Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Peek into Fall

Sweater: Target $3
Shirt: Target $2
Belt: $1
Jeans: Forever 21 $11
Boots: Sway $22
Purse: "gift" from Mr. Shopfreak

We were planning to go into the city and since there was a chance of rain, I got to wear a fall outfit!  I'm usually not into any season besides summer, but since I've been seeing so many cute fall and winter outfits, I'm kinda excited to remix my closet for colder weather. 

I am a huge bargain shopper, but I do have one item that I tend to splurge on: purses! I don't go too crazy though and its usually for a special occasion: Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Anniversary, Birthday or Christmas :)  I love Michael Kors' Hamilton purse and this snakeskin design was my favorite so when I found it, I bought  it even though it was more than my usual splurge budget. I have a brown one as well but the price I paid for both was probably less than half the actual retail price so I was happy.
Now I just I have to use it more, but that's the story of my life..

This year has not been going too well for my purse collection. When I find a purse, I do my usual price stalking on Shopstyle so I can wait for a good deal. I was watching a striped Kate Spade purse and it was at a price point that was a little higher than I wanted to pay. I was lucky enough to find one at a store front to check out in person and was planning to go ahead and buy it online as soon as the price was lowered again. The next time I checked the website, it was sold out! I called the storefront and the purse I just looked at was sold the day before. I guess it was not meant to be.  :(

So this past Tuesday, I was contemplating another Kate Spade purse during the sample sale and was stalking it again. I kept checking it out over the course of the day. After work, I even had the purse in my shopping cart and then took the kids out for ice cream. After watching the Amazing Race, I decided to get it as an anniversary present from my husband. But, lo and behold, this one was sold out again! BOOOOOO! I should have learned my lesson, but it's just hard for me to commit when I'm splurging. 

Thanks for stopping by! This outfit is also featured at Distinct. Style.Innovation
for this week's Fall Boots challenge! Check out the other cute outfits! 

Also linked up to Bloggers do it Better!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Tribal Necklace

Dress: Ross $2
Necklace: Glint & Gleam via Deal Pulp $16 including shipping
Bracelet: Party City $0.50 

I love how a statement necklace can turn a simple black smocked dress into so much more. I got this necklace from Deal Pulp and loved the colors and tribal-inspired look. Deal Pulp has Daily Picks that have featured pieces from "Glint & Gleam".  A lot of the jewelry has been pretty unique so I always like to check out this site. 

P.S. Links to Deal Pulp are through my referral site..
thanks in advance if you sign up through me!

Just linked to The Pleated Poppy for "what I wore wednesday". 
Stop by and see the other outfits. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Mini Closet Makeover

Maybe one day....
Photo credit: Pinterest

I recently wanted to add a double skirt rack under some hangers to maximize space in my closet. As I was strategizing my plan of action, I decided to reorganize my L-shaped closet so that I had easier access to my dresses instead of my pants. I wear dresses way more than pants so I'm so happy with my decision.

As a result of my mini closet makeover:
1) I found lots of dresses I forgot about. I decided to return some sundresses I just bought and I vow to be very selective before bringing another dress into my closet. We'll see how that goes :)
2) I made a new pile of folded bottoms for my shelves = more hanging space!
3) I changed some shirt hangers to the skinny velvet ones to maximize space.
4) I also changed some skirt hangers to skinnier hangers as well. The clips on my old skirt hangers took up 2x the horizontal space.
5) I moved some luggage out of the closet = more space for my purses

After all these changes, I didn't need to create the double rack after all!

If you are looking to do some changes to your closet, check out Kendi's closet series for more food for thought. Also, check out Dulce Candy's closet! It's soo pretty!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What I wore Wednesday: Turquoise Dress

Dress: Marshalls $8
Belt: JCPenney $2
Earrings: $1
Bracelet: ?

Since I started taking pictures of my outfits, I've been trying to get more creative with my hair too, this time with another braid.  I like how it looks up close, 
even though it could be a little more neat. 

