Archive for November 2011
Most of my thrifting this month was incidental to my search for cheapo moving blankets. I hit four different stores between South Portland and Augusta.
|Oscar de la Renta striped silk scarf, Goodwill Augusta, $2|
|Mossimo green sweater, Goodwill Augusta, $5|
|Aeropostale striped cardigan, Goodwill Augusta, $6|
|Polka dot scarf, Goodwill Topsham, $3|
|Celebrity Pink Jeans pink jeans, Find, $15*|
I love my new Miz Mooz Journey boots. And I'd better, because even on sale they cost twice as much as I've ever spent on a pair of shoes. They're smooth, soft leather with a warm, fuzzy lining. The stacked heels made for comfy walking all day, and I love the stitching detail on the toes. If you happen to take a look at these, be warned that they're a bit large. I'm a pretty consistent 6.5, and the boots were loose even with thick socks. A pair of insoles fixed that right up.
So I now have knee-high boots in black and gray. Cognac, you're next.
Remember that ad campaign Toyota ran several years ago spoofing on "My Sharona"? Imagine that when you read this post's title.
My little Corolla may not be the world's most attractive car, but I love it. And today it passed a very special milestone:
OK, I'll admit this wasn't the safest trick to pull on my morning commute, but there weren't any cars around me, so I took a quick snap.
I bought my 2004 Corolla from Hertz in August 2005, just a couple of days before going back to Atlanta for sophomore year. It had 30,250 miles on it. I paid cash, using savings from my restaurant job and from graduation gifts the year before. I was just a little short, so my parents kicked in about $1,000 to cover the sales tax and warranty. And boy, has it been nice not having a car payment.
For five-plus years I consistently averaged 10,000 miles a year, despite changes in circumstances. With my commute I'm now really packing on the miles — I'm on track to drive 30,000 miles in a year. But the car got a clean bill of health at inspection two months ago, and the only thing I've had to do that wasn't routine maintenance was replacing the oxygen sensor two years ago. I'm going to run this thing into the ground.
Looks like I was wrong when I said winter was here. We've had several days in a row of temperatures near 50, and all the snow has melted. Today I wore a short-sleeved top under a light jacket and bared the tops of my feet to the air — well, when they peeked from beneath my hems. Today's outfit was inspired by the recent thaw and by Kasmira's outfit from a couple of days ago. I find the pairing of pink and green very spring-like and beautiful (especially in AKA's shades).
Was that enough hyperlinks for one paragraph?
|Top, New York & Co.
Tank, Banana Republic
Pumps, Nine West, thrifted
After wearing my newest clothes yesterday, I decided to wear my oldest work-appropriate clothes today. I bought this dress and these shoes in high school.
I bought the dress senior year because I needed a black dress to wear under my graduation gown. It was $40 on sale, and I gagged a bit at the price — perhaps the most I had spent of my own money on any one garment to that point, except for my prom dress. That was a good night's worth of wages and tipshare from my restaurant hostess job.
The shoes I bought sometime earlier in high school, but I don't remember exactly when. I found them at Journeys, a store at the mall that mostly sold skateboarding shoes. (Hmm, apparently they're still around, and pretty widespread.) I was never into the skater style, but Journeys sold some other cute shoes sometimes, and at some point I happened upon these Mary Janes. For $20 shoes, they've held up remarkably well. They're super-comfortable, and I wore them to salsa classes when I lived in South Florida the summer after graduating college. But now they're starting to look pretty worn, and I'm casually looking around for some replacement Mary Janes, in patent leather this time.
I can't wear it to work, but here's the piece of clothing that is truly my oldest:
My elementary school had a music group where students played Orff instruments: xylophones, metallophones and glockenspiels. It was only for fifth graders, and I was so excited to join when I was old enough! For some reason they ordered our T-shirts in adult sizes, so yeah, it still fits.
Today I paired the two newest items in my closet.
The jeans were my sole Black Friday purchase. I hadn't intended on shopping Friday, but then I happened to park across the street from a consignment shop when I got back from having my car's oil changed. I'm really enjoying colored bottoms. And I promise this looked less ketchup-and-mustard in real life than it did in these photos.
The photo above is what I looked like for most of the day, but there was this, too:
Both today and yesterday, I spent some time tramping around in a park full of snow, mud and standing water. I hadn't been prepared on Saturday — I was just lucky to have an extra pair of flats from Goodwill in my car. I rinsed off the mud from my $5 flats and stuffed them with paper towels to dry, and I think they'll be all right, but I'm glad I didn't have to risk my Ecco flats, which were expensive even on eBay. From now on I'm keeping these boots and some extra socks in my car for contingencies.
J and I had a wonderful Thanksgiving, hosting my parents at our new place. I'm thankful to live in Portland and to have my parents within easy driving distance for the first time in seven years.
Coconut butternut squash soup (NY Times)
Grated beet and carrot salad (Chocolate and Zucchini)
Cornbread stuffing with apples and pecans (NY Times)
Lemon roast chicken (Mark Bittman)
Apple-cranberry galette (adapted from Mark Bittman)
And then here's what I wore for work today:
Straight leg jeans, DKNY Jeans
Most of you are probably still have heavy, harvest-y food sitting like a weight in the bottom of your stomachs. Nevertheless, for your consideration, here is what I came home to a few days ago:
That's a buttercup squash, filled with bread, cheese and cream. It was rich, salty and made a perfect dinner for two. I grabbed the recipe from NPR here, where they used a pumpkin instead. I'm not crazy about pumpkin — after years of eating pumpkin-flavored baked goods, I'm always disappointed to find that the real thing isn't sweet — so I substituted buttercup squash, which still gave me the bowl shape, the bright orange flesh and, yes, a hint of sweetness. We used a hunk of leftover fontina for the cheese. You fill it, bake it and then scoop out a bit of squash flesh with every spoonful of cheesy goodness.
