Category Archives: Deals

Classy-Casual…

IMG_9021IMG_9025IMG_9027This has got to be hands down one of the best purchases I have ever made at F21. This dress was suuuuper affordable, and I get compliments on it constantly, which I attribute to the print not looking like a cheap floral, as well as the cut. I just took quick snaps, so forgive me on the lack of detail here, but this dress is a high-neck cut that ties in the back above a V-cut, and has a little bit of a cut out in the front. The length is perfect for me, and the gathered waist is flattering. I typically wear this with minimal jewelry, maybe just a bangle or two to offset.

I feel like my arms are an area of my body I could improve on. We all know I have long monkey arms, you should see the monkey photos my sister loves to tag me in (ugh), but they’re not overly toned. Definitely room for improvement, but I feel like a high-neck dress or top is always a flattering choice, whether you’ve got great noodles going on or not. It draws attention upward, leaving just the right amount of skin showing to accentuate your arms and shoulders, and works whether you’ve got a big set of twins or small. This dress is appropriate for all occasions and I actually would say I wear it way more casually than I do in dressy situations. It’s just the right amount of easy-breezy middle ground for summer, paired with flat sandals it becomes a really great option for day-to-night transition without feeling underdressed or obligated to wear heels. Easily the best $16 I have ever spent at F21. Well done.

Dress: F21, (sold out, similar cuts here and here)
Sandals: DSW
Bag: Aldo (Similar here and here)
Bangle: Nasty Gal


 

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Purple Palazzo Pants.

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Three belts are better than one….

That’s right. I am wearing three belts. THREE. Giving Joey a run for his money. (If anyone else gets that FRIENDS reference you are truly my hero.) Basically, I’m not huge into wide belts, and I’m very picky about the ones I do purchase, haven fallen victim to the oversized waist-belt trend of 2008. I now cringe when I look back at those photos. I looked like a cartoon. But sometimes it can be done well, and all depends on the design and quality of the belt, and what you’re pairing it with. In this case…I couldn’t find one I was absolutely in love with to break up the super high waist of these pants and still be wearable with other outfits I had in my closet, so I opted for some visual interest using three smaller belts I already had. These pants need something thicker, because they are a LOT of fabric, and a very large block of color on the body. Just one little belt seemed to get lost. So, strength in numbers, apparently!! Two of these belts are the same (thanks to losing one, repurchasing, and then finding the first one again), but that worked well in my favor for this stacking effect. You could do this with a combination of any belts and think the result is far more interesting and customizeable than just opting for one big chunky belt. Line up the buckles, tuck the leftovers, and you’re set!! I’ve never been one for rules, and three belts are definitely better than one, achieving the exact amount of texture and variation I was going for here at my waistline. :)

Moving on to these pants. Another item from my “top steals of all time” list, these were  originally $250 Palazzo Pants from BCBG Max Azria, which I scored for a bank-breaking $5. Yep…God Bless a sample sale! I was fortunate enough to have a friend (Shout-out to Shannon in Spain!) talk me into getting up early on a Saturday morning last year to take me to my first ever sample sale. Normally, nothing can wake me up at 6am on a weekend, shopping included. Black Friday?!? Hell no. That’s ridiculous. I loved it in my younger years, getting up at the ass-crack of dawn to camp out, fight crowds, and score stuff for more than 50% off, mainly because I had nothing better to do. But these days, I need my sleep and my sanity, and usually that sort of animosity at such an early morning hour is just not worth the discount to me. And hello…have you all heard of a little thing called Cyber Monday?? That’s right, all the fun of Black Friday from the comfort of your own home while wearing old PJs with unkempt hair and sans shower. Sounds like a pretty easy decision to me! Anyway, this particular Saturday I was feeling quite rested from an easy week and I said what the heck. Why not…

This was probably one of the best sample sales I’d heard of. BCBG is notorious for their extra thrifty pricing, and I walked out of there with about $1500-1800 retail worth of stuff, all for around about 10% or less of that cost. I paid about $160 for a nice little haul that included my first ever pair of palazzo wide-legs, and I was hooked.

These are just now making the blog debut, but have been in my closet for over a year. We’ve seen a HUGE surge in the popularity of wide-leg pants this past year, and especially this spring, with colorful floral and printed versions making their way to nearly every shelf. These happen to be EXTREMELY wide, like a true palazzo pant, to where you can barely tell they are pants. If you are on the fence about the palazzo or wide-leg trend, I would say just hop on over and do it. This is a flattering look for just about anyone, I just recommend opting for a high-waisted pair, and making sure the inseam is long enough to just barely dust the floor for that truly elongated look. The last thing you want is a wide-leg pant that is too short, or shows too much ankle, because you’re not doing yourself any favors by adding width and shortening up on length.

