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A 30 something blogging about her love affair with Fashion.....among other things!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Thrift of the day

I miss thrifting. Back when I was living in the US and Japan, it was one of my favorite activity. In Japan, it was so addictive that I did not purchase anything new for a long time.
In Pune, I do not get to thrift a lot. There a not many places where you can go and score used clothes. There are what we call flea markets but they are not the real deal as they never sell anything dirt cheap or pre-owned there. Everything is new and can turn pricey. The closest I get to thrift is when I check the street vendors on M.G.road. They have many imitations but sometimes you come across the real deal. Plus it is never really expensive. What do you except, it comes out of a cardboard box.
But recently I discovered a new place to thrift. There is this lane at the end of North Main road in Koregaon Park with street vendors offering cheap sandals and other knick knacks. Some of them sell western clothes. Sometimes you go and you can score, other times their selection is really boring. Recently I went there because I wanted to shop but did not want to spend too much money. I saw this mint Dorothy Perkins blouse and a Leopard tunic dress. The blouse was dirty but I took a chance on it. Plus it was on my shopping list. And who can resist a leopard print? Both items cost me 300 Rps (less than $5). I went home excited and immediately washed them both. Two days later I was ready to wear the blouse but surprise, surprise it is a bit tight at the sleeves. I could fix it now that I have the skills to do so. But it is such a beautiful blouse I do not want to take the risk. Plus it is not long enough so chances are that I may not wear it. Therefore the blouse goes to the "For sale" bin. (By the way, my clothes are divided in several sections: 
1-the Special occasion section: clothes I wear like once a year for a party
2-the everyday casual: clothes I wear on a daily basis
3-the dress up section: clothes I wear on dates or when we go somewhere different
4- the pajama section: clothes I would not be caught dead wearing outside except maybe to work out
5-the "to be fixed" section: clothes I want to refashion
6- the "for sale" section: clothes that do not fit or that I do not like anymore but that I plan on selling
7- the too cold for Pune section: all my heavy knits and coats 
8- the "donate" section: clothes that I will donate.
The tunic dress however, fits like a glove. I really like tunic dresses of this kind but I can never find them in my size or a size bigger in here. Plus it is so soft it is like wearing a nightgown.

Open cardigan - Shimamura
Tunic dress- Thrifted (Forever New)  
Pants - Zara (More than 12 years old)
Shoes - Busy Bee (Koregaon Park)

There is a story to these pants. I bought them back in 2002 maybe and wore them twice ever since. They were in my "cold clothes" suitcase and I was very happy that they still fit after all these years (Stretch! Hello?)I love the color and the fit but they are way too long. Even with my highest wedges, they still drop to the floor. Back in the days in Zara Japan, any pants size 8 and up were always too long ( I am happy that they eventually realized that bigger size did not necessarily mean longer legs) But, maybe it is time to hem them a bit.

I was happy with my thrift but there were so many more clothes I could have bought from that place. Actually one seller was pushing a Pierre Balmain shirt on me, begging me to purchase it. It was tempting, except the buttons were so weird. Any other skilled thrifter would have seen the potential in that shirt. But me, I did not because the buttons irked me. I cannot tell you how many things I did not buy while thrifting just because there was something wrong with them. Back in the days when I did not know how to use a sewing machine, I was okay with it. But now, I have to admit that it was pure laziness that made me let go of that shirt. But I am not losing sleep over it. That thing was truly ugly.

Close up on the wedges (my camera is really getting crappier and crappier) 

Red lipstick (a first for me believe it or not) and my dear Razor pendant gifted by my Mother

It is getting cooler now in Pune. And I am so excited because it means I get to wear sweaters and jackets. I hate being cold but I do miss layering. I do miss the Fall, when Mother nature turns to gold, and you reach for a blanket at night. I just hope that the cool weather is here to stay at least until next year.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Fall Style Challenge

Hello there readers!

 I have some exciting news. I have been asked by an e-commerce menswear company called Bonobos to participate in their Fall Style Challenge along with other bloggers.

The challenge is to style different looks for women that would complement any items from their Fall men's suit line. This is a no brainer because I love Fall: it not too cold, not too hot and you get to layer. Plus I have to say their Fall line is very nice even if I am no expert on men's fashion. They have some pieces I know the hubby would have liked. Who am I kidding, they have some pieces I would have picked for myself (if the price was not too steep).

Anyway, based on the Bonobos Fall lookbook,  I decided to style these following outfits: (and they all come with a story!)

