In Style, What I bought

July 2012: What I bought

Wait, what did I say again about not wanting to spend much this month? *weak laugh* *wipes forehead* The good news is I didn’t spend $1300 like last month, so … progress is slow but sure.

On the brighter side, I returned a lot of stuff and some of my purchases were replacements, or practical items. It wasn’t ALL fluff.

NORDSTROM JUNE PURCHASES

The Nordstrom stuff was purchased in June, but received in July.

RETURNED

CLASSIQUES ENTIER PEZZA PONTE KNIT BLUE SPECTRUM AND DONIA NEUTRAL SKIRT (Nordstrom) — $255 for both

Classiques-Entier-Pezza-and-Donia-Skirts-Nordstrom

I thought these two skirts were really cute, but when I received them in a size 4, they were swimming on me, too long and bulky. I sent them back.

It is meant for a taller-than-5’5″-and-much-curvier-in-the-hips-and-butt kind of woman. In addition, the blue one was cute, but it wasn’t a vivid blue as the picture. It was more of a muted blue and kind of boring. Disappointing. 🙁 (My wallet cheered however…)

KEPT

ON SALE — ADA TWO-TONED OBI LEATHER BELTS (Nordstrom) – $115

(Originally $88 each or $176 in total)

I am a straight up sucker for belts. Belts, are my #2 accessory after necklaces. I especially LOVE obi belts! These belts are made of a stiffer, thick Argentinean leather, and the two tone is unusual — I have never seen it before. I am also going to experiment with tying them different ways, as pictured here:

ACTUAL IN-JULY PURCHASES

E-BOOKS

Can you believe I forgot that I bought books in previous months? Amazon is going to take all my money and laugh all the way to the bank because of my need to read.

They make it way too easy to buy awesome books. These are the books I got this month:

Last month, it was:

REFILL — DAVID’S TEA CHECKMATE AND VANILLA OOLONG TEA — $20

I demolished my stash of tea in record time and had to replenish my stock.

I repurchased my favourite Vanilla Oolong from David’s Tea.

Discover the power of vanilla and oolong, with a little hint of orange. It’s temptingly rich. We’ve used Pouchong tea leaves, the least oxidized of oolongs, which gives it a lighter, fresher taste. Delicious and totally addictive on its own, we also love blending this with fruit flavoured teas for a touch of creamy sweetness. Taiwanese pouchong oolong tea, lemon myrtle, marigolds, natural flavouring*.

I also picked up a smaller bag of another tea I am not sure I want to commit a whole tin to yet: Checkmate (also from David’s Tea). It is really delicious, like hot cocoa but in a tea.

When you mix white Bai Mu Dan with black tea, coconut and chamomile flowers, it creates a rich, satisfying, chocolate flavour. You’ll swear you’re drinking a cup of hot cocoa, even though there’s no chocolate in the blend. Black tea, white tea, coconut, Roman chamomile flowers, artificial flavouring*.

Update: Once I run out I’m going to buy a tin of this Checkmate tea. It really is quite good.

SUNPENTOWN STAINLESS STEEL RICE COOKER — $73

sunpentown-stainless-steel-rice-cooker

Did you know that Teflon has to be off the shelves by 2015?

We’ve gotten rid of our beloved Teflon rice cooker and bought this lovely gem instead (love!) It is truly non-stick, stainless steel, and cooks white rice like a charm.

For brown or other kinds of rice, you’ll need to buy another kind of device. I. Love. It.

I do think that it isn’t 1 cup of water to 1 cup of white rice, it’s more like 1.25 cups of water to 1 cup of white rice, unless you like your rice really al dente and dry.

