My guide to buying secondhand/ vintage

When I was posting a photo on my Instagram recently, I realised I still hadn’t written a post on how I approach buying secondhand/ vintage, which I thought might be useful for those less obsessive to searching for secondhand treasures than I am.

While this will be a general guide focusing on women’s fashion (which you know does not have to just be for women – wear what you want!), as that is generally the area I tend to focus on; I will try to make this post as inclusive to different sizes as much as possible. I also think a lot of the points in this post are relevant for most people!

In regards to being inclusive to different sizes, I am generally going to focus on plus sized fashion as a point in this post. Although, finding good fitting clothes at any size is difficult, it can feel especially intimidating buying vintage as someone plus sized as the general rhetoric is that everyone was smaller in the past (which was not always the case). It’s for the reason I’ve pulled together some specific tips for plus sized vintage lovers.

But first some general tips.

Know your measurements – you don’t need to know the distance from your elbow to your wrist but generally knowing your bust, waist and hips measurement is useful. Leg length can be useful as well, which you should have encountered jean shopping before, especially if you are part of my petite brethren who need a 28inch leg or smaller.

I tend to focus on my waist measurement when looking for clothes as I tend to go for a silhouette that is looser everyone else but there. I think knowing these measurements are especially important on sites like Ebay for example, as some people may classify what they regard as a size 10 for example different to you, and can lead to things either fitting you when you might have disregarded them or an ill fitting purchase.

If you don’t have a tape measure handy, a general rule is that a size 6 is a 24/ 25 inch waist, size 8 a 26 inch waist, size 10 a 28 inch waist, size 12 a 30 inch waist, size 14 a 32 inch waist, and it carries on as such in 2 inch increments. However, not everyone will fit this blueprint – everyone’s body is different!

Another top tip is to measure a piece of clothing you think fits you very well and use that as a guide.

Tops tips for plus sized women – if you’re looking for vintage fashion, the 80s and 90s is great for plus sized women and when I look for clothes in that decade, I often see larger sizes represented. However, that does not mean you should discount other decades, as although rarer, there are pieces in other decades such as the 50s and 60s that will work (especially if you know your measurements!), you just have to dig a little more.

Charity shops tend to be more size inclusive because they rely on donations and they are definitely on of the places I have seen the largest size selection.

If you’re a size that is not well represented, looking for your favourite brands on Ebay is a good start, I know that Killstar (if you’re into a gothic look) caters for a variety of sizes and Lazy Oaf because of some of their cuts can work for plus sized women (though beware of price bump ups for some pieces as their larger sizes usually sell out fast).

I’d also check out vintage fashion bloggers who are plus sized, as although, I’ve included this information based on what I’ve personally seen, I’m not plus sized and someone who is will be able to advise much better than me.

The blogger Vintage Voluptuous has done some great posts on vintage fashion and has even done vintage plus size Etsy roundups. Her blog is so easy to follow and all her outfits are flawless – she’s definitely worth checking out.

Another great blog I found when researching this piece was Something Definitely Happened who crafts some ‘Practically Perfect’ looks (you’ll get it when you see her Mary Poppins look).

Although, both these blogs aren’t exclusively focused on vintage but reproduction items as well; they are great not only in terms of inspiration and creativity but also if you like a brand that they mention that caters to your size, you can look out for them on Ebay and Depop!

I wasn’t able to find any plus sized bloggers who focus on sustainable fashion (doesn’t mean they don’t exist – google can only do so much!), however I did find a list of sustainable fashion companies that cater to plus sized women, as well as ethical brands, as I have noticed that ethical and sustainable companies usually tend to have a limited sizing run.

Ebay

My first Ebay tip is to set up buying alerts for the items you are looking for. It saves you trawling the site every week and hopefully will guarantee you first dibs on the item. I really wish Depop had this feature (please correct me if I’m wrong about that but as far as I see it does not). I currently have two alerts set up for a rare pair of Irregular Choice (Petal Fever – in green of course – there’s currently a blue pair up in my size but I want the green!) and a vintage pair of Dr Martens.

The second tip involves knowing where to begin if you are not looking for a particular item but want to be inspired (/ replicate that ‘looking through a website for clothes’ feeling). My tip here is to look for brands that you usually like a lot of the pieces for, for example I generally like a lot of the items in Urban Outfitters and Zara but I am not willing to pay their prices (especially Urban Outfitters) and would rather buy second hand and help the planet out. I would even suggest looking for pieces you’ve seen in store (this is especially useful if you’ve tried the piece on in store and know your size) and searching for the piece (this is a useful tip for platforms like Depop too). I’ve found this is a really great way to get something new and stop the culture of a piece sitting in someone else’s wardrobe who’s bought it and changed their mind.

Ebay can also be great for some vintage fashion details but make sure you carefully read the description as you won’t get the opportunity to try it on like a vintage shop. A lot of the times, items may need some DIY, which can be difficult to judge whether it’s a big job or not without seeing the item so be careful unless you are a master seamstress.

However, I’ve found some lovely vintage 90s gems on Ebay in great condition, as well as some great pieces from Urban Outfitters and Zara.

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1st image: Dungarees originally from Zara. Bought on Ebay. 

2nd image: Dress originally from Urban Outfitters. Bought on Ebay. 

Depop

Although, I love Depop, I’d also like to start with a word of caution as it isn’t for everyone.   Depop can be more tricky as both a buyer and seller, as it can be harder to communicate (you are not allowed to send images as a private message, which I understand is useful to stop harassment but can be frustrating). I’ve also had issues with sellers not sending me an item, though I successfully got my money back through a Paypal claim but it wasn’t a short process. As a seller, it can be frustrating when you receive what I would describe as incredibly cheeky offers for items to the point where you’d be losing money selling the item to someone.

