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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Planned Purchases & Price Matching - The Bay, Kitchen Stuff Plus, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Future Shop

I've been a bad, bad girl.

I told myself I would stop. I would end the madness. But alas, here I am, preparing to swipe my Visa once again, and stock up on kitchen gadgets galore.

I present to you my current wishlist/planned culinary purchases, arranged by store.

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The Bay (Sale Ends May 1st, 2014):

Joseph Joseph Stretch Trivet in Green



I've been searching high and low for the perfect trivet for some time. I have two green silicon circles at the moment, but they're incredibly thin and about the size of small salad plates. Considering I tend to use a lot of big pots and pans, I constantly worry about damaging whatever surface I place the hot pans on. I've been looking for something a bit thicker, with enough surface area to accommodate my roasting pants and cookie sheets. I wanted it to be silicon-based, due to silicon's amazing heat-resistant properties, durability, washability, and plain old ability to cool rather quickly if needed. Plus, I figure that most of the metals ones (even the coated, enamel ones), will retain too much heat and burn my hands if I try and move or adjust them, or that my pots will slide around on a slick metal surface. 

And then in steps in this beauty; a trivet goddess if there ever was one. Compact, but expandable. Refreshing in both colour and design. Heat resistant to 600F, and dishwasher safe, it fits the bill (and beyond). Currently only $13.99, on sale from $19.99 - it's a pretty sweet deal. I can't wait to pick one (maybe even two) up!


Joseph Joseph Scoop OR Small Scoop Colander in Green



Yeah, I'm a sucker for matching sets/collections. But hear me out! These colander scoopers are a utensil-junkie's dream. Heat resistant up to 480F, so it'll be really useful for oven-based meals like roasted potatoes that need saving from being "oil-boarded", or to de-chunkify your chicken/roast's resting juices. It sure beats my slotted spoons, and I really can't get over how intuitively simple and modern this tool's design really is. I'd like to get both, although I could probably manage (read: struggle) with just one. Right now they're on sale for $6.29 for the Small Scoop (down from $8.99) and $8.39 for the Regular Scoop (down from $11.99), so for under $10 each, I could afford to scoop them both up. 


Kitchen Stuff Plus:




I already have a nice dark grey/black marble mortar and pestle, and it has served me well for quite sometime; HOWEVER, it's way too heavy and large for its main purpose (in my case) - grinding a few small spoonfuls of black peppercorns and pink himalayan salt crystals. You really should try grinding your own spices more often - there's just something very satisfying about the crushing motion and the freshness of the grind, and besides, my poor Bodum Bistro Salt and Pepper Grinder died about a mere month-or-so post-purchase (beyond Future Shop's return policy), and frankly, it was half-assing it from the beginning. Sometimes it would screw up; when I wanted salt, I got a mix of salt and pepper instead (and vice versa). So I got fed up, relegated it to the back of a cupboard (until I have the patience to deal with Bodum Customer Support), and decided to hand-grind from there on out. Now, I'm trying to clear up space on my counters, and I'm getting sick and tired of lifting a heavy marble mortar for a mere teaspoon of salt, so I figured I'd find a smaller, counter-top replacement, and stow my larger marble stunner for times when a simple teaspoon just won't cut it. That's where this precious little piece comes in. I've read a number of positive reviews on this model, and for only $4.99, you really can't go wrong. Sure, I would've preferred another black marble one to match (I'm a sucker, remember?), but the $10 Fox Run Marble Mortar and Pestle in Black seemed a bit too shiny (translated: cheap) in comparison to my current one. Besides, I think I could get used to this simple, understated style.





And so, to complete the set, I'd love to pick up one of these absolutely adorable (this pic really doesn't do it justice) matching salt pigs. Right now, I just have a this huge plastic pouch (the one the salt actually came in) taking up valuable counter space, so this, like the mini mortar and pestle, will prove to be very effective. I was considering getting a second one for my peppercorns, but my Cuisinart 16 pc Spice Rack already has a designated jar for them, so there'd be no point (we're trying to save space, remember?). It's a sooey-worthy steal at only $2.99, although I've got to admit this is one of those things I'd prefer to get vintage, but I don't have the time/patience to search (closest Value Village is 40 minutes away...). That, and purchasing from Etsy, as wonderful as it would be, is a bit too costly for me (or else I would be all over this gorgeous turquoise one). Either way, considering how cheap it really is, even if I do eventually find a snazzier one whilst vintage shopping, it wouldn't be much of a loss to replace it. I've got to admit though, I'm really liking the pop of pink against the white!


