Category Archives: shopping

2017 recap, favorite purchases + 2018 shopping goals

As I mentioned in my final “monthly budget adventures” post of 2017, I spent less than $900 total on my clothing budget for the year.

Looking back over the items that I purchased throughout 2017, it’s interesting to note that several of my favorites were actually replacement items, including the black tote bag, sneakers, and wallet I purchased last year.

Librarian for Life + Style | Collage of favorite purchases for 2017

My favorites overall were:

2018 shopping goals

My shopping goals for 2018 are pretty simple — Both Sam and I am embarking on a year of no shopping for new clothes! (This will not include replacing necessities like underwear, nor will it include any c/o items.) I’ve felt this coming for awhile, as it will give me a chance to really get to know what’s in my closet and reassess my style and my wardrobe.

So my shopping goals for 2018 are really #noshoppinggoals.

How about you? What are your shopping goals for the new year? Please leave a comment and share.


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday#iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsStyle With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy WednesdayWhat I Wore WednesdayI Feel Pretty WednesdaysWeekly Wednesday Fashion LinkupTop of the WorldThursday ModaFashion FridayPassion for FashionFun Fashion FridayFabulous FridayFriday FavoritesFancy FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

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Monthly budget adventures (December 2017)

A quick reminder to please vote for your favorite outfit of mine from December — thanks in advance! And now it’s time for my monthly budget adventures… this past month, I spent just a little over $20.

Lands’ End sales

Librarian for Life + Style | What I got @ Lands' End (Dec. 2017)

I stacked multiple Lands’ End gift cards to score 6 items for a total of $6! I took advantage of a 50% promo code when Lands’ End was having a massive online sale — and I made sure my promo code was good on sale and clearance items, as well. The biggest score of my Lands’ End clothing haul was this beautiful wool coat, which originally was priced at $219, and I used promo codes to get that price down to below $75! You can see more of the details for each clothing item below.

Details + shopping links:

  • Women’s Suede Moc Slippers, in leopard {exact style}:  paid $0 (original price $44.95, used 50% off promo code for $22.47, used gift card)
  • Women’s Traditional No Iron Dress Shirt in “Rich Red Check” {exact}:  paid $0 (original price $59.95, used 50% off promo code for $29.97, used gift card)
  • Women’s Combed Cotton Cable Sweater in “Wild Cherry” {exact}:  paid $0 (original price $49.95, on sale for $20, used gift card)
  • Women’s Combed Cotton Cable Turtleneck Sweater in black {exact style, some colors out of stock}:  paid $0 (original price $49.95, on sale for $20, used gift card)
  • Medium Two-Tone Zip Top Canvas Tote Bag in “Serene Gray/Black” with the zip top {exact style tote}:  paid $0 (original price $40, used 50% off promo code for $20, used gift card)
  • Women’s Wool Car Coat in “Gemstone Teal” {exact coat, still on sale!}:  paid $6 (original price $219, on sale for $149.96, used 50% off promo code for $74.98, used gift card and paid remainder of balance

And here’s a look at the Lands’ End items in real life:

Librarian for Life + Style | Lands' End collage, Dec. 2017

J.Crew Factory sale

I also took advantage of a holiday sale to snag my husband a couple of cardigans via the J.Crew Factory site, and I added a simple black shell to the shopping cart to take advantage of free shipping.

Librarian for Life + Style | J.Crew Factory black shell

Details + shopping link:

  • Cotton “Caryn” shell {exact}:  paid $15.60 (original price $39.50, on sale)

Budget recap:

Total spent for this month: $21.60
Total savings for this month:  $482

Total spent for this year:  $854
Total savings for this year:  $1,202

Please note that I get commission for clicks made through affiliate links in this post. This goes toward covering my website and file storage fees, so thank you for helping support this blog!

Giveaway + gifts

Last month, I was the lucky winner of a name necklace giveaway on Nancy’s Fashion Style blog! It arrived in the mail — all the way from the Netherlands! — this month, just in time for Christmas.