My advice to combat this is as a buyer always check feedback, make sensible offers and always read a seller’s profile details. As a seller, one thing that helped me is don’t feel like you have to respond to low offers. Also, buyers please be polite in your messages, sending ‘lowest?’ with nothing else does not make me inclined to want to offer you a good deal.

I have got some great deals on Depop though from my vegan Dr Martens to my Lucy and Yak dungarees (though I keep missing the denim dungarees when they come up on their Depop – I think I’m cursed!).

There are though some great sellers on Depop who source some truly stunning vintage pieces. My favourites are Worthless Vintage (where I got the trousers seen below and the necklace in the picture above), sisters Mathilda Mai and Liberty Mai (who now have a website called MaiBee) and Earth Nadia. People with Instagram followings also tend to sell their items on there so if there is a fashion blogger you like, it’s definitely worth checking out if they have a Depop – one of my favourites is Babyricecake.

If you like a seller’s style, it’s also worth checking out their likes on their profile for more sellers who probably have a similar style to follow.

I think Depop can also be a great place to source items from America if you’re from the UK while avoiding custom fees, etc.

In regards to searching for items, Depop can be a scary place to begin if you’re not looking for specific items. I would suggest looking up what Depop sellers are popular and following ones that suit your personal style, as well as like my advice with Ebay looking for brands you particular like – this is especially useful for more niche brands like Lazy Oaf and Killstar, as people who sell those items in my experience tend to sell lots of similar items from the same brand and others.

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1st and 2nd image: Trousers from Worthless Vintage on Depop!

Vintage

For me, modern day vintage shops can be divided into two types. The more trendy, usually 80s and 90s focused (though fashion from other decades can be present), often reworked vintage shops and the classic shops, which focus on pristine pieces, usually from the 1970s and earlier. Of course there are shops that mesh between these two types but for me broadly most vintage shops are either one or other. The newer shops tend to fit the first category.

The reason these categories are important is because depending what vintage style you are after will depend what shop you want to go to. If you are interested in a fairly authentic vintage look and bespoke pieces, the second option is probably your best bet, but if you’re interested in blending in vintage pieces with modern pieces the first type is probably what you’d prefer.

Due to the fact that the first type of shop tends to have more recent or reworked pieces, they tend to have a larger size selection (this is also because they tend to have a larger amount of stock).

There’s not much advice I can give about shopping in brick and mortar vintage shops as they will be dependent on your area, except for know your measurements and bring a tape measure handy (this is especially useful if you struggle to estimate the size of clothing). This also helps if you have to take a gamble because the vintage shop doesn’t have a changing room (rare but it does happen) or you don’t feel comfortable trying it on and want to wing it (it depends where you go but sometimes the changing rooms can be a bit makeshift).

The best places I’ve been to for vintage shopping (both in vintage shops and the charity shops there) have been Nottingham and Sheffield. I do of course love London, especially Brick Lane but it tends to be more expensive. If you are ever in St Albans I’d recommend Little Viking Vintage, who I’ve wrote about before. You can also check out their Etsy, which often lists the crème de la crème of their stock.

Brick and mortar shops can sometimes be more expensive than online (it really depends)  but you do have the added bonus of the option of avoiding guessing whether something is going to fit/ suit you.

Another thing to pay attention for if you’re not as well versed in vintage is that some vintage shops also sell vintage style clothing, which is often sourced from fast fashion sources. The Ethical Unicorn has a great post on what to look out for here.

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1st image: Vintage Pendleton coat from House of Vintage.

Charity shops

A lot of people are cautious of charity shops. I get it, they can be overwhelming and often filled with things that most people wouldn’t be interested in. However, they are definitely worth a look whether you’re interested in a vintage or modern look – I’ve seen plenty of dresses from Asos and Pretty Little Thing fill charity shop rails nowadays (especially as people are more conscious about where their unused clothing goes to).

When I’m in charity shops I tend to hunt for vintage and I’ve definitely found some gems from a beautiful green velvet blouse from Marks and Spencer’s old St Michaels range to numerous Laura Ashley dresses.

That does not mean though that I don’t sometimes have no idea where to start. The way I’ve combatted this is either through going in with a particular goal in mind, i.e. I’m looking for a pink coat or starting by just focusing on each individual section – I tend to always go straight to dresses.

A lot of charity shops have also clued into the fact that there’s been a switch around of opinion on charity shops and have seriously upgraded how they present items (so much that a charity shop I know in Lincoln even has a waitlist for items that appear on its mannequin) and will often have a ‘vintage’ section (this is usually a mixture of actual vintage clothing and clothing with a vintage twist – i.e. rockabilly dresses). This has meant though that the prices in charity shops have increased and I’ve witnessed many a item priced high enough to no longer be called a bargain, however, 90% of the time items you will find will be much cheaper than the standard high street fair (apart from maybe stores like Primark).

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1st images: Vintage St Michaels by Marks and Spencer blouse, bought from a charity shop.

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2nd image: Vintage Harley Davidson motorcycle boots and Topshop dress, both bought from a charity shop.

DIY

You’re out vintage shopping or you’re browsing in the charity shop and you spot the perfect item but then you find it has a small hole and the zip is broken. What do you do? Well, if you have sewing know how the answer is probably simple but for those of us who are uninitiated or simply ridiculously bad at DIY, what do you do?

