Browse Tag: Value Village

Silkscreen Feathers

Silkscreen Feathers Grey Silkscreen Feathers


Today’s outfit is a first for me and I can’t even describe in words how much I love it. I feel like a million bucks. There is not a thing that didn’t work when I threw it on this morning – it was actually the second outfit of the morning!

I found this top at Value Village about a year ago – the sales girls were gushing over it when I brought it to the counter… luckily I was the Cinderella that it fit! I was never sure how to wear it, so this is actually the first time in how many months that I’ve worn it! I’m a huge activist for not keeping things you don’t wear, but unique pieces like this, I was going to hang onto until that glorious day (today!) that I figured it out.

Paired with skinny jeans from the half price sale on Sunday – a little grey cardigan, purple pointed toe pumps and jazzed up with my handmade jewellery in purple. I made the set to go with a purple dress I was wearing to my cousin’s wedding in September, but with the unique combination of beads it works well with a variety of other outfits too!

Stripes, Sequins and Gold!

Gold Stripes and Sequins As mentioned in my previous post about my thrifting adventure this week, I discovered this super fabulous tank by Bebe for $7.99 at Value Village in mint condition. Beautifully soft and flowy with two tone gold mini sequins in stripes around the whole thing. One of my pet peeves is companies making a design only on one side of a top or dress. I’m talking something really obvious too such as sequins, it looks really strange to see a top full of sparkle on the front and flat matte on the back. Just seems really lazy to me and unprofessional!

It occurred to me today that I am lacking a white cardigan to go with outfits like this. I have had several in the past, but as we all know, white doesn’t last. The cost of smelling good? Damaged, soiled underarms… boo! The lifespan of white thrift cardigans is extremely short sadly, but luckily the cost makes it worth while to simply buy another one when that sad day comes. In lieu of my non-existent white cardigan I pulled out the khaki blazer as it seemed like a softer choice than my black leather jacket.

I’d like to take this opportunity to point out the fact that this blazer does not do up. Too often do I hear women fussing over jackets, cardigans and blazers because of the zipper or the buttons. The standard response to these customers is: “When are you going to wear it done up?” To which they always respond: “Well it needs to be able to do up!” Honestly, when have I ever worn a cardigan or blazer done up? It’s usually the top underneath it thats most exciting so I like it to show but have my arms covered! That’s its purpose… for me anyway.

Because its go gold or go home, I pumped up the sparkle with my custom designed “military ball” necklace, bracelet and earring set which I altered a second time about 6 months ago into this very long, luxurious piece of jewellery. I even paired the ensemble with the white flats that tore up my poor toes the other day for no good reason! All in all not a bad casual setup for the office!


As mentioned in my previous post about my thrifting adventure this week, I discovered this super fabulous tank by Bebe for $7.99 at Value Village in mint condition. Beautifully soft and flowy with two tone gold mini sequins in stripes around the whole thing. One of my pet peeves is companies making a design only on one side of a top or dress. I’m talking something really obvious too such as sequins, it looks really strange to see a top full of sparkle on the front and flat matte on the back. Just seems really lazy to me and unprofessional!

It occurred to me today that I am lacking a white cardigan to go with outfits like this. I have had several in the past, but as we all know, white doesn’t last. The cost of smelling good? Damaged, soiled underarms… boo! The lifespan of white thrift cardigans is extremely short sadly, but luckily the cost makes it worth while to simply buy another one when that sad day comes. In lieu of my non-existent white cardigan I pulled out the khaki blazer as it seemed like a softer choice than my black leather jacket.

I’d like to take this opportunity to point out the fact that this blazer does not do up. Too often do I hear women fussing over jackets, cardigans and blazers because of the zipper or the buttons. The standard response to these customers is: “When are you going to wear it done up?” To which they always respond: “Well it needs to be able to do up!” Honestly, when have I ever worn a cardigan or blazer done up? It’s usually the top underneath it thats most exciting so I like it to show but have my arms covered! That’s its purpose… for me anyway.

Because its go gold or go home, I pumped up the sparkle with my custom designed “military ball” necklace, bracelet and earring set which I altered a second time about 6 months ago into this very long, luxurious piece of jewellery. I even paired the ensemble with the white flats that tore up my poor toes the other day for no good reason! All in all not a bad casual setup for the office!

Giving Your Shoes a Facelift!