J. CREW NO. 2 PENCIL SKIRT IN GARDENSHADE PRINT – $99.99 ON SALE!

I ended up finding this J. Crew skirt in GardenShade Floral, ON SALE. IN MY SIZE (0) for $99.99! (Okay, so $100 isn’t a far drop from its original $128 price tag, but it is still a nice discount). It looks SO good in person (I saw it on a woman who rocked it with a purple sweater, and ever since I found out the name and the skirt, I’ve been dying to buy it). The print feels very similar to the D&G, even though the tones/shades are off.

ZAC POSEN Z SPOKE WHITE DRESS – $130

I got rid of my old white summery dress (I realized it made me look really short and dumpy, even though I was going for that beachy, carefree sundress look), and picked up a more figure flattering Z Spoke white modern-tennis-meets-couture kind of dress.

Zac-Posen-Z-Spoke-Sleeveless-White-Jersey-Dress
It’s perfect for my inverted triangle shape — balances out my shoulders nicely because the skirt flares out at the hips. It looks SO WEIRD on the model, but it is very flattering in real life on shorter people. Looks less tennis-y.

J. CREW ALLIE DRESS — $198RETURNED

UPDATE: Unfortunately I did return this. The material doesn’t feel nice or soft or huggy to my body (yes, a real term), it was too short even on my 5’4″ frame, and felt cheap. I may return this. Don’t get too attached to it. I really like the shape, the flared waist, the colour looks nice… but for $200? I’m keeping the tags on it until I can decide. It also has pockets, seaming, and looks to be of high quality (haven’t received it yet).

J. CREW NAVY SCHOOLBOY BLAZER — $198

J. Crew got a lot of love this month. This is a blazer I am keeping. Great fit, cut, looks great rolled up or left down, and fits well in my wardrobe. They went like hot cakes on the rack!

WHITE BLAZER FROM ZARA — $80 and LOVE ADY WHITE BLAZER — $88NEVER ARRIVED!

It was a blockbuster month for blazers. I saw this jersey white blazer from Zara and loved it with my pants, but not my dresses or skirts (hits too low on the hip).

….until I saw another white blazer (Love Ady) with ruched sleeves and a shorter cut which would work out better with skirts/dresses and possibly tops too.

Update: I never even received this blazer. They were totally sold out of it, which is a bit of a blessing because it solved my which-white-blazer to keep dilemma for me 😉 I’m waiting to get both of them before I decide which one to keep.. if I decide keep them both at all.

THE CONTAINER STORE IS ALSO THE DEVIL!

I sort of discovered The Container Store online and started filling up my online basket with all this stuff I never knew I needed.

Armed with a 10% off code (CLICK10OFFER) I went nuts and spent around $200, but I ended up returning $150 of it!!!! *pats self on back* This is what I kept:

UMBRA TUBO ACRYLIC ORGANIZER = $12

FINALLY. FINALLY! I was hunting down ideas for my makeup brushes and pencils to take up less room (versus laying them flat). I also wanted something light, and practical (no glass because it can break and nothing too big because I have to travel with it). I tossed around ideas like a pencil holder or a cup, but I wanted separated areas and something clear so I could see the colours easily. The only con with this makeup organizer, is that I can’t put my stubby eye pencils or lip stuff in them. They’re too short. 🙁 I wish they added one section that was super short for these items. Still, it holds most of everything I need to reach for: Now I don’t have to hunt to find what I need.

1 PACK OF 10 HUGGABLE SLIM VELVET HANGERS — $7

You know those infomercials where the women gush over how amazing these velvet hangers are, and you think to yourself: OMG who ARE these people!? Who in the world gets excited over hangers!? That’s me now.

Honestly, I thought I could get away with not ever buying hangers because they take up room and they usually have a few in every hotel I’ve been in. I think they’re bulky, they take up space, and are kind of annoying to carry around. Lately however, BF has been hogging all the hangers in the hotels we stay in, so I figured I might as well buy a set.