First, check the item’s price reflects the damage. If it doesn’t and you’re feeling brave, mention the issue to the shop manager, explaining that it will cost you to fix the issue. If you manage to successfully negotiate a price you’re happy with, I’d say go for it. Well, that of course depends on what the issue is. I recently encountered a dress that I LOVED but the zipper would not budge no matter how hard I tugged. I managed to get some money off the dress and have since took the dress to be fixed. In total, the dress cost me £6 (I think) discounted, £1.50 for the zip and £16 for a seamstress to fit the new dress. Overall, that brings the total to £23.50, which although might seem a bit steep at first, is about the price that a lot of people would spend on a dress for a night out.*

While, that was a success story*, I would say do not go for the repair if it is past your skill level or know how. I recently fell in love with a green, 1950s lace dress while vintage shopping but it had noticeable discolouration all down the dress. While the dress was priced accordingly, as it was a branded dress in good condition other than the discolouration, it was more than I was willing to pay for a faded dress that I didn’t know whether I would be able to fix.

Essentially, use what knowledge you have to determine whether something is worth a DIY. Remember simple dye jobs can be quite easy (washing machine dye is your friend) and can transform a item, as well as a simple cropping of a top, but stay within your skill level (and outsource when necessary) otherwise that item will just be sitting in your wardrobe!

*Update: Due to the zip issue I wasn’t able to properly try the dress on and it fits on the waist but is way too tight on the hips – you win some, you lose some!

Etsy

I have a confession. I have not bought any clothing from Etsy in a long time. I tend to use Etsy to buy items from independent artists, however there are some stunning vintage shops on there as well and I do have a few favourites I love to follow.

If you’re a 50s/ 60s queen I’d check out Sartorial Matters‘ shop – the pieces are usually very Chuck’s style in Pushing Daisies!

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Another seller who sells on Etsy who is great for that vibe is Sweet Bee Finds, though my favourite of their pieces tends to be sold on their Instagram.

For sweet vintage pieces (that are usually Laura Ashley!) I’d recommend Duel at Dawn who also sells lots of adorable brooches.

For quirky accessories but also occasionally cute, alternative vintage pieces I’d recommend checking out KawaiiKave.

My top tip for Etsy is to make sure to set your shipping destination when searching, if you’d like to avoid costly international shipping costs.

Final thoughts

My general rule is I try to only buy new if I’ve exhausted looking for the item on the above list. I have slipped up on this a few times but compared to my spending habits before it’s a complete turn around. I will admit I was concerned about writing fashion posts where people couldn’t easily get the items if they liked it but the response I have had has been great!

I’d also suggest if you do need to buy something new and can afford it looking to companies that provide a living wage to their workers. Some of my favourites include Lucy and Yak and I love the ethos and transparency of Maison Cléo – if you’d like a future blog post on that, let me know!

April (April is the Cruellest Month)

Facebook: @aprilisthecruellestmonthblog

Instagram: @aprilisthecruellestmonth

Twitter: @aprilcruelmonth

This post is entirely my own opinion.  

I’m on a journey to make my wardrobe more ethical and sustainable (luckily a lot of what I buy is vintage which helps) but I’m not all the way there yet so the clothes I mention will reflect this. 

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Pastel Asos x Hello Kitty, Primark and Rokit Haul

For once in my life I have actually managed to one, go to London and actually stay in budget and two keep everything I bought to a particular theme. The theme being pastel, well, mainly different shades of pink. Maybe, this is because most of the items I got are from Primark but it still counts!

However, I did also happen to puruse Asos before I went to London and a certain Asos x Hello Kitty collection may have dropped. I did not go mad (for me) however so I only got two items and one I’m not sure if I’m going to keep (I need opinions).

I am happy with what else I got though (even if spoiler alert that is because it contains a lot of socks) even if I still need a white slip (to go under a purchase I bought and a sheer white vintage number I got before the trip and a dress that’s in the sale in New Look that I’ve been wanting for a while). Also, some plain black shoes that are also suitable for work (or brown!). I’m trying to hold off spending this month though, as I really want to focus on saving!

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The sheer white dress I mentioned. 

Also, apologises that I’m only posting once a week at the moment. I really wanted to try and coordinate my blog content to my YouTube content.

These posts will either be on Thursdays or Sundays so still fitting the schedule but for a little bit they are only going to be once a week while I catch up.

So, here’s the video to this blog post below – extra brownie points to anyone who reads this post and watches the video!

I’ll start with the Asos x Hello Kitty collection as I got this before my trip. For those who are new here I’m a big Hello Kitty fan and loved the Lazy Oaf x Hello Kitty collection as well as the Topshop pop up. Essentially, if it’s got Hello Kitty on, I’m there. So when I saw Asos we’re doing another drop I knew I had to investigate especially as I didn’t get anything last time. I further knew I needed this collection when I saw that the tones were  pastel focused.

Hello Kitty x Asos pastel jacket 

When I saw this denim jacket featuring pink, yellow (fun fact: I love yellow hence why La La was my favourite Teletubby) and denim; I knew I needed it. As the description on the jacket said no stretch despite the jacket looking slightly oversized on the pictures of the model; I still for some reason wasn’t expecting this to be oversized. However, it is. This isn’t a bad thing because I love a good oversized denim jacket but I just wanted to flag it – if you wanted a tighter fit I’d recommend going a size down.