It can be pretty expensive at times even when you thrift, to keep up with the latest styles and trends. Some days we even find ourselves caving and rushing to the mall and spending a fortune because at that particular moment – you HAD to have them! Honestly I do not recall an instance where I was thrilled with my decision to do this – and nine times out of ten the item sits in the closet because I found something better thrifting several months later.

Painted Shoes Painted Shoes

One thing that I have always found interesting about friends is their shoe collections. Not to mention the widely acknowledged joke about women with far too many shoes. Because of my uncommon tiny foot size, fat-less ankle and high instep, finding a size 5.5 shoe that doesn’t look like grandma’s is a very difficult feat. Lately I have noticed my feet shrinking even more, combined with the wear and stretching ability of thrift footwear.

Painted Shoes Painted Shoes


Two years ago I was invited to a military ball. As you may or may not know, these are very formal events usually requiring an expensive gown of some sort. You know me, to Value Village I went! Lucked out with the dress but the footwear was impossible as always. I found myself going to Spring and dishing out a pile of money for gold sequin wedges – quite simply because the sparkle pumps I was hoping for I couldn’t walk in! I am a dancer so I need something I can dance all night in. Wouldn’t you know it, the guys wanted to leave the ball before the dancing even started!

It was a pointless purchase as cool as they were, I never wore them again… until one day I decided I wanted a pair of nude/fleshtone shoes to wear with my dresses. When I go out on weekends I like to have some height so I typically wear either a medium heel or my J.Lo wedges which always grab attention due to their huge size. Believe it or not, they are the most comfortable bar shoes I have ever owned.

I got out the paints and decided to attack these sequined beasts in hopes of improving them. I was never going to wear gold sequins, the outfits one could wear are just too limited to justify owning such a pair of shoes. So I mixed paint over and over to achieve my skintone in acrylic paint. It was certainly going to have a textured effect which was just fine with me. I gave them a good two coats, even changing the colour a second time so it was more accurate.

After the two coats I did a light sealer of clear gloss medium in hopes of giving it a more finished look. Honestly that step should be repeated as it was a very thin coat. But I wore them out that weekend and they went over really well! They didn’t stand out and by extension, made my legs look longer.

The topic of painting shoes came up at the office one day last month, as to whether there were techniques and methods of doing it successfully. I didn’t really have any answers just my basic acrylic application – so I decided to do a little research! I found three great articles that are very interesting for making your footwear more exciting!

H&M Emerald Green Dress

H&M Dress H&M Dress


Every now and again we come across amazing finds that become a staple in our wardrobe. People ask me all the time where I get things but it just makes me laugh, about 90% of the pieces in my closet (save for my underwear!) are thrift. It’s rare that I even go into a “real” store! This particular gem was a “grab first, analyze later” piece. Found it rummaging through the dress rack and my jaw dropped. It’s an absolutely stunning number by H&M with a sequined neckline.

Like I say all the time, I have yet to see anything like it. It’s slightly formal for most people but when has that ever phased me? Beautiful emerald green – my favourite! I look forward to next year’s thrifting adventures when all the girls get rid of their popular “in” pieces from this year… with any luck I’ll have a wide variety of this green to choose from come next January!

Normally I like to wear my nude, peep-toe heels with this outfit but seeing as I’m sitting at my desk all day I just opted for black flats. To give it more of an edge, I paired it with my new addition – black pleather biker jacket. Surprisingly when I got to the office I noticed another girl had a bright coloured dress on, royal blue – with a similar black jacket! Seemed to be the outfit or style of the day!

Shoes Get the Death Penalty

Destroying My ShoesSometimes even shoes you love, must be subjected to the death penalty. No electricity required, just scissors or a garbage can. I tend to push the limits with my clothing, especially my shoes. Thrift shoes are both wonderful and not at the same time, as this footwear is already worn in so they tend to be far more comfortable than new – however this also means their life span is a lot shorter than you would expect. Both a positive and a negative in their own right.

Don’t get me wrong I loved these white flats with the ankle buckle, it really pained me (quite literally!) to have to enforce this terrible fate. The first few times I wore them they were perfectly fine, but due to the slick lining my feet did occasionally slide or sweat. Very strange sole I can honestly say I haven’t seen a shoe like it. The last two times I gave these shoes a chance at life they tore up my toes in the most excruciating and annoying way possible. No three strikes for these bad boys!

