Lucky in Leather

I’m telling you, it was a total dry spell as far as shopping went before I reopened my blog. CC must be my lucky charm!

I went out to Garbo with Louisa yesterday and she must have bought a dozen things and yet I walked out empty-handed and hungry for a bargain. The boys’ t-shirts I had bought for running ($1 each, at Big W) and the Schticky my mother insisted I buy (verdict: is highly ineffective against a Vallhund coat-bomb) hadn’t sated my appetite, so I drove down to the St Vinnies “outlet” in Eight Mile Plains.

I am generally loathe to purchase anything from second-hand stores. The patrons always creep me out a little bit and everything smells pretty musty. But like any good frugalista, I didn’t mind getting my hands a bit dirty if it meant a bargain. I’m slowly starting to warm towards thrift-shopping.

First up were these absolute steals: leather shoes. They were having a “50% off the marked price of all shoes” sale and I spotted two pairs that I’ve had on my wishlist for a little while now. Tan leather heels (with broguing, bonus points!!) and leopard print heels with a toe cap. I couldn’t believe that the only two shoes that I liked the look of were right there in front of me, in gently-used condition and my exact size. I got shivers.


 

I included a picture of the soles to show off their condition. Usually the idea of wearing someone else’s shoes makes my skin crawl but they looked barely used and I couldn’t very well say no to near-new leather shoes. Especially irresistible was the price: $4 for the tan pair (down from $8) and $5 (from $10) for the leopard pair. Total score! I’m thinking of getting rid of the amber rings across the nose of the leopard pair and replacing it with a plain gold chain but we’ll see if I can ever be bothered doing that.

 

I was lucky enough that day to also come across an Events wrap a-line skirt, %100 wool and 100% gorgeous for only $8. Normally I steer clear of red clothes but this was too sweet to pass up.

Afterwards, I traveled down to Trade Secret (the secret is that they usually don’t sell anything worth the trip down there) and for a change, I came across some Loop Leather Co. genuine leather belts that I actually needed (oh my God, I say this about every belt I buy, I’m like a crazy belt lady..)–A plain, wide black patent belt to replace the free one from Target my mother gave me when it bites the dust (see the belt in my last outfit post) and a dark red hip-belt to match the shoes I bought last week (also featured on my blog!). Both $10, down from approx. $50.

So yep, it seems I only have this sort of luck when I am actively blogging and go shopping by myself–but as for others, they seem to have all the luck instead when they’re shopping with me!

Purple Pose

I’ve been wearing this coat all Winter, and since I’ve been on a little hiatus for the better part of that season, I decided to wear this outfit one last time to show you the sort of clothes I wear to the office. Even though I have a desk job now, it still doesn’t prevent me from being fabulous!

 

The pleated dresses I’ve bought from the girls’ section at Target (both the magenta and the mint one) have been one of my better investments of the year. I love coming up with fresh new ways to wear them and so far I found three different ways to mix them up: With a cardigan, as a skirt (with a belt to hide the blouse) and with a blouse underneath as with these pictures. I think this has got to be my favorite way to do it!

 

What I wore:

Gold Deer Skull NecklaceeBay, $3.00

Purple Coat – Valleygirl, $25 (I waited so long for this one..)

Girls’ Ponti Magenta Dress – Target, $11.16 (down from $25)

Black and White Polka Dot BlouseAliExpress, $13 (At least it was before they hiked the price up..)

Girls’ Patent Waist Belt – Target, free from another dress

Black Opaque Tights – Target, $1 (bargain bin, aw yiss)

Hush Puppies Black Patent Oxford Heels – Myer, $25

Total: $78.16

Not bad for a multi-layer Winter outfit if I do say so myself.

Flaunt Those Faults

It’s been a good day today.