Maybe, the searing heat taking place at the moment is scouring my judgment on this one but I’m not sure if this suits me. I’m also struggling to put this with outfits at the moment, especially as the heat doesn’t really make me prone to wanting to. I think another problem is that I need more denim/ white staple dresses in my wardrobe for layering, as I have lots of black pieces but I often don’t want to wear them with softer pastel looks. I’m considering investing in this white denim dress from Monki, as I think it will help a lot and the style of dress is very much in my comfort zone. However, like I said I’m also trying to save money (the eternal conundrum!) – if I can get to half way through the month without spending too much I might treat myself!

Price: I’d rather not discuss. 

Beret: Just Peachy 

Skirt: Lazy Oaf 

Socks and trainers: See below…

Hello Kitty x Asos socks 

Although, I hesitated a little between whether I should buy the pink or white with these I decided to go with the classic white, as I thought it would be cute with a few of my Lazy Oaf x Hello Kitty pieces. These are the kind of socks I’m scared to wear as I don’t want to ruin but I will because I personally think life is for living and socks are for wearing!

Price: £4.00

Primark pusheen top

Pusheen and a pink grid pattern? What’s there not to like?! The stitching on this isn’t perfect on the Pusheen but then it is Primark. This is also a little sheer and it is £8 (so not incredibly cheap) but it will look great tucked into skirts or high waisted jeans.

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Price: £8 

Beret: Just Peachy 

Cardigan: Lazy Oaf 

Skirt: Lazy Oaf 

Socks: Primark (see below)

Shoes: Primark (see below)

Pink fluffy top 

This is actually one of my favourite purchases from the day. It’s actually really good quality and I was worried it was going to be itchy but it’s actually very soft. I definitely want to go back and get another one of these tops and perhaps some more colours. I haven’t washed this yet so don’t know how that is going to go. This is a 90s dream and would look great with a A-line skirt. On the label it said this was part of Primark’s new improved sizing. Since it’s a top it’s hard for me to judge on that as I can fit a range of different sizes in tops usually but it did fit nice for what it’s worth.

Price: £8

Pink Frenchie socks 

It’s probably best if I do all the socks in one go (minus the Hello Kitty ones of course) because there’s quite a lot of them. The first pair are these adorable pink Frenchie socks and I love these as they come already ready to wear folded with shoes. Since I have little legs unless a sock is designed like this they are often go too high on my leg to be worn peaking out of shoes and look flattering. These however are perfect and I am determined to go back and buy every variation.

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Price: £1.50

Pink Strawberry socks 

These were the socks that I spotted before I picked up the Frenchie ones. They are the same style but a slightly darker pink and with a strawberry on. I LOVE pink and strawberries as a pattern combination so could not resist these when I saw them. I can’t wait too put them to good use!

Price: £1.50 

Pink glittery Marie socks

Glitter. Check. Marie. Check. Socks. Check. These are definitely then dream socks for me. The only thing that could make them better if they were pre-folded like the Frenchie and Strawberry socks. I definitely want to incorporate this into a Marie look with my other Marie pieces (it is way TOO HOT for the jacket at the moment though).

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Price: £2

Pastel Honeydukes Harry Potter socks

These are less to wear peaking out of shoes and more to bring some everyday pastel into my life. I am in awe of the Primark Honeydukes collection and wish I had bought more of it (next trip I just might have to pick up the makeup bag and pyjama set).

Price: £2.50

Pastel Honeydukes Jelly Bean Harry Potter trainers 

These are without a doubt my favourite purchase of the day. I am seriously considering buying another pair, as I don’t think I’ll be able to cope when this pair wear out. Not only do they have a bit of a platform which I am always in need of but they combine two of my favourite things: pastels and Harry Potter. I think I might of needed a size down in these as they are bit loose at the ankle but that might be aided by tying them up to the last available aglet (the reason I haven’t done already is because on one of the shoes the lace has a knot in preventing me from doing so).

Price: £10

Rokit Pink pastel vintage gingham dress

Based on the shoulder pads inserted in the shoulders alone I’m going to guess this is from the 80s (I may take these out but am undecided yet). This dress is about midi length on me and I’m going to need to wear a slip underneath it as it’s sheer (I’m going to pick some up on my next Primark trip as this is an issue with a few of my items now). I love the little details on the button and the cute circle detailing. Once I have something to wear underneath this will look great with my Harry Potter trainers and the Strawberry socks.

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Price: £18

So there it is my for once on a theme haul. I know my content has been a lot of hauls recently so I’m going to try and mix it up. I want to do some personal posts again but those are hard to write and I’ve been facing a bit of a writers block recently. I’m hoping posting once a week for a while will help sort this out. As always let me know what your favourite content of mine is. I’m thinking of doing some more content with just more of my general likes and dislikes + facts about me in the upcoming weeks so watch out for that!

April (April is the Cruellest Month)

-Blog posts once a week-

YouTube: @aprilisthecruellestmonth

Facebook: @aprilisthecruellestmonthblog

Instagram: @aprilisthecruellestmonth

Twitter: @aprilcruelmonth

Tumblr: @aprilisthecruellestmonthblog

June Favourites

Hello, everyone! June was very much a mixed bag for me as a human being but hopefully I’ll be able to pull some favourites out of the month. I really need to note down what I’ve been enjoying throughout the month more as honestly as I get to writing these posts and it’s not until half way through writing that I remember what I’ve done in the month.

Style wise I’ve been all over the place this month. I’m talking 90s queen one minute and 70s flowy hippy style the next but I’m trying to embrace it even if my Instagram feed is probably a chaotic mess to most people. I’ve also been trying to document my outfits more. I’ve found taking a photograph and then taking a day or two off works because in that time off I realise the picture is actually nice instead of instantly thinking its terrible.

