Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Save Me, San Francisco

Discovered this past week that I love Train and didn't know it.  Current favorite is this track.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

On my last trip to the city by the bay, I wore this outfit.  In honor of my friend's birthday I wore my new heels.  She is always dressed to perfection and wears heels probably every single day.  The first photograph is taken my gorgeous backyard.

Top: Macys-Michael Kors~$30
Approximate Total Cost:$73

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Amidst Packing Ross Run

Needed to go buy sheets today for our new bed being delivered tomorrow so I headed over to my new favorite and conveniently located across the street store, Ross.  My husband thinks he's getting more room on the bed, but I bet I can take up an entire king size bed if I try.   Of course before checking the bedding section I follow my usual browsing pattern at the store.  I skip the purse and accessory section as I rarely change my purse.  I head straight for the shoe section and find these beauties:

Nine West brown platform heels on sale for $19.99! It was too good of a deal for me to pass up.  If you think walking in 4 inch heels is hard try maintaining your balance while wearing them and bending over to take photos!

My next stop on while browsing Ross is always the dress section.  I grab a few selections to try on just for fun. Such as this ugly number. It didn't make sense on the hanger and my curiosity compelled me to try it on.  I think my expression says it all. The bow tie is pointless and accentuates nothing. Its a cummerbund gone wrong. There is quite a bit of extra fabric under the bust and I don't even know where to begin on the skirt.  The fabric is an unappealing off white with a yellowish tint.  It just plain fails.

Eventually, I make my way over to the bedding section and find 500 thread count cotton sheets in a pretty steel gray color with a satin sheen to it.  I'd love to have bright floral sheets or maybe something in a nice pastel print but my husband would probably cut them up into rags.

And lastly, my outfit for today.

Shirt: Ross-French Laundry~$7
Belt:Ross-Came with another shirt~$10
Jeans:Nordstrom Rack-Joes Jeans, Honey booty fit~$70
Shoes:Old Navy-Silver strap sandals ~$20
Bag: American Eagle Outfitters~too old for me to remember
Approximate Total Cost~$107

Yes, I know $70 for a pair of jeans doesn't seem like a bargain.  And believe me they weren't easy for me to purchase mentally. I called up my husband and texted pictures to friends before caving in and buying them.  I justify them with how fabulous my butt makes them look ;)

Monday, August 22, 2011

If you got it flaunt it dress

Dress:Ross-Derek Heart Grey Dress~$20
Tights:Nordstrom Rack-Black Polka Dot Tights~$4
Shoes:Ross-Black Flats~$14
Approximate Total Cost~$38

My "If you got it flaunt it dress" highlights my small waist and large chest while the pleated skirt creates volume where I lack hips.  ( I swear when the dress isn't wrinkly from driving around and doing errands all day the skirt has pleats)

The top portion of the dress is a jersey material that stretches where I need it and believe me I need it.  This weekend I went to a small bra boutique, A La Folie, in Berkeley for a one day only sale.  This place sells beautiful and functional lingerie in a wide array of sizes, like from an A cup to an I cup!  Unfortunately, its also quite expensive so I wasn't about to miss a sale there.  I browsed the clearance rack and found a bra I liked in what I thought was my size.  I try it on and was disappointed when I saw it caused a bad case of double boob, the phenomenon where the boob muffins out of the cup creating a lumpy unappealing look.  I ask the sales lady for some help and she informs me I should be wearing a 32F! Yes, you read correctly, F.  She gets me a few bras in my new size to try on.  Holy crap! I didn't realize my back was hurting till I tried on the bras and the pain disappeared!  If you haven't gone in for a bra fitting recently, do your girls and your back a favor and do so! So, now I have a new quest.  To find places that sell my new size at reasonable prices.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

My current favorite skirt

Skirt:Ross-Jones New York Signature Pleated Skirt~$15 (retail price $109!)
Shirt: Old Navy-V-neck pocket Tee~$3
Belt: Ross-Part of a Blue top~$10
Tights:K-mart-Nude geometric patterned~$5
Total Approximate Cost ~$47

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Target Dress Review

The three dresses I've reviewed were all found on the clearance racks for under $20. Target is a great place to find clearance items, accessories like belts, bags, sunglasses and even jewelry at budget conscious prices.

