Archive for March 2010
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Sunday, March 21, 2010
I found the studs at Hobby Loby. Here is one boot without the studs, I remembered to take a picture after I had already started working on the boots.
We are having mole poblano, yum! My stomach is already growling.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
All pictures belong and were taken from: http://www.style.com/
Saturday, March 13, 2010
I was putting off this post because I can't seem to get my thoughts together, but if I don't do it right now I never will. So here it is.
When I go thrift shopping I like to take a small bottle of hand sanitizer, most thrift stores have garments that have not been cleaned and well after touching so many skirts your fingers will get sticky and dirty so I use some hand sanitizer until I can get to a place where I can wash my hands.
Just because a thrift store looks messy don't think that you won't fid something. In fact I like messy looking thrift stores (as long as the clothes are on a rack, not on the floor). I even enjoy funny smelling thrift stores because it will keep some thrifters away =P and well, I can have more things to chose from when I'm thrifting.
Some thrift stores have outlets, yes kind of like store outlets where they sell off all sorts of goodies for less than half price, well they have it at thrift stores too. In fact one my favorite thrift store is an outlet and all prices are $1.75 on Thursdays, I believe Goodwill has them too in some states.
Sign up for sale notification emails, goodwill has it, when they have their 50% off sale I get an email and I'm there, you can also sign up with the store so they can send you coupons, some stores offer this, not all.
Make sure you eat, wear comfy shoes and clothes when you go thrifting and don't go looking frumpy, just because you shop at a thrift store doesn't mean you shouldn't dress nice. Plus it's happenned to me that the few times I went in my gym clothes I bought more things that I actually didn't need, but when I look nice I can say "this is cute but not cute enough as what I'm wearing so I don't need it" helps you when you're trying to stay on a budget.
Only buy if you really, REALLY, love it. If you like it, leave it. If you have second thoughts about it, leave it. Most of the time when you get home and the hype is gone you'll regret having bought that item.
Find your wardrobe basics! I've read many blogs where girls advice that you should spend some money on good quality basics, I say get them at the thrift stores. If you are patient you will come across those basic pieces, good quality too, and pay only a fraction of what you would pay if they were new.
Like for example, when I got my riding boots I was planning on investing $150 to buy me a decent pair of riding boots for the winter. I found a pair of boots at DSW that I loved but I couldn't make myself buy them, the next day I found my Ettiene Agnier riding boots at the thrift store for $30! I've worn them so much this winter and they are so perfect, it was just a blessing that I found them that day. So I say be patient and you will find that good quality item, no need for spending so much money, unless you can't wait.
When I say wear something comfy, do, my favorite thrift store doesn't have dressing rooms or mirrors! So what do you do? try the clothes over your clothes. At first I used to be embarrassed especially if there were men around, now it doesn't matter, of course I try to find a place where I can comfortably try on a dress without a man stading side by me.
The same thrift store, tons of women go, what to do when there is little time before they get the best stuff? I manage that cart like a pro driver, skipping over kids and women who bend the big behinds to try one shoes. I see, grab, and put on cart. Does it fit? who knows, there is no time when other women are getting the goodies. I pile and pile clothes I like and think are going to fit until I've walked through each aisle. Then when I'm done I go to my little corner and inspect what has tears, stains, and what is repairable. Then I go through my pile again and do the fitting, then one more time I go through the decreasing pile and try on or measure each garment, I do all these steps everytime 'till I only have the best of the best in my cart. Please be nice and hang the clothes back in the rack. We don't need to be messy about it.
Things that don't stop me: minor stains, tears, buttons missing, bad zippers, mild smells, dry clean and dry clean only, bigger size, shoes with worn out soles.
Things I avoid: sweat stains, dry fur if it's got to be dry cleaned it will be very expensive, not worth it, too tight, ugly pattern, blood stains, underwear except slips, stinky shoes, strong old smell (sometimes it's impossible to get rid of).
Now, this is the most important part, you have to touch, yes you have to touch the fabric, after a while your sense of touch will kick in and you will learn how to distinguish good quality fabric, this is how I've found many nice cashmere and silk clothes that didn't seem that nice on the rack. You will also start noticing the patterns of the fabrics, the colors, just by looking at the fabrics I've been able to find nice quality vintage pieces.
Vintage is very easy to spy, the more you look at it the easier you will find it.
Shoes made in Brazil, Italy, Spain, leather upper and sole, handcrafted are good quality(most of the time).
Shoes made in China, man made material, synthetic leather...not so well.
Shoes made out of leather upper and sole tend to be good quality, usually though the sole will be man made. The best thing is to make sure they fit, I usually take socks or wear the foot hose so that I don't have to stick my foot in on a questinable shoe. After I get home I clean all my shoes using alcohol before I wear them, if they are tennis shoes I throw them in the washer.
Don't be afraid to try different things from your usual style, it's not like you have to buy it when you try it on and if you really love, love it, then it's not like you're paying full store price.
Another tip is to look at the way the clothes are made, the more details like gathering and other appliques tend to be better quality, the harder it is to make the better the quality (most of the time).
Fit is very important if you want to look good, so if you don't sew and can't afford a tailor don't buy it.
Look at the buttons, usually the good quality clothes have nicer buttons (a little bit heavier too). Vintage buttons are easy to spy but some are yellowish, don't let this stop you, you can buy new ones and replace them OR you can buy a cheap garment with cute buttons and cut off the buttons to replace old ones (Some buttons can be expensive new).
Look at the patterns, do the lines match? most quality clothes will have the pattern match exactly all the way around even with buttons, kind of like the Louis Vuitton bags and the letters LV, yeap it's hard to match patterns and unless it's a quality piece mass producing machines will not do it.
