116 posts categorized "Fashion, Jewelry + Beauty"

June 11, 2015

thredUP Gets the Thumbs Up

If you have good clothes that you want to sell, let me tell you about my experience with thredUP. It’s like eBay but done with VIP services. In a nutshell, you send in a bag of your used clothes, the approved items get photographed, uploaded on their site, and if it sells, you get money. Much like eBay only without the entire eBay hassle. Read on if this sounds interesting. Here’s what I did:

Register for an account and order a free Clean Out Bag. It’s the size of a laundry bag but it’s plastic for sturdiness and mailable via Fedex or USPS. 

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My Clean Out Bag sent to me with all necessary mailing labels affixed.

They accept children’s and women’s clothes, and they’re gaga for anything and everything designer. 

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Fill 'er up!

An email is sent to you when they’ve received your bag, with notification that they will begin processing it. Each clothing item is inspected for tears, stains and pilling, all of which will be rejected. A selling price is attributed to each item depending on sellability, and rejected items are either sent off to charity or you can buy into a feature where they get shipped back to you. 

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This is my account showing the pieces they accepted, what sold and the amount they'll pay me upfront.

In my account, I see the list of my clothes that they’ve accepted. thredUP photographed each one and even put a few on a mannequin for better display. Then the images are uploaded onto their website to be sold. The price of each item is based on season, brand, condition and style. Then thredUP pays me upfront on these prices. I’m getting $56.73!

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For any of my items listed under $59.99, I can earn between 10%-40% of the selling price. 

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Here’s one of my pieces, a Kickee onesie that sold.

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This Theory dress is still up for grabs on their site to be sold. 

$56.73 may not be a lot of money but 1) I got rid of clothes I don’t need and it feels great to clean out, 2) I didn’t have to do any work like taking pics, uploading, monitoring, selling a piece, packing it, shipping it. What a relief! 

Thank you thredUP!

 

 

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April 24, 2015

Everlane: Retail Rebel

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I have a friend in the fashion industry who designs accessories for big-name brands. She never buys clothes at retail because she knows better; namely the big mark ups. It does give you pause if you think a full-priced item at $200 might have cost $25 to make.  

Have you heard of the online retailer Everlane? They sell basic clothing items, including silk tops, dresses, tanks, pants and weekender bags and totes. The designs are classic with a casual cool vibe, which includes cashmere. Their whole business philosophy is transparency to the nth degree, and I'm talking about pricing. For each item they sell on their website, they lay all their cards on the table: the story of the manufacturer, why Everlane works with them and trusts them. In an illustration, they reveal the breakdown of how much it cost them to manufacturer, and then how much they marked it up. Also compared is how much it would cost at a traditional retailer.  According to their website, a brick-and-mortar retailer marks up their items 8x.

Here’s an example of Everlane’s cashmere crew from their new spring cashmere collection. 

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I find this concept refreshing and intriguing. I do feel less taken advantaged of as a consumer. Is transparency the new black? I hope so.

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March 13, 2015

Loose Easy Braid

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No, this isn’t Zoe and I!  This is from Casey Leigh Wiegand, who I follow on Instagram.  Her images are pretty dreamy.  They really have a sense of calm.  She had been playing around with different kinds of braids and posted this and this one on Instagram.

If I ever had long enough hair, this is how I would do my braid.  It’s messy, not fussy and looks deceptively easy to do.  Thank you, Casey Leigh Wiegand!

  • 1. Part hair down one side. 
  • 2. Run a braid from the top of your head down to the top of your ear.
  • 3. Fasten with bobby pins.
  • 4. Skip down 5-6 inches and begin braiding again.
  • 5. Fasten with a rubber band.

Photo from caseyleighwiegand

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February 15, 2015

Oh, Backpack

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People used to say to me, “Don’t you remember last winter (2013)? It was one of the worse winters we’ve had.”  As hard as I try, I don’t remember.  That’s because I was never forced to step out in inclement weather with my 1.5 year old.  Both of us shielded from the cold and snow entertaining ourselves at home. 

Fast forward to a 2.5 year old who now goes to preschool.  She and I now move among the daily commuters heading to school and work.  She sits in her UPPAbaby stroller, so I can walk at a brisk pace before descending into the subway.  The weather has turned colder, so I purchased Manitoba’s universal rain and wind stroller cover.  It’s a lifesaver, and we call it the “rocketship” so she’ll be excited to crawl in.  More on this cover in another post.  Winter is here, and naturally one anticipates snow.  Here’s my dilemma: I’ve never had to push a stroller in snow before.  Will my UPPAbaby or City Mini go through snow or will she need to walk to school?

