Thrifting With thredUP

IMG_1123IMG_1125IMG_1124IMG_1128DSC02471

I love the thrill and the chase of digging though racks of clothes to find the perfect piece, but I’m not going to lie — thrifting is hard work. While there is something fantastic about shuffling through vintage pieces on endless racks, it can be exhausting and not to mention, super disappointing when you find a great item but it’s not in your size.

Enter thredUP, an online fashion resale site that functions as a thrift shop and a spot to sell your gently used clothes. I first used thredUP to sell clothes when I was in the process of moving into my studio before the manfriend and my leases lined up. The process is super simple, the company sends you a polka dot bag, you fill it with your gently used (or new!) items you’d like to sell, and then ship it off! Once the bag reaches thredUP, their team sorts through your items and either deems it sellable or a prime piece for charity — similar to the process that you’d go through if you were taking clothes to Buffalo Exchange or Plato’s Closet except with the added bonus to donate your clothes that they don’t want to feature in the online boutique! I’ve sent over two massive bags of clothes and made about $9 for each bag, but granted most of the pieces were from Forever 21 or H&M so the payouts made sense. Obviously, nicer items for for more money, but you also have the option to have an item shipped back to you if you don’t agree with their selling price. I recently went online to order a new bag for the massive closet cleanout I did a few weeks ago and was bummed to see that they are now charging a $9 processing fee to send in a bag (it used to be free) but it’s definitely a great option if you  would like to donate clothes and don’t have easy access to a Goodwill.

On the flipside, the online shop is filled with TONS of clothes that you can shop! If you’re not into used clothing, you can sort items by “new with tags” or “like new condition” which is what I did. I managed to score this faux fur jacket for just $19, originally valued at $70! I also snagged a super soft, brand new workout top for $11. Another thing I like about shopping on the site is that you can filter items by your size, so you don’t accidentally fall in love with an item that you can’t really have. Added bonus? First time shoppers get 40% off their first purchase!

 

The Perfect Top From Twin Ray Apparel

DSC02443DSC02439DSC02448DSC02442DSC02438DSC02447

Considering we’re expecting a massive snow storm tonight, it’s pretty unseasonable to be sharing this outfit, but something about shopping for spring clothes always makes me feel better about cold weather!

This top from Twin Ray Apparel was gifted to me as a surprise, but the online boutique sure nailed my personal style! I’ve been loving the choker trend and the fact that it combines that with an off-the-shoulder style makes it a total win in my book! I also love that the ruffled statement sleeves make this top a touch different from most of the other off-the-shoulder pieces out there.

I couldn’t wait to wear the top after I opened up the package and I was in major luck because it was 60 degrees a few days later, so I wore it to my birthday brunch at El Centro. (I seriously eat too much Mexican food.) I paired the statement top with my distressed boyfriend jeans for a beachy look and to make the top more casual for daytime. I can’t wait to rock this with strappy sandals and white jeans in the spring!

If I had to describe Twin Ray’s style, I’d say it’s a combo of beach babe meets sexpot and since I once had a friend describe my style as “hippy come hither” it makes total sense that I’m obsessed with the majority of the items in the boutique! I’ve got my eye on this top for an upcoming beach trip. Since the brand fits my personal style so well, I’m super excited to share that I’ve signed on as a Twin Ray Apparel Brand Ambassador and that means YOU get 10% off all purchases with code DAMSEL10! Happy shopping, friends!

Shop My Look:

Mishel Top – Twin Ray Apparel

Jeans | Gap

Booties | TJ Maxx (similar)

Bag | Rebecca Minkoff

Who Run The World? Girls

In honor of International Women’s Day, I wanted to post something about supporting women-owned businesses on my company’s Instagram, and while I was searching through my camera roll for the perfect photo, I realized that we have a TON of badass, women entrepreneurs in the city! I know this post is a little late in the day to be sharing a roundup of amazing, women-run businesses in the District, but I’m an advocate of shopping small and local all year round, so I figured I’d put one together. Read on for some of my favorite  restaurants, retailers, and online boutiques from some major girlbosses.

JEWELRY

IMG_0676

  • Mallory Shelter Jewelry – you’ll find delicate, handmade jewelry that makes a statement at this Union Market pop up. Mallory used to be one of my colleagues (she was actually my boss!) but left Streetsense to pursue her passion and her business has completely exploded. I wear her gold bar studs almost every day and just recently got this silver cuff ring for my birthday. She’s at the market until April 2, but you can shop her collection online at any time and at various retailers like Salt & Sundry and Proper Topper!
  • Designs by s.e.K. – another fabulous jeweler, this local artisan specializes in creating  pieces with natural minerals and stones. I recently shared my Aspen Drive Necklace in a previous blog post!