Bed Bath & Beyond:




Okay, I'll admit, I would scoff at those who owned a pizza stone. "My frozen pizza crust crisps just fine on my $10 perforated pizza pan, thank you very much." Let me just say, I'm sorry. I was naive and foolish and realized the error in my ways when I tried to bake a homemade gluten free crust... and watched to my dismay at it glued itself to my pan, plugging the perforations. I figured that something without perforations ran the risk of making my crust soggy, so I went ahead and investigated this "pizza stone" bizness a little more. Turns out, The Bay has a very highly recommended pizza stone on sale for half price, and Bed Bath & Beyond sells it for $35 more (Perfect opportunity for a Price Match). This particular pizza stone (Originally $49.99 at The Bay, on sale for $34.99, selling at BB&B for $69.99) can be used in the oven, microwave, freezer, and even on your grill - can be heated up to 930F! You can slice away on it, and it claims to be much lighter than it looks (30% lighter than cast iron? I'll be the judge of that). Considering I'll be making my own gluten free pizza doughs and breads from scratch from now on, this could seriously come in handy. I plan on finding a nice wooden pizza peel (possibly bamboo) at Winners/Marshalls/Homesense; I've seen quite a few before, but never had a reason to pick one up (until now that is).


Future Shop:




I'm a bit of a Bodum fan-girl, and have almost never been disappointed by their clever products (the salt and pepper shaker being the exception). I currently own the Bodum Bistro Hand Mixer (which I scored on Clearance at The Bay for $31.99!), matching Bodum Bistro Toaster, and also matching Bodum Bistro Electric Blade Coffee Grinder, (found it at Winners for $19.99) among other things, and so I saw that the red "hand blender" was on sale and decided, why not? I haven't used an immersion blender since I was living at home, and simply struggled with my pathetic 5-or-so-year old Magic Bullet (that inevitably bit the bullet this year) for the longest time. I am questioning this purchase, seeing as I recently gifted myself (we all deserve something nice every once in awhile) an OXO Food Mill (I persuaded BB&B to let me have it for $50, tax included! How could I say no?!) and replaced my Magic Bullet with a Kitchenaid 3.5 Cup Food Processor. I pined for one when making homemade (from scratch) butternut squash soup, but now I think my food mill would probably do a better job. Still, this video's had me convinced that there is more than meets the eye. $45.98 ain't bad, and it matches, so, you know, gotta collect 'em all. 

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And there you have it folks; a tally of how I'm going to be so broke ($130 in the hole, to be precise) and how I need/justify/deserve it all. And who knows, maybe while I'm out and about, I'll find even more (let's hope not, for my wallet's sake)(but if I do, you'll surely be the first to know).

Until next dime!

Shopaholic

Friday, February 21, 2014

Street Style Trend: Daisy Crazy

I've been seeing a lot of blog posts recently, and surprisingly a lot of them were about this Daisy print trend. I just so happened to be browsing Urban Outfitters, and stumbled across some amazing sales on daisy print items (All under $40!). Convenient, no? So if you were considering jumping on the daisy train, well welcome aboard! Mind you, Forever 21 has two pages worth of homages to the flora in question (with a full-range of doable prices, financially speaking), so I've included some of their must-have accessories as well (Starting at $1.80 - Five's my fave, matching bracelet not shown). Finally, I've quickly gathered some fun daisy-themed inspo from none other than Lookbook.nu, just incase. I'll admit, I'm not the biggest fan of all over micro-floral (I find it too outdated for my tastes) but after writing this post, I've come to realize how versatile this print really is, especially in its classic "black background, with contrasting white daisies" form. I probably wouldn't go for a garden-worthy maxi, but I don't think I'd mind a single flower or chain of daisies. We'll see!

Prepare for a Floral Fixation:


Urban Outfitters



Forever 21


1 - Darling Daisy Bow Hair Elastic
2 - Tiered Daisy Earrings
3 - Daisy Field Woven Scarf
4 - Stacked Rhinestoned Daisy Ring
5 - Sweet Daisy Necklace
6 - Darling Daisy Ankle Socks


For Further Inspo: Lookbook.nu


Daisy by OLIVIA N.