I originally settled on cheap, plastic hangers until I decided that maybe buying slightly more expensive ones with this so-called magical velvet would make my strappy dresses stay on the hanger better…. so I bought a pack of 10. They are AMAZING. I can shake my tops and my dresses (just like the TV people) and it DOESN’T FALL OFF the hanger!!!! I’ve limited myself to just 10 hangers…..

okay, well I originally bought 30 hangers but then BF freaked on me in the store when he saw all of them. :P…..

10 is just enough for the dresses I must iron and hang up. The rest of my clothes are jersey so I don’t need to worry about wrinkles too much. If you are looking for amazing hangers, these are it!

4 SPECTRUM CLOSET S HOOKS — $8

Such minimalist way to hang your purses! I hate leaving them scrunched in a corner, or on a shelf. They’re easy to pack and carry (they’re just S-Hooks), and they are very sturdy with a great curve for my wider-handled purses, without using up my precious hangers. I hang two purses per hook. See?

White-S-Hooks-Purses-Hanging-Minimalist-Closet-Organization

(Note: These are not all of my purses in case you are wondering. I still have 2 cross body bags I use when I travel, gym bags and a few clutches)

REPLACEMENT MOLESKINE RULED NOTEBOOK — $18

To replace my old notebook. Boring, but…. geeky fun?

Update: Yes, I love this notebook. It opens quite nicely (flat), it doesn’t bend the edges because the cover is a hard cardboard, and if you use the elastic, it keeps all the pages together.

It’s also a pleasure to write on — really nice paper — the ink dries very quickly and doesn’t bleed through to the other pages like in cheap paper … well, unless you decide to hold your pen there for a minute to soak the page 😛

REPLACEMENT FOSSIL MADDOX ZIP WALLET — $40

(Originally $55)

To replace my beloved Danier leather once-stolen-and-then-returned-by-a-cop wallet of 10 years, I purchased this Fossil Maddox Zip Wallet on sale. I had to replace my 10-year-old wallet because the leather was getting so stretched, my cards were falling out. (It also didn’t have a zipper all the way around, so I was afraid I’d pull it out of my bag and then whoosh, my credit cards go flying down the street.)

For the Fossil wallet, I don’t love the leather in terms of how buttery soft I know leather can be, but I do know a slightly stiffer, cheaper leather is usually better for wallets because then the card slots won’t stretch out, and it’ll hold up better. Plus, it was $40 and not $400.

THE STORY OF THE WALLET HUNT

I was looking at ALL kinds of wallets, up to $400 per wallet (yeah I know, insane right?). I looked at Tory Burch, Longchamp, Kate Spade, m0851, Tumi, Marc Jacobs….. you name it. I basically went to every department store and specialty store I could think of that did not have blatant, ugly logos all over the place, but I couldn’t find a wallet that is as practical as the Fossil one. The zippered section at the back holds my metropass and map, the insides are perfect for separating my bills (they all look the same to me!). I also stick the receipts in the front section (there’s an open flap). Overall, it’s a compact, fairly slim wallet.

NORDGREEN PHILOSOPHER PATINA GREY LEATHER WATCH

I was recently gifted this Nordgreen Philosopher Patina Grey Leather watch, and I love the look of it. The dial is clean, clear and sleek, a good weight, and the only drawback is the leather feels a bit thick / sturdy, and not soft, but it makes sense as it’s a watch. My wrists are tiny, so I had to punch a few more holes in it (this is why you should all own a belt/watch hole puncher), and it looks great. They also had a regular grey leather strap watch which I suspect is a softer leather, but I like the distressed grey as it looks darker and kind of ‘cooler’.

Other things I bought:

  • Crazy-Glue (one-use tubes) — I use crazy glue so rarely, that it always dries up after I open a tube.
  • This Strap-a-Handle for my dad to use on heavy boxes so he doesn’t hurt himself

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Am my own Sugar Daddy. Am a millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using TheBudgetingTool.com. I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I have 11 side incomes that are on track in 2020 to make me $50K - $75K. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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15 Comments

  1. Helen

    For your eye pencils, are you able to find a clear plastic container from the $1 store? (Dollarama Plus is where I was thinking). Something along the lines of a tealight holder – works for me but I also don’t buy the huge foot long pencils either.  I have a tall one for longer brushes and a short tea light holder for the stubby pencils that will only get shorter.

