04 June 2013
Are you on Instagram?
After much consideration, I started an Instagram account a few months ago. If you love clothes, cats, and food, You should follow me!
Look for me: Frugal_Jana. My account is private (stalkers! Seriously.) So, request and I'll add you!
Looking forward to seeing your life in pictures!
Posted by The Frugal Stylist at 10:11 AM
06 April 2013
|Estate sale goodies! Vintage fabrics, sewing notions, buttons, and a 1930's iron that weighs 10 pounds.|
Have you ever been to an estate sale? If you have, then you know discovering gems amongst other people's stuff is one of the best kept shopping secrets. If you have not, well I kinda feel sorry for you. You see, estates sales are much more that a glamorous garage sale. An estate sale is usually the liquidation of an entire home. If you are into anything vintage, retro or just plain out unique- you need to hit up an estate sale ASAP.
|My pride and joy: pink entry way chandelier!|
I became hip to estate sales about 3 years ago when an old colleague asked for my help in working an event. My eyes were larger than my bank account! China, purses, linen- everything I adore was organized under one roof! I made out with a cool 50's era desk, and huge gold embossed wood framed mirror. Fast forward to today, I am now apart of a team that organizes sales throughout the South Bay area of Los Angeles County. We've organized sales in million dollar homes and modest houses with bounty of treasures. Besides getting first dibs on great items, I have the rare opportunity of getting to know the former owners through what they possessed. Estate sales usually happen for one of two reasons: the resident is moving and needs to down size; or the family needs to liquidate a deceased relatives possessions. Not to sound eerie or anything, but the best sales are when a death happens. Let me explain.
The first house I worked contained 3 generations of stuff- dating back to the early 40's. The family owned a dry cleaning business and were active within the community...fancy dresses, china, linens, and jewels galore. At this home, I also picked up one of my favorite items, women's lifestyle mags dating from the late 40's to early 50's. It was charming to discover her handwriting in the margins of the pages. The most recent house was in a neighborhood that was built up after WW2. As it was normal for the era, the wife stayed at home and tended to the house while the husband provided. This husband was the maintenance super at StarKist Tuna. From the abundance of booze and the 70's sound system, these two liked to entertain! The Mrs. was a pretty good seamstress and loved to shop as evident from the abundance of fabrics, sewing notions, and business cards from department stores that have been closed for over 40 years. Childless, they took in her sister's sons after their mother's death. How do I know all this? By their possessions, pictures, and letters. It's awesome "getting to know" these people that have departed.
Since I don't want to become a greedy hoarder, I limit my purchases around what I like to collect:
Most of the sales have vintage jewelry from before 1980.. As you can see, I look for brooches, pins, pearls, and crystal jewels. I am the lookout for a lamb brooch...
Sheep Pics! And cat pics too...I look for anything (ANYTHING) with a sheep, ram, or lamb. I'm a bit more selective with the cat pics, and usually get pictures that look like my kitty.
I have an abundance of vintage china, so I really have to limit myself on this collection. I look for pretty floral and anything interesting and pink, such as a the candy dish topped with a deer.
Back in the day, folks were all about making their bathrooms glamorous. Tea towels, Bakelite vanity mirrors, crystal and bronze goblet- I want a pretty bathroom too!
With the exception of the newer homes or when the estate sale is due to a move, expect to find table clothes with matching dinner napkins; plush floral embossed towels; and carefully crafted feminine aprons. What you will be hard pressed to find is clothing. For whatever reason, many of the family members donate the clothes before me and the crew get access to the house. Yeah, it's a bummer. I was able to get my hands on some slips and tulle sleeping caps.
I leave you with some estate sale shopping tips:
- Discover estate sales in your area. You can search Craig's List or estatesales.net. You know that Penny Saver circular that comes in your snail mail every Tuesday? Don't toss it! Estate sales are posted in there!!
- Get on the email list. It's best to get on the email list to get notifications about upcoming sales and images of what to expect.
- Be nice to the staff. I can tell you from personal experience that I give a little extra off the price of some stuff if the customer is nice...and they are not a shrewd resaler. Also, do not haggle for a lower price on the first day. Since the idea is to liquidate the house, everything will be marked 50% off on the last sale day.
- Know what you like. Know what you need. As demonstrated, I collect specific items based on themes. I am all about any item with a feminine, vintage flair. If mid-century modern or steampunk is your thing, stick to it. Looking for cool kitchen gadgets or fine china? Stick to that. Trust me: this rule will prevent you from becoming a hoarder.
- Expect to pay more in affluent neighborhoods. Million dollar homes are usually not filled with junk. Their vintage stuff is of high value while their new items are designer. Based on my experience the reason for the sale is due to a move- expect to find furniture, art work, clothes and books.
- Older suburban homes have the best stuff. These places are packed to the rafters with treasures with friendly prices. Don't overlook the run-down home in the boring neighborhood.