DAISY DRESS By SAMMI J.

Lavender Daze By HANNAH R. (And yes, that IS a Daisy-Themed Leg Garter.)

Daisy Day By IPEK N. (Last resort?)


Can you dig it?

-Shopaholic


Thursday, February 20, 2014

Kitchen Stuff Plus - Classic 2.4L Crock Pot, Only $10!

I know I'm kind of KSP-obsessed, but it's for good reason! This Canadian company continues to impress me with its weekly (sometimes even overlapping) special offers, commonly known as "Red Hot Deals" (not to be confused with Red Flag Deals' "Hot Deals"). I've kind of been on a bit of a Kitchen Stuff Plus hiatus of sorts. Don't ask me why... but if you must, I'll just tell you I've been way to lazy to make the long(-ish) trek to their Yonge and Bloor location. Also, I've kind of been a bit of a traitor and have been doing most of my shopping at Marshalls (le bf works there, I get to use his discount, sue me).

But this week I just HAD to make my way over to pick up their latest deal - A classic, 2 setting Crock Pot! With their current Red Hot Deals coupon (Valid until February 23!), you can score what's normally $19.99, for only $10! Just print the coupon or present it on your phone at your time of purchase. If you're buying online, just use the code RHD212 to get your discount!

This Crock Pot is the perfect size students, a couple, or a small family. At 2.4L, you've got enough room for a roast, and it's a lot less overwhelming than your typical 7 quart set up (bigger isn't always better). It's perfect for when I'm working or going to class, as I can pop the ingredients before I leave, and come home to a delicious, fresh meal, with no extra effort required. Simple to use, even simpler to clean (pop the insert into the dishwasher, and you're done), and with 5 fanciful colours to choose from (The blue Damask being my perfect pick), you'd be silly not to take advantage and "invest" in a Crock Pot for your kitchen.

"Red" | "Daisy" | "White" | "Damask" | "Polka Dot"

If you buy one and catch some sort of Crock Pot Fever, never fear, another option is here! If you do infact need a bigger slow cooker, Walmart has a Stainless Steel 7 quart Crock Pot available for $19.88 (with Free Shipping). It's a basic model, like those above, with great reviews and a darn large crock caboose to boot. Personally, I wouldn't want to haul that out of the cabinet on a weekly (potentially daily) basis, and my apartment is cramped enough as it is. But if you have the space, why not?


If the above hasn't convinced you, perhaps some crave-worthy slow cooker recipes'll do the trick!

Remember to adjust serving size/portions before using the recipes, as they may not be tailored for a 2.4L Crock Pot.

AllRecipes.com Slow Cooker Recipes

Spoonful.com 30+ Simple Slow Cooker Recipes

FoodNetwork.com Slow Cooker Recipes

Food.com Crock Pot Recipes

Now get to Crockin',

-Shopaholic

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

How to Make Certain Things Taste 100X Better, Just By Heating Them Up

Inspiration kind of hit in the middle of work the other day, while I was cashing out a lady who was buying some Miss Vickie's chips. She happened to approach my register seconds after I complained to a co-worker about my hunger pains. "Now this is a snack!" I exclaimed, excitedly waving around this woman's bag of chips, as both the customer and co-worker chuckled at my antics. "They're even better warmed up!" she said, and continued on with a story about how her son told her that the chips would literally blow her mind after a few minutes in a hot oven. Her story sparked a list of items, and we ran through them like giddy little school girls, mouths watering (and stomachs yearning) over the thought of delectable reheated goods.

And now, I'm ready to rock your mouths with that very same list.


It's Getting Hot in Here

Cookies: anything without cream or candy could use a good nuking. If you love cookies fresh out of the oven, why not recreate that by popping those puppies back in the oven? The smell is intoxicating and worth the extra time!

Glazed Donuts: If the Krispy Kreme box didn't convince you, the feeling of a glazed donut upon your tongue is pretty orgasmic. Rusty spoons need not apply. #ObscureReferences

Muffins: Take your muffin, heat it in the microwave for 10 seconds at a time until satisfied. Repeat.

Potato/Corn/Tortilla Chips: As mentioned above, toasting your potato chips in the oven takes them to a new level of enjoyment. But why leave out the other members of the chip brigade? If you love nachos, you'll surely love the taste of a freshly toasted chip.