 

I did happen to find a pair of 725 Originals white (replacement) flats at Value Village last week. Very simple and sweet. So I took those home and later that evening decided to take the buckle flats off the shelf. They didn’t go far, just to the floor as I decided what to do with them. It then occurred to me the part I liked about them was the ankle buckle – unfortunately I’m not able to redesign these new flats with the same ankle design but I could reconstruct them to be a decorative addition to the toe of the shoe. As it exists now, the design at the toe is a simple knot which I will be removing and attaching the buckle piece across in its place.

I didn’t have my glue gun handy so I couldn’t do this all in one go, so it is still a work in progress. I cut the buckle flats in such a way that they could be worn, by removing the toe completely – which is what was cutting my toes in the first place and removing the back zipper as well as the buckle. I plan to see if they are salvageable by painting them, adding either an elastic or ribbon to the back where the zipper used to be… I’m not 100% sure what I’ll do, but what’s the worst that can happen? These painful shoes go in the garbage!

A Little Sea Green

Sea Green Top Originally this morning I was going for a more formal look with a high waist skirt and blouse. I tried two different skirts before deciding they were either too short & tight or completely the wrong style. As it’s such a specific item I have not successfully found the ideal high waist skirt. One day I shall find you!

Instead of a dressy day it’s a casual one with my beloved blue-hand-staining yoga jeans, nude flats and my super cheap Ardene blouse! Love the colour and how light the fabric is. Nothing too special about today’s setup except for my hairdo that is, put it all in miniature braids last night to give my hair some excitement. It’s interesting!

The White Aztec Dress

White Aztec Dress White Aztec Dress

My newest addition to the dress section of my wardrobe! Let me introduce to you this size large (haha!) sleeveless white dress with high neckline and bold black/gold Aztec print. It blew my mind when I saw the label was Seduction (?!) Not often does that brand make such a cool dress but here’s a great example of how a dress print should be done: completely around the entire dress – none of this front only print nonsense. I was very surprised at this factor alone, normally all the sequin tops and vibrant print pieces I find are made in the lazy fashion only visible on one side. Of course that’s great if you only expect to face the public dead on at all times.

White was never my favourite colour but as I discussed in this post it is now one of my favourite colours or lack of colour… Now I’m drawn to it because of its crisp, clean appearance. White is not a colour you can often find in good condition when you thrift however this gem was brand new with the original tags on it! Not that it was an expensive dress to begin with, but still I got it for half of the retail store’s original price tag! I suspect the reason it appeared at Value Village this weekend was because of the size, which as you know I’m not a strong believer in. Sure enough I eye-balled it perfectly, any smaller and it would not go over these hips! It does however need a slight adjustment under the arms as it gives extra fabric to having a larger chest than I do. All in all a minor adjustment to make for such a cool number!

To make it a little more put-together for the office I paired it with a new cardigan and the white flats I was intending to butcher some day soon. My glue gun has not yet arrived so until then I’ll wear them as is! Jewellery for this is quite simple just a hint of gold bangles and silver earrings. Nice and sweet!

Beautiful Bangles

Bright Bangles Some days you don’t find much in the way of jewellery and accessories in thrift stores… But every now and again you hit some real gems! I found two sets of matching beaded bangles for $2.99

I have the uncommon problem of really small wrists, working retail for so long I am always hearing the opposite – “These rings are so tiny!” “Bracelets are always made so small!” Well ladies, bangles are usually a standard size in my experience. There are two sides to the coin so best not whine about it, it wasn’t meant to be.

Long story short, the bangles fit perfectly!

The “Wow” Factor

St. Patrick's DayMy not-so-impressive outfit today scored me a prize for St. Patrick’s Day at the office! Who knew! Honestly on my drive to work this morning I seriously debated even posting today’s attire as its so unimpressive. Just going for a lot of green and simple. I picked up this emerald green top at Value Village last night so I’d have something casual to wear (I had contemplated wearing my emerald green dress from H&M but its a bit formal). It’s quite big on me but I have every intention on stitching it up into a more exciting top one of these evenings! Can’t get passed the colour – I just love it!

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Lug Skipper Shoulder Pouch

Lug Skipper Shoulder PouchEvery now and again I find something that stands out, not because it appeals to me but because its either in mint condition, has new price tags still on it or the price is outrageous. This particular find on Value Village’s half price day really threw me for a loop. First it was the colour, bright orange. Second, the original Lug price tag is still hanging on it. Third, we receive a huge collection of this same item (along with the tote bag, wallet, passport organizer, yoga bag, etc) into The Revolving Door one day.

