Elka Three


I would like to talk a little bit about my awkward excursion to Value Village last week where I discovered this enchanting work of art, a print if you will by Michelle Armas. I was actually looking for boots which I discovered (see my post Boot Lust) when across the store I could see this fascinating not to mention huge piece of art along the back wall. All of my favourite colours pulled me in from afar. I managed to get this 48×36 frame down off the wall to my delight it was only $24.99… naturally I had a coupon too so less than $20 by the end of it.

Getting it into my new car was a feat I must say. The Tucson was certainly the most spacious ride I had for thrifting, it made my life easy. Now the Civic Si shows off my bold personality but does not compare in regards to trunk room! Sports cars not good for large scale thrift adventures! I managed to wedge the frame into the trunk and slowly made my way about 2 minutes down the road to work to unload. Once inside I was able to look at it closer and found a sticker on the back of the frame with Michelle’s logo and Etsy website.

After scrolling through the most beautiful artwork on her page I came across “Elka Three Print” for $60. This beautiful print was wrapped on a wood frame and now waits in my hallway for the perfect wall to display her.

You can order online from Etsy!

Monthly Consignment Update

Thrift Spending:

September 1st – $0
September 8th – $22
September 15th – $48
September 22nd – $0
September 29th – $0

Total purchases: $70

Total income: $830

Number of items consigned: 100

Consignment Income $830 – Spending $70 = Month End Balance $760

I did a little shopping last month which is okay, I still came in under my budget! I seem to go through spurts of having a desire to thrift and then a few weeks where it doesn’t cross my mind at all. Lately my issue with it is Halloween, Value Village is over-run by tacky cheap Halloween garbage which results in the stores being full for months of glittery skulls in a rainbow of colours. Not so fun for those of us that are genuinely wanting to thrift.

Boot Lust

14615851_970463813083424_4587667630100396654_oAny clothing lover like myself gets beyond excited when they come across a great pair of boots. Recently I have stumbled into three pairs of amazing boots, unique in their own way. Now in the summer I caved and spent considerable money on new Fly Londons, which are great and all but very heavy on my feet and unfortunately don’t allow me to stand the 9 hours I need to without feeling sore. I think that’s just the reality of retail, no one shoe can be comfortable for that long.

I accepted two pairs of worn boots for consignment last week because they were my size, normally they’d be too worn to sell but considering they’d be coming home with me and I will love them regardless! One pair is a brand called MAG which is not really known in Kingston, that has really unique footwear. We’ve had this brand at the store before and it hasn’t really caught on, but this particular pair I thought was really unique and had the laces I require to fit my muscular calves.

14691311_971299892999816_6497213829281078253_oAlthough my tiny feet require several insoles and thick socks to pull them off comfortably, I feel like these bad boys could be a nice addition to my fall wardrobe. The other pair were dark plum coloured Fly London boots which I took home as they were in need of major love. Seeing as I had spent serious cash on the shoe version months prior I thought it’d be worth it to give these taller boots a good home. There is some serious distressing going on around the toe and ankle areas (the previous owner was rough on her boots!) but I thought maybe one day I’d find a polish to touch them up. I also couldn’t get them done up at the back, so I opened them up down the seam and inserted black elastic so they would fit over my calves. Surprisingly it worked out quite well! I will need to find new laces as the ones they came with are too small based on the size I had to expand to.

The third pair of boots I found recently were at Value Village, where lately everything is priced at $15.99 for no apparent reason… these western ankle boots by Lucky Brand however are worth considerably more. I honestly didn’t expect them to be comfortable but they really are.



That Girl at the Office

s94 Some days I miss being in an office! But I was never that “typical” girl in the office, I have always been a vibrant colour palette full of prints and colourful heels. You won’t often find me in a traditional black suit, but if you do there’s going to be a pop of colour to accent it. I enjoy wearing clothing that I would call business casual, some would think its more business professional, but its fun and tasteful. Who said that business and “professional” meant boring?!

s93 For me the brighter the better! I am thrilled by loud prints and vibrant palette. Bold jewellery even more so! I often hear at the store women say “its too loud for me” and they walk out wearing the same neutrals or blacks that they came in in. There are so many amazing dresses out there in so many shapes and styles, but women are so afraid of them! Either you love them or you run the other way. For me they are so easy to style but the fit has to be right. I almost always have to take them up an inch in the shoulders and often the hem as well because below the knee is less flattering on my 5’2 height.

s92 “Normal” shoppers often have the idea that I must be good at thrift shopping, they whine that they never find anything, that there must be a trick to it or I am just lucky. They think I must go every single day in order to “find the good stuff”. Which is completely not true. Its not easy, its not a walk in and walk out type shopping experience. You have to be able to envision the look, it has to fit, and it has to be the right price. You wouldn’t believe how many times I said goodbye to pieces I loved because I thought they were priced ridiculously high for what they are. We all have a price we are willing to pay for things and when it comes to thrifting, my price is low and that’s the truth of it.

s91 I also am not above taking chances or risks. I’m willing to cut open a dress to make it fit better, most would not. I’m willing to chance that the item will fit me when I get home if I don’t feel like trying it on. Thrifting is a gamble, but a financially sound one. People would never believe the price I pay for what I wear every day, they can’t believe they spend $180 on the same type of dress at the mall and only wore it once. If I spend $10 and only wear it once I’m content with that… I see women every day consigning brand new $400 purses that they decided they didn’t like afterward. I have no words.