If you can imagine, I’ve been on a shopping slump for months on end, and it was only today that I seemed to be striking it ridiculously lucky in stores. Myer’s shoe department is currently on sale, with most full-priced items 25% off and sale items at 50% off. Naturally, I couldn’t leave the store empty-handed. (The rest of Myer was on sale as well from what I saw, but three football-field-sized levels worth of stuff to work through leaves a frugalista like me feeling a little ill.)

Anyways, these are the babies I purchased. A pair of Basque Hannah Cranberry Pumps and Vince Camuto Verona Ruby Pumps. The Basques are reduced from $139 to $80 to $40 and the Vince Camutos are reduced from $189 to $99 to $50. Awesome prices!

As you can tell, I love suede right now. The downside to suede heels sitting on flimsy sale racks for months on end, however, is that they tend to get damaged. Just a little trauma will scrape suede right off the shoe and unlike plain or patent leather, suede also fades under the powerful halogen lighting. I knew that there was a perfect pair of size 39’s in the cranberry pumps out back in the CBD’s Myer, so I struck it quite lucky, because every other 39 I tried on had a left shoe that was four shades lighter than the right one. The ruby pumps were a little dinged up from being tried on more than a few times, but mostly unnoticeable because of the beautiful feature bow on the front. I did regretfully tell the sales assistant that while I wanted to buy them, I wished that they weren’t damaged, and she told me to tell the front counter that she told me I could ask for a further 10% off because of the damage. So when I did, the shoes dropped to $45! Not a bad deal at all.

Fast-forwards to a few hours later, I was wandering through an alley in the CBD and came across a store called Igedo. Normally I don’t bother with them because they’re quite expensive, but they currently have a lot of sale racks marked down to $19, so I snuck a peek. Lo and behold, I found this gorgeous woollen jacket with leather trims.

 

I was on the fence about the purchase, because they only had size 6 and 8 left. Since both were too tight for me but I was so in love with it, I picked the larger of the two size 8s on the rack and as I was walking to the counter, I noticed that there was a tiny stain on the shoulder and a pen mark under the lapel. Thinking back to my trip to Myer, I asked the sales assistant if she could give me a discount and she offered the jacket to me for $15–down $19 down from $120! When I got home, I noticed that it matched perfectly with the vintage 100% silk houndstooth skirt I had bought at Vinnies a while back, and that made me even happier!

My last story, though I don’t have any photos, was that I went to Target and found a gorgeous City Dressing dress (it’s white with thick black stripes and red roses along the hem) in the damaged items/no packaging rack for $4, down from $79 in my exact size! To the untrained eye, the zip was damaged beyond all repair, but a crafty frugalista saw it differently and snagged that baby off the rack. A few minutes of my time and the zip was fixed, good as new.

I took photos of the repair process (because it seems like zips are the first things to go on items accumulated in those racks) so if anyone’s interested in seeing them, please comment below and I may just write a little zip-fixing tutorial for you guys! :)

Anyways, that’s all from me for today. The moral of the story is that damaged items give you great leverage when it comes to bargaining because they’re harder to sell, so don’t be afraid to ask for a further discount, many stores will happily give them!

Date Night



 

It’s been a long while since my last outfit post! As such, I figured it was appropriate to post an outfit with some stuff I bought maybe a year ago. I kind of never got the opportunity to wear this playsuit. It is so beautiful, with thick jacquard fabric and boning in the torso–I absolutely love it but it always seemed a touch too formal for every occasion I went to, or not formal enough. On a recent date night to the movies with a man with a penchant for silk-blend trousers, I finally had my chance. I classed it up a bit with a structured blazer and tights, and rocked this look in my glasses.

I wear my glasses in so many of these outfits and never feature them in my photos. Why? Because they mess with my face. I look great in person in glasses, but there’s just something that about them that doesn’t photograph very well. Reflections and whatnot. All things considered, I’d rather not have glasses at all, and I actually have to resist the urge to throw up in my mouth a little whenever I see today’s hipsters walking about wearing those utterly fake, oversize spectacles in some cringe-worthy attempt to be ironic. They don’t look cool, guys, put them away if your vision is 20/20.

