Author Archives: yourg724

Casual Basics

 

While I enjoy showcasing the unique, fashionable and glamorous finds that I uncover at Goodwill Keystone Area stores, my favorites typically are the day-to-day basics I can count on for my everyday, casual lifestyle.

Cooler weather calls for cozy, comfortable and sometimes waterproof basics. On my last trip to the Goodwill outlet a few weeks ago, I purchased this truly vintage graphic sweater from Sasson. Maurice Sasson started his designer jeans company in 1976, so this sweater is easily from the early 1980s. It’s acrylic and has held up well. It’s still soft and warm and it’s definitely a piece I am not going to see on anyone else. Since it was purchased at the outlet, it cost me less than a dollar.

The rest of the outfit is definitely modern. The classic dark wash skinny jeans are from Zara Woman. Zara is a “fast fashion” company based in Spain. According to their Wikipedia page “Zara needs just one week to develop a new product and get it to stores, compared to the six-month industry average and launches around 12,000 new designs each year. Zara has a policy of zero advertising; the company preferred to invest a percentage of revenues in opening new stores instead.” I don’t buy fast fashion brands new, but I don’t mind buying them at my local Goodwill Keystone Area stores. These jeans would have sold for around $39.90; my cost was $7.50.

Since the weather has turned colder and wetter, waterproof boots are a must when out playing with my dog, Penny, in the back yard. These lined and insulated Rockport boots were also found at the outlets for just $2.25. Rockport boots can sell up to $230, so saving 99% was a fantastic deal.

Lastly, a faux fur-trimmed scarf added a bit of fun, whimsy, and warmth. Scarves are great to pick up at Goodwill. For under $5, you can add a lot of color and style to a simple outfit. This black one will pair with almost any outfit.

Although this look doesn’t have any sparkle or pizazz, it’s made of great basics that will get me through the winter. Stock up on sweaters, boots, and scarves now at your local Goodwill Keystone Area store. And while you’re shopping – pick up a gift card for a gift (or for yourself)! When you spend $50 on gift cards, you’ll receive a free $10 gift card through December 24th, click here for complete details!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Sweater: $1.00 (estimate)
Scarf: $1.97
Jeans: $7.50
Boots: $2.25
Outfit: $12.72
Retail: $330+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Holiday Preview

 

The holidays are practically upon us with Thanksgiving being right around the corner. I’ve already been starting to stock up on colorful, sparkly and festive looks for December when I’m shopping the aisles at my local Goodwill Keystone Area stores. Incase you need extra incentive to get out and shop, Goodwill Keystone Area stores are having another 50% Off Sale this Friday, November 22, click here for details!

You may have a variety of holiday events to attend and dress for – work parties, family gatherings, girls’ nights out… But, I think the look I pulled together here could work for many different festive occasions.

The bold red jacket from Savior was found new-with-tags for $6.00 (Retail $48.50) and features statement sleeves. This color alone makes me think of Christmas! It is lightweight, so it could be worn year-round. I kept the rest of the ensemble fairly neutral since this color was so dramatic.

The white sequined tank top from Loft added just a touch of fun with the black embellishments in a tiger stripe pattern. Goodwill’s cost: $4.25; Retail: $49.

The vegan leather and Ponte knit pants from Banana Republic give the outfit a bit of edge without going over the top. Black pants are the workhorse of your wardrobe – you can pair them with almost any blouse, sweater or jacket hanging in your closet. These are fun and I like the subtle shine the vegan leather gives to the outfit. There were $5.95 at my Goodwill and Banana Republic still sells a similar pair online for $98.

I added some more sparkle with the rhinestone and silver necklace (a new-with-tags SugarFix by Baublebar find). The style reminds me of vintage pieces from my grandmother’s jewelry box. This necklace was $29.99 when new.

Finally, just a sprinkle of leopard print finished off this festive look. A small leather bag with brass hardware from J. Crew holds just what I need – my phone, a car key and of course, bright red lipstick. It was $4.97 but would have retailed for around $120.

The Target-brand “A New Day” booties were new-without-tags for $6.97. Their retail cost was $37.99. These shoes have been on repeat with my wardrobe and I always get compliments whenever I wear them. The block heel makes them comfortable and the leopard print gives them some flair.

