Tag Archives: bargain spotting

SAVE OR SPEND: NINE WARDROBE STAPLES TO MIX AND MATCH THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

Holiday party season is upon us once again, and it’s time to get that wardrobe ready for a whirlwind of schmoozing and boozing with all those relatives you’re only happy to see once a year.

While you may not be able to control how many times your grandmother makes an off-hand comment, with these picks, you will be sure to have full reign over how good you look. Whether you’re feeling a little loose with your wallet or not, the key to nailing down the perfect holiday look is to mix, match and layer (your most glitzy to your most basic pieces), crafting awe-inspiring and unique looks that will stave away passing thoughts like, Didn’t she wear that last week? Most importantly, be sure to stock up on statement jewelry and plenty of festive tights to pull together even your most run-of-the-mill outfits.

Happy Holidays!


The Black Velvet Dress
SaveTopshop Glitter Spot Velvet Dress, $92
SpendNevenka Easy Come Easy Go Velvet Dress, $145


The Red Dress
SaveOasis Crepe Fit & Flare Dress, $75
SpendNeiman Marcus Swingy Pont Dress, $250


The Black Slack
SaveNew York & Company Slim Satin Pant, $23
SpendTadashi Shoji Straight Leg Pant, $148


The Sequined Party Dress
Save: Modcloth Sparkling Toast Dress, $92
Spend: Sonia by Sonia Rykel Dress, $700
Extra CreditLipsy Shift Dress, $137+ French Connection Reflectra Sequin Dress, $268


The Patent Leather Pump
SaveN.Y.L.A. Lettis Pump, $80
SpendStuart Weitzman Bowright Pump, $187


The Gold Flat
SaveKimchi Blue Metallic Skimmer, $29
SpendMarc by Marc Jacobs Love Glitter Flats, $230


The White Lace Top
SaveB. Vintage Dolman Lace Top, $58
SpendFree People Porcelain Lace Off-the-Shoulder Top, $198


The Embellished Blazer
SaveBKE Embellished Blazer, $65
SpendSteffen Schraut Black Feather Blazer, $283


The Fun Black Skirt
SaveBuilt by Wendy Satin Peplum Skirt, $63
SpendRed Valentino Lace & Taffeta Mini Skirt, $177

–AMBER DANESE GRANDFIELD
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BARGAIN SPOTTING: ETSY 9 UNDER $60


1. Osanatharnoy Rose Gold Lines Ring, $58
2. Drew More Reptile Eye Ring, $13
3. Aquanetta Five Ring Lot of Mythology Rings, $20
4. Sisicata Clear Resin Ring with Amber and Black Resin, $40
5. Laurel Hill Double Crescent Necklace, $38
6. Caravan Treasure Sterling Silver Eyeball Ring, $45
7. Renathe Schneider Mosquito Resin Ring, $28
8. Flowers for Real Jewelry Foliage Pendant, $22
9. Marya Zoya Dangle Drop Earrings, $30

–STEPHANIE KAO
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EIGHT EAR CUFFS UNDER $40

It’s August, and it’s six trillion degrees outside. If you’ve got hair that is long enough to go up, you’re wearing it up more than ever. Now, I love a show-stopping necklace as much as the next gal, and ditto that for the oversized, clunky bangles, but when my hair (which I personally consider an accessory) is wound up in a demure chignon, I sometimes feel the need for a little compensation up top. So, considering we all have our ears out on such display during this steamy eighth month of the year, badass earrings are clearly the way to go…

But, you know what’s annoying? Heavy-ass earrings that make your ears bleed. And, sometimes (correct me if I’m wrong), it seems like a fair share of the gorgeous statement-making earrings out there, once put on, somehow manage to morph into demonic hanging anvils set on making each turn of the head a skin-stretching nightmare. Also, what about all those lovely lobes out there that are not pierced? Are they to eternally wallow in the mind-numbing sea of vintage clip-ons? Never. The solution: the ear cuff.


It started when I stumbled upon this amazing Spine Earpiece by FELIKS + ADRIK, but ultimately decided I needed something a bit more budget-friendly. Well, did I ever hit the jackpot–who knew there was such an array of affordable earcuffs out there? We’ve got your needs covered, from the more subdued to downright extravagant. All I have to say is: God bless you, ASOS.

So, without further ado, we present to you eight adventurous ear adornments–all under $40–for the pierced and non-pierced alike.


