Wednesday, January 31st, 2018

Monthly Update – January 2018

Holy crow, I actually bought something!

Actually, I had to laugh when I saw Sherry went on a bit of a spending spree at Icebreaker. I’ve been waiting for a sale to hit there for months, and one finally happened! I’ve had my eye on these Vertex half-zip shirts since well before Christmas:

Icebreaker Vertex Long Sleeved Half-Zip Flurry in Black and Blizzard Heather – $124.95 ea (reg $178.50ea)

Now 30% off isn’t great, but it’s certainly better than paying full price. I thought about waiting for a better discount, but the sizes were starting to sell out. I picked mine up on Saturday, and as of yesterday the Blizzard Heather is already sold out in my size. They do shrink a little, but that is to be expected with Merino wool. That’s why I bought mine slightly larger. I washed it in cold water, hung it to dry, and wore the black one to work with a pair of jeans yesterday. If you don’t want to pay top dollar for quality cashmere, these Merino tops are the definition of cold weather luxury. They’re fantastic.

The same day I bought the tops, I picked up a second pair of bootcut jeans. They’re the same style as a bought back in October. I didn’t get quite the sale I did in October, but it was alright. I paid $177.45, down from the regular price of $302.40.

In the three and a half months I’d owned that pair, I’d gotten the price per wear down to ~$2.25. Bringing the cost per wear down that far in that short a time span told me it was worth picking up a second pair, especially considering I wear my jeans for years at a time. As I mentioned in October, I’ve noticed a pattern in my denim preferences. In the summer, when I wear ballet flats near daily, I wear skinny jeans that are hemmed for flats. In the winter, when I opt for boots, I wear bootcut jeans. Knowing this about my preferences allows me to look at my existing closet and prepare for potential purchases. For example, I know I will likely need another pair of skinny jeans come summer, so I should keep my eye out for a major sale. Looking into that now allows me to sit patiently and wait. It also allows me to explore the idea of a capsule wardrobe more realistically, because I have data backing up what I actually wear at different times of the year.

Unless I find a massive sale on an appropriate pair of skinny jeans, I don’t see myself purchasing anything else in the next few months. I don’t have my eye on anything, and to be honest I don’t plan on trying to covet anything either. We’re still looking for a new home, so I’m focused on that at the moment.

Did you purchase anything this month? Have you noticed any patterns in your clothing choices from season to season?

Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

Monthly Update – October 2017

Hola!

So how about that October? October seems to be a consistently brutal month for us. Super busy.

I’ve been contemplating the direction I should take this blog given my inability to take outfit photos on an even remotely consistent basis. It’s dark when I leave for work in the morning, and dark by the time I leave the office in the afternoon. The weekends are busy with doing the things we didn’t get to during the week, and generally spending time playing together as a family. I won’t cut into that last wedge of time for a hobby. It took me months to hit my stride in terms of balancing work tasks and home tasks, but as you can tell around here some things had to give.

I’m not ready to give up on this blog though. I love having this little creative outlet, though I may focus more on other subjects of interest more often, and a bit less on fashion. I have been finding it difficult to reconcile the drive for constant fashion spending with some of my sustainability leanings as of late, so I may explore those areas more. While I did purchase a couple items this month, at the moment I have no urge to shop. I’m happy with my closet, so why seek out more things to covet?

It’s a question that doesn’t get much thought that I’ve seen on the internet. What happens when you’re happy with your closet? If you’ve spent years “investing” in your wardrobe, at some point your wardrobe is largely made up of these pieces. They’re not going to fall apart quickly, so why keep shopping?

Anyway, like I mentioned before, you’re probably going to see other subjects cropping up around here.

This is a budget post though, and I mentioned above that I did purchase a couple items, so I’ll keep it brief.

I bought the Babaton Beekman Sweater in Constant Camel/Birch for $152.25. The weight, style and colour combo filled a gap in my wardrobe, and is making my fall/winter clothes feel more well rounded. I’ve worn it six times so far.

I also bought a pair of dark wash bootcut jeans from 7 for all Mankind for $106.47. I find bootcut jeans work better with the style of ankle boots I have for fall and winter, so I picked up a second pair. These were 40% off the existing sale price, and fit nicely, so they were a no brainer. I’ve worn them eleven times already this month, so they’re already down in the single digit cost per wear.

