Tuesday, August 4, 2020

A Day at the Thrift Shops

I had today all to myself, so I got up early and prepared to go hit the few second-hand and thrift stores that are open downtown. 
I promised I would wear this dress again soon! 

  • Dress - Sandwich; last seen here in May for a home day
  • Shoes - Half Truth Veda, Fluevog; last worn here (3rd outfit) in June for a brunch and shop with L

This was perfect for my marathon shop! 
It's cotton, with lots of stretch. 
The back zip was excellent for quickly trying clothes on. 

Of course, I masked up. I was chatting with my friend Cat on the weekend about masks, and was keeping my eye out for cheap clothes that could be chopped up and made into masks. I love having a friend who sews! 
My camo one is by Goody, picked up in the drugstore a week or so ago. I kept it on the whole time I was out. 

The stuff: 
I tweaked my ankle slightly playing badminton at Nick's park party, so babying my feet in these low kitten heels. 

Copper and turquoise bling: 
Coordinating with my mask! 

  • Enameled copper cuff - Renoir, vintage 60s, vintage expo
  • Brooch - thrifted
  • Enameled copper earrings - Matisse by Renoir, vintage 60s, Grandma J's
  • Copper/turquoise ring - vintage, Grandma J's

I started out at Flavour Upstairs, where I had to wait a bit to get in due to a line. On a Tuesday! Outrageous. 
I picked up this huge silk scarf for $9.99. 

It's made in India, and it's seen better days, but I love the ombre dye. 
This is going to Cat for mask-making.

I also picked this up for Cat, but if it doesn't fit her, I'm going to tell her to cut it up for more masks. 
"You can tell her I approved it."


It's a lovely silk dress by Lane Bryant.
Regular price $29.99, marked down four times before I spotted it on the $5.00 rack today! 

That chilly season is just around the corner, and I'm always on the lookout for good quality sweaters. 
This is a lovely shade of blue, and will go with tons of stuff in the fall. 

And it's 2-ply 100% cashmere, by Marina Luna, which is a TJ Maxx line. 
For $34.99? Yes, do you know what cashmere costs these days?? This would have been at least $100 new, easy. 

I cannot resist a fun print. 
This jacket is just pure awesome. It's 100% cotton, is a very cute fit - that wide waistband gives a peplum-ish effect, and those are short sleeves. 

The backside. I have shoes in all those colours. I like the scribbles in between the groups of flower shapes. 
It's by Marc Jacobs. 
For $34.99 - that feels like a deal. 

Flush with my success at Flavour Upstairs, I saw that Mango's had Canadian-made masks, so I picked up a couple. 
The top one is by Au Noir, who make some of the fabulous shirts in L's closet, and the bottom one had no label. Gotta build up my mask wardrobe, as I'll be wearing one every day when I'm out in public, and I may as well have matching ones for my wardrobe. 

I quickly took a peek in Fluevog, as their sale is so tempting (I resisted!), and as I was talking to Rae (one of the lovely Fluevogologists), and showing off my purchases, she insisted on pulling out a bag of her own clothes that she had in the back, and offered me my pick! 
So, thank you, Rae! I love this groovy sweater. 
Which is also by Marc Jacobs! 

Look at that sweet little button placket on the back.
And all those colours in the plaid - I'm going to have fun with this in the fall/winter. 

I also selected this mustard-y yellow/brown fine sweater. 
It will be a good layering piece, I think. 
It's by Zara...and it was free! 

From there, I strolled over to Upcycle and found this lovely maxi dress on half price, for $19.99. 
The brand is Lucca, which feels like...not an expensive designer brand. It looks like fast fashion. 
I really liked that the dress is fully lined in viscose (the printed fabric is polyester), and I love that fabulous print, and giant ruffled hem. However, someone removed the elastic all along the shoulders and neckline, so it doesn't sit right. I'm not a fan of off-the-shoulder styles on casual clothes (too much bra/boob wrangling for my taste), so I thought...hmmm....