Just linked to The Pleated Poppy for "what I wore wednesday". 
Stop by and see the other outfits. 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Maximizing your clothes shopping budget: Un-extreme couponing

My guide to deal-finding and un-extreme couponing:  saving you money to free up your clothes shopping budget!

1) Coupon Blogs: Check out coupon blogs before you go anywhere. Most coupon blogs will have weekly posts for grocery, drugstore, retail storefront and online stores. You can get a lot of personal care items for free or almost free, but you'll need to cut or print coupons and sign up for store loyalty cards. Coupon blogs will tell you exactly how to do it, so it's easy!

2) Swagbucks: instead of using google or yahoo to search the internet, use Swagbucks and earn points for searching. Last year, I earned $60 in Amazon gift certificates to use for gifts and for my People Stylewatch and InStyle magazine subscriptions. Can't beat free money for doing something you are already doing! They just recently have $5 Target and Land's End gift certificates so I can buy clothing too!

3) Ebates: get cash back for online purchases. It all adds up and you could turn your Ebate check into a new outfit! I haven't gotten into ShopatHome or other rebate companies. Ebates has been easy and I've already received a couple of checks in the mail.

4) Sign up for daily deal sites. They frequently provide free credits for new members so you can usually get some free or inexpensive accessories and if you are lucky: free clothing! Here are a couple to check into:

Deal Pulp: lots of cute, inexpensive and unique accessories in their Daily Picks area. 
SaveMore: $10 credit for new members
Plum District: $5 credit for your first purchase!
Eversave: $3 off your first "save"
Jasmere:  a charitable donation will be made with each purchase
Sharing Spree: a portion of the deal supports local non-profit organizations.
BuyWithMe: Local and national offers
Dealster: Local and travel deals
The Clymb: Athletic gear

P.S. A bunch of the links are to my referral sites, so thanks for signing up through me!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Deal Alert: Cute stocking stuffer earrings!

Groopdealz has some cute Mum earrings for free today! Pick out 2 sets of earrings and 
just pay $2.75 for shipping. 

Thanks Hip2Save & Thanks for signing up through my referral link!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Everybody Everywhere: Colored Pants

Crop Jacket: Forever 21 $10 2010?
Tank: ?
Capris: Mervyns
Shoes: Payless $5

Another fashion challenge post, this time for the monthly challenge over at Everybody Everywhere. Loving that I'm bringing out the old stuff..haven't worn my green capris in FOREVER!  My crop jacket is one of my favorite nautical/ striped clothing item in my closet, but of course, I haven't even worn it this season, or maybe this year...

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Wear It Wednesday: Long Skirt

Plans: Work
Ruffle Shirt: Loft $20
Skirt: Express circa 1993
Belt: Old Navy $1
Shoes: Payless

Just found another challenge blog and thought I would take part. At Distinct. Style.Innovation, they do a weekly "wear*it Wednesday" challenge where you can email them your pic to be featured. Click over to see me and other fellow long skirt wearers!

This is another circa 1993 skirt that I have and its been forever since I've worn it. It used to be one of my favorites back then because its so comfortable and I love the color.  I also loved this ruffle shirt and didn't want to miss out on it if I waited for it to go on sale even more. Sometimes you just have to splurge! 

Yay for my newbie belt! I've been wanting to wear it and I'm sure I'll get more use out of it this fall. Love finding cheap cute belts! 

I'm on the lookout for more fashion challenges..It's my 21 Day Challenge withdrawal in effect...

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Finding the Deal!

