May 21, 2015

Mother's Day Matching 2015

I didn't plan to take a 20 day blog hiatus but it happened. I was busy with the assembly of my annual review portfolio (which always takes longer than I anticipate) and some consulting work. All is well though!
Since I last updated I went to the Boden sale and didn't find anything for myself but got a sweater dress for Emilia that she can wear next year. I haven't shopped much otherwise. I bought and returned a dress from Anthropologie. I will review it for fit soon. I also will review the Lindsay dress from Boden which I liked enough to keep.

The above outfit was worn during our Spring Break trip in St. Barths (top photo). Emilia and I also wore these matching Lilly Pulitzer tunics on Mother's Day (bottom photo). We went to the Pittsburgh Zoo with my parents and sister. She and I got lots of compliments on our matchy match look during both occasions. My favorite ones came from little girls who would shout with glee some variation of, "look mommy, they match!" Emilia really likes matching and asks to do so whenever she spots one of our matching options in a drawer or closet. I think it is fun and makes for endearing photos that I can show her when she's a teenager.

I had a lovely Mother's Day weekend, celebrating with my mom, my mother-in-law, and my stepmother-in-law. Maybe next year I will try to rope them into an even bigger matching plan? I hope you had a nice celebration too.

May 01, 2015

Boden Sample Sale Spring 2015!

It's that time of year again, when the Boden sample sale comes to Pittsburgh! Tomorrow (May 2nd) will be my third time attending the clearance event. As usual, I am excited to go but not excited enough to line up for the 10am start. I prefer the opening frenzy to peter off prior to my arrival so that I can have a leisurely experience. Besides, I went late into the afternoon before and still came away with great pieces. That said, if you are looking primarily for Mini Boden it is best to go early. 

You can read my review of a previous sample sale here. Don't forget to bring a re-usable bag so that you can collect pieces to take to the fitting rooms. Also, it is useful to know that these fitting rooms are communal. Make undergarment selections, accordingly!

And lastly, remember to print your $5 off coupon so you can score an even better deal! Happy hunting!

April 29, 2015

Marc Jacobs Exeter OOTD and thoughts on my shrinking time to shop

I've owned this dress for over a year but I think this is the first time it has made it onto the blog. This is also the first time I wore it to campus. I bought it after a long search that ended with Gilt, surprisingly. I like Gilt but when it comes to out of season/past season clothes, I typically find better prices on Yoox or Ebay.  This Marc by Marc Jacobs dress (in a print called Exeter) didn't sell out when Gilt first had it so when they sent me an extra % off coupon, I took the plunge. But I was worried about sizing. Despite years of familiarity with the MBMJ brand, I have found that newer season garments don't fit me as well. It could be a change in their size patterns or changes in my waistline. Regardless, it has made me reluctant to buy because I lack concrete fit information.

Thankfully this risk brought reward. I really like the print and the length of the sleeves. I am wearing a size 8 so if you are hunting for it, it runs large. The (not sheer but still) mesh panel across the waist and through the back can be easily camouflaged and reinforced with high waist tights. Buying without trying is always a risk and with sites like Gilt (who have return policies that seem to vary per garment/order), I was extra nervous. Anymore I rarely get to buy after trying on something especially when it comes to my favorite dress brands. This is part of why I buy less in general. It wasn't always the case.

When Pittsburgh had a Saks downtown, I used to be able to kill two birds with one stone. I would comb the sale racks and then sweep through new arrivals. I would try on pieces to consider buying that day or for fit information to guide future (eventual sale) purchases. Back then I had more spare time in general since I hadn't yet had a child. I was also traveling more for work and for fun, and could visit department stores that aren't in Pittsburgh. I am sure I could try on more things at the local Nordstrom but it isn't downtown. And as much as I enjoy shopping in stores, I typically can't justify a drive to the burbs just to browse. I also find fewer current styles that appeal to me from my former go-to brands so there is less of a draw overall. I do miss having time to meander around by myself and try on clothes. I always found it to be relaxing.

Lately, if I get into a fitting room at all it's kind of a miracle. I rarely feel able to focus on shopping for myself when I am in stores. Searching racks, making selections, finding my sizes, and then also having enough time left to try on something seems impossible. I spend a lot more time at the Disney Store than I do in stores for me. But that is fun too, just for different reasons.

The semester is finished (grades are due today), my annual review portfolio will be completed in a few weeks, and then I will have a bit more time and flexibility to do my own thing... At least in theory, apart from my book revisions, article manuscript drafting, and grant writing. Regardless, I am looking forward to trying to shop in person again soon!

Marc by Marc Jacobs Exeter dress
Banana Republic Factory cardigan
Spanx tights (25% off with code FRIEND)
Tory Burch Revas


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