What's a girl to do? Chop it off! 
Muahahaha! Now I have an excellent maxi skirt with an elastic waistband. Never mind that those waistband ruffles are a little ragged and uneven! Don't care. 

From Upcycle, I went over to the Patch, which has gotten slightly better (but not much) with their safety protocols. At least they had hand sanitizer, but it is still way too crowded in there. I spent a couple of hours going through the entire store and phew, I need a nap. 

Here's what I found, starting with this gorgeous gold velour pleated midi skirt. 
It's very swooshy! 
I didn't recognize the brand - A New Day - so I dug around in the tags down the seams and...
...there we go - it's a Target brand! Shocking! 

It was $19.95, which is about what it sold for new. 
I'd rather buy it second-hand (always!) and I have only been in a Target a few times ever (ugh, no thank you), so I'm fine with this.  

This was truly an "OMG OMG OMG" find. It's a really sweet swingy dress. 
That deep V is super-flattering, and the floral-ish design is reversed on the opposite sides (dress, cuffs, hem). 

The cuffs have a lovely split, so I'm sure I'll be dragging them through the soup soon. 
The pattern is bright pink, burgundy and black. 

The hem also has small slits on either side, which make it flippy when I walk. 
It's fully-lined in black. 

And 100% silk! 
"But what about meeeeee?"


Even the lining is silk! 

It's by Proenza Schouler for Barney's New York. Holy smokes, I found Proenza Schouler!! (here's the Vogue link - links 'cause I love, of course).
As Barney's is now closed, enjoy a look at how much this brand sells for via Saks Fifth Avenue (here) - my dress would probably have been around $2,500 (since it's silk and has sleeves), possibly marked down for around $600-700 (as I see their sale dresses run). *choke* Wow, I got a deal for $22.95! I get a kick out of a Patch employee writing "Barneys" on the tag - obviously their pricer hasn't heard of this brand! 

Well, now I have some new things to play with! What's your favourite? 

Monday, August 3, 2020

Bigass Long Weekend Wrap-Up: Tropical Cotton; Green Brunch; Kimono Badminton Party

Oh, what a lovely weekend it's been, my friends. I truly hope you've all had a peaceful and joyous weekend yourselves!

I have outfits to show you, and not one, but two Flashbacks to share too, and there might even be a few cat pictures here and there, so let's get started. 

Friday's outfit. I was only at work for a few hours, so I rushed through as much as I could, and then strolled home to hang out with L for the afternoon and evening. 
I am totally in love with this dress. It felt marvelous to wear.


  • Dress - Apanage; purchased here last weekend for $29.99
  • Shoes - Chie Mihara; last worn here in June with emerald armour


I love the fine cotton lawn weave - it was light and airy.
I did pop a boob button at one point (I'd been opening hauling boxes) and didn't notice until I locked myself out of the office and had to go see the property manager to get a maintenance guy to let me in. Fortunately, I'd remedied it by the time he showed up. I'll need to safety-pin that next time! 

Isn't the pattern glorious?
Big white peonies with spiky foliage. The background is a yellowy-cream, and the greens are in the chartreuse-olive range, with a touch of rust-brown.

After I put on the bias-cut cotton slip that came with it, and then layered the dress over that, I quickly realized that I was going to have a Velvet-Adjacent Induced Rage Session if I kept two clingy cotton garments on together.
Off went the cotton slip, on went one of my full vintage nylon slips. Phew, disaster averted!

I love how the waistband is slanted from one side of my waist down to the opposite hip.
 And although it's a wrap front, I didn't have too many issues with it wanting to billow open.

The stuff:
I picked out the rusty-brown tones for my accessories, including my awesome Chie Mihara flatform sandals. We'll have a Flashback on those shortly.

Warm bling:
Karen's cuff and ring, and Mom's choker.


  • Amber, sandalwood and brass choker - vintage 70s, Mom's
  • Brass/copper cuff - Karen's
  • Wooden ring - Dots
  • Taxco silver/stone poison ring - Karen's
  • Earrings - consignment


It's been gorgeously warm all weekend - not too hot, a nice light breeze - and Vizzini's been enjoying the deck.
"I was until right this minute..."