This was also the month I started my YouTube channel (finally!) and although I’m still nervous I’m excited for future videos and hopefully I point where I can properly align my schedule with this blog. At the moment I’m uploading about once a week (purely because of how long editing takes). Since I work full time during the week I struggle to get videos out until the weekend. I’m actually going to film a video to accompany this post but it probably won’t be up until after this post has been released. One of the reasons for this is because some of the items that are my favourites are on hold for me Friday so I’d like to wait for the video to show some proper shots of me wearing them! When the video is live I’ll be sure to add it to this post however.

What I’ve been wearing….

Vintage clothing

This month I’ve really been inspired by rummaging through vintage and charity shops to find one off pieces. Since I’ve also been loving 90s style this has been quite successful as 90s items aren’t too hard to find in either place compared to older more sought after 50s pieces. Although, I’ll admit some months when I’m feeling less inspired or focused it can feel like a minefield; it’s been a great tactic for me this month as I get to reuse pieces (which is better for Mother Earth); save money a lot of the time and be a uniquely sassy individual.

April in blazer

I picked up the blazer in the above photograph (please forgive the morning rush messiness) from Little Viking Vintage on their sale rail for £10. Although, I am instantly drawn to basically every blazer in the world (because blazers are my style super item) I was especially drawn to this item because to me it was the epitome of 90s TV presenter. I paired it was dark green dress that matched some of the flecks and the sparkly converse I got for my birthday for a 90s casual look.

Dress: H & M (old) 

Blazer: Little Viking Vintage 

Shoes: Miley Cyrus x Converse

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The other item I snagged in the sale rail for £10 is this lovely mid floral dress that just oozes 90s – to me it reminds me a little bit of the more earthy toned items worn in The Craft or the outfits worn in The Virgin Suicides. However,  although The Virgin Suicides was made in the 90s it was set in the 70s so the clothes had a slightly different feel.

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The Craft (1996)
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The Virgin Suicides (1999)

I didn’t have quite the right plain white top to go underneath this but am hoping to pick one up this weekend when I go into London. I think this dress would look nice styled nice and simply with accessories kept minimal.

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Apologises for the awful pose – all clothes on the floor are mine!

I’m also going to pick up this amazing denim playsuit this weekend and am considering wearing it for Pride but haven’t decided to wear that or the other dress I’m picking up which is a long 70s embroidered dress with cap sleeves that is sheer (hence no photograph as I need to buy something to wear underneath). I’ll try both looks on in my YouTube video so the internet can tell which looks better (ha, ha).

Fishnets

I finally gave in and bought some fishnet tights from the market as well as some fishnet socks (which would have looked amazing with the vegan Dr Martens I desperately wanted in an Ebay auction but couldn’t afford to bid on!). Although, I only picked up black I do want some white and pink pairs, as well as glitter in the future. The tights from the market were only £4 and the socks £2 and they are actually very comfortable.

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90s slightly grunge queen.

Top: Vintage Sonic Youth top because I’m too trendy for you (ha, ha). 

Dress: Vintage M & S (check out this post to find out more).

Hat: Yesstyle (the one linked is similar)

Choker: Yesstyle

Though when buying the man running the stall did ask my clothes size, which completely threw me. It turns out he was asking as they had a bigger size depending on height and stuff but I think maybe they just need to have a size on their display so people can decide! I’m luckily I’m at a place where I can mostly brush off comments like that but others can’t. It turns out the tights are quite large on me and I can pull them up very high (which, to be honest I like).

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Beret and bag: Lazy Oaf 

Choker: Yesstyle

Dress: Primark 

Shoes: Iron Fist 

70s style long dresses 

I haven’t actually bought the dress I’m going to insert an image of below because I’m still not sure and think there might be things I want in London more this weekend. It will also need hemming because I’m short and I’ll need to buy one of those suction cup bra things but I think it’s flattering and will be nice and cool for the current heatwave (let me know your thoughts below). I’m not sure on the exact brand as it’s from TK Maxx but price wise it’s £29.99 (or you know £30) if that helps anyone’s decision making process.

Love Moschino heart print sandals 

This is another thing from TK Maxx that I have tried on but haven’t bought. However, this item I very highly doubt I will because reduced they’re still £70!!! They are the most gloriously 90s style shoes and they’re covered in hearts, which I love! A bonus of these is that Love Moschino doesn’t use real leather as far as I have been to tell because the creative director Jeremy Scott is vegetarian. Please correct me if this is incorrect!

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Apologises this outfit really doesn’t go but is just what I happened to be wearing that day!

Daisy Duck belt 

So you just got a sneak peak of the next item except the difference is that I actually bought this item. I got this thinking it would look super cute with Lazy’s Oaf new pastel half and half jeans (if I actually end up getting them). However, it’s more of a hip belt and I wanted it to wear with fairly high waisted items so I think I’m going to have to DIY some more holes into it. I can’t remember the exact price but it was about £13 (you can see the exact price in my picture below, ha, ha) and I had to get it because of the buckle.

@rileybambi on Instagram rocking the heck out of the jeans. 

Belt buckle

Belt close up

Daisy Duck

Everything I got at the Lazy Oaf sample sale 

If you’ve not read my post with what I got at the Lazy Oaf sample sale yet or watched my video first of all where have you been? Second of all, if you have seen it then you know how I managed to pick up some goodies this time that I have been obsessed with. Something, I’ve learnt for next time though is that I think I’m going to try and focus more on the lower priced items so I can come away with more (whether I’ll be able to achieve that is another story!!!).