It's a little late, but I have to think this would make a great entree for a vegetarian Thanksgiving, if you use a larger squash or pumpkin. I might try a Long Island cheese squash; they're large and could hold lots of filling, but they're relatively flat, so you'd have less chance of a filling that's toasty at the top but lukewarm and/or soggy at the bottom.
Whatever tweaks you make, go cook and eat this now!
I've always thought of this sweater as being burgundy, but since it's Thanksgiving week, I'll go with cranberry this time.
I wore the lilac blouse with my burgundy pencil skirt back in July, and at the time I thought of it as an "unusual" color combination. Well, I wouldn't consider it that anymore based on some of the pairings I've made since then. But I liked it, so I couldn't resist creating a fall version of the color combination.
It's gonna snow tomorrow!
These pink tights were the clear choice to pair with this sweater. But it was my first time wearing brightly colored tights to this job, so I toned them down by covering them up with some tall boots. Next time I'll show more leg! It was also the first day where the temperature didn't crack 40, so that was a good reason to wear tall boots, too.
Our new apartment is flooded with natural light. At the old place I always had to turn on a floor lamp just outside the frame, and it was still dim. We're still moving furniture around, so I had a slightly different spot and setup each day this week. I'm hoping to start doing daily outfit posts next week, including details shots, so we'll see how that goes!
|Blouse, Macy's; Pants, Banana Republic (eBay); Pumps, Nine West (consignment)|
|Turtleneck, Target; Skirt, Modcloth; Belt, Target; Flats, Bare Traps|
|Blouse, New York & Co.; Belt, thrifted; Dress, Old Navy; Tights, Target; Pumps, Nine West (thrifted)|
My first designer thrift score! Usually the high end of what I find on the racks is Banana Republic or J. Crew. My Googling suggests that this is the real thing. I think the folks at the store must have overlooked this little scribble, because the usually seem to have some idea of what they're dealing with in terms of labels or materials — for example, on the same trip I came across a pair of Cole Haan pumps (not in my size) marked at three times the normal price for shoes. But the scarf was only $2, less than several of the polyester ones in the bin with it.
Anyway, coming across little gems like this is what makes thrifting my favorite kind of shopping. And it makes me even more excited for my next expedition — I think my luck is moving in the right direction!
This week I turn 26, which means I'm officially on the downslope of my 20s. Does that make me too old for a wishlist? I don't think so.
Short, skinny black pants for work
My only pair of black trousers is a wide-legged pair from Banana Republic. I'd love a different silhouette that I could wear with either heels or flats. My mother-in-law wore a nearly perfect pair to our early Thanksgiving on Saturday. She said they were from Ann Taylor, and I think they may have been these.
I've been on the hunt for a pair of these, with no luck so far. It's complicated by the fact that any shaft larger than 14 inches in diameter will leave my bird legs swimming. These Miz Mooz Flynns may be a possibility.
|(Queen of Hats)|
|(The Black Tie Company)|
|Shirt, New York & Co. (thrifted); Belt, thrifted; Skirt, Gap (eBay); Pumps, Calvin Klein (eBay)|
|Cardigan, Target (thrifted); Belt, thrifted; Skirt, thrifted vintage; Flats, Bare Traps|
|Cardigan, Target; Tank, J. Crew; Belt, thrifted; Skirt, Modcloth; Wedges, Bandolino (thrifted)|
|Black T, Banana Republic; Belt, thrifted; Skirt, thrifted vintage; Pumps, Calvin Klein (eBay)|
Back in college, I moved every year, not even including summer internships. We bought used furniture and then sold it at the end of the year, which was easy when there were lots of other students also moving. Nonetheless, I was always amazed at how much I had managed to accumulate since the last move and half-surprised at what a hassle it all was.
When J and I moved to Ohio three years ago, we fit as much as we could into our two sedans — that was it. But now we own furniture.
We had to find an apartment quickly when we moved to Maine this spring. We found it on the third floor of an 1865 house on Deering Street. We had the whole floor, probably 1,600 square feet, in a great location — a quiet, tree-lined street right on the edge of Portland's downtown. But the apartment got very hot in the summer and had temperamental plumbing; the kitchen had very little counter space and no dishwasher.
So this weekend we moved to a modern building that's even more centrally located in Portland. Our apartment is beautiful, though right now it's a mess. Maybe the best part is that it's a place I can imagine staying as long as we're in Portland, which means no more moving for another four or five years at the least. Because even when you're looking forward to your new place, moving sucks. Especially when the previous tenant didn't clean out the bathroom drawer where he apparently stored his toenail clippings.
|Dress (as a top), Old Navy; Tank, Hanes; Skirt, thrifted (no tag); Tights, Target; Pumps, Nine West (consignment)|
|Sweater, Alfani (thrifted); Necklace, Forever 21; Skirt, Target; Boots, Aerosoles via DSW; Cashmere socks, a gift|
|Shirtdress, Express (thrifted); Gray tights, Old Navy; Flats, Bare Traps|
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