BOUTIQUES 

dsc02026

  • Refine Boutique: You’ve heard me rave about Tanya before, but her carefully curated boutique and specialized shopping experience is truly amazing. I always leave her space feeling confident and with high-quality pieces that I love
  • Whistle & Wild: this online shop has become one of my favorite spots for boho-inspired and affordable fashion! You can learn all about the business and the amazing girl boss behind it, Amanda Nelson, in one of my past posts. Psst, they’re offering free shipping today and tomorrow!
  • Twin Ray Apparelone of my former coworkers and total megababe, Cristianna, just launched her own boutique! Think beach babe meets sexpot and you’ve got an amazing, curated collection of items on this online boutique. I recently signed on as one of their brand ambassadors and you can get 10% off with code DAMSEL10! 

EAT

IMG_0610

  • Buttercream Bakeshop: how many times have I Instagrammed this adorable, neighborhood bakery? Too many, but I don’t plan on stopping. Owned by pastry chef Tiffany MacIsaac (who is a total doll), the bakery serves up confections beyond your wildest dreams — unicorn bars, anyone?
  • Centrolina: owned and run by Chef Amy Brandwein, this City Center restaurant serves up some mean pasta in a cozy and comfortable environment. I went there for New Year’s Eve 2016 and had the loveliest evening. We can’t wait to go back!

SUNDRIES 

IMG_0621.JPG

  • Little LeafI dare you to step into this paper and plant store and emerge without purchasing an adorable little succulent. From the team behind Salt & Sundry, this shop is a horticulturist’s dream and definitely worth a visit
  • Salt & Sundry: if you don’t know about this home goods retailer, you’re missing out. With two locations, one on 14th Street and one in Union Market, this boutique will make you realize you NEED a pineapple tumbler and you definitely can’t live without one of Sydney Hale’s yummy candles

FullSizeRender (5).jpg

WILDCARD

  • The Farm Women’s Market: you may have seen this magical ceiling of dried flowers on my Instagram feed, and this is where that ceiling lives. Located in Bethesda, the market is essentially an indoor farmer’s market and features lovely flower shops, delicious bakeries, and other assorted vendors

Designs by s.e.K

DSC02482DSC02490DSC02483DSC02484

When Sarah Kaplan of Designs by s.e.K reached out to me to collaborate with her jewelry company, I jumped at the chance to style one of her beautiful, handmade necklaces. Each necklace is made by Sarah herself and features all natural stones and minerals in each piece. Can you say major step up from my Forever 21 costume jewelry!?

Ironically, I opted for the Aspen Drive Necklace, and I’m obsessed with its unique shape and neutral colors. One of my favorite parts about the necklace is that you can double up the strand to create a completely different look! My other favorite part would have to be that Sarah has created this business from the ground up, and to top it off is an absolutely lovely woman! She was so sweet and easy to collaborate with and I love supporting locally owned and woman-run businesses.

For a trip to Charlottesville for a UVA basketball game, I wanted the necklace to be the main focal point of my outfit, so I chose a neutral palette of classic staples to make sure the necklace truly stood out. This outfit is a little bit more on the preppy side for me, but I figured that I had to fit the part for a UVA game! (Don’t worry, the JMU Dukes still have my heart.) Previously, I’ve worn this necklace with an asymmetrical black tee, ripped boyfriend jeans, and a gray moto jacket, so it’s definitely versatile!

Designs by s.e.K necklace is running an awesome promotion right now, sign up for the company’s newsletters and get 15% off! If you go to their website, a pop up will greet you where you can sign up for the newsletter.