What I’ve been obsessed with…

The 90s

As mentioned numerous times already (and in my last blog post!) I’ve been feeling very nostalgic towards the decade I was born in at the moment. Since I grew up with a lot of TV shows from the era which inspired me fashion wise A LOT it’s unsurprising those outfits hold a dear place in my heart. I’m definitely going to be looking back over Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Clueless in the coming months so hopefully expect some posts inspired by this.

Buffy
Forever my style queen.

What I’ve been watching…

Set It Up 

If you’re looking for an easy to watch romantic comedy I’d recommend Set It Up on Netflix, as not only does it star Titus from Unbreakable: Kimmy Schmidt (my only motivation for watching it) but it’s actually an enjoyable watch. It’s only interesting to see the ways in which gender politics within romantic comedies are changing, especially the jokes made to appeal to a 2018 audience.

What I’ve been collecting…

Gachapon containers 

This is a bit of a weird one but I’m determined to collect enough to somehow DIY a lampshade (I’ll let you know how that goes). For those who don’t know what I mean Gachapon containers are the little plastic containers that house the toys you get out of the machines where you put a pound in.

Gachapon

Keychains/ Powerpuff Girls Kinder Egg Toys 

So I may have a small Powerpuff Girls obsession and I love trinkets so I’ve been collecting any small Powerpuff Girls toys that I can get my hands on. I actually gave out the kinder egg that contained this toy at work with the condition that I would swap the toy if they got the Powerpuff toy (the pack I bought was a pack of three but only one egg had a Powerpuff girls toy – I’ve since only bought the individual Powerpuff Girls eggs to escape this deception).

I also have been loving buying the small Disney Tsum Tsum keychains to put on my keys – I also get a care bear toy which is noisy and rattles but I love it and I want more.

Powerpuff girls

What’s I’ve generally liked/ loved this month…

Hello Kitty charity shop toys 

In one of local charity shops I think they received a donation from a Hello Kitty collector as one of their cabinets was choc a bloc. They’re all very loved and used but I had to pick up these two especially the Hello Kitty astronaut! The astronaut was £4 and the other Hello Kitty £3 I believe.

Hello Kitty Astronaut

Hello Kitty nurse

TK Maxx

Near where I work there is a TK Maxx that I like to go in on my break and window shop (a skill I’ve perfected) and I have to say my love for the shop has been reignited a bit even if there isn’t the best selection in that shop. I’ve also noticed TK Maxx stock brands like Topshop and River Island now which is a twist (I noticed some dresses that I’m pretty sure came out earlier this year) from what I’ve seen from them in the past.

Birthday presents 

Since this month was my birthday month I also have to give a shout out to everyone who bought me a present. I loved everything I got and I am incredibly grateful. You can read about what I got for my birthday here.

IMG_0092

Artwork: 

Sailor Moon: Jenny Clements

Stickers: Lazy Oaf 

Yuri on Ice!, Cherry hair girl and Kiki prints: Geen Jones 

Studio Ghibli stickers: Weiliwonka 

My June then was one of being thrifty, returning to my everlasting obsession with vintage and continuing to be an extra individual.

April (April is the Cruellest Month)

-Blog posts Thursday and Sundays- 

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90s thrift/ charity shop haul

Hi everyone!

I have a new video out, which I’ll link down below. I’m hoping the audio is ok, as I had to use the audio from my camera in the end as I had issues with my microphone! It’s another haul but this one has a bit of a twist because it’s a haul of things I bought from charity shops (thrift shops are from what I’ve gathered are the American equivalent).

I’m hoping to do some vlogs soon so hopefully they will be of interest and make it so my channel isn’t purely haul videos (not that there’s anything wrong with that, ha, ha – I just don’t have the money to sustain it!).

At the moment I’m just trying to film as much as I can (and still write here!) because I’m hoping that will make me less nervous. Hopefully, I’m a little less nervous this time – Martin said I seemed like I was so that bodes well.

In the video I know I mention the price of one of the items but I don’t think I mention the rest. For reference I don’t remember the exact prices but everything was under £10! I think the first item I mention (I don’t want to give away any spoilers!) was around £6, the second around the same and I know the third was £7.

Let me know if there is any type of video you’d like to see me film – I’m hoping to film a vlog style follow me around video next week but we’ll see how that goes (ha, ha).

Also, another fun fact is that I did actually film me trying on the items for this haul but didn’t think it went with the main content of the video so I didn’t include the footage. The reason I’ve been filming try-on’s so far is because I love videos that show the item on someone as well. However, because our flat’s fairly small I do struggle to film them in our space.

April (April is the Cruellest Month)

-Blog posts Thursday and Sundays-

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May Favourites

I feel like I don’t actually have too many favourites this month (maybe because I was trying not to spend too much money, ha, ha or maybe because May feels like just the build up to my birthday month). However, I still have some things I’ve definitely been enjoying this month. Even if I feel like my style is a bit all over the place at the moment (even more than usual). All I know is that I have been feeling pink, purples and blacks for some reason at the moment.

One of the main things I’m excited this month about is two pairs of shoes I got. I was supposed to be getting some ‘practical’ shoes that would work with everything/ I could wear to work but were still cute but I failed completely on this mission. In the end I ended up with two pairs of 90s extra shoes. Both the shoes I bought however were from charity shops (if you’re from somewhere that doesn’t have charity shops they are essentially second hand shops where people donate old clothing, books, etc. – not only does it let things be reused but the money also goes to charity).

