|Finds for under $40
As a single mother with four tech monster children, once I’ve paid my phone and broadband bills I rarely have any money left over to spend on myself. Unfortunately, given my chronic lack of funds, when it comes to fashion, I’m a brand snob who only wants the best. Fortunately, one of my most formidable superpowers is an uncanny ability to create something from almost nothing.
My mission: find five distinct outfits that could fit in a backpack (I’m headed to New York in a couple of weeks, and I like to travel light).
|Cute but conservative
- The clothes had to be washable.
- They had to make me feel like a comfortable cross between Sailor Moon and Condoleeza Rice—in my life, I routinely transition from soccer field to boardroom with just minutes to spare.
- They had to meet a $40 budget.
|Yes, I will be running this meeting!
Three hours later, I had assembled the following:
- Black leather Nine West knee high boots, Deseret Industries, $5.00
- Hot pink Betsey Johnson tights, Ross, $5.99 (also included black herringbone patterned tights, not pictured)
- Pink polka dot Italian scarf, Ross, $3.99
- Adrienne Vittadini black scoop neck sleeveless dress/jumper, Ross, $13.99 (clearance)
- Black and white striped elbow length Talbots t-shirt, Savers, $2.39 (I used my 20 percent off coupon when I recycled a bag of clothes).
- Pink Ralph Lauren short-sleeved cardigan, Savers, $4.79
- Fun crocheted necklace, yard sale, 25 cents
|Channeling my inner Sailor Moon
Grand total: $36.40. With a long sleeved black t-shirt and a pair of black Ann Taylor slacks I already own, I am totally set for the Big Apple—and beyond!
|Skirt or poncho? You decide!
The fun thing about these pieces is that they can go from casual to dressy, from edgy to conservative, depending on how I combine them. And they illustrate why I shop almost exclusively at thrift and consignment stores—for big brand fashions at budget prices, you are not going to beat a second-hand shop.
But this Thursday, I won’t be wearing any of these outfits. I’ll be all dolled up in a little white dress (for the
second time) as I sign copies of Little White Dress: Women Explore the Myth and Meaning of Wedding Dresses. Proceeds benefit the Boise Valley chapter of Dress for Success. See www.dressforsuccess.org for more details about how your second-hand clothes can give women a chance at a first-class life. Happy fall shopping, y’all!