I’m getting ready for the holidays, with a little help from Goodwill Keystone Area. Whether it is clothing and accessories for myself, household goods for my home or unique gifts for family and friends, I can find it all at Goodwill!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Jacket: $6.00
Top: $4.25
Pants: $5.50
Shoes: $6.97
Bag: $4.97
Necklace: $9.97
Outfit: $37.66
Retail: $380+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

French Girl Style for $5

 

Every once in a while I challenge myself to create an outfit for around $5, so to do that I head to the bins at the Goodwill Keystone Area outlet in Reading. I wanted to have a chic, simple look and that made me think of a classic French Girl Style – which is defined online as “effortless elegance, and French girl outfits typically highlight one statement piece, instead of being comprised of two or three statement pieces each of which compete for attention.”

Finding a complete outfit in one trip is usually the goal. I don’t have to wonder what I have at home to match or go with a find. I started this look I’m calling “French Girl Style” with the pleated vegan leather skirt from Calvin Klein. It was such a timeless piece and the midi-length was something new for me. The retail cost on this piece was probably around $109, but since clothing and accessories are sold by the pound Goodwill Outlet stores, I estimate the cost at around $1.00. Digging though the bins can unearth treasures and great finds, but it takes a little effort.

I decided to keep the outfit simple and looked for a top or blouse that would compliment the bottom. Stripes are a classic look and always a “do” in my book. This was a simple ¾ sleeve pocketed t-shirt from Jones New York. It has gold buttons as a detail on the gathered sleeves. I can easily pair it with jeans or trousers and throw a blazer or cardigan over it this winter. The retail price was around $49.

Since this look needed some sparkle, I added rose gold stilettos from Aldo. Shoes are not sold by the pound at the outlets, but are around $2.25 a pair. Not a bad deal when you consider these Aldo heels were $80 when new!

Lastly, I needed a statement bag. This truly vintage black leather frame-style bag from Letisse probably dates to the 1960s. Amazingly, as I did research on the bag, I discovered it was a Reading, PA brand that began in 1949! Click here to read article.

What a fabulous discovery! The owner, Nicholas Braun sold Letisse in 1969 and retired, but the brand lives on online where you can find their vintage bags on sites such as eBay, Poshmark and Etsy.

So my “French Girl Style” brought me right back to Reading, where I found a bag that was originally designed and constructed right here in Berks County. Goodwill Keystone Area stores have many treasures and once in a while you can find something with a past worth researching. I’m going to look for more Letisse bags and uncover more about their local history.

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Outfit: $5
Retail: $350
KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Chanel Chic

 

I’ve always admired Coco Chanel’s style. Her iconic tweed suits inspired this look. Wikipedia says “The founder and namesake of the Chanel brand, she was credited in the post-World War I era with liberating women from the constraints of the “corseted silhouette” and popularizing a sporty, casual chic as the feminine standard of style. A prolific fashion creator, Chanel extended her influence beyond couture clothing, realizing her design aesthetic in jewelry, handbags, and fragrance. Her signature scent, Chanel No. 5, has become an iconic product.”

While a Chanel suit would be extremely lucky to come by at Goodwill, I was pleased to find this sporty red and navy tweed jacket from Jones New York. It has the classic lines like Chanel designed, but a modern feel. I snagged it at my local Goodwill for $6.00; the cost when new would be about $99.

To juxtapose the boxy jacket style, I added a feminine ruffled silk ivory blouse from Talbots. This classic top can work with many different jackets – from jean to leather. And the $4.25 price was a good buy since similar shirts sell for around $99.

To lighten the look, I styled it with Gap jeans. These featured ankle zippers and a medium blue wash. My cost was $5.50, but Gap jeans typically retail for about $79. Jeans are one of my favorite items to purchase at Goodwill Keystone Area stores. You can find many different brands and variations and they are already worn in a bit for a softer feel to the fabric, especially if you like the distressed look.

I went with classic red and blue accessories: a red quilted purse with gold chain strap (not unlike the classic Chanel bag!) and navy pumps. While Chanel bags cost thousands of dollars, this Aldo version (retail: $55) with tassel and stud detail was $4.97 at Goodwill.

The navy suede heels from Ann Taylor also featured black tassel trim. These walked out of Goodwill with me for just $6.97 while I would have spent up to $149 at the mall for them.