Casual Sunday

Bonobos Tweed Blazer

Pretty in Pastels

It is Sunday. You and your man want to have a lazy day: sleeping in, then going out for brunch at your neighborhood cafe, maybe end up antique shopping. He is dressed relaxed in Jeans and shirt but he adds a little bit of texture with his tweed jacket. You want to match his effortless look with a boyfriend jeans but you up the ante by paring it with a bejeweled sweater, peplum shirt and your favorite trench. The beret makes you feel like such a lady but the grey booties say " you rock, girl!". Well, just because it is Sunday, does not mean you have to let go of your style.

 Lunch date

Bonobos Grey Windowpane Wool Suit 


A man in a nice suit always gives a good impression. Imagine him showing up dressed to a tee in a grey wool suit for your lunch date? Who would not have butterflies? Thanks to this outfit, you will give him butterflies too. The pleated midi skirt with colorful butterfly print says that you are fun, and bold. You pair it with a leather and tweed jacket to keep you warm; and a grey sweater because by now you are comfortable enough in his presence. But the accessories in a soft color palette always remind him that you are foremost a lady and needs to be treated as such. 

Pair Plaid for a party

Bonobos Blackwatch Plaid Tuxedo

Pair Plaid

It is party time. He looks clean and fresh in his plaid Tuxedo and you do not want to be outdone. So what do you do? You find inspiration in the way Carry Bradshaw was dressed as Stanford's best man. You want to be edgy and playful. A sequined jumpsuit paired with a red jacket is the solution. For accessories, go for blue stilettos because metallic ones are so predictable, a studded round clutch and heart shaped earrings. But you are not done: you need a  plaid bow tie that matches the plaid of your man's tux. He finds it super sexy and cannot keep his eyes and his hands off you.

There you have it: three different styles that would compliment any items from Bonobos Fall line. It was fun styling these outfits. I cannot wait to see what the other bloggers will do with the challenge. Stayed tune to learn more as well. Do not forget to check Bonobos for more Fall styles.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Comfort zone

I am stuck. In a dress routine. I wear the same thing over and over and sometimes the same way. I wanted to dress better this year, wear more of the clothes that keep hanging on my closet. Basically have fun with the clothes I neglected. For a while I was trying. I went on Polyvore and made styling boards of different items that I have problems wearing. And it worked. Dressing up was fun and so much faster in the mornings. But these past weeks I have been wearing the same thing maybe because I have been busy. I grab these Jeans my Hubby bought for me from the US and a top. Sometimes when I have more time I throw on a blazer on and some heels. Truth is I love the jeans. They are a nice dark wash and not too loose or too tight. They are perfect. But I was trying to get out of my comfort zone and avoid the jeans uniform. Not stay in. 

I hate routine. But I am not comfortable with change either. The truth is I would love to just change my entire wardrobe and start from scratch. But that would require funds I do not have. Therefore I better work with what I got. Since most of it is not bad at all. 

Take this tunic for example. I had it for a year now. I love it so much I made another one just like that. Sure it is big and not that flattering unless I use a belt (which I never do). But it is comfy and so easy to style. Plus the tropical print always gives me a boost. So far I always wore it with jeans or black pants. But today I decided to pair it with orange pants and ankle strap heels. It was nice and unusual. The pants could have used a bit of ironing but I am happy with the result. 

Maybe the problem is that I want to dress great but I am not willing to suffer from it. If you have been reading for a long time you will now that I am all about comfort. I get that fashion is to have fun and experiment. But you cannot expect me to have fun strutting in five inch heels. I am not into that "fashion is pain" thing. I am more into "fashion is comfort" thing. And I am not willing to sacrifice that. I need a pair of jeans I don't have to struggle to get in. I need a pair of pants that is not so tight I can't breathe. I need heels that give me enough support so I do not wobble when I walk. My dresses will never be too tight or too revealing. 

But I will tell you what I am willing to do in the name of fashion: I am willing to experiment with color and prints and materials. Everyday I am discovering more prints to fall in love with and more colors that may suit me. Living in India,  you have to fall in love with prints and colors and embellishments. It is what they do best when it comes to fashion design. Furthermore I would experiment with silhouettes. I have been dying to try and make (or have someone make me) pleated midi or full skirt. They are so ladylike and elegant,  an attribute that I find missing in my style. But also simple pants. I need simple structured pants. That is what is lacking in my wardrobe: more tailored outfits. Less boho and more chic. Because the bohemian thing can get you so far. Have you seen how much crap the Olsen twins get for their dress style. Personally I love it (and even dedicated a full board on my Pinterest) to it. Yet,  something got to give.

There you have it, my next goal in perfecting my style: not stray too far from my comfort zone by trying new things. How on earth am I to accomplish that? Well stay tuned!

Tunic - Cupid (Koregaon Park)
Pants - Splash
Shoes - Head over heels (Lifestyle)

Bag -M.G Road

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