Here are my tips for finding deals and getting the most out of your shopping budget:
  • Only buy on sale! Everything eventually goes on sale so I really try to start with the clearance racks first. If I find something I like that's not on sale, I'll add a note to my phone so I can watch for sales and buy later or...
  • Set a price alert on Shopstyle: When I find something I like and want to wait for a sale, I search for it on Shopstyle and create a sale alert. They'll email me when the item goes on sale! 
  • Go shopping often! You find the best deals when you are out and about so go out there often. Plus, walking is good exercise! Die hard shoppers will also know when stores will markdown their prices, but I'm just not that obsessed, yet!
  • Use coupons and check retailmenot for online coupons before buying. If you shop at Target, they have coupons on their website that when paired with clearance finds, ends up with free or really inexpensive clothes!
  • Sign up for email and facebook updates to get coupons via mail, email and FB. Create a free email account just for these emails so it won't clog up your inbox.
  • Buy only what you love: I learned this one over time. It's only a good deal if you love it and will wear it. Don't fall into the "it's only $5!" trap!
  • Set a budget and keep track! I have a monthly budget that helps keep us out of debt. I keep track of my spending on Yahoo notepad and it helps me see what I've bought for the month and if I've spent too much, I can decide what I really want to keep.
  • Buy the size that fits your body. Don't get caught up on the size of the item. Also don't buy the size that doesn't fit you as well because that's all that was left on clearance. 
  • Take pictures wearing your new finds. When you can see it actually on your body, you can make sure that it fits you well.  I just learned this from starting this blog.
A couple of these tips will be reminders for me as well, to be more decisive and careful with my money. I get caught up in the excitement of a good deal and sometimes buy things that I'm either lukewarm about or doesn't fit as well as it should. 

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Fashion Reality

Plans: Shopping
Romper: Contempo circa 1993!
Belt: freebie with dress
Fedora: JCPenney $2 in 2010

Since I'm off on Fridays, I love that I get to catch up on my reality shows that I don't watch with my husband.  I'm in reality heaven right now because I have breakfast watching some of my favorite shows ever because they mix both fashion and reality drama. 

Spoiler alert: I hate when I have shows recorded on DVR and then read about the episode before I get to watch it so if you haven't watched Rachel Zoe or Project Runway this week, stop reading now...

Rachel Zoe: I'm bummed that Brad is gone. I loved him, but it's sad that he tried to steal her clients away. Rachel is a little much for me, but I have to still watch! Jeremiah looks like he's going to be drama too. Her line is so her, really pretty & luxe pieces. 

Project Runway: Team Chaos had the cutest clothes! I'm surprised Anya won, even though she's my favorite. It's probably because the challenge was all about the printed fabric and she really does do pattern mixing well. I love her tough tribal style (and her accent :). My favorite this week was Viktor's evening gown. I loved the ink spotching that he did. His dress for Nina Garcia's challenge was so pretty too. My other fave is Kimberly.  I loved the neon dress that she wore when she won Nina's challenge. Hmm, maybe I like her personal style better than her design though. Her Nina outfit was cute, but can't think of any of the others.... Who are your favorites? 

Past season fave for me: MONDO!

Friday, September 9, 2011

If it's not on my blog, I didn't wear it

Plans: Work
Skirt: Old Navy $2
Shirt: Macy's
Bracelet: Old Navy: 47 cents!
Shoes: Payless $5

“I have an irrational fear of wasting a good outfit 
on an insignificant day.”

Found this quote on another blog and I used to agree completely. I have clothes that have been waiting in my closet for a LONG time, waiting for vacation or an occasion when I'd see my friends, waiting for something. So now, if I take a picture for my blog, maybe that'll be enough to get these clothes out of hibernation. There is such satisfaction in wearing my clothes!

I don't remember the cost of my shirt, but it's been in my closet forever. With the exception of my shirt, my total cost of my outfit is $7.47!  Not bad for clothes that all came from mall stores, not a thrift store. 

I should have done a closeup of my $0.47 bracelet. Sooo cute. It has pearls on one side and some chains braided with blue striped ribbon on the other.  Love how accessories add that little detail that bring an outfit together. 