 

This bag is actually found in stores right now as the “Lug Skipper Shoulder Pouch”, retailing for a minimum of $30 Canadian. Their price tag on it was $9.99 at VV. Only $5 on half price day. Talk about a steal of a deal. Walking to the cashier, I notice a wall of other purses and decide to peruse before I check out. I didn’t understand why these were separated from the rest. As it would happen, I learned very quickly these pieces had a very high price tag.

I pawed through a few that looked nice, a few that looked strange even ugly in fact. All above $20 and I couldn’t understand why as I didn’t recognize half of the labels. Maybe that’s partially because labels mean absolutely nothing to me at all but I came across one that I could see being both cute and ugly at the same time. It was not a label I had ever heard of, brown trim and a robin’s egg blue – could have accessorized it nicely. My jaw dropped when I flipped over the price tag, $79.99. Value Village’s price was basically $80 for a second hand bag that I couldn’t decide if it was ugly or not.

Needless to say I have never looked at anything on that wall again.

Repurpose, Redesign, Restyle!

Last night I decided because it was such a nice afternoon (thank you Daylight Savings!) that I would go thrifting before heading home. Normally I avoid Value Village at all costs on Tuesdays as its seniors day… I’m still waiting for a 20 something’s day… hasn’t happened yet. Anywho I went anyway luckily all the seniors were at Humpty’s for dinner and the place was quite vacant.

At first I was just looking for the usual list – but as always I got side tracked thinking about Amanda’s request for thrift styling and decided to paw through the dresses looking for something in her vintage/Audrey Hepburn style. A few pieces looked decent, but never in the right size! I did find one that I think is going to be perfect – not to mention reversible! Hopefully she will delightfully surprised when it arrives!

RRR RRR

I snagged three things for myself on this adventure: A white and gold sequin top by Bebe; wild print dress by Kismet and finally a broken necklace that was packed full of my favourite colour green wood beads. What you’re seeing today is two hours of restringing work thanks to yours truly. But! I now have a set of six elastic bracelets and a super long (outrageously awesome if the truth be told) necklace with many strands. I only dropped entire strands of beads in my lap twice!

The dress I picked out yesterday is tagged as a 13-14, if you read yesterday’s post it’ll save me a good chunk of time explaining my beef with sizing in general. There was no way a size 14 woman is going to fit into this – at the store they would use the old staple: “What’s this for? My arm?” I’ve never enjoyed people insulting clothing because its not their size – would it not be enough to simply say something to the effect of “Shucks, I wish this was my size!” The end. Instead from here it goes on to them looking at me saying “It’d fit you, must be nice to be so tiny you’d look good in anything.”

Green Necklace

As much as I’m sure that’s supposed to be a compliment from your perspective its actually a snarky, not to mention inappropriate remark. What was it Thumper’s mom taught us? Oh yes I remember: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Translated into the new english language: “Don’t say nothin’ at all.” Forgive me I just couldn’t help myself! Bottom line is ladies: it’s an insult – don’t say it!

Back to the outfit and all social stereotypes aside, this size “13/14” dress just needed to have two inches taken off the straps to be a perfect fit. Not tight anywhere, no bulges hanging out in unwanted ways – a very flattering piece in the end! Truth be told I was not about to stitch the straps correctly at 6:30am this morning so I simply made a loop at the front and tied a knot, which conveniently fell quite nicely behind the top of the dress. No sewing required!

Over top I chose my seagreen ¾ sleeve cardigan, paired with my new “restylized” bracelets and necklace, my beloved green flats and a mini belt in a similar green. I’m very matchy-matchy today in a fun kind of way. My coworkers mentioned the green trend today as two other women had green as well but a different shade and style of course!

Fleshtone Blouse

Fleshtone Blouse Fleshtone Blouse


I may have forgotten my Daily Digs post this morning so I took two snapshots at work because of this blouse. Its very unique, as per the usual – found at Value Village on one of my first trips here in Medicine Hat. It’s a miserable snowy-slushy day today so I’ve gone more casual with a simple brown cardigan, jeans and tall brown boots. The blouse however is a lovely fleshtone tan with ruffles around the arm holes, gathered at the waist and beautiful sparkled embroidery around the neckline.