Working near a big outdoor mall can be a dangerous thing. I've done a little bit of lunch-time and after-work shopping there. And there's a Target nearby, too. It's convenient for items that I need right away (such as an $18 Spiderman fleece blanket as a birthday gift), but I'm staying the heck away from it as far as clothing goes. The one in my hometown is already doing me in.
The Loehmann's close to my work is much smaller than the one I usually go to, but it has some pretty good basics. I wanted to get tops that would be suitable for work but can be dressed down for play. The blue Rebecca Beeson sleeveless top is nice and soft, and only $5. The black one by the same designer is around $10, but the understated details are worth it. There's a flap that drapes from one shoulder to the other--graceful details in a conservative sillouette. It's a great contrast with my vintage thrifted skirt.
One of my lunchtime excursions netted me this $8 batwing top. It's really more of a treat, but I love the color. If I wear my black t-shirt from Target underneath, it'll be perfect for work. Both of them have collars of the same shape, but the black t-shirt provides a lot of coverage.
My hometown Target came through for me yet again. Right before I started my job, I needed dress shirts. I love the color and the satiny sheen of this blue one. On a trip to another Target, I found the Isaac Mizrahi for Target cardigan. I don't like the twin-set look, but I do like something like this. Not bad for about $15.
Actually, this whole outfit is a Target outfit except for the thrifted vintage skirt. I bought the shoes at the end of last Spring's clearance.
Casual Friday means blue jeans. Actually, jeans are acceptable in my office even if it's not Friday, but I'm the new girl and want to make this job permanent, so it's better to dress up a little more. I bought two pairs of Fins Denim jeans from a discounter sometime last year. Boutiques like Le Train Bleu had them for $100+; I bought mine for $10 each. The non-stretch pair has broken in really nicely and fits perfectly without being tight...I love it! The darker wash--which I love--is perfect for a more professional environment.
Maybe I ruined it (my mom seems to think so), maybe not (personally, I think it's cute), by pairing the jeans with a $5 cropped jacket sample I picked up from a Forever 21 store somewhere in Alhambra. That store bears the original name, which was Fashion 21, and the sale racks held a fabulous selection. Where else can you find a cropped jacket sample like this for $5, and then a nice, warm peacoat for $20?
I'm just very lucky to have a job that lets me indulge in my style whimsies, both in terms of the dress code and the disposable income. With all sorts of obligations, primarily student loans, I'm not gonna go overboard with spending, but it's been quite a few years since I had the ability to buy clothes without feeling guilty. I'm enjoying the moment, that's for sure.