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Of the Fashion.
Musings on style, shopping, and the like by people of decidedly realistic means.
Recent Entries 
Ok fine, so I've never really shopped there and it's exceptionally lame to be lauding something I've never personally been a patron of, but I really do like what they have on their website, and generally have been trying to appear older and more sophisticated than I actuallly am/with clothes that will last and all, and this line from GAP Inc. would have been consistent with that trend.

They're closing off the stores though, which is a pity.

I seriously hope it doesn't go away before I have a chance to experience it. The store's website is HERE.
9th-Mar-2007 05:15 pm - In My Dreams Wishlist Items...
I have mixed feelings about very conspicuous consumption: as in those handbags that everyone who is vaguely interested in fashion will immediately recognize and with a good sense of the way that said bag cost at least four digits in USD. On the one hand, I have to be practical, and even pride myself on it, and on the other... They just look so good. In that spirit, one of the items on the sort of in my dreams wishlist that I'll be lucky to ever get my hands on, ever... (It would have to happen a long time after working and such.) is a Chanel black quilted leather handbag. Classy and timeless, for sure.

So I recently bought this off Ebay. It's a pretty roomy double-breasted cardigan from BCBG Max Azria, which I saved considerably more than 50% on, but it's also ended up being one of those times where I learned that shopping off Ebay was not that ideal in terms of getting properly sized clothes. The collar is wide, but not so wide that lower collars are visible above it, and it looks wierd unbuttoned, which leads me to the difficult question of how I construct outfits around it.

So far, I'm thinking of wearing button-downs with the cardigan (I need one that buttons up higher in that case) and turtlenecks (which, lo, I also need more of. In warmer weather a cute dress might also work, though it wouldn't show above the collar of the cardigan.

It's an interesting style, but one I'm not sure I would go for if I could go back and do it again.
6th-Mar-2007 04:53 pm - Cute Skirts for Spring.
It is bitterly cold here in the Boston area, and I find myself missing California quite a bit. Looking at nice spring and summer-appropriate clothes though, manages to make the weather a little easier to bear as I eagerly await the return of warm weather (or at least, my return to California). In the continuing spirit of planning spring outifts, I present some nice skirts that are, most importantly, on sale. Click on the link to see the bargains!

Unfortunately for my limited collection of skirts, the peasant skirt trend from last two years or so seems to be struggling to an end - though I will still wear mine since I consider them cute, and a crucial part of my spring and summer wardrobe - but any nice and more A-line shaped skirt should have relative staying power. I really like the colors on the skirt to the left, though admittedly, I'm not sure whether it qualifies as practical, since it'd be difficult to match due to the somewhat random combination of colors (some green, some pink, and is that red I see?). The specific shades on the skirt look quite nice togethr, the problem is that other shades of the same color in a top might not necessarily meet the same criteria.

Yay for spring clothes...Collapse )
5th-Mar-2007 04:01 pm - Looks for Spring: Nautical.
The nautical look is one that I'm a fan of this spring, and especially since I'm getting very tired of the randomly icy and snowy weather in these parts, I'm going to list a couple of clearance finds from retailers I don't usually shop at, but if nothing else J Crew, American Eagle, Hollister, and Abercrombie are dependable for a very generic but usually pretty cute and vaguely preppy nautical look. I usually refuse to shop at such places simply because I don't believe it constitutes shopping when the things look more or less the same year after year, and since I find it overpriced for what it is, but for a good deal I'm fast proving I'll do almost anything. For the nautical -hanging out on or near the waterfront on in grassy fields where by god, it's warm - look... Stripes, blues and greens, probably paired with capris or a nice flouncy white skirt and cute sandals.

It's a look I'll put a little money into this spring by continuing to look for nice tops in blue and green, as well as tanks and shirts with skinny horizontal stripes, which I'd previously been avoiding since with the wrong piece, it's often not flattering.

Tank top from Abercrombie, 12.90

Striped Shirt from American Eagle, 14.90

More on sale things for Spring...Collapse )
I can be a very lazy dresser despite the general goal of dressing well and being stylish. As in, much too lazy for anything with laces, almost, except when the weather demands I go out in my heavy-duty waterproof, snowproof, and slip-proof boots. If I went to school anywhere warmer, I'd want to be in cute sandals and flats all the time (heels are hell on the feet, even comfy heels after a while, when one has hills and stairs to climb on a daily basis).

This is a thinly veiled excuse to blog on recent shopping finds in the cute shoes department. Seriously though, flats are useful for almost everything in your average college girl's life, from classes, to jobs, to an evening chilling out on the town with friends, and also to parties (more leathery and durable flats that are easy to clean are ideal, but still, cuteness).

