November 2012: What I Bought
I call this the month of Winterizing. I bought stuff for the long, cold Canadian winters ahead, which kind of look like this….
CANADIAN POLICE CAR CHASE
Also, has everyone met my new pet baby seal, Fluffypants??
She only knows one trick right now, but I’m working on teaching her more.
But isn’t she just ADORBS!? SOOOOO fluffy!!!
On to what I bought.
!!! FREE !!! E-BOOKS FROM AMAZON VIA SWAGBUCKS
I forgot to mention this in my previous roundups, but I’ve been buying e-books on Amazon with giftcards I’ve been earning via Swagbucks so far:
- You are what you wear: What your clothes reveal about you
- Millionaire Teacher
- Personality: What Makes You the Way You Are
- The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail-but Some Don’t
- The Hunger Games Trilogy
- The Complete Memoirs of Casanova (Unexpurgated Edition)
- I’ve Got Your Number: A Novel
- Eyewitness Travel Guides: French Visual Phrase Book
- Le Petit Prince: la meilleure vente de l’histoire des enfants (illustré)
- The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business
- The Consuming Instinct: What Juicy Burgers, Ferraris, Pornography, and Gift Giving Reveal about Human Nature
- The Boxcar Children Mysteries Box Set: Books One Through Twelve
- Snoop: What Your Stuff Says About You
- Priceless: The Myth of Fair Value (and How to Take Advantage of It)
- Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior
Also, I ran the numbers, and getting $5 Amazon gift cards works out to be a better deal than spending all my points and getting $50, so that’s what I’ve been slowly doing.
I highly recommend it especially if you live in the U.S., and can buy STUFF online too.
MINI TOOTH BRUSHES
There’s a little secret that I’m actually quite obsessed with dental health.
Not with the whole getting your teeth as white as a porcelain toilet bowl, but more with actual dental HEALTH.
I brush, I floss, I try things to try and keep my teeth and gums healthy, because I read somewhere that it all starts in the mouth.
You can prevent a lot of diseases and problems, if you just take care of your teeth.
So I was super pleased when BF found these mini tooth brushes (literally), and you can use to clean in between you teeth in addition to flossing.
You’d be surprised what floss CAN’T bring out of your teeth sometimes, and these little brush things are incredible, or maybe you can use them in place of flossing (although it won’t fit into some super tight spaces).
I really like them. I just wish they weren’t plastic.
The white things are the caps…
THRIFTED ANTHROPOLOGIE EVA FRANCO ORAYA DRESS — $65
It looks brighter in person, less dark and drab.
More like this!
I had no clue this was an Anthropologie dress. It originally retailed for $188 USD, which means in Canada it would have been $228 CAD or more.
I got it for $65! The print looks like this up close in some areas: It didn’t fit perfectly in the back, but that lovely proprietress of Kensington Market’s Kali Maa SEWED IT FOR ME.
She seriously did the tailoring for me in half an hour, FOR FREE so that I would consider buying the dress for $65.
Otherwise I would have left it, because tailoring would have cost $65 in and of itself.
All I knew was I liked the print on it (someone described it as fabric on acid), which turned out to be some trippy desert cacti print with an overlay of cartoon-y dots.
I am not entirely in love with the bright orange sash (the colour jars me a little), but I figure if it really bothers me, I’ll just wrap it around myself, and put another belt over it.
Maybe a dark red, or a leather obi belt, which I incidentally did NOT have in my belt wardrobe, and ended up purchasing!
THRIFTED CASHMERE SWEATERS — $30-$40 each — $100 total
Some of you are very grossed out by wearing secondhand items, but I’m not. I wash everything before I wear it, and I even throw a little tea tree oil in there for a bit of disinfectant.
IVORY SUTTON STUDIO SHAWL CASHMERE SWEATER — $30
RALPH LAUREN CASHMERE T-SHIRT SWEATER — $30
It’s a t-shirt rather than a long-sleeve sweater.
