Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

Monthly Update – October 2017


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?



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.


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.

Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

Monthly Update – May 2017

If not for my husband buying two pairs of hiking bottoms for me, nothing new would have entered my wardrobe this month.

Indulge me if you will as I slide into sounding like a crotchety old person. And by sounding like a crotchety old person I mean saying what I’m thinking without giving a crap if anyone agrees with me or not.

There is a lot of shit in stores right now. A lot.

Who on earth decided it was a good idea to resurrect pleats and put them on the front of shorts? Some styles died for a reason. Doing something no one else is doing doesn’t automatically make it new and fashion forward. Sometimes no one is doing it because it’s a shitty idea.

Why would you take the time to embellish a shirt that’s transparent? Because the embellishment is supposed to distract you from the fact that the shirt is a piece of crap destined for the garbage pile. Full stop.

Honestly, I was completely and utterly disengaged from shopping this month. I couldn’t even drag myself into a change room. I had originally planned for the Memorial Day weekend sales to be where I stocked up on all sorts of new back to work clothes, but I just couldn’t bring myself to be bothered.

Quarterly Budget: $750 + $360.64 (carryover) – $569.96 (Apr) – $0 (May) = $540.68

It feels a little odd linking up with the other budgeting bloggers this month, but I’m doing it anyway. I think it’s good to reflect on the months you don’t buy anything, and the reasons why, as much as the months you do. If anything, I think reflecting on the reasons why you don’t buy things is becoming increasingly important in this retail environment.

For those who are curious, my husband bought me the Columbia Silver Ridge Shorts in Cypress and the Columbia Saturday Trail II Convertible Pant in British Tan. Both will be awesome for getting out and about in the wilderness with the munchkin this summer.



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.