I decided that if we’re both walking in one or more feet of snow among fast-moving cars, I need to have both hands free and be as unencumbered by totes and handbags as possible.  I have begun looking into backpacks.  If you’ve read my past post on the subject, you know I have an uneasy relationship with backpacks.  They’re not quite my style yet they are truly functional allowing you to move about freely without the bag-lady chaos or purses falling off shoulders.  

As I searched and scrolled around, I began collecting some that I liked onto a Pinterest board.  My backpack identity is zero, so I wanted to rummage around and figure out what I was most attracted to.  I began to notice a common theme emerge: structural, compact and somewhat tight to the body.  Let’s see what I end up with!

1 Francesco Biasia’s Paradise 2 Yellow flip lock backpack 3 Francesco Biasia’s Miss Sarajevo 4 Freda backpack 5 Sylvie backpack 6 Kelsi Dagger Metro

 

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September 11, 2014

My Sorel Winter Boots

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I didn't read all 200-something reviews on the Slimpack but it's hard to believe my size 7 foot is different from anyone else's size 7 foot! 

Last winter, I ordered the Joan of Arctic in a 6.5 after reading that the boot ran big. It was too small but I also thought it was way too clunky and too much boot for me, so it got returned. I decided to order the Slimpack next in a 7 because it had an urban style with its leather shaft yet warm and winterproof. The 7 was still too small! Keep count: this is return #2. I spoke to customer service, and was told different styles were sized differently. Because it was the end of the winter, they ran out of sizes, so I had to wait until the summer when Slimpack was restocked. 

Fast forward to summer 2014, I order Slimpack in 7.5. STILL too small. Really? I also needed someone to help pull them off me. Return #3. I couldn't believe I had to order a size 8 but I did. They came, and they were still too small. Do these sizes go up by centimeters?? I even tried them on with thin socks and I could see my big toe poking through the rubber front. I called customer service because I really needed guidance and counseling because I truly was tired of going to the post office. At this point, I was determined to own a pair of Slimpack boots. She suggested going to a size 9, especially if I was going to wear thick socks. I was worried they would swim on me around the calf. I did order the 9s, and they fit. Let's not forget Return #4, however. So the 9s stay. I can wear thick socks, I can remove the boots on my own, and they aren't over bulky in the calf area. 

Overview: I will love my Slimpacks and use them well in NYC winters. However, I'm hesitant to make another Sorel purchase because I never ever want to return four pairs of footwear again.

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June 2, 2014

Not Your Mom's Patches

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I would know because I’m a mom, who used to wear patches on my oversized denim jacket in the 80s.  Many were odes to the hot bands of the day: Duran Duran, The Stray Cats, Blondie, Pat Benatar.  I hadn’t thought of that jacket in a very long time but I sure felt like a cool cat whenever I wore it.  

I thought of this jacket and its patches because I happened upon Paulette, who owns Dahlia Soleil at the Hester Street Fair one week.  She crafts some of the hippest iron-on/sew-on appliques I’ve seen in a long time.  She has this wonderful forward-thinking point-of-view: meshing the old crafts of embroidery and crocheting with Photoshop and the digital arts.  The details are wonderfully old-school and simple.

While there’s nothing in my “mom” wardrobe that calls for patches any more, I immediately thought of my toddler Zoe.  These designs are so relevant, streamlined in design and the topics are super fun.  I think a little denim jacket plastered with a few of these would put Zoe early onto the road to coolsville!  And maybe a Blondie one for mom’s good ol’ days.  

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May 5, 2014

Today's dilemma: Birkenstock or not

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Hmm, I already have my opinion for this one but I thought it would be interesting to explore.  Apparently, last year big designers like Prada and Marc Jacobs bought into the anti-fashion shoe.  This year, J. Crew models don them in their “Style Guide;” a noted editor-in-chief for a young fashion mag sings their praises in her personal and professional life; and one of my good friends rocks a silver pair with an eggplant-painted pedicure.  