What I’ve been wearing…

Holo strappy shoes

The first pair I got are these holo (I like to believe Christine aka Simply Nailogical) would be proud) shoes, which I feel like have a distinctive name for the style that I can’t remember the name of.

 

These were £4.50 and I got them from a charity shop where the money goes to help Rennie Grove’s Hospice Care, which provides “care and support for adults and children in Herts and Bucks diagnosed with life-limiting illness”. I tried these on in the shop as I wear in-between a size 4 and 5 shoe and wasn’t sure if they’d fit, as they were a 4 but in fact they are the perfect fit and I love them. I’ve actually worn these for the day and they’re super comfy (probably because someone already wore them in). The only thing wrong with them, which Martin actually pointed out to me is that they have a small stain on one of the inside of the straps that looks like dried sauce (I hope that’s what it is), which is not nice. However, I think with a bit of care and attention I could get the stain out.

Jelly healed sandals

The next pair of shoes I actually got yesterday (so not actually in May but SHHH!!) but I had to include them because I’ve been wanting some jelly heeled shoes for ages! These ones are clear (with a slight purple sheen in person) silver glitter shoe and are actually a size 3-4 so they teeniest bit too small but I couldn’t pass them up. They were £6 and I think need a good wash before I wear them as there is a small grass stain but as they’re jelly shoes they are easier to wash.

I am excited to wear these with another purchase that I’ll be mentioning in this haul to live my best extra 90s, Spice Girls life (as a 90s kid I’m pretty sure I remember owning jelly sandals as a child!).

Also, I’m really going to try and make sure that more stuff I buy is from charity shops and vintage when possible, as I love unique pieces and vintage clothing and it’s good for the environment as well! These shoes were from a  Keech Hospice Care charity shop – a charity who provide specialist care for adults and children with life-limiting and terminal illnesses.

Lazy Oaf rainbow kilty skirt

I had been coveting this skirt for a while so when I was in the Lazy Oaf shop after comic con and saw they had only one left and it was in my size; I knew I had to try it on. Although, its a little big on the waist; it fits perfect elsewhere (story of my life, ha, ha). It’s also sating my Lazy Oaf cravings until the sample sale, as I’ve seen some great pieces for sale on depop recently but I am desperately trying to resist them till after the sample sale).

Lazy Oaf Skirt.jpeg
Sorry about the mark on my mirror/ its dustiness and the socks/ tights/ underwear basket in the background! 

Beret: Just Peachy 

Top: Forever 21 (donated by a friend) 

Skirt: Lazy Oaf 

Shoes: Charity shop 

What I’ve experienced…

MCM London Comic Con

I’ve already done a whole post with my haul from MCM London Comic Con but wanted to mention it again, as I really loved the experience. For years I’ve been determined to cosplay more and am determined this year will be my year – if I don’t do at least one cosplay for October’s con I want someone to ban me from going!

I also have really been loving the Pusheen keyring I picked up there from the Artbox Pusheen takeover. I don’t why I’ve been loving it so much other than its super cute and it reminds me that my birthday is soon!

Birthday cake pusheen

What I’ve been reading…

Sailor Moon manga vol. 4 

I quickly devoured the Sailor Moon manga I bought at comic con and have to say I’m still really enjoying it – I especially love Sailor Pluto and have a feeling she’s going to develop into a favourite of mine.

Sailor Moon Vol. 4

What I’ve been watching…

Brooklyn Nine Nine season 5 finale

After the devastation that hit everyone’s hearts when we thought Brooklyn Nine Nine was going to be cancelled; Amy and Jake’s wedding felt even the more poignant. I also love how they left the season on a cliffhanger (thank god it was picked up by another network!).

The Backstreet Boys singalong scene was another highlight and I don’t really have much to say other than the show continues to kill it!

brooklynninenine.gif

Source: Giphy

Steven Universe 

I don’t know why it’s taken me this long to watch Steven Universe and I may only be on the first season but I love it! I need Steven’s burger backpack and to cosplay Pearl (hopefully planning this for October) and Lapis Lazuli and to be actually in that pastel wonderland. And for Martin to cosplay as the lion.

stevenuniverse

Source: Giphy

April (April is the Cruellest Month)

– Blog posts Thursday and Sundays- 

 

 

 

Disney inspired beret haul + lookbook

Anyone who knows me moderately well knows that I love all things Disney and I especially love incorporating things from pop culture that I love into my style. Hence, my love for all collection where Lazy Oaf has collaborated with well known icons. Therefore, when I first discovered the shop Just Peachy I fell in love. Especially, with the berets because I think a distinguishing feature of my style that year most people will agree is probably the beret.

However, I am not the only one to love and covet these berets, which is why one of them before now had been sold out for a while (and is sadly sold out again). It is also why I got super excited when they restocked – I’d also like to mention the shipping from America was fairly quick (and the tracking super spot on) – I didn’t get hit by customs either which is definitely a bonus.

I’ll start by reviewing the beret, which is still available and started my obsession with Just Peachy’s shop! This beret is $20.00 (I’m not sure how much that is in pounds but overall for both berets and shipping I think it came to £36 and since the parcel came from America that isn’t bad). It’s lovely quality and looks exactly like the photograph. My one fault with this beret is that it is very large and so struggles to stay on my head (and this isn’t an issue with the other beret I bought).