Recreating designer looks on a dime is one of the benefits of shopping at Goodwill Keystone Area stores. Being a Thrifty Fashionista has it’s advantages when you know how to look like a million bucks at just a fraction of the cost.

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Jacket: $6
Blouse: $4.25
Jeans: $5.50
Bag: $4.97
Heels: $6.97
Total: $27.69
Retail: $480+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Fall Color Blocking

 

The leaves are almost gone, but the warm, autumnal hues have completely invaded my wardrobe. I’m not rushing the holidays and diving right into red and green or blue and gold. I’m soaking up the burgundys, the mustards and the eggplants. These rich colors are warm and inviting.

Today’s look is a color block dress from Loft. I snagged it for $6.50 at my local Goodwill Keystone Area store. It would have retailed for around $79. I loved the combination of teal, burgundy, mustard and a few neutrals. According to Wikipedia “Color-blocking is thought of as the exploration of taking colors that are opposites on the color wheel and pairing them together to make interesting and complementary color combinations. It is commonly associated in fashion as a trend that originated from the artwork of Dutch painter, Piet Mondrian.”

I paired it with a rust-colored suede jacket from Calvin Klein. My cost was $10, but this would have sold for around $159. It’s a perfect layering piece for fall. It would look smart over a t-shirt and jeans on the weekend and just as well over a blouse and trousers for work.

It’s boot weather and I was ready to break out these slouchy brown leather boots from Matisse. I have featured them on the blog years ago, but they are such a classic, I had to bring them back. I love re-using items in new and different ways. My cost was $9.97; retail was $275.

The bag was a great find from the Goodwill Keystone Area Outlet Center on St. Lawrence Avenue in Reading. The merchandise at outlets is typically sold by the pound and I estimate that I paid around $1.00 for this gorgeous oxblood Adrienne Vittadini purse. It was new-with-tags with the original price listed as $295. The necklace was $1.97 and was new-with-tags from Target.

This whole look came together nicely and the color blocking gives the outlet a fun and stylish look. Incorporating styles of art into fashion and finding an outfit that retailed for over $800 for less than $30 at Goodwill is priceless!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dress: $6.50
Jacket: $10
Boots: $9.97
Bag: $1.00
Necklace: $1.97
Total: $29.44
Retail: $825+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Fall Transitions

 

We’ve finally had some beautiful fall weather, with just a touch of coolness hinting at the chilly forecast to come. I’ve started to think about transitioning my wardrobe (as I always do at the change of seasons) so that I can more wear out of my favorite pieces.

I was thrilled to find this bell-sleeve Ann Taylor shift dress for just $6.50. The navy, cream and harvest yellow stripes were perfect for autumn. The dress originally retailed for $119, so not a bad investment, especially if I can get two seasons worth of wear out it. I’ve mentioned before on the blog that I love patterns, textures and colors and I’m not one to shy away from horizontal stripes. I find it flattering on all shapes and sizes, especially if the article of clothing is well made.

To play off the stripes in the dress, I added these strappy, brown, stacked sandals for warmer weather. I found them in like-new condition at the Reading Goodwill Keystone Area outlet for just $2.25, but their list price was $49.99! The bag has been featured on the blog before, but it was a perfect match with the dress, so I was happy to re-purpose it again. It is from CO-LAB, which is a popular vegan leather brand from Canada.

The necklace was a chunky, gold and stone, multi-layered style from Sugar Fix at Target. It was new-with-tags for $3.97.

For cooler weather, I added classic soft, brown leather riding boots and a cream scarf ($3.00). I purchased the Lucky Brand boots years ago at a local Goodwill and they are a staple in my wardrobe. They just get better with age. I’d probably also add tights and a chunky cardigan as winter sets in. But for right now, I have some options on how to style this versatile dress.

Think about how your fall purchases now can transition into winter. Goodwill Keystone Area stores are stocking up on sweaters and jackets and don’t forget to check out the scarf selection as well!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dress: $6.50
Shoes: $2.25
Necklace: $3.97
Total: $12.72
Retail: $200+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Canadian Tuxedo

 

There are several fashion items that as a younger person I declared I would never wear. They included cowboy boots, large handbags and rompers. I have worn and embraced all of those things – even all at the same time in the past few years. One thing I was holding out on was mixing jeans and a denim jacket or shirt also known as a Canadian Tuxedo. What brought it all together was a trip to the Reading Goodwill Keystone Area outlet. And spoiler alert: this outfit (minus the shoes and necklace) was around $4.00 and all the pieces are fabulous brand names.