Thursday, September 8, 2011

21 Day Challenge: Lessons Learned

Plans: Shopping on Labor Day
Tank: Gap
Shorts: New York & Co via Ross $5 (with tags)
Belt: Gottchalks
Bracelet: JCPenney
Earrings: Charlotte Russe (free with coupon)

 After starting this style blog and trying out the 21 day challenge, I've learned:

* I wear my hair down a lot!
* Buying dresses all the time limits the remixing possibilities
* I'm way more creative with my outfits when there is a challenge to complete
* I save my new clothes too long..I need to wear them!
* Love comments on my blog! I'll miss being linked up to Kayla's blog..
* I'm going to be more selective with my clothing buys now
* I should pay more attention to fit
* All outfits from now on should be blog worthy!

I completed 18 of the 21 challenges! The three days I missed, I was camping and missed the link up deadline. Then, because I was posting a couple days later, I wasn't getting any comments so I skipped a couple of challenges to catch up and post on the same day.

I can't say enough about how much I enjoyed the challenge. Lots of lessons learned!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

21 Day Challenge: Woo hoo!

I got my first mention ever! Kayla did a "favorites" post of her top 3 outfits for each challenge and I made the cut! She liked my head scarf look for her "Adorn your hair" challenge.  It brightened my day when I went to check out her post this morning! And you know, it's all about the little things in life that make you happy! Thanks Kayla!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

21 Day Challenge: Work It

Plans: Visited family at college
Dress: Ross?
Necklace: Old Navy
Bracelet: JCPenney $3
Earrings: Charlotte Russe

Awww, the last day! I think we were supposed to put together our ultimate outfit, but I just wanted to be comfortable when we went to visit our nephew at his university. I was planning on taking the picture while we were out and about, but didn't really find a good location, and he'd probably think I was weird to be taking solos around campus. 

I fully enjoyed the 21 day challenge and it really pushed me to get creative with my closet. I have some other outfits I'll be posting the next few days and we'll see how much longer I'll keep this going. Thanks to everyone who has left me comments!
 It made the challenge even more fun!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

21 Day Challenge: Fancy Shoes

Plans: brunch and errands
Dress: Marshalls $5 
Belt: Marshalls $5
Shoes: Payless $8 

So I'm pretty impressed with myself that this outfit costs $18 total! 
But, really, everything had tags on it? 

We had to wear "sunday shoes" for this challenge, so I picked these cute red polka dot ones. I've been looking for red shoes forever and these are fairly comfy.  
Now I just need to find a cute red purse....

Friday, September 2, 2011

21 Day Challenge: Adorn your hair

Plans: school pick-up/ nursing a sick child
Scarf: Gift from BFF :)
Tank: Wet Seal
Skirt: Target
Earrings: Charlotte Russe

I wore this outfit awhile ago and started buying similar scarves to wear like this. I do this a lot, I go through phases where I'm slightly obsessed with my "thing" of the moment. 
This year, my obsessions have been: 
 *making chevron style friendship bracelets
*full skirts
*kate spade

some things come and go, some stand the test of time: 
*reality shows
*going out to eat
*shopping :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

21 Day Challenge: Statement Necklace & Remix #3

Plans: Work
Necklace: Simply Vera Wang, Kohls
Dress worn as a shirt: Old Navy
Skirt: New York & Company
Shoes: BCBGirls from Ross $20

I love statement necklaces so I had a couple to choose from today but this one looked best with my final remix outfit. I wore my grey dress again, this time as a shirt.  I also folded in my sleeves a little so it looked more like a tank top. This was my first time trying out the whole remix thing and I liked it for these 3 outfits. I don't know if I could do a full 30 day/ 30 item remix though. 
I think I would get bored with the same colors and separates. 

This skirt is one of my favorites, but after seeing this pic, I think I might need to hem it.  Not sure I'm ready to get out my sewing machine again though. I just recently made some little tissue holders and I was just very impatient with the whole rethreading and re-bobbin-ing. If not for those two things, I would really enjoy sewing. Especially with all the blog inspiration of refashioning thrift store finds, but  that's another hurdle to get over in itself.