Taco/Burrito Kit Shells/Tortillas: Don't paso on the Old El Paso dinner kits; if you heat up the accompanying grains a touch in the oven before serving, your dining experience will improve by at least 85%. At least.

Peanut Butter Sandwiches: One of my closest friends Brandon used to make this for me whenever I'd visit. DIY at home by taking two slices of your standard PB&J bread (I prefer cutting the crusts), placing them on a very large plate, and slathering one side of one slice with an unhealthy amount of the aforementioned spread. Next, place the second slice of bread on top, and proceed to "stucco" the crustless side borders of your sandwich with as much peanut butter as you can stand. Fill in every last nook and cranny - you'll thank me later. Take your finished PBBB (or peanut butter bread brick, for of all you ignoramuses) and pop it in the microwave for about 6-15 seconds, depending on power levels (<1 if over 9000), until peanut butter has reached a desired, melty consistency. Pour yourself a pint of milk (you're gonna need it), and enjoy.

Bread: Quiznos does this for a reason, and a very good one at that.You would think this would be obvious, but many people seem to be quite content with subpar-ly served grain options. By simply tossing it into the oven, one can sometimes breathe new life to a somewhat stale and (obviously) lifeless loaf. This is especially true for the aromatic cheese breads I often pass up on due to stupid dietary requirements (as in, I want to convince myself I'm doing the right thing by passing on the extra cheesy calories). This doesn't just apply to your basic dinner rolls though. Toasting sandwich breads, biscuits, and bagels of all makes and models is the key to a more enjoyable meal. Like, you don't have to go full-panini over here; just toasting the bread before making your sandwich will do the trick.

Now get the Focaccia outta here.

-Shopaholic

Saturday, February 15, 2014

How To Use Up All of That Old Holiday Chocolate (Valentine's Day Edition)

So you may or may not have had some companionship on "Over Commercialized, Keep the Wavering Holiday Romance Going Strong Day". None of that matters now though. No, what matters is that you have a stack of various heart and/or cupid shaped chocolates (gifts from friends, family, or coworkers) laying around, or your inner-shopaholic (and possibly, inner chocoholic) is screaming because all chocolate has now been marked down to the low low price of "almost free because we have to clear this sappy shizz off the shelf pronto". But nevermind that either. Just clear your mind, and drop that chunk of chocolate. Now. You really don't have to shove all of that chocolate down the hole. As sad as you are, you'll get sick of it soon enough, and then it's back to the Ben & Jerry's for you. And we don't want that, because it's pricey, and frankly, less satisfying.



Here's my list to make the most of your typical post-holiday chocolate binge buy:

Chocolate Fon-Do!

Separate your bars by type (dark, milk, white) and as long as nuts and candy aren't involved, melt them down by continuously stirring them in a double boiler (or use your fondue pot, if you've got one laying around), buy some berries (and I recommend using "fondue forks", or at the very least, some long wooden skewers), and have a little fondue-dipping fun! You could even mix around the chocolates, making a marble swirl of sweetness. Doesn't that just make your mouth water? 

*Understandble Drooling*

Chocolate Covered (Insert Whatever You Can Possibly Think of Here)

Going off of the fondue idea, you could make your own chocolate-dipped just-about-anything! 

Here are a few great, well-reviewed recipe ideas:




Coocoo for Cocoa-Kernels

Give your popcorn the gourmet treatment by melting down that leftover chocolate and drizzling it on top of some freshly popped kernels! Popcorn is one of the easiest, most satisfying snacks you could make, and you don't even need a popcorn maker! You literally just add some unseasoned, unpopped kernels (which you can buy at any grocery store, or Bulk Barn) to a pot with a little bit of butter or oil (I personally prefer Organic Coconut Oil), cover it all with a lid, and cook it over the heat on your stove, lightly shaking/jostling the pot when the kernels start popping. Once the popping slows down, pull it off the heat and you've got yourself some steaming-hot fresh popcorn! Let it cool a touch, then use a fork to drizzle on your melted chocolate, and whatever else you really feel like adding. Chill until the chocolate's hardened, and enjoy!