I found a very cute sheath dress, it's merona (target brand) and it gives me a nice sillohuette but the patterns are so mismatched I feel a little self conscious whenever I wear it knowing that it's awfully made.
For the last tip, don't let dry clean labels stop you, most dry clean (if not all) can be hand washed with no problem, some dry clean only garments can also be hand washed but it's less likely, to be on the safe side I hand wash my dry clean garments and dry clean the dry clean only garments. Only twice I've hand washed 2 garments that where dry clean only and they were just fine. But once I hand washed a dry clean garment and it shrunk. However most were just fine.
So with these tips I end this post, hope it helps those newbies and good luck on your thrift store hunting trips =)
For this season I'm totally in love with stripe and flower patterns, dresses and I really want to try a boho look at least once. I think it's good to dress outside your box of style. I would love to get some moccasins, last year I saw a few pars but passed them up because I didn't think I could pull them off, I regret not hacing bought them. Now I'm going to have to wait and see if they come my way via thrift stores.
Skirt: Liz Claiborne
Shirt: Sonoma (Kohls)
Tote bag: American Eagle
Tulip pin: Vintage (estate sale)
Denim Jacket: Gap
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
I have to admit that I've become a good thrifter (not being modest, no =P), but it wasn't always like that. In fact, until about 3 years ago I did not shop at thrift stores, I had been a few times before but I had no interest, my sister always loved garage sales, my mom too, I hated and still hate to drive around and waste gas to find nothing.
A few years ago one of my frieds at work was talking about a thrift store that she likes, she had found a chrstimas silver ornament that costs about $50 dollars at the store and she had bought it for a $1.00 in a bag of old things that no one had wanted to buy. I remember I was so intrigued I had to check it out for myself.
I didn't ask her exactly where this thrift store was because I was embarrassed, yes I admit it, I was embarrassed because I didn't want the other teachers to think that I wanted to buy other people's old clothes and stuff. So I drove and drove by the street with no address, didn't find it. The next time during our conversation I was able to ask her more details where the store was without sounding too interested. She gave exact directions but when I went it was closed =( however I saw the clothes and I wanted to check it all out.
The third time I went I finally got in, I saw the sign that they were moving, close very close to my job. That time I bought an overpriced George brown skirt and an even more overpriced White vintage victorian type night gown, I wasn;t very happy with the price I had paid but I was content with my finds.
That's how my love for thrifting started.
Over the past 3years I've learned quite a lot, I've always been detailed oriented and good at it too, but it took me time to perfect my strategies when it came to thrifting. I did buy those skirts that didn't fit well just because they were cheap, many times I came home with clothes I never wore. But through this time I've learned my lesson.
So I'm going to share with you some tips to good thrifting, there's many basic tips that other thrifters have shared, so it probably won't be much different, but I'll definitely share my best ones with you.
Know when the staff puts out new merchandise- some will tell you, other's will say "we do it daily" so you'll think you have to go everyday but you won't because usually they have new stuff Thursdays.
So probably late on Wed it's when they begin taking out stuff. It has to be there by Thur. morning.
I always go through all the sections: childrens, womens, men's etc. You know some women hide things they want to come back for, or they just put back something they decided not to but wherever they can, so it's always a good idea to check every section.
Check the rack that's near the dressing room. You know what they tried on is probably good, so check it out, you can have all the best things piled in there.
Have enough time to thrift. I usually take from 2 to 3 hours at a big thrift store, depending how big it is.
Check the messy crates, you'll be surprised what people hide in the least likely places, I found my vintage Etienne Aignier boots in the plates aisle!
Take a tape measure and know your measurements (on clothes lying flat), if you're not sure you can just take out your tape measure and measure the garment. Sometimes this is required because there are not dressing rooms or not enough time to try on things, but if you have time to spare try the garments on. One of my favorite places does not have dressing rooms so I've learned to calculate if it will fit, and if not I take out my tape measure.
Picture the things clean and maybe refashioned. Most of the clothes at thrift stores are smelly, I always wash them before I put them on regardless of how clean they look.
Sweaters: I shave them to get lint off, they look like brand new after it.
Skirts: If I like the pattern and they are too long I shorten them, if they are too short I add a cute trim.
Dress: You can modify them to be a akirt and a top, you can make them smaller size.
Shirts: I don't like to wear long sleeves long, so I always shorten them or I roll the sleeves up, I think they look good.
I do not but undergarments or tights, that is one think I will not buy used but if I thrift them new thay I will get them.
Shoes: a little polish can do wonders, missing laces? get you some new ones at Wal Mart.
Missing soles? do the same. Shoe repair is so costly here that I guess it would be easier to buy yourself new shoes, but I have a couple of pairs I'm planing to take along to my next visit in Mexico and I'll get them repaired there for cheap.
Jewelry: you just have to clean it.
Watches: Ebay has great prices on batteries.
I like to shop alone, I don't get distracted by meaningless conversations and I don't have to be forced to answer whether or not the clothes my friends pick make them look fat.
I also take water because I tend to get thirsty.
Don't take your children, but if you have to take something that they can play with. Many times I see children playing around or getting into trouble because they are bored.
Make a list of what you want to buy and keep it with you, I have the list on my mind hehe but I do remember what things I want to look for. I also take a look at magazines to see what things I want to look for at the thrift store.
Okay I will stop here and continue next time because I'm worn out today. =)
Sunday, March 07, 2010
Wednesday, March 03, 2010
Blazer: Vintage (thrifted)
Shirt: Banana Republic (thrifted)
Skirt: vintage (thrifted redone by me)
Hose: I got them new at the thrift store.
Headband: Charlotte Ruse
Tuesday, March 02, 2010
This was my outfit today.