 

Anyways, I’ve been wanting to get that off my chest for a while, so without further ado, here is the rundown:

ASOS Bandeau Playsuit in Copper Jacquard – ASOS, $15 (Such a good buy, with an extra 15% off! Back when the Aussie dollar was stronger of course..)

Black Work Blazer – Target, $29

Gold Tassel Belt – Forever New, $6.50 (Crap, I think I added an extra 50c onto that price somehow)

Sheer Tights – Target, 25c

Black Kidskin Leather Heels – Mascotte, $40 (Actually now that I think back, I remember they were really $39.. oh well, close enough)

Total: $89.25

In addition to all that, I’d just like everyone to know that those shoes are the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever owned. Mascotte gets a big, frugalistic thumbs-up from me, with really good quality, classic styles and very frequent sales, eek!

They also happen to stock the most amazing men’s shoes as well. Actual round-toed men’s shoes. None of that chisel-toed, square-toed pointy-toed crap you’ll find in YD, Roger David, etc. I actually have yet to find a man who appreciates the beauty of a nice round-toed brogue, but I’m sure keeping my eyes peeled..

Frockaholics Anonymous

So, dear readers. These are the frocks I have lovingly, painstakingly selected to occupy permanent positions in my wardrobe, and while I definitely have my favorites, very few of these are dresses that I haven’t even worn once. In a perfect world, I wouldn’t be dedicating half my wardrobe allowance to all 50 dresses (yes, 50) and I would stop buying dresses that look good in theory but I never end up wearing, but it is what it is.

As some of you may have noticed, my blog has been under hiatus for a little while now. For those interested in knowing why (and also what’s been happening in my life since my last post), please continue reading. For those not interested, rest easy in the fact that you know someone who is both frugal and wasteful with their money in the same breath and carry on!

Work is a total bummer. I get up at the crack of dawn and drive to work in my Beep Beep and then at the end of the day just before the sun sets, I drive back home and take Hugo on a run around the block and instantly hop on the bike afterwards to burn off some bun. So the only time I have to take any photos is on the weekend. That wouldn’t be too bad if I wasn’t trying to artfully slot myself into a productive social and dating life. I don’t have time to take photos when I’m busy running around all the time! My time-management skills are appalling, frankly, and in an attempt to get them under control, I’ve re-opened my blog.

The paradoxical thing about now having a full-time job is that I’m trying to wear a different outfit to work each day so I should theoretically have plentiful content to populate this blog. But you know how I am, guys. I can’t just go out in public wearing a dress and a pair of shoes. I gotta have my accessories, my tights, my belts, my matching bags and jewelry items. Equipping all that stuff takes up a good half hour and by the time I’m done, I just want to be gone, not hang around and document my outfit.

So that’s where work life has left me. Plenty of new outfits and wardrobe additions, but little time left to share them!

As for my dating life? I was having such a varied and interesting time in the last few months that I briefly considered opening up an anonymous Sex and The City style blog to record everything that went down (no joke). Actually, my dating life is the reason why I can’t post any photos of my recent birthday party (it was Great Gatsby themed and gives me a horrible pain in my stomach every time I think about it). I’ve gotten over old thorns in my side which have been replaced by new ones, made some truly awful mistakes and gained some awfully good friends, and after mulling through all these new experiences, I’ve found that my confidence levels are definitely better than what they used to be.

Because of all the above, my social life has been thriving. I’ve recently been bar-hopping for the first time ever and I was brave enough to go up to guys I found to be cute. Yes, I was. Sober, too, mind you. Not only that, but I joined a women’s running club (workplace-related, not yet initiated) and I am all lined up to go dancing next week. You see, now that my days are filled, I’m having to find very creative ways to work with my spare time.. One day I’ll strike the perfect balance and I’ll be unstoppable!

As for Carbon Chic? Expect the unexpected.