Isn’t the card Nancy sent sweet? (It translates to “lots of love,” FYI.)

Librarian for Life + Style | Name necklace giveaway

Librarian for Life + Style | Name necklace giveaway

Recent clothing gifts also include a faux fur scarf from my mom and “Bob Ross” socks from Santa… a pair for Sam and a pair for me! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Faux fur scarf closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Bob Ross socks

I also have an idea for the monthly budget series for next year… so stay tuned!


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday#iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsStyle With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy WednesdayWhat I Wore WednesdayI Feel Pretty WednesdaysWeekly Wednesday Fashion LinkupTop of the WorldThursday ModaFashion FridayPassion for FashionFun Fashion FridayFabulous FridayFriday FavoritesFancy FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Monthly budget adventures (November 2017)

A quick reminder to please vote for your favorite outfit of mine from last month — thanks in advance!

And now it’s time for my monthly budget adventures! I spent a grand total of $12 this month, all on new-to-me items that I picked up at an estate sale in Portland over the Veterans’ Day holiday weekend. We had gone down to Portland to stay with some friends, who happen to be experts at estate sales. (Tips they gave us:  Be polite; Dress well but not fancy; bring cash; and be prepared to walk away if the seller won’t agree on a lower price.)

We went on the final Sunday for an estate sale in the very nice Laurelhurst neighborhood of Portland, where I found these lovely items for half-off the original price:

  • Patent leather pumps with velvet bows, Franco Sarto {similar}:  Priced at $12, paid $6
  • Snakeskin and patent leather cap-toe flats, Bandolini {very similar!}:  Priced at $8, paid $4
  • Small square silk scarf {similar}:  Priced at $4, paid $2

Please note that I get commission for clicks made through affiliate links in this post. This goes toward covering my website and file storage fees, so thank you for helping support this blog!

Librarian for Life + Style | Brown patent leather bow heels, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Snakeskin and patent leather flats, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Olive + burgundy silk square scarf, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Olive + burgundy silk square scarf, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Olive + burgundy silk square scarf, estate sale find

Budget recap:

Total spent for this month: $12
Total savings for this month:  $125 estimate

Total spent for this year:  $832
Total savings for this year:  $720


I have a few gift cards for Lands’ End that I’ve saved up, so I’m planning on some Christmas shopping for myself!

Monthly budget adventures (September 2017) + recent Target shopping experience

It’s time to see what my monthly clothing budget adventures were for this month!

Spoiler:  I only spent $2 this month!

New jeans

I earned a $25 Target gift card this month via online surveys, and I thought it good timing to try out the new clothing line, “A New Day,” at Target. (By the way, this post is NOT sponsored by Target — I thought it would be useful to share my recent shopping experiences at Target.) If you haven’t heard yet, Target is phasing out a lot of their well-known brands, including Mossimo and Merona (noooooooooo!) and bringing in new lines, including “A New Day” for women and “Goodfellow & Co” for men.

The one item I picked up at Target? A pair of Mossimo skinny jeans. Yep, the new item I ended up getting from Target is from one of the lines they are phasing out. Get ’em while you can! 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | New dusty rose skinny jeans at Target

The color for these “curvy” skinny jeans is labeled as “Pink,” but they’re really more of a dusty rose. It’s a trendy color — and not a color that’s represented much in my closet. It’s not a color that is particularly flattering for me, but having this color on the bottom isn’t as bad as having the color near my face. But I think this color will play nice with a lot of other items in my wardrobe, so the “dusty rose” kind of ends up an interesting variation on a neutral color. And hey, I finally match the background color of my style blog!

I did like the fit of these skinny jeans, as I definitely have a curvy bottom half, and the placement of the back pockets looks flattering. And they feel sooooooo soft. I’m not sure how long they will last — but my regular pair of skinny  jeans from Target has lasted 5+ years of weekly wear! — but for $2, I was willing to take a chance on a trendier clothing item.