Merona Collection

I really liked this dress when I first saw it in Target stores a few weeks ago. I was attracted to the bright colors and paisley like print. As well as, the ties to accentuate the waistline. I'm a total sucker for anything that ties or has a bow. One unfortunate thing about this dress is the material, its 100% polyester and has a paper like texture that makes it flare out from the body and stay there. I tried on a size 6 which was a little tight across the bust so it might flatter smaller chests more. It was a little loose on my waist but the ties remedied the situation. I liked the modest neckline but didn't care for the shape of the skirt. I may go back and see if i can find a size 8 to try on, maybe a size up would flatter my shape more.

Converse One Star

I think what attracted me to this dress was its similarity to a dress my cousin has and looks fabulous in. I tried on a size small because i couldn't find a size medium in purple. The dress also comes in a light grey color, but I'm trying to stop my current wardrobe trend of heather grey dresses. This dress again was too small in the chest. The zipper didn't even make it up the last three inches or so. I liked the empire waist and the fabric (100% cotton) but didn't care for the fact that the dress covered all of my back. This one is also worth another try in a size up. (I'm still figuring out what size range i fit into with my newly plumped body)

Challis Kimono Dress

I really like this style of dress but thought the large chest would rule them out completely for me. My husband suggested I just go for it and try one. Of course, he encourages any visible cleavage. I liked the print and thought what the hell, may as well give it a try and I'm glad I did. Despite the plunging neckline little cleavage is actually visible. The dress is casual and even short enough to wear with jeggings or tights as shown above. For ten bucks I can ignore the fact that its 100% rayon and I think I'll be wearing this dress often for the remainder of summer and through the fall.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Best Place to Shop...

...is in your own wardrobe. A significant portion of my wardrobe is still at my parents home. Being of Indian decent, I essentially have two complete wardrobes: One indian and one american. When I was home last week I started trying on some of the clothes I left behind just to see if they still fit. Thankfully, the majority of my more casual indian tops did! I think I need to start incorporating some of my finds into my everyday outfits. Such as the blue and orange floral top on the left. There are tons of floral prints in the stores these days so I guess it even fits the trend. The shirt on the right is a BCBG top I purchase about three years ago and only wore once. It was quite baggy at the time and the sleeves just didn't suit my then twig like frame. Now the shirt is a little snug on the bust but I think totally wearable.

So try shopping your own closest every once in a while and dig up those forgotten shirts, pants, and skirts. Maybe they'll suit your style today :)

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Bright Sunshiny Day

Cardigan: Gap~Free (A gift from a relative)
Top:Old Navy~$4
Jeans:Ross-Vigoss Brand~$9
Approximate Total Cost~$42

Its been a cloudy and cold summer, so I brighten my day with colorful outfits.

In recent house news, our loan has been officially without a doubt approved by the lender! Friday we will be doing the final house inspection/walk through and then signing the closing documents! Making it finally officially ours! We need to be out of our apartment by August 31st so that leaves us with two and half weeks to sort, pack, clean and move!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Taj Modge Podge

Last week my husband and I completed a puzzle of the Taj Mahal, the Indian icon of everlasting love. The Taj brought my husband and I a little closer together. We worked together to complete a shared goal and accomplished it. After trying so hard to buy house and failing numerous times it helped to do something together and finish it. It also kept us from our usual evening activity of catching up on DVR'ed shows or the netflix queue.

Once we finished the puzzle, I wanted to frame it to place over the mantel of our future home. I did some research on the internet and decided to try using Mod Podge glue to affix the puzzle pieces to one another. First, I used a foam sponge to spread a thin layer of glue on the front of the puzzle. After it dried I repeated the process on the front and back twice. It worked really well and I could flip it over after the first application without worrying about it coming undone. Next I used spray glue to affix it to a black mat board and then the mat board to the picture frame backing. The finished product turned out great!