Do you hear a “but” coming?  But, I just don’t understand them.  If people are wearing them just to be trendy, then they’re taking fashion waaaaay too seriously because they are not cute.  If it’s because the summer’s scorching hot and it’s easier than tying a shoe, then I can relate, although not enough to acquiesce.  It might be because I live in New York.  I have this urban instinct to protect my feet.  I never wear flip-flops in the streets either.  I can’t walk or dodge fast enough in any open shoe, and only a finger’s width of rubber separates me from the very dirty sidewalks of NYC.  

I know, summers are sweltering, and covering up is hardly festive for the season but I’m resolute to putting a sock and sneaker on.  A small and pretty walking sneaker, not the massive athletic ones.  For the past 15 years, I’ve continually found my favorites at Puma.  I’ve had to buy a new pair this year because I threw my current pair into the dryer, and they shrunk a titch.  I ended up buying these.  They look clunky but they weigh about the total of two $.25 coins with the uppers made of some material similar to a very noisy windbreaker.  I digress.

Perhaps you think my Pumas are ugly, and I shouldn’t be commenting on the Birkenstock.  For me, they’re a little too flat-footed and make my foot look an extra size bigger but I do leave you with some very pretty images of Birkenstock-wearing folk.  So, you see, I appreciate but do not partake!  What do you think about the Birks as fashion?   

{Photo credits: left column/ Rawkiss, Dusty Pickup, Vogue Paris 2013, Nordstrom, Brooke's Landfill. Right column/ Nordhaven, Celine via Interview magazine Dec 2012/Jan 2013, Glamour Denmark, The Face July 1990 by Corinne Day, Free People}

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April 16, 2014

J. Crew's Liquor Store

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I just love New York!  Next time you are in Tribeca, check out J. Crew’s men’s shop housed in a landmark 1825 townhouse that used to be an old liquor store.  What could be better than stylish fashion surrounded in excellent decor?

{Photos via A Continuous Lean; Remodelista}

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March 26, 2014

Cover up! My new swimsuit

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I bought a new swimsuit!  Lately, swimsuits haven’t excited me.  It was all about ‘how low can you go’ or how many sexy straps a piece can have.  My priorities have changed, and I no longer care if I look “sex-ay.”  I care if I look good but not the way I did when I was younger.  My priority is how well I can run after a baby without feeling I’m going to have an embarrassing mishap.  Believe me, I have those suits in my drawer, and I’m not going to toss them but I decided to add a new style to my wardrobe.  When I saw this swim set, I didn’t know if it was weird to wear a rashguard top, when I’m not worried about rashes or if long-sleeve was going to be too warm.  I bought the top at South Beach Swimsuits but they didn’t have my size for the bottoms, so I found them at J. Crew.  I am looking forward to wearing a retro-style, high-waisted brief.  Isn't the ruching cute?

I love going opposite of “how low can you go” because, honestly how low can you go? Here are a few other cute ones! 

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{clockwise from top left} Striped Ocean Park; Seafolly Coastline; Esther Williams; Red/white gingham

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February 12, 2014

Paper Dolls, Dollhouses, Fashion Sketches

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Fashion Plates, remember those?!  Oh, man, I can remember that creative burn pretending I was a “fashion designer” as a pre-teen.  I bought Zoe a sticker book that features the cool teen and all of her groovy “Betty and Veronica” outfits.  I haven’t let her touch it yet though…I just want to savor it a little longer.  I indulged my paper doll, dollhouse and fashion designer diva with this post, and I hope it does the same for you!  This particular toy from Mattel doesn't exist any longer but rejoice!  Melissa & Doug makes the closest to the nostalgic Fashion Plates that I’ve found, right HERE!!

{Photo via PopSugar}

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The perfect dollhouse!  Six interior rooms fold out for play, and store away flat for clean up designed by Smollhouse.  Form and function; so clever!  AND you must check out these ridiculously cute Minifolk, who inhabit the foldaway home.  Detailed instructions on how to dress them are included, not to mention drawing in their happy faces.  Fret not, you don’t need to be Picasso!  All available at Caravan.

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Download London and her BFF, Brooklyn as free printable paper dolls at Sweet Paul, and then color them in with watercolor paints, colored pencils or crayons.

{Photo via Sweet Paul}

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Flip Fashion is an illustrated mix-n-match fashion lookbook with styles ranging from disco queen to street style.

{Top photo via Jenna Park}

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I found these sweet illustrated, low-maintenance dollhouse rooms from Eudeline Moutarde.  Visit her website, click on the images to print, cut out and play.

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