I couldn’t pass these up. They had pockets, were the most gorgeous shade of eggplant purple, made of amazing fabric, and were very long with a high waist. Oh and the $5 price tag on a $250 item was pretty much bananas too. I myself was on the fence with this style, but for $5 I will try ANYTHING. Officially hooked, I’ve acquired a couple other pairs in both solids and prints since that should be making their way to the blog soon.

BONUS: Aside from just being comfortable with pretty details, this outfit is super classy and lady-like, which makes it a fantastic interview outfit or office attire in a more corporate work environment if that happens to be your gig. #WIN

Pants: BCBG Max Azria (Similar here (sale!! Not quite as wide), in black here, and in gorgeous red here, great price!!!)
Top: Nasty Gal, (similar here)
Belts: Target, H&M
Bag: Aldo (similar, DVF)
Bracelet: Nasty Gal

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The Urban Outfitters Surplus Store.

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Sherman Oaks Location: 14608 W Ventura Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91403

So, I’ve mentioned it in a couple posts now, and I thought it was time I do a post on the Urban Outfitters Surplus Store of LA. I drove by this countless times thinking it was just another Urban location, and I already have 3 close by me, so I paid no mind. Finally, after a few months I realized that the GIANT letters and decals in the windows, you know, the ones that say “SURPLUS” all over, weren’t changing. See, initially I drove past and just thought that it was in-store advertising for some big sale, but it finally donned on me that it was not just a sale, but an actual surplus/overstock/outlet store. I know, I’m a little slow…

Finally one day I stopped in, and it was a day that changed me forever! As a surplus store, you are scoring brand new Urban Outfitters clothing at absolutely ridiculous prices. We’re talking thrift store prices, sometimes better. Yes, it’s true, this is the place where they sometimes send the ill-fitting crap that no one wants in the real stores, but I would say 40% of this store is wearable. And by that, I mean wearable to me within my realm of style and fit. That’s pretty good for an outlet in my opinion, and honestly, it’s for the better that the percentage of personal appeal is on the lower half, or else I’d probably buy the whole damn store.

I absolutely love Urban Outfitters, and I think their buyers do a great job with marketing detailed pieces that tend to have a unique edge to them. It just never fails that I find some of my most interesting and favorite pieces at Urban, and I commend them for their creative and affordable loyalty to fashionistas everywhere. Immediately upon my first visit to the beloved Surplus store, I snagged some amazing things at next to nothing. All things I probably would not have paid full price for, ever. It’s a great feeling to know you have the opportunity to get weird and mix up your style without dropping dough or having to take the careful time of sifting through multiple thrift stores. There are gems everywhere in this store, and you’ll sometimes even find things that are still available online or in-store at full price. A few tips when visiting this store, or the only other location (as of now) in Chicago:

1)   Do like a thrifting pro, and scour every rack. It tends to be a little messy and out of place, especially near closing time, and it’s worth your while to make sure you’ve seen everything.

2)   Get Weird. I always talk about stepping out of your comfort zone of “predicatable” style and adding some edge to your wardrobe with truly unique pieces for next to nothing. This is your time to take risks and branch out, if any!

3)   Always ask for a price check. That top is wacky but awesome, right? And totally not what you’d normally pick out. And even though it’s 50% off, it’s still not really worth $29.99 for a spot in your closet….well, good news! I would say more than 60% of the items I’ve purchased have rang up much lower than the red sticker, making it hard to pass up the things you don’t want to try at full price. A lot of these items are cleared out after a regular sale sweep in main store locations, and sometimes the tags are left over from those sales. That means when they’ve hit surplus, they’ve got a red sticker already and get passed over for another markdown sticker even though the price has dropped. I found a $110 Dolce Vita dress, marked $59.99, which is extremely high for this store, and I asked for a price check just to see. The guy on the sales floor told me $10. Hell yes I’d take it for that! Well guess what. When I got up to the counter, it rang up as $5.  Now, do you really want to miss out on 95% off just because you didn’t ask?? I didn’t think so.

Pictured below, some trendy and awesome pieces I’ve scored here have included wedge sneakers for $6.99 (seen here), multiple chiffon and printed headwraps for $2-3 (seen here), camo printed skinny jeans for $9.99 (seen here), as well as a floral blousson top for $4, high-waisted acid wash cutoffs for $9.99, motorcycle tanks for $5, and the aforementioned white Dolce Vita dress for a staggeringly low $5.

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The store itself is much more female than male, with womens clothing taking up over half the store. It’s a cutoffs-wonderland with a whole rack of brightly-colored frayed goodness for $3 a pop, contains ample dressing rooms with no try-on limits, a ping pong table in the center for bored boyfriends (brilliant), and even a photo booth. Above are some photos of the LA store in Sherman Oaks, as well as some of the super-scores I’ve snagged. If I haven’t sold you on checking this place out, you need help.

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