The Shapeshifter

Ok, so maybe you're not a fan of the chocolate dogs and cherubs you received, that's okay! Head on over to Dollarama/Walmart and buy a cute mini-silicone/plastic baking/chocolate mould in whatever shape or form that your heart desires. Melt down your chocolate (I recommend doing it in a measuring cup, in the microwave (p.s. be careful, it'll be hot once you take it out)) then pour it into your chosen mould. Tap or lightly bang the sides of the mould on your counter to eliminate any air bubbles, and chill covered in the fridge until they've set. Now you've got your own special chocolates, in portions/shapes you personally prefer! Huzzah!

Chocolate Snow Flakes

Ok so they don't actually resemble snowflakes, like, at all, but I'm running out of puns. 

You can repurpose your chocolate as a dessert/drink topping! Just use a regular old hand grater. Whether you use a coarse or fine one should depend on what you'll use the shavings for. Use a coarse grind to make delicious chocolate toppings for your favourite hot drinks, making them Starbucks worthy! Use a finer grating for decorating all sorts of baked treats!

It's Getting Hot in Here

You know, you don't have to just EAT the chocolate. You can drink it too! I've always wanted to try Mexican Hot Chocolate, but I just never had the patience (or the extensive supply of chocolate) to just go ahead and do it. Maybe I will now though, cayenne pepper and chocolate just sound like a match made in some purely gluttonous paradise.


A Pizza My Heart

Ok, so the above wasn't really tickling your fancy. You really have so many different types of chocolate, but not much of each, and you don't really want to mix them up per se.


Two more words: You're welcome.

Re-Gift the Godiva

So the chocolate is lovely and all, but it seems that your clearly unobservant colleague didn't remember that you are caffeine intolerant to the nth degree/don't like the ones with the cream filling. Do the "unthinkable": Regift it. As long as it's still Valentine's Day (possibly the day after, if you didn't get a chance to see the said recipient on the "big day"), it is perfectly acceptable to give someone your unwanted heart chocolates (as long as they don't know who, or where, they came from). Use it to get on your boss' good side, to bribe someone to be your date, or to treat a friend who might not have gotten any (Shoutout to the Gretchens). Surprise your significant other (he won't care where it came from), or save it for your mother (just add it to the roses you were meaning to send). Bonus points if the person actually loves that specific chocolate.

And if you got a pile of Hershey Kisses, have I hit the motherlode for you...

Try one of these 101 Kisses-Specific Recipes: http://www.somethingswanky.com/101-hershey-kisses-recipes/

And if you got Ferrero Rochers, DO NOT do any of the above. I'll be over soon to... "dispose" of them, personally.

-Chocoholic


Friday, February 14, 2014

Top 14 Spring/Summer 2014 Trends

A girl that is strapped for cash must be picky with her purchases.  Don't be wasteful with your wallet - show it some wuv. To help, I've searched high and low to compile a list of everything worthy of wearing in the warmer weather. I've rounded up some of the most popular and oft-mentioned trends for the coming SS2014 season, so that any savvy splurging is completely justified, if not encouraged.

Top Trends to Buy For (Or Not to Purge from Your Closet):

Metallics

Metallics will continue to shine this season, making your glitzy holiday-wear/NYE purchases totally worth recycling! The brighter and more colourful, the better. If it looks like a rainbow has had its way with your outfit, +1 to you my friend. A lot of people are opting for classy, coloured couture items, but those of us on the streets know how to work some 90's holographic prints right in there. To this day I regret not purchasing a mini holographic backpack for $5 from a yard sale (instead I spent it on an Eminem CD and a Bart Simpson snow-globe pencil). Personally, I love any excuse to stand-out (fashionably), so this trend is right up my alley.

Pastels

A winter revolutionist and quintessential spring favourite, pastels are continuing their reign over our wardrobes. The key here is to partake in a rendition of Carl Jung's "Law of Opposites". Pair your subtle pastels with bolder, contrasting shades for maximum impact. To make it easier, keep it monochrome, just in varying shades/intensities. If you're feeling adventurous, try pairing a fun fuchsia piece with a subdued baby blue, or sweet mint green with a vibrant tangerine!

Cropped


Don't crop crop tops out of your closet just yet; with a steady stream of high-waisted bottoms, ready and willing, crop tops are here to stay another season. When I'm feeling brave, the midriff baring is a go. If you're a little shy or tummy conscious, just pair it with a high-waisted pencil or full skirt to close the gap. Keep your bottoms to balance everything out. High-waisted jeans, a crop top, and a moto jacket or blazer always make for a great outfit, and some high-waisted jeans can work shapewear-esque miracles. The other day I had fun pairing my cropped, striped oversized tee with a flowing double slit maxi-skirt in a similar shade. Just keep your proportions in check and you're golden!