1. Etsy Plain Gold Heart Cuff Earring, $4
2. Urban Outfitters Hanging Chain Ear Cuff, $18
3. Anni Jürgenson Ear Cuff w/Pheasant Feathers, $38
4. Anni Jürgenson Ear Cuff w/Rose-Gold Spikes, $37
5. ASOS Rose Gold Leaf Ear Cuff, $18
6. ASOS Stars Ear Cuff, $18
7. ASOS Snake Ear Cuff, $14
8. ASOS Statement Draping Chains Ear Cuffs, $12

–JEAN CANDIDO
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$TEEP TO ¢HEAP: SET SAIL FOR A SEVENTIES SUMMER


If there were just one decade I had the chance to go back and live through, it would definitely be the 1970’s. Maybe it’s the life and death of Hendrix that I feel sore about missing out on (okay, perhaps that span extended beyond the 1970’s, but hey, still counts in my book) or the birth of the disco era that so captivates me. Or, maybe it’s the creation of Judy Chicago’s Dinner Party or the cinematic resurgence of the femme fatale

Regardless, 70’s pop culture continues to inspire some seriously cool style today, and the influence of the era is inescapable: oversized shades, bootcut bottoms, crochet tops, and cork wedge sandals, to name a few. One shining example is Carin Wester’s Watercolor Tie Blouse—a modern update of the peasant top of seasons past, and, luckily, this piece is just short enough at the waist to show off your groovy wide-legs by James Jeans. Top the look off with some brown vintage sunglasses and a pair of platform wedges or wooden sandals, and you’re more than ready to bust out and do tha hustle with the best of them.

As for all you savvy gals on a budget? You know we’ve got you covered, too!

HEAD IN THE CLOUDS
1. Carin Wester Watercolor Sleeveless Blouse, $221
2. Phosphorescence x Erin Wasson 60’s Movies Sunglasses, $250
3. James Jeans Fly Boy Slim Trouser Jeans, $172
4. All Saints Rosalina Heel, $280

PLATS ON THE GROUND
5. Free People Sleeveless Tie Floral Buttondown, $50
6. What The Funk 80’s Clear Brown Sunglasses, $39
7. The Proportion of Blu Narrow Bootcut Jeans, $44
8. Soda Tahiti Skin Bare Platform Sandals, $29

FINISH THEM BOTH OFF WITH THESE!
9. Nasty Gal Chained Circle Earrings, $18

–LIZ HOFFMANN
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FIFTEEN WAYS TO SPRUCE UP YOUR YOUNG LADY LAIR


1. Cantilever and Press Wolf Den Coat Rack, $250
2. Real Butterfly Gifts Purple Gem Beetle Display, $40
3. Amelia Rose Vintage Vintage Copper Teapot Cover and Ceramic Kettle, $39
4. Loyal Luxe Cat Teepee, $36
5. Oryx and Crake Design Red Laser-cut Coasters, $16
6. Proud Mary Guatemalan Folk Art Dog Mask, $35
7. Bizzy Betty Tillandsia Air Plant in Red Sandstone Rock, $20
8. Stitch Happens 7 Bronwyn’s Crochet Covered River Rock, $28
9. Paul Loebach Nesting Side Tables and Step Stools, $400
10. Vintage Ohio 1950‘s Table Lamp Set of Three, $95
11. Earth Sea Warrior Saber 24K Gold Tooth Resin Tiger Skull, $225
12. Teresa Lucky Oak & Linen Twist Tealight Candle Holder, $20
13. Ross Menuez Tatami Kuma Pillow, $48
14. Harry Allen Banana Bowl, $280
15. From The Hip Creations Science Experiment Light Switch Cover, $8

–STEPHANIE KAO
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MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY: HEAD-TO-TOE IN $100 OR LESS!

Extra cash. Who couldn’t use a little some of that? We certainly wouldn’t mind a bit swinging our way… Which is why we’ve put our very best bargain-hunting abilities up to the test: rounding up one workweek’s worth of wardrobe, strapped with only a $100 to assemble each Monday through Friday look.

While we did utilize some of the more obvious budget-conscious and easily accessible fast-fashion retailers out there–namely Forever 21 and Charlotte Russe–we think it’s important to keep your sale-sniffing radar alert to all possibilities by taking the time to investigate your options (stores you may not necessarily equate with ‘cheap’). After all, everyone’s got merchandise to move, especially during transitional periods like these that are sure to save you boatloads of ka-ching.

We find that Etsy is a consistently dependable, fertile, and budget-friendly shopping resource (supporting small businesses too, is a definite plus); the selection is seemingly endless and the price point range is one that can accommodate most anyone’s wallet. ASOS (basically our right hand when it comes to thrifty online shopping) if you didn’t already know, pretty much brings it in terms of quality vs. price. Be sure to designate it as your one-stop shop for any trend you’re feeling up to tackling this season, because their eyes and ears are open to it all–and at prices which are dangerously within reach. Last but not least, how can we neglect to mention the omnipotent, omnipresent Urban Outfitters? Sure, some of you may be hesitant to admit it, but you shop there. We all do. If you live in the city, they occur almost as often as Starbucks and you practically have to go out of your way to not be inside of one. But the thing that usually pulls me in? The sale section, hands down. Sure, a trip to UO can be testing at times, but the bargain-bin dipping is usually pret-ty fine.