As a general caveat, buying shoes online is not always the best idea, since there's no way of really knowing how well the shoe fits without really trying it on, but if you're in the market for a specific sort and style... I think it's a good idea, in the interests of a bargain. As long as one sticks to quality shoes, I haven't had any serious problems with flats.

Steve Madden Flats, 39.99 on Smartbargains
; These were in Vogue too in their March feature on nice things for under $100, and available in universally useful black as well as a nice and festive bronze. 40% savings off retail, which is a little less than I would go for, but they're quite cute and unique-looking, when one is looking to expand their collection of flats beyond the standard ballet flats.

It's all about the shoes...Collapse )
4th-Mar-2007 05:23 pm - Yay or Nay: Jasmine Sola.

Jasmine Sola is an East Coast chain of clothing boutiques geared towards... Well, I personally think it's geared towards tweens shopping on mommy or daddy's dime, and the surfeit of bright colored things sold there when I finally gave in and entered one didn't really change my opinion... it does stock brands geared towards young women though.

Does it make the cut?Collapse )
3rd-Mar-2007 02:40 pm - Inspired: 3.1 Phillip Lim.
Purely as inspiration, since I don't think any self-made college student (or in my shameful case, a college student living on their parent's money for the most part, outside of a few weekend-long debate judging gigs) can yet afford either clothes priced at this level or the shopping around at multiple locations that seeking his stuff out would require. No real introduction is needed for Phillip Lim, who seems to be quite popular right now, being a finalist for pretty recent new designer awards and such, and with well reviewed Spring and Fall Preview shows this year.

From his Fall Preview this year, it's simple, it's stylish, and too me it's consistent with what I think of as dressing well. It's not especially trendy or trying hard, and to me that's pretty important when it comes to more expensive pieces. Also, in the way of a personal thing, black dress on black tights and in general dresses and tights - not a faux pas jeesh - as some of the girls were wont to think when that was my wardrobe selection for an on-campus semiformal party yesterday.

Like the Style.com runway review suggests, to me these things are very wearable, and for me that implies a certain degree of class and style that doesn't fade with the season. I want colder weather to return again quickly, since I really do prefer Autumn and Winter styles to Spring and Summer. (Cute coats and scarves are my favorite things.
2nd-Mar-2007 01:33 pm - On Handbags.
I very recently started investing in nicer handbags - as recently as a couple months ago I had a grand total of pretty much one bag at a time and generally one that was very casual, didn't actually coordinate with most outfits, and looked like something a middleschooler would carry. Those unstylish days are a distant memory however, and at the very least, and I'd like to think I've invested wisely.

So here's my advice for expanding a handbag collection without breaking the bank. This is one of those things where going to a brick-and-mortar discount retailer is an absolute must - you never know what sort of bargain treasures you'll find. (In the same way, just because you're saving money is not a reason to buy something you're not completely in love with.)

I actually kind of have this on extended loan from my mother, who bought it on Ebay for about thirty dollars. It's an older Kenneth Cole New York bag, black leather, and ridiculously practical for a day out shopping or even a nice evening out. I'm still on the lookout for a nice clutch that's more appropriate with formal or semi-formal wear, but this will serve. Current trends definitely lean towards larger bags, but I'm still a fan of smaller ones to go with some outfits - as long as it fits keys, a wallet, a phone, and other little extras, it's all you really need.

Another bag, more rambling...Collapse )
1st-Mar-2007 02:40 pm - Acceptable (?) Splurges.
Since these (relative) deals are all likely to disappear very soon - one that I staked out last night for posting reasons in between writing four pages of my paper on African politics and recent economic development has already disappeared - and to attempt to illustrate what I mean by responsible consumption to balance out my previous post implying the foolishness of prioritizing gratuitous consumption... Here are some things that count undoubtedly as splurges, but are also practical, and even acceptable if one is willing to save a little for the sake of these things.

Shopbop is not somewhere I'm likely to ever actually shop myself, but it does carry an interesting selection of things you're not quite as likely to see at your local department store.

Marc Jacobs Dress, Sale for 113.40; Originally priced at nearly 400 dollars and I love the color, the way its available in my size, and the percentage one can save from the full price. Now I'm never going to splurge on it for myself since I already have a dress, but I feel like it'd make a unique and stylish formal dress, and generally flattering though perhaps a little bit boho for a formal dress. Either way, the point is that you look for deals and splurge exclusively on deals if you're independently generated disposable income is limited or perhaps nonexistent/you're drawing on other people's resources.

Other possibly acceptable splurges...Collapse )
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