Monthly Consignment Update

Thrift Spending:

August 1st – $0
August 8th – $0
August 15th – $0
August 22nd – $0
August 29th – $0

Total purchases: $0

Total income: $1096

Number of items consigned: 127

Consignment Income $1096 – Spending $0 = Month End Balance $1096

Holy moly no purchases in August! I guess that is a combination of working so much and my thrift haul a few weeks ago to resell at the store, I had no interest in going to Value Village where the Halloween and Christmas junk has infiltrated!

Ottawa Thrift Trip

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I have skipped plenty of Value Village half price weekends this year as sometimes thrifting loses its thrill when the price points start creeping up and I don’t see the value in it. Last weekend I decided to spontaneously treat myself to a morning away (as in a two hour drive) to Ottawa to hit up the Value Village circuit for the Super Saver’s half price day. I like to be there for 10:00am when it opens that way I can get a cart and the clothing isn’t absolutely everywhere as per my second stop an hour later.

ottawa3 By the time I get in there are already women rummaging through every row so I get in line as it were and start the plunge. I thrift to resell far easier than I thrift for myself. I know at this stage of the game what will sell the fastest and what the women in Kingston are looking for. Mainly tops, bright prints and clean lines. I spent $180 in the first location I stopped at, which is over $300 in product, roughly $3 per item! The most expensive item I bought was $20, so I paid $10… I flipped this wonderful item at the store within two days to bring home a $40 profit!

I was hoping to turn a profit on a Kathy van Zeeland bag I found for $6… unfortunately even after examining it I realize the shiny finish was completely peeling away. Can’t imagine how I would have missed it in the store as I comb through everything after discovering these items. Sadly not much you can do but shrug your shoulders and toss it.

I have two favourite finds at the end of this haul: a nameless white lace long sleeved mini dress and a vibrant neon print dress by Sandra Angelozzi. I paid $3 for the white number and wore it the next day, I had not expected it to even remotely fit but my gosh its a beauty!

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The neon print dress the cashier commented on how she loved it but donated it because the top was too gappy on her – it was on me too always is! So in the early hours of the morning before work I took it up in the shoulders as I so often do and it fits like a dream. After wearing it over the course of a regular busy work day I discovered it is not so good for bending!! I checked out the brand online and Sandra Angelozzi dresses range in the upwards of $200 ballpark! Not bad for $6!

Monthly Consignment Update

Thrift Spending:

July 1st – $15
July 4th – $11
June 11th – $27
June 18th – $0
June 25th – $0

Total purchases: $53

Total income: $837

Number of items consigned: 72

Consignment Income $837 – Spending $53 = Month End Balance $784

How to dress, when you’ve gained weight

kimchibluedressIts not easy to say those words is it? That word “weight” combined in the same sentence as “gain” just doesn’t feel good to say. Not that weight gain is bad or should be frowned upon, it is just ingrained in us, especially as women, that weight gain is negative and therefore fills us with disgust.

I have, for the most part, always been the same size and same average weight – but more and more as my work consumes most of my spare time, I find myself having less and less energy to do any sort of physical activity. Combined of course with the stress of searching for your new home and all the wonderful goodies that come along with buying your first home… I’m sure there’s a few stress pounds in there too.

Regardless of the reasons why we gain, we need to be able to dress regardless of our size. By all means don’t go throwing out all your clothing that suddenly no longer fits. For all you know this could be a fluctuation which happens in women’s bodies. Sometimes I wake up and can’t fit into a pair of shorts, by the afternoon those same shorts are falling down. This could be just me, but my weight shifts over the course of the day. Continue Reading

Tips for Consigning Clothing

Remove the sales tags if it shows a low value or a price sticker.

    I collected a few sales tags to show you what people leave on their clothing that they are bringing in. “Outlet $9.99 Compare at $19.00” “Value Village $5.49” “Value Village $9.49” If the store prices based on a 1/3 rate of the retail value an item with a price tag of $5 would have to be sold at $1.60 of which the consignor would receive .64 cents. That is assuming the prices don’t drop or go on sale.

    It is in your best interest to remove the label from the inside, play on the fact that most people wouldn’t know the item is from Streetwear Society or George. At the very least remove the price tag. I find a lot of women think that because their items have original sales tags that it will increase the value of their items, it does not in most cases. The only instance where it would is if the item is an expensive highly sought after item such as a Lululemon jacket ($250) or Frank Lyman dress ($200).

Continue Reading