I can't help it - I am a 4-year-old when it comes to cats. I have to poke the beast.
"You certainly do."

He's been happy to have us home a lot this weekend.


Flashback #1!

Local shoe store Footloose carries Chie Mihara, a line of shoes by a real person who actually designs her own shoes and owns her own company (17 years strong). Her shoes are aimed at comfort and style and embrace qualities that I love in good companies (bio here*). *all links 'cause I love, of course.

These are my fourth pair by her - the prices are in the Fluevog range of up to $400 a pair, so I either wait till a pair I like goes on sale (like these ones, or these ones (now gone)), or I find them second-hand (like these).
I bought these in May 2018 (here), so I've only had them for two years. I had a pair of rust-coloured sandals that I'd thrifted and had fallen apart on me, so I kept my eyes peeled for an "upgrade" pair (better quality, leather, comfy to walk/stand in). These were on half price at Footloose for $199.50. Not cheap!

I wore them right away, in May 2018 with my crane shirt and yellow leather.
 I let go of that shirt a while back. The skirt is currently in my fall/winter wardrobe.

With my "chicken" top and a very short skirt in June 2018.
Yvonne has this skirt now. The top is in the giveaway pile.

I wore this outfit to work and then to the dentist in July 2018.
"I'm helping, as always."


The shoes have a great 1970s vibe, but also give me a 1930s vibe (which is where the 70s got their platforms from).

This September 2018 outfit was one of those ones that was good in theory but not in practice. See above Velvet-Adjacent Induced Rage Episode - one of these days I'm going to learn!
Linda has this dress now - she opened up the seams and added another colour to it to fit it to her - it looks awesome on her.

The rusty-brown colour works well as a copper or orange analog, as I've matched it here in October 2018 to my copper skirt and jewelry.
I like these funky proportions.

I just gave this neoprene skirt to Vero!
 This is my first time wearing it in March 2019 - it was a bit too short for me.

My Big Lady Boss Pants' first outing in April 2019. The trousers require heels, so I went with a pink/brown theme.
"Black and white is better."


I love that outfit - everything in it is so harmonious to me.

Of course, I've worn my Fendi belt with these shoes, as I did later in April 2019.
I love that dress, and all the orangey-brown tones here.

I might have to dig this silk top out of the giveaway pile - every time I see it in a Flashback, I find myself falling for it all over again. Wait, I might have given it to Vero. Ah, well. 
This May 2019 outfit is another solid one. The pants have a fine caramel line in them.

I wore three separate party outfits for L's birthday in June 2019.
"Back when people came over for birthdays."


This jumpsuit (a gift from Wendy Brandes) was the midnight to 3:30am outfit!

Speaking of jumpsuits, here's another from July 2019 that you might recognize.
I ran with the orange tones in the shoes and did orange accessories.

I need to wear this kimono again! It's a dangerous garment due to all the tassels and glass beading, which gets smushed into my chair at work and attacked by a cat at home.
 This is from August 2019, a year ago.

I don't keep these shoes out all year round, although I suppose I could wear coloured tights with them.
 This is from September 2019. I have all that stuff still.

This is a fun outfit, also from September 2019, for the last Urbanite at the Art Gallery.
My hair is crimped and I have a strip of copper eyeshadow across my face. Yes, I'm wearing a leather and brass arm gauntlet and a leather body harness. I'm a wild woman!

After lockdown this year, I wore the shoes for a "sanity balm" outfit in May 2020.
 I should wear that dress again.

And here's the last time I wore them, with my emerald satin armour, in June 2020.
It takes bold shoes to balance a dress like that!

Mathy stuff: In just over two years, I've worn these shoes 17 times, which is $11.74 per wear. Imagine how low that cost-per-wear will be in another two years!


On Saturday, L and I strolled down to Pluto's for brunch.
I've been wanting to wear this dress for a while! We're going to Flashback on it below and see how many times I've worn it in the 10 years that it's been in my closet.