    Re: moleskin notebook – how do they hold up after being tossed about in your purse/bag? I keep eyeing them but always wonder if the corners will bend/fray etc and basically end up ruined before I get to use the entire book.

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      I wanted a sort of all-in-one solution rather than a bunch of holders to take care of and pack.

      The Moleskine notebook is great!! No fraying, no bending, it’s a hard cover on both sides, and I just pull the elastic over it and it stays closed. I love it.

      Reply
  2. Miemo Khamvongsa

    i still haven’t organized my closet. I love that you are a finance person, but loves shopping, yet somehow it works out. 

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      I do love money and shopping.

      Two very opposite loves that fight.

      I have to be more picky about my wardrobe (I move a lot) which is a nice bonus for my wallet 🙂

      Reply
  3. Aloysa @My Broken Coin

    I was eyeing that J Crew blazer for many months. But I just cannot justify to shed $200 on it. But I do want it badly! 

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      I eyed it too. Every time they come out with a schoolboy blazer I long for it. It is their No.2 seller and unless it is WEIRD colours likes neon pink, it never seems to go on sale 🙁
      They were already sold out of my size in stores when I went to go try it on last week.
      This particular jacket is the right material for me and doesn’t feel light or wrinkly or too stiff. Also, NAVY!!!!!!
      Otherwise the last blazer I’d consider is a tweed but that is less important now that my basics (navy, white, black, brown leather) are covered 🙂

      Reply
  4. Carly

    That tea sounds amazing! So have you decided what your next destination will be yet? 

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      It is very delicious.

      My next destination? Maybe Washington 🙂

      Reply
  5. Asia

    I love the obi belts; especially the two tone.  If I can find a good place to buy leather I will make one because this bitch is on a budget. 

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      Tell me you’ll report back on how much it costs!! 🙂 I’d love to know… And then learn how to do them :p

      Reply
  6. jeweliette23

    I like the obi belts.  And I used to read the whole Boxcar Children series too!  That and Babysitters Club.  Good times, hehe. 

    I did purchase black riding boots and black leather jacket from the Nordstrom Anniversary sale but I ended up returning both items.  The boots were too tall and I decided to hold out for a different style leather jacket (eying All Saints).  

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      All Saints has some awesome leather jackets but they look heavy… Which is why I went for m0851– super light and will break down to buttery softness.

      Reply
  7. The Asian Pear @ Blogspot

    I LOVE those leather Obi belts. A bit pricey but so beautiful. I love the teal one especially. I’ve been meaning to make my own obi belt but I kept procrastinating because of school. Maybe I will make it this year!

    What e-reader or tablet do you have? I’m considering of purchasing as well.

    I’ve had checkmate, it’s nice but not really my thing. It’s a bit too sweet and fragrant. I like black teas mostly.

    The Lovely Ady white blazer looks cute.

    One of my biggest NYC regrets is not visitng the Contrainer Store. *pouts* And you’re not alone on those hangers. I changed ALL my hangers when I redid my bedroom and I LOVE them. I have broad shoulders and my clothes are all 3XL so these are WONDERFUL. I bought like 60 of those velvet slim hangers!! Hmm… I should really do a closet post now that I think of it… Hmm. =/

    Reply
    1. Mochi & Macarons

      I am a fiend. If you saw how many I have you’d freak 🙂

      I have the iPad which is nice for magazines.

      I like really sweet teas so that worked out for me

      Yeah I think Love Ady will end up being the one I keep but the Zara one is so soft…..
      Closet post!!!!!!!

      Solly 🙁 the velvet hangers are really amazing. I can’t believe I never used them before.

      Reply

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