SHOP MY LOOK: 

Necklace | Designs by s.e.K

Sweater | H&M

Chambray Shirt | GAP

Jeans | Free People

Booties | Steve Madden

I Just Wanna Do Hoodrat Things With My Friends

dsc03701dsc03665dsc03707dsc03712dsc03719dsc03736dsc03743dsc03750

Photos By Dennis Turbeville

This outfit brought to you by one of my weird impulse moods. After an off day at work I found myself at Forever 21, searching for a replacement to my favorite brown suede skirt (RIP. She had a good run) and while I had no luck in finding a dupe, I quite literally ran into this hoodie dress hanging by itself on a rack. Already in a weird mood and clearly not finding what I was there for, I figured “why not”, grabbed it and headed to the dressing room. Part of me was hoping that I’d hate it on because the idea of a hoodie dress is so ridiculous, but of course, I loved it and after checking the tag and seeing it was only $14*, I figured I had to get it. The Forever 21 gods were on my side and my weird fashion choice was validated when it rang up to only $7!

I strategically wore this to a brunch at ambar with one of my closest girlfriends because I was planning on eating all the things, and you bet we did. I’m ashamed, alarmed, and slightly proud to admit that we ordered EVERY SINGLE DESSERT ON THE MENU. I am an animal. Moral of the story, if you’re going to ambar wear something that will hide your inevitable food baby. 

I don’t usually go for “street style” and I’m not going to lie, I felt very “model off duty” in this look and I was pretty into it. I don’t know how many more athliesure/streetwear items you’ll see incorporated into my wardrobe but it’s definitely something I can see myself having fun experimenting with! 

*Disclaimer – I’m fairly sure that my dress was marked down so much because there are two slight red pen marks on one of the sleeves 

Shop My Look:

Dress | Forever 21

Boots | Steve Madden

Bodysuit Round Up

dsc02373dsc02374dsc02368dsc02376dsc02384dsc02377dsc02398

Alright guys, you gotta know by now that I’m obsessed with bodysuits. I’m even wearing one right now as I write this. If you don’t have one, you need one, and I am here to help you find the perfect one to jump on the bandwagon! I’ve linked 6 of my favorite bodysuits below, and I own them all, so please don’t hesitate to DM or email me and ask questions about sizing, quality, or fit! 

  1. Halter Bodysuit: I’m coining this the ultimate going out bodysuit. This leo should probably be synonymous with American Apparel but there’s a reason why so many people have it! It lends just the right amount of side boob (sorry, Mom) and who doesn’t love an exposed back? Pair with skater skirts and high waisted jeans for a killer look
  2. Contemporary Stripe Bodysuit: I’ll call this one the conservative bodysuit. At first glance, you can’t even tell this is a bodysuit! I’m actually wearing this one right now tucked into a leather skirt and yes, I wore it to work! 
  3. Bay Babe Bodysuit: This bodysuit is making me daydream of summer. I can’t wait to wear it with my distressed Levi cut offs and converse for some impromptu rooftop cocktails
  4. Rib Longsleeve Leo: This leo is one of the most worn pieces in my closet (see how I styled it here and here). The long sleeves and high neck make it perfect for layering with a jacket or pairing with a high waisted skirt in cooler temps
  5. Cross V Bodysuit: This is the leo I’m sporting in my pics from this post and I’m seriously obsessed with it. I love the flattering v neck like and can’t wait to pair it with my pink tulle skirt – total nod to ballerinas! 
  6. Hooked On You Bodysuit: I’m not going to lie, I probably should have sized up in this leo (I got an XS and it’s pretty boobaliciois) but I love the racerback cut and the casual button details on the front! I’m envisioning this paired with distressed boyfriend jeans or a floaty summer skirt

The Prettiest Keyhole Dress

img_0858img_0862img_0859img_0876img_0868img_0865img_0883img_0881img_0882

Photography by Crystal Aegean

Can you believe this Rose Wholesale dress is only $15? Me either. It looks way more expensive and I felt like a princess wearing it! While I was shooting this look near the Mall with the amazingly talented Crystal Aegean, a little girl literally thought that I was model and told her mom she wanted to “go look at the fashion show.” It was adorable and I don’t even really like kids. 

I saved this dress up for a girl’s night out to celebrate the big 26 and had a blast dancing in it with my girlfriends until an unexpected plot twist happened and I left with a chip in my front tooth. (Beer bottles and crowded dance floors do NOT mix friends. Knocking my teeth out and chipping them is one of my biggest fears so you will never catch me drinking beer out of a bottle ever again.) Major props for my girls for taking care of my crying, snotty self after it happened – I love and owe you!

Aside from that little road bump…I got a lot of compliments on this dress and I loved its unique details — especially the high slight and keyhole! Plus at $15…you can completely justify a fancy dress for no reason!

Shop My Look

Dress | Rose Wholesale

Heels | LuLu*s

Ring | Forever 21