  • Dress - Taylor, consignment; last seen here in June 2018 for Ulti/brunch
  • Silk haori- vintage, vintage store, Portland, OR; last worn here in April with big red pants
  • Shoes - Born, consignment; last worn here (2nd outfit) in July 2019


I see I didn't manage to wear this dress last year - that feels like an oversight! It's been one of my stalwart Ulti/brunch/grocery shopping dresses for about 5 years.
It feels a little too casual for me to wear to work most of the time, but it's wonderful in hotter months.

I can't believe I've had it for ten years.
 Where did that time go??

After we got home from brunch, I read on the deck for a while, and just left the dress on.
It's lovely for hanging out at home.

I covered up for walking in the sun in my haori.
Silk is always awesome for hot and cold weather - it breaths, but also insulates.

I took it off to eat, as I didn't want my sleeves dragging through my huevos.
I'm blurry as I wave my arms about!

The stuff:
I'm not really surprised to see that I haven't worn these shoes for a year - they're "barefoot" shoes, i.e. they can be worn with no nylons or footies, so they only get worn when it's hot out. I also don't wear them to work.

Black and gold bling:
 Just matching to the black and cream haori pattern.


  • Necklace - Aldo
  • Chain/leather wrap - local
  • Silver/aventurine ring - consignment
  • Silver Taxco ring - Karen's
  • Silver/onyx ring - Tocarra, vintage fair
  • Earrings - thrifted


My guy also dressed up for brunch, and wore this to toss around the Frisbee later in the afternoon.
A sweet vintage Hawaiian polyester shirt, a Pack A.D. concert tee, thrifted shorts, skull socks and second-hand Cons. Rock on, L!


Flashback #2!

I bought this dress almost exactly 10 years ago, in July 2010 (here), at the Velvet Crease (in their old location on Cook Street), for $27.00.

It's by Taylor, and is 100% cotton eyelet, and is fully-lined - it even has bra-strap-snaps which I broke at some point when I forgot about them and took the dress off. I often refer to it as my Lettuce dress due to the leaf-lettuce-resembling fluffy gathers that are sewn in a boustrophodon pattern of ruffles. 

I wore it to work at my old job in July, right after I bought it.
Nothing too fancy (I was a little more timid with my accessorizing back then!), just rust shoes and my Grandma J's copper cuff/earrings.

With a bit of black here in August 2010.
This was another work outfit.

I wore this for a job fair in September 2010 - this was when my department at my old job was outsourced. 
My old black boots (I walked to the job fair) and a belted blazer (so 2010). I did get 3 interviews out of it, but no job. 

In May 2011 - I actually wore this to work at my new/current job. That's my dad's silk scarf in my hair, a waterfall cardi (very 2011!), and a pair of clodhopper shoes. 
And a scotch on the stairs after work - my first few months at my job were not happy ones. 

July 2011 - me and Vizzini. 
I have a scarf around my neck. I loved those shoes. 

Probably an Ulti outfit. 
This was in August 2011.

I didn't wear the dress again until July 2012, where I showed off my new-ish aqua Fluevogs. 
Life is better - and I have my blonde streak in my bangs. 

A somewhat fancy outfit a year later in July 2013.
One of the many denim shirts I've had over the years. 

Another simple outfit from June 2014.
I miss those shoes - I wore them out. 

A couple of months later, in September 2014. 
Definitely another Ulti outfit - I haven't duplicated my shoes yet! 

Oh, well, "famous last words"!
My hair is purple and parted on the other side, though. This was in June 2015. 

A year later, in June 2016, with silver accessories.
Basically, at this point, I'm down to wearing the dress once a year. 

July 2017 - and my hair is even longer. 
Another outfit worn to Ulti/brunch. 

Much longer hair, and some sunblocking accessories, in June 2018. 
I have neither the hat nor the linen jacket anymore. 

And here's the last time I wore it, in May 2019. 
Trying it with tights and boots. The tights were a bad idea. Sigh, clinging issues!

Mathy stuff: Including the current outfit, I've now worn my Lettuce dress 16 times, which works out to $1.69 per wear. Awesome! 