Florals

Another spring favourite, florals, are back once again. No surprise there, though. The best way to add some modern flair to this trend is by scoping out pieces that feature texture and embellishments within the pattern. Like flowers covered in sequins or beads for that extra pop.

Athletics

Sportier looks are back on the runway, and with neoprene dresses well behind us, designers seems to be adding comfy-cozy sporty elements into their collections. Just picture shiny fabrics juxtaposed with fellow kooky colours reminiscent of a 90's workout video, but on a more luxurious scale. The trick here is to not put on too many sporty pieces, as you run the risk of becoming an overdressed athlete. Aim for more of a "girl who knows how to balance comfort and class" kind of look - "luxe" jogging pants with a more modest, but still structured, top would do the trick.

Sheer

Dare to bare in this showstopping trend. Now don't think you need to go full-frontal here, a little flash of something underneath here or there (ankles count!) behind a mesh panel can turn up the heat on any outfit. Want to make it even more conservative? Try layering an opaque tank top under a sheer chiffon dress shirt (under a blazer) for a more family appropriate look!



Full Skirts

You don't need to go as far back as the 50's to see that tea skirts are back in full swing. These comfortable, flowy, "I must twirl around endlessly" skirts have been popping up all over the runways - and for good reason! They're a great alternative to the double slit maxis we've been pretty fond of. So get your tea party on, and try to keep things sweet and playful for the ulti-MiuMiu outfit!

White Oxford-Inspired Shirts

Ok so it's not like basic, crisp white shirts haven't been considered one of the foundation pieces of any woman's closet. But these specific reincarnations are basically taking it to the next level. Cropped, unstructured, embellished, ruffles galore, you name it, they did it this year. Although not the most practical basic, these new oxford-inspired tops could really bump up your boring, go-to work outfit into something a little more trendy for "casual Fridays". It's still following the dress code if it fulfills the requirements if it's described as "white, collared, and starch-straight", right?

Boxy

I think this trend really speaks for itself. Well-structured sleeves and torsos to give the appearance that the wearer is secretly a box in disguise is pretty much the look you're going for. It may be a little risky for those not confident enough with their already broad shoulders, or rectangular torso. As J.R.R. Tolkien once wrote "A box without hinges, key, or lid, yet golden treasure inside is hid." Release the booty.

Pleats

Ok so schoolgirl skirts is a step in the right direction, tennis dresses even more so. What we're really coveting here are some skinny pleats, the barely there pleats that make you say "those aren't pleats? No, little elves broke into my closet last night and tried to expertly organize it by efficiently folding and my clothes to fit into the smallest space possible, but I guess it just didn't work out. Micro pleats is the name, and monochromatic/basic tops is the game. Have fun, but don't get lost in the folds.

Pop-Art Inspired

This trend is all about looking like a walking museum. The bolder and more indecipherable the image, the better. Prada, Warhol, and Pollock can provide all of the inspiration you need. Be careful with investing in this trend - too bold or too kooky could be a problem for those of you who don't want the eye-spotlight. Dress at your own risk.

Big Words (And I don't mean words like: circumlocution)

The more obnoxious the name and logo, the better. Be it a brand, emotion, or literally just the most random word possible, wear it loud and proud. If you look like a walking advertisement, you're doing it right.

Wide-Leg Pants

This trend has three extremes. There's the boot-cut-ish trouser that you wear to hide the fact that you're wearing heels from three season ago, the palazzo pant extreme because you want to indulge in your faux-euro roots, and the gaucho extreme that is literally so extreme that it was named after one of the most uncomfortably enunciated words I've ever had the displeasure of saying. I'm loving the palazzo pant trend simply because self-conscious women can a pretty great way to get away with not shaving on a hot summer's day.

Fringe

I'm not really sure if fringe is ever really going to be out-of-style, per se. I think Free People, Coachella, as well as the state of California, will keep it rolling strong for years to come. Still, if western-wear isn't your thing, look for pieces that embellish with a touch of skinny, fluffy, silky fringe, instead of the thicker, wider, stiffer strands commonly created with suede or leather pieces. You could also consider delicate, fringed jewelry, which isn't too hard to come by. Or you could always just accessorise with a not-so-delicate leather whip, your choice.