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on dusty rose skinny jeans at Target

Details:

Fitting room snapshots at my local Target

Here are the rest of the items I tried on from my recent shopping excursion to my local Target. Long story short:  I was NOT impressed with the overall fit of the new “A New Day” clothing items, and I did not buy anything from the new line. The sizing inconsistencies confounded and exasperated me. I am not a fan of this new line, and the following pics will show you why.

And fair warning, I’m about to get VERY CAPSY. 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items from the new "A New Day" line at Target

I first tried on this white-and-black striped boatneck top in size large. I like the envelope shoulder detailing, and of course, stripes are classic. But this size large was SUPER unflattering on me — basically clinging instead of skimming and making all my curves look like lumps. PASS. I will continue to get my striped tees from J.Crew or J.Crew Factory — and I wore one of my J.Crew Factory tees above — this is the exact tee from J.Crew Factory — when I tried on the dusty rose skinny jeans!

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items from the new "A New Day" line at Target

Next was a trendy ruffle-sleeved sweater — which was SO RIDICULOUS on me that I burst out laughing in the changing room. I had chosen it because I wanted to try something new and outside my comfort zone. But it turned out to be too tight (even though I got a large), and wayyyyyy too fussy for me. (Note:  I cannot find this anywhere on the Target site. I think it’s from the “A New Day” line, but it might also be from the “Who What Wear” line. It’s similar to this ruffled cardigan from the “A New Day” line.)

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items from the new "A New Day" line at Target

I LOVED LOVED LOVED the pattern and colors of this shirtdress, which has an elastic waist. I grabbed this in size medium, and while the waist fit, I was drowning in fabric on both the top and bottom. Who is this dress made for?!!!! I could fit an extra set of boobs in the top part, and it still would be too large. And it’s so odd to have such a full skirt and no pockets. The other items in size large had been too small, as seen above, and now this size medium was way too large. I DO NOT UNDERSTAND.

So although I loved the print — and I love shirtdresses in general — this shirtdress failure really disappointed me.

Correction: I thought this shirtdress was from the “A New Day” line, but it’s actually from the “Who What Wear” line; these two clothing lines were right next to each other in my local Target store, so I can understand the mix-up. Either way, the sizing is insane.

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items from the new "A New Day" line at Target

I picked this black floral dress for its lovely autumnal floral print. I grabbed a size large for this dress, and my hips were stretching the bottom half to within a quarter-inch of its life — but the top was swimming on me. So again, who is this dress made for?! Women with fuller hips need not apply. DISAPPOINTING.

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items from the new "A New Day" line at Target

I picked up this grey shirtdress because, on the hanger, it looked like an interesting variation on a basic piece, like a longer top to wear over leggings. It had interesting details like the fabric covering both the buttons and the tie belt. The top looked fuller, so I picked up a medium to try on.

I think you can tell from the picture below that the fit is — again! — RIDICULOUS. The bottom is NOT designed for curvier hips, and those buttons are just about to pop off from the strain. Meanwhile, the top is huge, with billowing sleeves. So sizing up to fit the bottom would have meant an even larger top half. SIZING FAIL.

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items from the new "A New Day" line at Target

The last item of clothing I tried on wasn’t from the “A New Day” line — because by that point, I was *done* with the weird sizing — but rather from the “Xhilaration” line. It’s a wrap blouse in a navy floral print and three-quarter sleeves. I liked the shoulder detail with the light shirring — it kind of had a slight 1940s retro feel to the design. But alas, the top was too short and threw off my proportions.

Librarian for Life + Style | Trying on items at Target

I think it’s also telling that the two items I liked the most — the top above and the dusty rose curvy skinny jeans that I did end up buying — were NOT from this new “A New Day” clothing line. I will admit that the new clothing line looks like it has a nice range of accessories and handbags, but those are also items that don’t have major sizing issues to take into consideration!

Final takeaway from the new Target line:

When I got home from my recent shopping experience at Target, here’s how I summed it up for my husband:

If I didn’t have such a positive body image, then it would have been really easy to blame myself and my body as the problem rather than the clothing line and its sizing issues.