On Sunday, Vizzini was sunning himself vigourously out on the desk. 
"I'm ensuring even sun coverage."


He was squirming around, thrashing his tail, ready for mischief.
"What? Who's calling me squirmy?"


He jerked to a stop to meow at me.
"What is it? Is the Man in trouble?"


Down he went!
"I need to investigate."


All safe and sound, protecting L. 
"Nothing to see here. I protect the Man."


L and I headed off to Beacon Hill Park on Sunday afternoon, to join our friends in celebration of Nick's 60th birthday.
It was windy, as you can see! 

  • Kimono - no label, consignment; last worn here in August 2019 over a brown dress
  • Top - Ellen Tracy, swap from Caro; last seen here in May with a silk cocoon
  • Pants - Lady Dutch, thrifted; last worn here in May for Star Wars Day shenanigans
  • Sandals - Born, consignment; last seen here (2nd outfit) in July last weekend for the Mrs. Roper Pool Party

I've been wanting to wear this lovely silk velvet burnout kimono for ages, but it's very challenging. 
For one thing, you can't wear a coat or jacket over it, so it has to be the topper - so it needs to be warm enough to mostly wear it solo. 

It's also covered in glass beading and has a kazillion tassels (cat-bait). 
And I've already destroyed some of the beading from it rolling into my chair's wheels at work the last time I wore it. 

But sitting around in a park on a warm August long weekend? 
Yeah, we can do that! 

I must mask up appropriately. 
Sequins, baby! 

  • Leather purse - Banana Republic, consignment

The rest of the outfit is pretty standard neutrals - I let the kimono do the heavy lifting. 

The stuff: 
Wearing my easy sandals again for the walk to the park and back. 

Gold bling: 
I was very noisy! The earrings are Mom's, and the necklace is homegrown vintage from about 1983-4. 

  • Necklace - gift from Mom & Dad, c. 1983-4
  • Earrings - vintage 70s, Mom's
  • Ball bracelet - Butler Fifth Avenue Collection, consignment
  • Chain bracelet - thrifted
  • Wooden ring - Dots
  • Crystal/silver ring - Uffizi Gallery gift shop, Florence, Italy

We were hoping for a nice hot sunny day, but hey, it's Victoria. It was windy, sunny, chilly, cloudy - which is about right. 
Our Birthday Boy, Nick, on the left, with Casey on the right. 

Party planners, Randall and Yvonne. 
It was a busy day in the park - we shared this area with several groups, who all seemed to be distancing pretty well. 
Nancy joined us!

Caro set up beside Ross and Cat. 
Spence (right) came over from Vancouver to surprise Nick. 
Rosanna and Greg showed up too! 

Linda rode her bike over. 
Looking fabulous! 
Love her vintage parasol! 

Caro brought a badminton set, so Chris and I played for a while. 
I actually played every opportunity I had, including a couple of rounds of doubles, and a two-on-one (me) situation, once our friends figured out I was a "ringer".  I used to play badminton as a kid, so it and Ulti are the only two sports I'm any good at. 

Caro cheered me on. 
"Go, She!"

It was challenging playing in the wind. 
"Go, Chris!"

Alison spectated with her wine. 

Action shots by L. I'm ready to swat!
I kicked my shoes off and played barefoot on the soft grass. 

It was so fun to jump around and run, tassels swooshing, necklace rattling.
No birdie escapes from me! 

I'm totally going to whack this one. 
There were a few "shuttlecock" jokes, heh heh. 

Chris didn't stand a chance. 
No way you're going to return this one! 

Ready...
Bam! 

I'm amazed that L caught the birdie actually flying in most of these shots. 
I'm looking pleased with that slam. 

And, yes! 
I am victorious! 

Once the sun disappeared, it got quite chilly out. Time to go home.  
All the cyclists headed off, and L and I strolled home to have dinner and feed our ravenous monster. 

There he is, so excited to see us. Vizzini, are you ready for some board games, music and chillin'? 
"Does a cat like kitty treats?"


I've heard that's true! 

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend, my friends! Thank you so much for dropping by.