According to an online dictionary, Canadian Tuxedo refers to any outfit consisting of a denim jacket, with denim jeans. Originating in the 1950s, crooner Bing Crosby was nearly rejected from an upscale hotel in Vancouver, BC (Canada) because he had been wearing an all-denim outfit. Levis heard of this and sent him a special-made all denim tuxedo.

I was not sent a custom made outfit, but I did discover this look in one trip to my local Goodwill outlet. What created my look were individual pieces unearthed in the bins. My t-shirt from Cabi has a blue, grey and white batik print and a gathered front to give it some interest and elevate it above a simple tee. Cabi is a popular online only retailer where you receive a personal stylist who helps you choose what’s best for you. I love finding Cabi at Goodwill because I know they are popular and well-crafted. This shirt would have sold for around $79, buy my cost was under $1.00 (clothing prices at the outfit are estimated for this article; clothing is sold by the pound).

The jeans were another great find. I love White House Black Market and these were practically brand new. They were unique because they have a button fly which I don’t see much anymore. Since there are no fitting rooms at the outlets, I took a chance on them and they fit me like a glove! Again, my cost was less than a $1.00, but retailed for $89.

The bag is another perfect designer find! The large black vegan leather tote with metal studs is from Jessica Simpson. It has a fabric lining and several pockets. It is perfect for carrying whatever I need to work and it has been used in heavy rotation on weekend getaways as well. At online stores such as Nordstrom and Dillards, her totes sell for up to $118. My cost: less than $1.00!

The last piece from the outlet trip was a new-with-tags denim jacket with gray sweater knit sleeves and hood. It was a new-to-me brand called Thread & Supply. According to their website they were started in 2012 and “Founded on warm, comfy, outerwear staples, our team continues to release effortless wardrobe essentials. With the softest high quality fabrics, designed to last beyond the season, the Thread & Supply brand is cozy forever.” I can attest that the jacket is very soft and comfortable to wear. Similar denim jackets on their website are selling for over $100, so I saved 99% and snagged it for around $1.00!

The booties I have had forever and are also from Goodwill. You can see them in a past blog or two and the necklace was from a friend’s clothing swap, which is a great way to change up your wardrobe for free.

The four pieces from the outlet cost me around $4.00, but their retail value was almost $400! Overall I saved 99% and experimented with a trend that never seems to go away, but one I avoided from now. Would you wear denim on denim? Let me know!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

T-shirt: $1.00
Jeans: $1.00
Bag: $1.00
Jacket: $1.00
Total: $4.00
Retail: $386+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Pattern Mixing 101

 

It’s back-to-school time and although I’m not headed back to school, I always see Fall as a time to refresh your wardrobe with new colors, textures and patterns. And one of my favorite things to teach my friends about fashion is about pattern mixing. Here’s a little crash course in Pattern Mixing 101 to get you started.

1. Use the same color palette and shades. Pattern mixing work is successful when you use similar colors. Neutrals pair well with other with neutrals and bold prints with other bold prints.

2. If mixing patterns on your clothing still seems intimidating, start with your accessories. Pair an animal print shoe with a trendy belt or a statement necklace. It doesn’t have to be pattern mixing with fabric – it can be mixing metals or finishes on your accessories.

3. Use scale to help you balance your look. Mix a small print such as a crisp stripe with a bold floral. Small patterns play well with bold patterns, but two bold prints will look overdone.

4. Wear what makes you look and feel good and rock those mixed patterns with confidence!

Today I paired a blue, red and cream paisley print sleeveless dress from Philosophy with a blue leopard print boyfriend blazer from Banana Republic. The blue ties the two pieces together and creates visual appeal. The dress retailed for about $118 and my cost was $5.50; the blazer sold for $178 and I snapped it up for $9.25 at my local Goodwill.

Neutral brown and red suede platform pumps from Colin Stuart (retail $88 – my cost $6.97), a red leather bag with gold zipper accents from Kelsi Dagger (retail $395 – my cost $6.97) and a gold necklace ($1.97) completed the look and closed the book on this class on pattern mixing. When you’re shopping at your local Goodwill Keystone Area store pair up a few patterns and give it a try!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Dress: $5.50
Blazer: $9.25
Shoes: $6.97
Bag: $6.97
Necklace: $1.97
Total: $30.66
Retail: $910+
KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Thrift-tee!