So without further ado, we present to you our VG-curated collection of wardrobe-winning savers–compiled from these aforementioned sites–all for less than $500. Are ya feeling the love around here or what?


MOSTLY MODEST ON MONDAY, Bottom Line: $99
Topshop Cream Spotted Scallop Collar Dress, $55; AJ Paul Jessie Leather and Jute Flats, $22; AJ Paul Vintage Sterling and Amethyst Necklace, $12; Jade Elise Vintage Brown Woven Mini Bucket Bag, $10


ART NOUVEAU ON TUESDAY, Bottom Line: $100
Outrageous Rags Handwoven Cotton Kaftan, $60; Montego Bay Club Prenger Strappy Flat Sandal, $20; Babooshka Boutique Phantom of the Opera Turban Headband, $20


WILD LIKE FIRE ON WEDNESDAY, Bottom Line: $93
Insight Kanga Skirt Dress, $60; Forever 21 Sweater Leggings, $15; Deena & Ozzy Studded T-Strap Skimmer, $15; Sincerely Nellie Turquoise Cross Ring, $3


PAINTED BLACK ON THURSDAY, Bottom Line: $98
Forever 21 Lace Yoke Knit Top, $16; Forever 21 Vertical Stripe Skirt, $19; Forever 21 Workman Lace-Up Bootie, $28; Fudu Mudu Triangle Earrings, $35

PATENTED PRIM ON FRIDAY, Bottom Line: $95
ASOS Bell Sleeve Shift Dress, $54; Charlotte Russe Structured Suede Heels, $33; Vintage Earrings Black Velvet and Gold Clip-ons, $8

–STEPHANIE KAO
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SMOOTH SALE-ING INTO SPRING!

If you’re like me, you sign up for all of your favorite clothing brand mailing lists, and you already know it’s SALE SEASON. Yes, it is that glorious time of year to snag everything you’ve had on your wish lists (but resisted) for mad cheap. So I’ve scoured my email blasts and compiled a list of the best sites, sales, and deals around (online, that is). I personally recommend jumping on the sale train before all the new spring stuff floods onto the scene (bringing with it an entirely new wave of temptation) taking over our brains and budgets with high hopes of warmer weather.

One of the greatest things about sale season is the fact that retailers are ready and willing to make you happy if it means: 1. More sales for them and 2. A smaller loss in profit from unsold merchandise. A perfect example of this would be the Deena and Ozzy Tread Boot I found on sale at Urban Outfitters. Urban’s site didn’t have my size, so I called up a store and scored a pair for the online sale price of $30, even though they were still $68 in-store. Lots of stores are willing to do this in order to MOVE that MERCH. Spring is around the corner, and if winter sale items are taking up space–and customers’ attention–by the time V-Day rolls around, stores won’t be selling their new duds in time to keep the fashion hamster wheel turning. Get my drift? The sale scene can be a fun game, but be sure not to go nuts as soon as the sales flags start flying. Patience is key. something that is 20% off today could be 40% off by the end of the week. True, it’s a risk to hold your horses on all those dream purchases but if it means you can save some loot, I’d say it’s worth it.

Check out some of these sites that boast new sales everyday:


1. IDEELI
This is the sweetest site for scoring designer duds at up to 80% off. I AM NOT LYING. Ideeli’s sales can last up to 40 hours, but usually end as soon as everything is sold out (about one day). As of today, the site is listing Nicole Miller Spun Scarves (at over half off, HELLO!). And I hope you are sitting down for this one: MUKS for 57% off, dude! But don’t be sad if a sale ends before you get your credit card ready, the best thing about sites like this is that there are new sales everyday for men, women, kids–even travel goodies.


2. ZARA
Whether you are shopping online or in-store, Zara’s sales are ah-mazing. In my eyes, Zara’s forte lies in its basics, so be sure to stock up on turtlenecks, tees, pants, and cardigans that will last forever but won’t cost you a fortune.


3. PIPERLIME
I know you’ve heard of this one, but Piperlime truly stands alone in its versatile brand selection and generous markdowns. Imagine your favorite Free People tank for less, or that hard-to-find Greylin dress you’ve been eyeing since September–at 60% off! This site is also great for deals on shoes and accessories. I also love the Girl on a Budget section; I learn about tons of new lines just by browsing!

Happy shopping!
–SARAH MUHL
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