And I DID have to remind myself while I was in the dressing room that it wasn’t ME, that it was the clothes and the way they were designed. But even knowing that it wasn’t my body’s fault that things didn’t fit — and saying this out loud to reinforce the message to myself — did not lessen my personal frustration and exasperation at the confusing and inconsistent sizing.

Perhaps others have found gems in Target’s new “A New Day” clothing line, and if so, I am happy for you! But it is obvious to me that I am not the target (har har) customer — nor the target body shape — at Target, at least not for the “A New Day” line. I will not be wasting my time with “A New Day” anymore.

Oh, and if you have enjoyed the Mossimo and/or Merona clothing items at Target, stock up while you still can, before they are completely phased out!

Budget recap:

Total spent for this month: $2
Total savings for this month:  $27

Total spent for this year:  $820
Total savings for this year:  $591


Please note that I get commission for clicks made through affiliate links in this post. This goes toward covering my website and file storage fees, so thank you for helping support this blog!


What have you added to your closet lately? Please leave a comment and share!

Monthly budget adventures (August 2017)

It’s time to see what my monthly clothing budget adventures were for this month!

Replacements

When we went on a recent shopping trip to Kohl’s to replace a few of his items, I also was able to replace a couple of items of my own this month, including a new tan-and-black purse to replace my old Christian Siriano for Payless tote bag, seen here. And it came with a fun ladybug tag — I have a thing for ladybugs! 😀 I also was able to replace my older pair of navy opaque tights.

Librarian for Life + Style | New tote bag

Librarian for Life + Style | New navy tights

  • Rosetti tote bag with ladybug charm via Kohl’s {really similar tote by same brand}:  paid $42 (original price $100, 40% off sale + additional 30% off)
  • Navy tights, Simply Vera Very Wang for Kohl’s {exact}:  paid $11 (original price $16, 30% off coupon)

Shopping local

We went shopping at local stores on my birthday, where I picked up a lovely pair of painted resin earrings. They reminded me of the “Put a bird on it!” saying from Portlandia. 🙂

Librarian for Life + Style | Bird earrings by Fernworks

Also on my birthday, I picked up a black sun hat at a local resale boutique, Megs & Mo.

Librarian for Life + Style | Thrifted black sunhat

And on Sam’s birthday, we enjoyed a local street fair, where I spied this colorful cotton tunic. It will go very nice with leggings and skinny jeans, I think!

Librarian for Life + Style | New cotton tunic

  • Bird resin earrings, Fernworks via local boutique {exact earrings still available!}:  paid $72
  • Black sun hat, Betmar via local resale hsop {exact hat}:  paid $11.25 (original price $35, on sale for $15, 25% off sale)
  • Cotton tunic, local fair:  paid $28

Budget recap:

Total spent for this month: $164
Total savings for this month:  $87

Total spent for this year:  $818
Total savings for this year:  $564

Please note that I get commission for clicks made through affiliate links in this post. This goes toward covering my website and file storage fees, so thank you for helping support this blog!

Chance find

While we were out and about a couple of weekends ago, Sam discovered this lilac beaded necklace in a tree. (Yes, in a tree.) So he took it down, and I added a new necklace to my collection by chance!

Librarian for Life + Style | Lilac bead necklace

Donations

I also went through my closet recently, in order to identify some items to replace, as well as a few pieces that no longer fit. That included, as seen below:

Librarian for Life + Style | Clothing donations, August 2017

Librarian for Life + Style | Clothing donations, August 2017

Librarian for Life + Style | Clothing donations, August 2017

Gifts

As I highlighted earlier this week, a friend gifted me this gorgeous pair of cognac-colored Lucchese cowboy boots!

Librarian for Life + Style | New cowboy boots

Librarian for Life + Style | New cowboy boots, Lucchese logo closeup

What have you added to your closet lately? Please leave a comment and share!