So that’s what’s going on around here. What’s new in your world?

Thursday, September 28th, 2017

Monthly Update – September 2017

So apparently I batch shop.

It makes sense when I think about it. Where I used to be able to casually browse and linger while making decisions, my life has become much more about efficiency. These days I browse the offerings online, save the ones I like to a Pinterest board, and then ask a sales associate to direct me to those items when I go into the store. Sure, I could order the items online, but I still prefer to try before I buy. Why tie up my money on maybes if I don’t have to?

Banana Republic Silk Cashmere Crewneck – $66.15 (reg $110.25)
Banana Republic Sloan Fit Utility Pants – $69.30 (reg $115.50)

Both of these items have been favourites for me this month. I find olive a really easy colour to work with, so the pants have been worn 7 times already! The sweater was a bit of a test. After my disastrous BR sweater experience last winter, I passed over the thicker knits and wool blends, and instead opted for the thin silk cashmere blend. After 5 wears it doesn’t seem to be pilling to the extent that my green sweater did, and the shape held up to hand washing far better than the camel merino sweater did last year.

Banana Republic Long Sleeve Soft Jersey Cardigan – $39.06 (reg $65.10)

This cardigan hasn’t been worn as frequently as the pullover, but that will likely change as we move further into autumn. I’ve still worn it 3 times so far this month.

I don’t have photos of the last blouse just yet. I’ve only worn it once so far, because I have the urge to pair it with dress pants and I don’t wear those as often as jeans. I really should wear it with jeans though, there’s nothing wrong with that pairing.

Banana Republic Cross Front Draped Shell – $31.50 (reg $52.50)

On the other end of the spectrum, there was also a notable exit from my closet this month. I sold my Smythe blazer. It was tailored absolutely perfectly for me – but I never wore it. I literally wore it once, and that was it. I couldn’t justify having something that beautiful, or that expensive, just hanging in my closet unworn. I’m thankful I purchased it, because having it sit there prompted a lot of self reflection and really drove forward my understanding of what styles I wear and why.

The blazer went to another blogger whose style it pairs with better than my own. I’m seriously excited to see how she wears it. It was a decent garment, it just wasn’t meant for me.

Quarterly Budget: $750 – $64.12 (carryover) – $0.00 (Jul) – $207.90 (Aug) – $206.01 (Sep) + $350 (blazer) = $621.97

Tons of money left over! To be honest though, I’m not going to carry it over to next season. My closet is not so lacking in volume or variety than I could justify spending almost $1400 by the end of the year. Maybe I would consider it if I had purse or jacket purchase in mind that I had been mulling over and researching for an extended period already, but there’s nothing like that going on right now. A pair of jeans, a pair of boots and some sweaters? For sure. But not $1400 worth.

On the subject of wardrobe, this Saturday marks the end of my first year of wardrobe tracking! It has been utterly enlightening, and I’m looking forward to recapping what I’ve learned with you.

What did you purchase this month? Anything exciting?

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Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

Monthly Update – August 2017

I’ve come to the conclusion that summer clothes do nothing for me. Literally nothing. In retrospect it makes sense, because I find myself consistently being more analytical than swipe happy towards the end of summer. I promise I’ll work on getting that onto the blog.

From a shopping standpoint, it was a slightly less uneventful month than July. One item.

Poppy Barley opened their flagship store in Southgate this month and, well, I felt the need to partake.

Poppy Barley The Soft Oxford – $207.90 (reg $207.90)

Shopping there is a fine line between supporting local businesses and indulging in an expensive shoe habit. Okay, it’s less fine line and more overlap. No regrets for the time being though. Other than specialty shoes like runners, I’m not looking elsewhere for shoes at the moment.

Quarterly Budget: $750 – $64.12 (carryover) – $0.00 (Jul) – $207.90 (Aug) = $477.98

Lots leftover for the month of September, which is a good thing. It may or may not get used up, but I do plan on doing some shopping next month. That and getting this blog back on track, because I miss this.

Tuesday, August 1st, 2017

Monthly Update – July 2017

Summer clothes!

Nordstrom Sale!

Back to school is coming up!

Yeah, I didn’t buy anything.

If I’m being perfectly honest, I haven’t set foot in a clothing store since I started work again at the beginning of June. Ditto for online shopping. I find at the end of the day my brain is just toast.