- Respect the home. Remember, this is not a rummage sale. The items hold memories of someone that once lived there. Honor their memory.
07 March 2013
|This was my favorite bra. I'm going to miss her!|
I've been wearing the wrong bra size.
Like 90% of American women, I was facing the responsibilities of the world without the proper support. What's sad about all this, is that I'm a staunch advocate for proper undergarments and include bra fittings with every personal shopping appointment with my clients. It was time for me to hire myself.
Since I went a cup up on a size that was already difficult to find, I was faced with an expensive and timely challenge. How was I going to frugally build up my bra wardrobe with this close to impossible bra size?
|It looks huge because it's full coverage. Looks awesome with form fitting sweaters. Natori $15, Nordstom Rack|
|Now, this is a pretty bra! Bustier style was a bit more costly- but I could not pass it up. Freya $32, Nordstom Rack|
I headed to Nordstrom Rack. Since I knew Nordstrom's main line stores carry a nice selection of impossible to find sizes, Nordstom Rack receives the season's leftovers. Based on experience, the hard to find sizes are usually the first to go and the first to get marked down. Lucky for me, they had only 2 in my size. This is indeed going to be a challenge.
Not to get discouraged, I hit up two other Nordstrom Racks and walked away with 3 more bras! At the most frugal prices!!!
Please take note:
- If you are not within the "traditional" sizes of 34-38 bands and A-D cups, do not shop stores that don't support you. Also, get measured at a non-mainstream lingerie boutique or a high-end department store like Bloomingdales or Nordstom. The ladies at the department stores and boutiques have been trained on fit and know which manufactures cater to your size. Stay far away from Victoria's Secret.
- American and European manufactures size differently. For example, I'm a 30F/G in European Brands like Chantelle and Freya- and a 32DDD in Wacoal and Natori.
- Always try before you buy. Each bra is cut completely different from the next. Sometimes even in the same style!
- Just like with shoes, NEVER purchase a bra that is too small or too big. Lack of support is not sexy.
- A good bra feels like the embrace of a friend you have not seen in a very long time. A bad bra is the equivalent of a limp handshake from a coward.
- Buy quality bras from quality brands. As much as I love Target, I would advise against purchasing your everyday supporters from there. A horribly crafted bra feels horrible.
- If you have a much more difficult size (28-30; 40-50 band, below an A above a G cup) pay a visit to a lingerie boutique within your city and make friends with the staff. Hopefully, they will inform you when your size goes on sale.
|My new Favorite. Frugal and fabulous! Ella Elle Macpherson, $9.75 Nordstom Rack|
My plan is to visit Nordstom Rack at least once a week to see what's available to build up my brassiere wardrobe. Hopefully, I will stay this size for a long while.
Posted by The Frugal Stylist at 8:07 PM
16 October 2012
|Is this a shoe or a weapon?|
This may get ugly. And controversial. There are some fashion trends out in the world that I will not be caught dead in. For one, leggings as pants. (you can see the jiggle in my wiggle for goodness sakes!) These below trends are just wrong:
|High Low Dresses|
These dresses are ridiculous. That much deviation in hem lengths just does not make since! Sure, this may look cute on this model but according the website I snagged this image from, she's on the skinny side. With her 5'11 height and measurements of 32-24-35 most clothes hang on her. Now, image a 5'1 curvy girl with measurement that read 36-25-37 in this dress...Not cute.
The blame goes to Cinderella and my mother, but I was raised to believe that a lady's shoe should be graceful. Heels with a platform are not graceful. They are clunky.
|Cropped, Pattered Pants|
As my clients can attest, I despised cropped pants. For most of us, they cut our height in half and give the illusion of gigantic thighs. Now, the fashion folks want to add a pattern and make them skinny?
Lesson: just cause it's in the stores, on the runway, or in a mag - the look is not necessary for you.
Posted by The Frugal Stylist at 1:31 AM
18 September 2012
With designers debuting their Spring 2013 collections less than a week ago at NYFW, you would think that Fall 2012 fashion is pase'. But, since I (and maybe you too) live in the real world of dressing for the current season, I am JUST now starting to think about my Fall wardrobe. You see, I'm not sure where you are at on Earth, but right here in Los Angeles the weather is not agreeing with my closet. With 100 degree temperatures, the last thing I want to put on my legs are a pair of textured tights. How horrific.
Now, once Mother Nature realizes that September means Fall and gifts Los Angeles with weather in the low 70's, I will fantasize about creating looks based on my favorite trend:
|Moschino Cheap and Chic|
Since purchasing the above listed looks is way beyond my frugal budget, I created a look inspired by this trend:
Patterns! Peter Pan Collars! Knit Sweaters! 3 Piece Layering! - Floral Patterns! Flowy Dresses! Chiffon Fabrics! HOSIERY! Lace! Feminine! This is my favorite look for Fall!
What's your favorite Fall Trend??
Posted by The Frugal Stylist at 7:23 PM