Category Archives: Thrifty

bargain looks that look like a million bucks

Mini Stripes and Thrifted Jeans

I love stripes! They’re classic and timeless. I wore a t-shirt by the ethical, organic company Armed Angels today. It is a mini-striped shirt. No need to be worried about looking wider. Skinny stripes don’t have that effect.


I wore a cardigan by Amour Vert over my shirt because it’s too cold in Seattle now for just a tee. The vertical color blocking effect of an open cardi will offset any worries about horizontal stripes. Amour Vert is made in the USA.


I was lucky to find a pair of pre-loved Current/Elliott jeans on eBay. The boyfriend cut is casual and comfortable, and the length is perfect for showing off my shoes.


I admit I created this outfit around these awesome shoes. I love the black and white theme. They’re by NAE (No Animals Exploited) and are vegan patent.


With the money I saved buying second-hand jeans, I could afford all the eco pieces from my store, Drizzle & Shine. Drop by if you’re in Seattle!

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Striped Top and Culottes

My Mayamiko pants arrived! I love the wide, cropped cut and organza trim.

black and white

I was recently gifted a Mayamiko top and fell in love with the soft cotton fabric and solid construction. Their mission of helping women struck a chord with me as well. So I ordered these pants when I saw them on the site.

fair trade and swapped combo

If you order something by Mayamiko, remember that the sizes are UK. I’m a 6-8 and the UK 12 fit perfectly. Of course the elastic waist meant there was wiggle room—I didn’t have to worry about an exact fit.

Mayamiko pants

I paired my culottes with a neat two-tone top from my friend Andrea. She’d contributed it to a recent clothing exchange and I picked it out. I gravitate toward her items because she has fantastic style.

If my boots look familiar, it’s because Andrea wore them in the fashion shoot I linked to in the previous paragraph. I love extending the life of clothes and shoes my sharing among friends. These are in my closet now, and I have a couple of pair of shoes for her.

culottes and boots

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Gray and White Thrifty Look

I just came back from vacation in Germany and while I sort, edit and cull my photos, I thought I’d share a thrifty look I wore shortly before I left for my trip.

gray and white

Top: Swapped
Pants: Suzy Shier
Shoes: Swapped
Bag: Thrifted

I picked up this top at a clothing exchanges a few years ago. It belonged to my friend Andrea, whose style I admire. At another clothing exchange, my friend Kristin handed these awesome wedges to me. She knew they were my size and, since I love her style sense too, she knew I’d like these.

gray fabric wedges and cords

The shoes and top work great with my cropped cords. I’ve had these for years. And they were only $5 from the Suzy Shier outlet in Cambridge, Ontario, the town my parents lived in for a while.

flowy top and cropped cords

My Harvey’s seatbelt bag was thrifted, and was also about $5, making this one of the least expensive outfits I own. Reduce, reuse, recycle!

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Bermuda Shorts and Basket-weave Top

Seattle’s summer is showing no signs of slowing down—and I’m not complaining! I love the warm weather. In summer I gravitate toward dresses, but shorts are a nice change.

Bermuda shorts

Top: Damselfly Seattle
Shorts: Saltworks via swapped
Shoes: Aerosoles
Purse: Crystalyn Kae
Bracelet: Brooklyn flea market

Shorts are usually too short and casual for work, but Bermuda-length shorts are fine in creative and/or casual environments.

woven-pattern top

I wore these to work with a loose top. I was drawn to this pattern because it looked like a thick, woven fabric. It’s an illusion—the pattern is printed on the fabric.

I like the dark background and how the top incorporates so many colors. It means I can wear this with almost anything. I like it with denim (so the denim shorts are a good fit), but it will look great with any solid pant or short.

shorts and sandals

I met up with Crystalyn Kae at Urban Craft Uprising this past July and I ended up with a cute lime green cross-body purse. Adorable, isn’t it?

Crystalyn Kae purse

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Sunny Stripes for Summer

I found this shirt at a clothing exchange and loved its day-glow colors. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart, but I took it figuring I could pair it with black pants.

striped top

Top: Swapped
Pants: Gap
Shoes: Target

However, when I saw that the yellow in the topic was the same hue as my highlighter-yellow cropped jeans I decided to put the two pieces together.

yellow pants and colorful top

Gold shoes aren’t exactly subtle either but I went with these because a demure ballet flat seemed to be a good fit for the psychedelic swirls in the shirt. It’s not often I find a shirt busier than my tattoo sleeve!

colorful summer outfit

It’s summer, and to me that means bright, fun clothes—especially ones that you can get wet! I bought a little pool for my dog so he can cool off. I enjoy dipping my toes in the water too.

poolside

What are your go-to summer tones?

I’ve joined Happiness at Midlife, High Latitude Style, The Penniless Socialite, and Rachel the Hat for blog linkups. See what everyone else is wearing!

