Affordable and Elevated

I'm not one to talk about specific price points too often, but guess what? I'm wearing an outfit that cost a total of $100 in this post. That's right! And what I love most is the versatility of each of the pieces.

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The most expensive piece I've got on is actually the Splendid slides, which I purchased for $40 at Nordstrom Rack at the beginning of spring.  I'm not much for trends, but the idea of an elevated flat for a dressier look is definitely something I can get on board with.  I love a good pair of heels as much as the next fashionista, but when I'm with my kids, they are just totally impractical.  And the same goes when a lot of walking or standing is on the event menu.

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black-slip-dress.jpg

This slip dress is from the Who What Wear collection at Target.  I found a lone one left on the clearance rack for $10 in my size.  A plain black satin slip dress? Yes, please. It's such an easy piece to use a million and one different ways.

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For this look, I repurposed the garter belt from a gorgeous pinstriped Marlies Dekkers set that I received from my friend Kate at French Theft Lingerie. It adds nice definition, and kind of gives a nod to the current corset trend. I love the juxtaposition of a piece with menswear details and the classically feminine style slip dress.

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black-slip-dress.jpg

I got this Panama straw hat at J.Crew for $50 several summers back and it is the hat I reach for all summer long. The classic shape of the hat makes it an easy pairing with all sorts of looks. If you treat a straw hat nicely, it will hold up for quite a long time.  Mine is starting to show some wear from times I treated it too roughly, but overall, I have been thoroughly pleased with how well it has survived several seasons of major use.

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black-slip-dress.jpg

My husband saved this silver clutch from the dumpster for me.  It's a great little evening bag! What a shame it would have been for it to go to its eternal resting place when it still has plenty of accessorizing life left in it. It's unbranded, and I have to admit, I like the total mystery of it. A little dash of metallic goes a long way, and this clutch delivers.

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There you have it! An affordable evening look for $100 made of versatile basics. 


J.Crew hat // Target dress (sold out) // Splendid slides // Marlies Dekkers garter belt

Classic Secondhand Picks

So much of what's fun about shopping secondhand is the hunt for the perfect gem! Because I love classic style - silhouettes, colors, and fabrics that withstand the test of time - I can always find something I love when I go back through history to add to my wardrobe. I'm lucky to live in an area that is rich in quality secondhand and vintage shopping options; however, it is easier than ever to find that perfect piece the world around these days.  

Historically, secondhand shopping online wasn't terribly fruitful because many shops didn't feel it was time well spent to post a single item on a website when it would need to be taken down as soon as it sold.  But since that process has gotten easier, I find that there is a depth of secondhand treasures to be found online. Today, let's take a look at a few items I'm currently loving.

1. Wool Suit Shift by Yoshi Yamamoto from Decades $750

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Located in Los Angeles, Decades is probably the best place to find jaw-dropping vintage couture. I love menswear, so this suit dress is a no-brainer for my classic wardrobe. Stripes get wider and narrower year over year, yet the narrow but mighty pinstripe remains a conservative workwear staple.  I also love garments that can transition from season to season, so this dress definitely gets my vote in that category.  

2. Asymmetrical Dress by James Galanos from Decades $250

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I love the simplicity of the cut of this dress.  It could easily be dressed up or down, which makes it a solid investment piece for any wardrobe.  A lot of times, an asymmetrical line on a garment can make the garment appear trendy or dated; however, if used sparingly, and as the only statement element of a garment, asymmetry can easily withstand the test of time.

3. Striped Sweater by Isabel Marant from Julianna Heale $240 (approx)

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Well, gosh! This is an easy piece to love. If this sweater doesn't have you ready to sip a glass of champagne by the seaside, I'm not sure what will. This piece is such an easy way to elevate a casual springtime look, and a perfect layering piece for travel. It won't ever look out of style.

4. Japan Dress by Boutique Nicole at Scout $248

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This dress has all the right pieces to make it an easy classic.  Simplicity reigns, and the details are timeless.  Everything I already said about asymmetry applies here, too. Honestly, who would dispute the notion that any little black dress is going to be a questionable investment?

5. Valentina Florals Bag at LaisVintage $61.59

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I haven't made a purchase from this Etsy shop, but I've had my eye on so many of the seller's beautiful vintage and vintage-inspired items. There really isn't anything I wouldn't love to call me own in the entire shop. Florals are often out of my comfort zone; however, accessories are a way I enjoy brining them into my look in small doses. Needlepoint isn't for everyone; however, the true vintage aficionado will know that a little kick of needlepoint in any outfit is a wonderful way to add a nostalgic touch without looking overly outdated.

6. Shelburne Flap Bag by Coach at DearGolden $84 

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This bag is an obvious classic no matter your style.  Coach is an iconic American brand, and this particular shape has definitely withstood the test of time. This is such a great daytime bag; why aren't I buying it already? This bag won't be going out of style any time soon.

7. Patent Penny Loafers by L. K. Bennett at ReLove $45

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Three cheers for loafers! Loafers have been kicking it (pun intended) for a very long time. They are one of the cutest ways to be sensible about your footwear. Black and white is a great combo. You can dress these up, dress them down, and honestly, you could pair them with any of the other items in this post and look fantastic.

Happy secondhand shopping, everyone!

New With Tags

As I mentioned in my previous post, one of the reasons I love secondhand shopping so much is the romantic notion that I can create bonds with so many glamorous, unknown women when I buy the items that are no longer serving their wardrobes.  On the flip side, one of the most exciting moments in secondhand shopping can be finding the most incredible new-with-tags item for a fraction of its original price.

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Enter these killer Vince red leather leggings. I'd spent enough time browsing the leather pants offerings of my favorite brands to know that the price point for nice ones rarely dips below the $500 mark. And the price point for really nice ones is often much higher. Having said that, I seem to have rather exceptional leather-goods luck. I scored these $600 over-the-knee Vince Camuto leather boots at Nordstrom Rack for $200 a couple winters ago, and this $1200 Belstaff leather skirt for the ridiculous price of $75 (though it was several sizes to large and I had it tailored for about $150) at Nordstrom Rack as well.  Maybe what I actually have is great Nordstrom Rack luck.

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leather-and-cashmere.jpg

These red leggings were the best new-with-tags score I've found while secondhand shopping in quite a long time.  They hadn't even had the little protective coatings removed from the zipper pulls yet! The pants retail new for $1095 and I got them for every bit as good as new at $190. And they fit exactly as I want them to fit without any alterations at all.

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leather-and-cashmere.jpg

I bought this Prada sweater new recently and I fell in love with it immediately.  It's going to be a great year-round piece because it's got total layering potential, and also works well on it's own because it's cashmere and quite comfortable to wear even without anything underneath. I've never had a short-sleeved sweater before because I always guessed it was an odd, impractical garment.  Yikes, what a misconception.  I've worn this sweater so much since I purchased it that my coworkers and friends probably believe I got rid of every other top in my closet.

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On a different vintage note, my husband and I recently wrapped up our search for the perfect vintage car when we purchased this 1966 Mustang. I've got a video up on YouTube chronicling that adventure.  Check it out! I've been a bit intimidated by the lack of power steering, but mark my words, by week's end I'll be in the driver's seat! I've never been one to avoid a challenge. So far, we've been calling the car our Golden Girl, but we're open to other ideas! We can't wait to take her on lots of adventures.  

Cheers to this very vintage May, everyone!


Prada sweater // Vince leggings // Tory Burch shoes (similar) // Celine sunglasses // Coach bag (similar) // Bobbi Brown "Sandwash Pink" lipstick

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