourages you to thrift slowly.  You have a whole month (well, 2 weeks for the first one since we’re already halfway through January – sorry, too many New Year’s-related challenges to blog!) to focus on looking for one item you really love, so you’re not as tempted to grab the first (cheap, ill-fitting) neutral cashmere sweater or statement coat you find. There are some good tips at the bottom of the post to help you embrace this method.

Dina is partnering with Mandy of Mile High Thrifter for the challenge.  Mandy is a social worker with a touch of Fleetwood Mac vibe to go with her dress-and-boots Colorado style.  She posts more regularly on Instagram than on her blog, but there are some great outfits in the archives!

 

Will y’all be doing the 12 Months of Thrifting challenge, or some such other strategy to build up your thrifted wardrobe this year?

Happy weekend, Thrifters!