NEIMAN MARCUS CASHMERE SWEATER (GREY) — $40
It was a larger-sized men’s sweater that I think was accidentally shrunk in the wash which is why the tag said 2X (as in XL times 2), but the cuffs were tighter so it fit better and doesn’t feel too loose and floppy like it’s too big for me (as it did with the other men’s sweaters).
MINI POST: WHY I BUY CASHMERE SECONDHAND @ COURAGE MY LOVE
What I can see, is that if I were to buy that cashmere sweater (a nice one), at retail in a store, it would cost me about $300 – $800.
$300, is if you buy it from J. Crew, where the cashmere is just a teeny bit itchy because it isn’t the super best quality of cashmere no matter what they say, and $500 – $800 is if you buy it from The Cashmere Shop in Yorkville, where they make all the goods by hand with the finest cashmere from Mongolia (no goats are harmed, just their nice soft, warm coat is taken each summer). ….but I am NOT willing to pay those prices quite yet.
I can pay $200 MAX at retail it for a cashmere shawl or $150 retail for a scarf from White + Warren who makes incredible cashmere pieces, but that’s my limit.
(Even White & Warren sweaters are a teeny bit itchy because they don’t seem to use the same cashmere in their sweaters as they do in their shawls and scarves, or they don’t do them as nicely. I don’t know what it is.)
So I buy cashmere secondhand for $30 – $40 per sweater from Kensington Market at Courage My Love, I wash it once before I wear it, and check it before I wash it again to get that slight incense/sandalwood smell out of the clothes.
Labels don’t matter much to me.
What I care about is thickness (ply), softness and how NOT itchy it is. It should never feel coarse (sometimes manufacturers mix camel hair in there), and the hair should not come off in your hand like crazy.
It should always feel like I’m cuddling with 48 puppies minus the allergies when I put on a cashmere sweater on bare skin.
I go through each sweater with a fine tooth comb to check for stains, flaws, pilling and other things I don’t want to even waste $30 on (there’s always another cashmere sweater around the corner).
Sometimes I find a great cashmere sweater, and sometimes I don’t.
I just keep checking back regularly. So far I like Lord & Taylor, Ralph Lauren and Sutton Studio as cashmere brands.
UGG TALL ADIRONDACK OTTER BOOTS — $361 — RETURNED
It ended up being $361 taxes included, after a 30% Friends & Family discount from SoftMoc.
I figure I have 75 days to think about them without wearing them, so I went to Montreal to see what other boots they have available to BE SURE they’re what I want.
I went all around Montreal, looking at boots, touching everything, but nothing came close to the soft, furry, loveliness that is an UGG specialty.
I also really like the Vibram sole, it’s super durable and tough, which is great!
UPDATE: I basically returned them, and I am now $361+ into the black.
- They were really comfortable and I liked how sturdy and light they felt
- They’re nice and high, with a great sole
- It looks like another warm winter this year, I can get by without warm boots I think
- It took me 5-10 minutes to get in and out of the boots, and I AM NOT a patient person
- I was thoroughly, 100% ANNOYED with SoftMoc Canada’s customer service on all fronts
- So annoyed, I didn’t want to keep them 25% because of my experience with them
RUDSAK RED LEATHER OBI BELT — $50
I need a red leather belt.
I don’t have one in the perfect deep red (not too dark, not too orange), and when I saw this, it reminded me of the perfect red of my Samsara vegan leather bag. It looks like this.. sorta.
They don’t have any pictures online (WTF), but here’s a similar one by a seller on Etsy by larimeloom, which is not made of leather.
TRIED A FEW NEW DAVID TEA’S TEAS — $6
I’m glad I didn’t buy any more than some samples. I tried these three new teas:
- Vanilla Orchid Oolong — It was nice, and the best of all the three teas, but too subtle for me
- Organic Banana Dream Pie — Their Banana Nut Bread is far better than this tea
- Cookie Dough — This one was the worst and tasted nothing like cookie dough for me
Lastly, some macarons.
About 48. I ate them all and they were yummers.
Each is about half price (around $1.33 each) versus Laduree ($2.65 each), and tastes decent enough. Here’s where you can find the best macarons.