Here's my newest addition, to make up for my shoe closet's lack of colourful, metallic options:

Urban Outfitters - Sale $19
For under $20, this was a very savvy expenditure. I love the comfort of a flat, but the flair of the holographic material, the fact that they're much cheaper than they actually look, as well as the pointy-toed primness of this particular pair - swoon. Can't wait to wear these when the snow melts!

What trends are you looking to invest in?

-Shopaholic

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Most Wanted: American Apparel

This past holiday season, my family and I took advantage of an amazing Groupon for American Apparel. You could either pay $20 and get $40 in store credit, or pay $40 and get $80 in store credit.

Obviously, I pounced on the $40 deal. And my family was kind enough to purchase a second Groupon for the absolutely necessary expansion of my closet (just did a HUGE purge... rather not discuss it, too depressing).

But what to get?

I'm kind of in-between sizes at the moment (10 lbs-ish away from fitting perfectly into all of my clothes - damn you five holiday dinners in a row), and so I'm a bit hesitant when it comes to purchasing anything that's going to attempt to keep my "rolls" in check. I tried on a few things, but none of them fit like I'd hoped.

The long coveted Disco Pants that supposedly work miracles on everyone else, looked awkward on me; the pockets sat too high. The Riding Pant was my next go-to, but even it disappointed me by being too long. I know I could've hemmed them, but the construction of the pants would've given me away. Finally, after over an hour of deliberating, I settled on a pair of super comfy and stretchy Dark Wash Indigo Easy Jeans, which made for a perf buttox. With my second Groupon, I purchased two bodysuits - The Nylon Tricot Micro-Mesh Gloria-V Bodysuit in Black that I've been fawning over for more than 3 years, as well as The Fiona Bodysuit in Black.

Ok, so I wasn't expecting to get two bodysuits, let alone two items in the one colour that has completely overrun my winter wardrobe, and I wasn't expecting to put any extra money down on top of the Groupons, but let me tell you - it was worth it. With my curvy proportions, I often find it difficult to find bodysuits (or really any type of clothing) that accommodate my... assets. And so, to find something that not only fit me, but also provided enough lift (Enough to go braless! Eek!), and that wouldn't effectively put my nips on display?

Jackpot, baby. Give me every colour you got!

Still, there were a few other items I considered getting, but that just didn't pan out.

The Wide Leg Pleated Chiffon Pant Preferably in Magenta. I mean, it's a Radiant Orchid-esque, sheer, pleated, wide-leg pant! SO ON TREND IT HURTS. They're actually ethereally gorgeous in person.

The Cotton Spandex Sleeveless Thong Bodysuit in Red. Unfortunately, the only ones they had left in my size had broken or missing crotch snaps. Boo hoo.

The Petite Unisex Long Wool Coat in either Deep Sapphire/Peanut, Oxford, Sunset, or Menthe. I am so in love with this coat it isn't even funny. It looks so warm and cozy, and the colours just take it up enough notches to be a closet staple. I wish I wasn't so broke at the moment, or I would've been all over this one. Still looking for a nice wool coat to carry me through the cold and semi-cold seasons.

The Hologram Leather Circle Skirt in Silver Foil Lambskin. I can't even verbalize my love for this. I am so tempted to just buy the materials and pay my sister to make one. However, circle skirts are rarely flattering on me. So in this case, I think it's best if I just admire from afar...

The Ponte Gloria V Skater Dress in Black, Syrah, or Lapis. The pictures really don't do this dress justice. Just like its bodysuit better-half, this dress suited me like none other. Unfortunately, due to a very open back, I found I had to keep adjusting the sleeves to ensure that I wouldn't be exposed at any given time. I figured fixing the sleeves every 1-5 mins would be bothersome, and a friend's admittance of purchase regret confirmed this. In the end, I put this one down, and slowly (sadly) walked away.

Cotton Spandex Jersey Gloria-V Bodysuit in Poppy/Melange Green/Raspberry. Oh my goodness gracious me, this is the perfect colour combo for spring! I didn't see this one in the store, and it looks to be almost completely sold out online. Still worth a mention though! Just imagining it with the chiffon pants... omgomgomg.

AND NOW, READY FOR THE GRAND REVEAL?


Mysterious third hand! OOOOHHHH!

What are you coveting from American Apparel? Or any store, really.

-Shopaholic