So, now since I've bought Mod Podge glue I figured I may as well try a craft type use. I decided to finally to do something with all the floral photographs I take. Some people stop and smell the roses. I stop and take photos of every flower in my path. A hobby of mine that tends to annoy those walking beside me cause of the frequent stopping.

What you'll need to decoupage photographs:
  1. Photos, not on photo paper. You can either photocopy existing prints or just print out photos on normal printer paper.
  2. Canvas, I picked up mine on sale at Jo Anns
  3. Mod Podge glue, or I here diluted Elmers works well
  4. Acrylic Paint
  5. Sponge Brushes
  1. Paint the canvas a color of your choosing. I chose lime green because its my favorite color and accent color in my apartment.
  2. Cut or tear photographs and experiment with different layouts till you find one you like.
  3. Use sponge brush to apply a thin layer of glue to the back of a photo and place on the canvas. Apply pressure and smooth out the edges. Repeat for all the photos and let the glue dry, approximately 25-30 minutes.
  4. Next apply glue to the entire canvas. Be sure to brush in the same direction, being careful of photo corners. Repeat 3-4 times allowing the canvas to dry between applications.
And, Viola! Your finished original and cheap art piece!
Of course, instead of creating art for the new place I should be packing. But hey, at least i scored free boxes off of craigslist!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

My outfit today

Top: Target -Janice knit top - on sale for ~$9
Skirt: Antropologie-Denpasar Skirt- on sale for ~30
Tights: Target- similar here-on sale for ~$6
Approximate Total Cost ~$60
(Sorry, couldn't get my shoes in the picture...i'll try harder next time or recruit the husband)

First time wearing this skirt and I absolutely love the weight and feel of the material. It is soft and silky to touch, light weight and twirls and moves with me and the wind. Oh! And, the skirt has pockets! Who doesn't love a skirt or dress with pockets?!? The shirt is also new (just got it yesterday) and i'm really loving the cap sleeves and general fit.

I've gained over 30 lbs in the past year and have replaced nearly all of my wardrobe. I'm experimenting with different cuts and styles of dresses and skirts to hide problem areas. I now find throwing on a dress so much simpler than jeans and a t-shirt. Dresses can hide so much more than the latter! This is a big deal for me. I'm known for wearing jeans anytime and all the time.

First Blog Post

So I've decided to start a blog to share my bargain shopping habit (or obsession as my husband calls it) as well as other aspects of my life to the interweb world. I haven't done much writing outside of graduate papers in the past couple of years. I'm a horrible speller and I can't claim any expertise at grammar either so you'll have to bear with me.

Right now my husband and I are in the process of buying a house. Its been an exciting, exhausting, and stressful couple of months of searching, putting in countless offers, getting many rejections and thankfully an acceptance of our offer on a house we really love. I'd love to share some photos of the house with you right now, but until we have keys in our hands I'm trying not to get my hopes up.

Today we visited our soon-to-be house for a structural inspection. The engineer said the house was in pretty good condition considering the age, but does show some signs of settlement. Luckily, this is affecting the back of the house where we're planning on renovating next year. We are crossing our fingers the engineer writes a positive report for our lender and the condition can be removed from the loan. The media keeps saying its a great time to buy! Prices are low! Interest rates are low! What the don't tell you is the headache it is dealing with the banks who own foreclosed properties and super cautious lenders post housing market bust.

But enough with my rant, here is the one picture from the house I'll share.

The family room in the house has an old fashion style wood burning stove with cute little gnomes on the feet! It think they're adorable but my husband wants to sand them off :(

Now on to my cheap shopping habit. I love looking for a great deal on clothing. Nothing excites me quite like finding jeans for 10 bucks or a shirt for 5.

So this weeks find was a super cute apron at Ross. My old apron's ties are fraying at the seams. Yes, I know, I could have just mended the old one, but after seeing countless cute aprons at Anthropologie I wanted an upgrade from the apron I inherited from a former roommate. And as cute as the Antropologie ones are, I can't see myself spending $30-40 on one. So, on my "I need to kill time while the laundry dries" trip to Ross I happened upon this one for $8.99!