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Still Rockin’ My Missoni Shift

Some items in my closet have staying power. This Missoni for Target shirt is one such item. I’ve worn this with tights and booties and I’ve worn it with skinny jeans and boots. This time, I’ve chosen denim leggings (yeah, yeah–jeggings) and nude ballet flats.

shift and cardigan

Cardigan: Target
Shift: Missoni for Target
Leggings: JC Penney
Flats: H&M
Necklace: Handmade by Dad

Yes, you read that right. My dad mad my turquoise necklace. Isn’t that sweet? He’s a fan of stones and gems so it made sense that he’d incorporate turquoise stones and silver beads into a neat piece.

turquoise necklace

The matching cardi was great for the office–it’s always chilly at my desk.

shift and jeggings

Stripes (zigzags) and flats are always in style, making this outfit have staying power. Next time I’ll pair it with my mustard jeans and pick up the yellow stripes in the top.

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Geometric Patterned Dress

I had a clothing exchange a while ago and this dress was one of the gems I acquired. It was more than luck though. My friend Kristin bypassed the stacks of clothing and hand-delivered the dress to me. She knew I’d love it.

geo dress

Dress: Gifted/swapped
Pleather boots: DSW
Vegan suede purse: Matt & Nat
Jacket (below): Swapped

I like the earth tones, geometric pattern, and faux-wrap style. I’ve worn it with tights before and it works great with bare legs too. This time, I wore boots, but it’s going to be great with sandals too. It’s a true all-season dress.

dress and boots

Because indoor (AC) and evenings are cool around Seattle, this green jacket came in handy. It’s another swapped find from a clothing exchange I went to a few years ago.

jacket and dress

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Striped Dress with Bell Sleeves

I picked up this dress when I was in Portland a couple of months ago. It has a neat, retro vibe. I got it at a used clothing store, so maybe it is vintage. Who knows?

striped dress

Dress: Crossroads Trading Co.
Earrings: DIY
Shoes: Arden Wohl x  Cri de Coeur

This will make a great go-to summer dress, although tights will make it a year-round item. In the heat of August, I’ll probably wear sandals. But for spring, a variety of shoe styles will work.

red shoes

I immediately thought of my Arden Wohl x  Cri de Coeur vegan suede shoes. The red shoes highlight the bold red stripes.

mismatched stripes

When clothes are made hastily and patterns don’t line up, it drives me crazy! I’ve walked away from purchased because of sloppy sewing. This dress, however is deliberately mismatched. In fact, there’s no seam down the center. It’s printed that way! This I can live with.

I wore this out to dinner with hubby and a couple we know. We went to a delicious vegan restaurant, Sutra. The menu is local, seasonal, and organic, and changes every two weeks! All the more reason to go back.

Oh, I’ve joined High Latitude Style, Penniless Socialite, Rachel the Hat, and Happiness at Midlife for linkups. See what all the others are wearing!

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Retro Blue Shoes with My Merled Dress

My gray merled dress is ba-aaack! The cost-per-wear must be so low by now–I’ve worn this a lot! But I still like it. I can style it with bright tights, fun scarves, or, as I did on this occasion, fancy blue shoes.

blues shoes

Dress: TJ Maxx
Tights: Fred Meyer’s
Shoes: Crown Vintage via DSW
Earrings: Swapped

I couldn’t resist these shoes. They’re faux leather, affordable, a great color, and have a fun retro vibe. The shoes may be 40s-inspired, but the rest of my outfit is current. The yellow belt was a fun touch–and it’s a complementary color to the shoes.

merled dress

I think I’ll be able to wear these with lots of things–from pants to skirts, and on all sorts of occasions. Probably not for sweeping the lawn, but the broom did make a nice prop!

blue, yellow, gray

Are you drawn to colorful shoes or do you stick with neutrals?

I’m joining Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet. Check out what everyone else is wearing!

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Floral Noir Jacket

I’m not really jumping on the “floral noir” bandwagon. I’m just wearing a floral print jacket I already own. Until recently, I’d never heard the term floral noir. But I do like it as an accurate description of a black-background, floral print.

floral noir

Jacket: Forever 21
Tank top: Target
Pants: Banana republic
Boots: Prada via thrifted
Pleather bag: Gunas
Necklace: Vivienne Westwood

Floral is so sweet and summery–and it’s not that nice in Seattle yet. So the black background makes florals a workable pattern for winter. At least until my Camila bush starts to blossom!

floral jacket

I wore this jacket before in a pattern-mixing frenzy. This time, I kept the rest of the look simple (basic black) and let the jacket steal the show.

floral blazer and jeans

Well, I couldn’t resist carrying my Gunas bag. It’s yellow and white–two of the colors in the jacket–and brightened things up a notch. It’s two-tone, but that’s not exactly a pattern, is it?

Gunas bag

Do you wear floral patterns in winter? Have you embraced the floral noir trend?

Oh, I’m linking up with Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet. See what everyone else is wearing!

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