I’m guessing this is common among moms that go back to work (Right? Right? Please tell me I’m right.)

Mica at Away From The Blue recently finished up a 6 month shopping ban and recapped her learnings. I’m not going to lie, the idea of a 6 month shopping ban feels incredibly appealing at the moment. Not so much because I’m a shopaholic in need of a reset, but because I’ve come to realize that I have sufficient volume of clothing in my closet. It may not be the exact item I want to wear at a given moment, but push come to shove I can dress myself.

If anything, I find myself craving less. I have the urge to remove items from my wardrobe rather than adding to it. I crave brainless simplicity because I don’t have a ton of mental capacity to spare.

Do I think I’ll actually go 6 months without shopping? No. I don’t feel that I’ve filled the sweater holes in my wardrobe for fall/winter, so I’ll be trying to do that again this year. Also, Poppy Barley is opening up their flagship store in Southgate, so there’s that as well…

Quarterly Budget: $750 – $64.12 (carryover) – $0.00 (Jul) = $685.88

Boring recap! True story.

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Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

Monthly Update – June 2017

Okay, so with finds on both the consignment and retail sides of the spectrum, I was a wee bit spendier this month than last…

To be honest I thought the bottom line damage was going to be worse than it actually ended up being, but let’s not kid ourselves. There was damage.

Kismet Top – $16.80 (reg $35.00 est)

I actually thought this was an Anthro brand when I first spotted it, as the pattern was strikingly similar to an item I was eyeing up while I was pregnant. So far it’s actually looking to be from Bootlegger, a store I recall being enamoured with as a teenager. It doesn’t strictly fall within my colour scheme (it pairs with most of my closet, but not all) so time will tell if it was a good idea or not. It’s quite comfy, and I like the neckline, so I may love it for a few seasons and then donate it back again.

James Perse Top – $21.00 (reg $258.30 est.)

Another top that’s not strictly in my colour scheme, but again, matches most of my wardrobe. I realize the “close but not quite” is a slippery slope back into a crammed wardrobe and difficulties getting dressed, so this is another top that may be loved and donated back depending on how hard it is to match with my existing clothes. For now I’m enjoying it.

Community Howley Blouse – $81.90 (reg $81.90)

Little bit of an experiment here. I went in looking for a standard white blouse, and ended up trying this short sleeved one on. Given my penchant for rolling the sleeves on my blouses, having a short sleeved blouse that is styled to be pre-rolled really just takes one step out of getting dressed in the morning. I was in a tossup between sizes, and opted to size up for a more relaxed summer silhouette.

Max Mara Wool Crepe Trousers – $110.25 (reg $367.50)

On a whim I decided to stop by Blu’s women’s wear in Southgate. They carry brands that overlap somewhat with what you would find at Holt Renfrew, so it’s usually outside of my comfortable price zone. They happened to be having a sale when I went in, so happy accident! I found these on a sale rack, and then an additional 30% was taken off the sale price.  Unfortunately I don’t have any photos of these yet because they were being hemmed, but these trousers fit like a dream. If they had a pair of these pants in olive as well I would have snapped up both.

Smythe Duchess Blazer – $374.85 (reg $624.75)

And the big ticket item. The same day they were offering 30% off sale items, they were also offering 40% off select regular price items. The full price items were marked with a sticker if they were excluded from the sale. I thought for sure the Smythe blazers would be excluded, but they weren’t!! They were marked down even more than the Shopbop sales while the dollar was at par! Given that I’m back at work now my odds of stumbling on a sale like this again is pretty low, so I snapped up the navy blazer they had in my size. It’s the only blazer I’ve ever found that fit me perfectly without tailoring, and it’s made in Canada to boot.

So, it was a bit of a financially whirlwind season, but it closed out just $64 over budget. I’m fine with this. I’m just going to take the overage out of next season’s budget.

Quarterly Budget: $750 + $360.64 (carryover) – $569.96 (Apr) – $0 (May) – $604.80 (June) = -$64.12

How did your month pan out? Did you add anything to your wardrobe? Did you find any good sales? I’d love to hear about it.



Hi!

I'm Cassie.

I'm a petite hourglass, slow adopter, food geek, Engineer, wife and mom. Welcome to the little corner of the internet where I ramble on about random things. Mostly clothes.

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