 

I love a sport that has its own fashion rules, and a golf course may not be a runway, but there are plenty of fun outfits to sport while you are on the greens. Summer and fall are the perfect seasons for golf outings and many businesses and charities host events around this time.

A few of the fashion rules for golf include:

  • Always wear a collared shirt.
  • Pair your shirt with dress pants or a cute golf skirt.
  • Wear comfortable sneakers as an alternative to golf shoes.
  • Do not wear denim.
  • Use a hat or visor to shield your eyes.
  • Wear fun socks such as ones with an argyle pattern.

While these rules may seem old fashioned, there are plenty of modern styles to help you stand out in your foursome. Many sporting good clothing companies focus solely on golf wear. If you get invited to play, stop by your local Goodwill and pick up an appropriate outfit such as the one I’m sporting. The pieces might be found in the workout wear, shorts or skirts sections. Collared shirts, such as polos, will be found with the blouses or tops.

This brightly printed knit skort features a few hidden pockets to tuck away a lip balm. It was extremely comfortable and would be as appropriate for running errands, as it would be on the course. The price at my local Goodwill Keystone Area store was $4.50, but golf skirts retail for as much as $70 – $80.

I paired it with a simple black button-up sleeveless blouse. I can wear this with almost any outfit, but it fit the requirement for having a collar, so it was golf-approved. It was $3.95.

The Adidas visor was a fun find for $1.97. And I wore Coach black sneakers, which would have sold for about $110 when new but were $9.97 at Goodwill. They are a great casual sneaker to wear anytime, not just on the course.

I’ve also seen golf club sets at my local Goodwill Keystone Area stores, so getting into the game does not have to cost a fortune. And going to a driving range is a great way to work out some of your stress. Pick up a new hobby with help from Goodwill and you’ll look great while chasing your ball into the water hazard or the sand trap!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Skirt: $4.50
Blouse: $3.95
Visor: $1.97
Sneakers: $9.97
Total: $20.39
Retail: $230+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.

Summer to Fall Florals

 

It’s hard to believe it is August already! The summer has flown by and back-to-school and fall will be here in no time! It’s time to find pieces that will transition from one season to another.

While we’re still have plenty of hot days here in the Goodwill Keystone Area, cooler days will be here soon. I’m starting to look for pieces that will be useful into fall. This outfit started with these fun, floral pants from Forever 21. I found them “new with tags” for $5.50. Retail price was $20. I don’t usually indulge with fast fashion pieces from mall stores, but these were unique and flattering. For winter an olive or navy sweater would also make a great addition.

For summer I paired them with an olive green tank from Loft for $3.95. It’s a great layering piece and will work under jackets or sweaters come autumn.

Instead of a standard jean jacket, I added a well-cut denim blazer from Talbots. It makes the outfit work appropriate and will work well over dresses or other blouses and trousers. I snagged this at Goodwill for $5.95, but blazers such as this sell on Talbots.com for up to $189. This one is a mix of cotton and spandex which will help it keep its shape through out the day.

For accessories, I found a “new without tags” pair of denim peep toe sling backs from Franco Sarto. They matched the blazer perfectly and were soft and comfortable. They were $7.47 at my local Goodwill, but sold for $149 when new! What a steal!

Lastly a navy leather clutch from Nordstrom ($4.97) and an Asian-inspired pendant necklace (also $4.97) completed the look.

All of these pieces will move your wardrobe into cooler weather. Start thinking about how your current purchases will transition into fall and winter. And don’t forget to start back-to-school shopping – school will start before you know it!

From my closet to yours,
Kirsten

Pants: $5.50
Tank: $3.95
Blazer: $5.95
Heels: $7.47
Clutch: $4.97
Necklace: $4.97
Total: $32.81
Retail: $450+

KirstenBlogHeadShot

 

About The Blogger

Kirsten is a 40-something mom, wife and marketing professional. She loves all things crafty, tasty and fashionable, especially while being frugal. She enjoys hunting for treasures at her local Goodwill Keystone Area stores to decorate her home and wardrobe.