So without further ado I introduce the Donald Duck inspired Beret:

Look 1

Donald Duck Beret 1

Donald Duck beret 2

Donald Duck Beret 4

Beret: Just Peachy

Top: Topshop (Old) 

Trousers: Lazy Oaf x Hello Kitty 

Shoes: Primark 

The back of the beret has Donald Duck’s little tail and is super cute – it also has a ribbon coming out the back in an adorable sailor style.

Donald Duck Beret Back

Unfortunately, however when you look at the back you can also see how the beret is a bit too big for my headshape (which, doesn’t happen a lot!). This beret though was most of my friends favourite out of the two I purchased!

The Tangled beret maybe because of its shape (it was a bit wider at the front) suited my headshape a lot more. I also love the colours because I’m behind in the seasons and still stuck in spring fashion mode. I think this would look beautiful with either a white or yellow sundress, specifically this button front midi dress from New Look – which, I am hoping to style it with at some point (but I just can’t afford it at the moment, as I am desperately saving for Comic Con next weekend even though I’m not going Saturday and am devastated that lots of the Arrested Development cast are going to be there and I’m not as can only afford the Friday!!!).

Tangled beret profile picture

The above image is the image used on the top of this page (if you’re viewing on a Laptop I apologise for the close up on my face – it looked too nice on the tablet and mobile view to change it because it showed a nice close up of the beret).

This beret was $15.00 so slightly cheaper than the Donald Duck beret and that beret is  probably more expensive because that beret has the extra detailing on the back!

Look 2

Tangled 6

Tangled 7

Tangled 9

Tangled 11

33073850_2508789512680197_4591174208104431616_n

Beret: Just Peachy

Dress: Primark (old) – this Topshop dress is similar, which I’ve actually tried on and I loved it

Shoes: Topshop (old – these shoes are similar but real leather – I’m not sure if mine are as I stole them off my mum)

Look 3

Yellow 1

 

Yellow 4

Yellow 5

Beret: Just Peachy (I think this look would also work with the Donald Duck beret but the top cuts off my criculation too much at the arms for me to try it!)

Top: Little Viking Vintage 

Playsuit: H&M (this one is the same one but in pink)

Shoes: Topshop (old – these shoes are similar but real leather – I’m not sure if mine are as I stole them off my mum)

Look 4 

Esther 7

Esther 5

Esther 4

Esther 3

Beret: Just Peachy

Top: Lazy Oaf x Esther Loves You 

Jacket: Lazy Oaf x Esther Loves You 

Skirt: H & M (old – this New Look skirt is similar)

Shoes: Primark (I would probably style this with a white shoe if I had the choice but currently don’t have any though watch this space!)

This would have looked so great with the Bunnyrees from the Lazy Oaf x Esther Loves You collection – one day I will find them and make them mine!

Look 5

Pink 2.jpg

Beret: Just Peachy

Dress: Olive (this one is similar)

Shoes: Primark 

Look 6 

This look was actually one I tried on in the New Look changing rooms today but I really liked it so I decided to include it. If you like this look it will be featuring on my Instagram story today, as I’m going to be doing a poll where everyone can pick their favourite outfit and whatever gets the most votes I will buy on payday.

New look 1

New look 2

Beret: Just Peachy

Dress: New Look 

Top: New Look

Shoes: Primark 

So here is my Disney inspired beret lookbook. Apologises that I have less looks for the Donald beret then the Tangled beret – I just happen to have more clothes that are in that colour palette!

Let me know in the comments below, which look was your favourite!

April (April is the Cruellest Month)

– Blog posts Thursday and Sundays- 

January Favourites

It’s been a little bit of a ‘dry’ January for me so this list might be a little bit short on purchases. However, I’ve done a lot of watching of things this month because of my lack of money, so expect to see a lot of suggestions for ways to occupy your time instead of a lot of clothes (though I suspect next month this list will probably contain a lot of clothes).

I’m going to start by talking about something that I’ve not actually bought anything from but I think is super cute and that is the Lazy Oaf x Betty Boop collection. I always loved Betty Boop as a child because of her stint in Roger Rabbit and because I  always saw her in vintage and alternative shops meaning that for me she always stood as a symbol for someone who liked to dress alternatively. And as someone who has always admired (even if they were at times too scared to dabble in) alternative fashion; Betty Boop always seemed pretty darn cool to me.

The showstopping piece from the collection (just to be clear I’m referring to the ‘Women’s’ collection because I’m not a fan of anything in the ‘Men’s’ collection) has to be the white double denim set, which I’d love to attempt to pull off- with the red beret and top as below- maybe with some red converse as well. However, the pieces are about standard for Lazy Oaf collaboration collections and would set me back £120 for the jacket, and £79 for the jeans. So, these pieces are definitely going to have to go on the back burner of things I like at the moment- plus there is no guarantee I would be able to find a pair of the jeans that would fit because of my waist to hip ratio.

I also wish I could style the pieces anywhere near as cute as @skumbagg_ did on Instagram. 

Also, @skumbagg_ highlights probably my favourite piece from the collection the red sheer heart jacket. And this is not only because I really love hearts but because this would look amazing in a Valentines day lookbook (which, I hope to do but don’t think I’ve got another outfits to pull it off- maybe then it will be a Valentines Outfit Of The Day).

My other favourite pieces are the stripe boatneck top (the top pictured below is actually a bodysuit, you can find it here) which would look so cute tucked into a skirt or high waisted trousers or of course the cute pin up jeans they have with the collection (see below- click to the next image to see the amazing bow detail). There is also an adorable crop top, which I love but also have no idea how I would style.

The crop top!

The one piece from the collection I do know how I’d style is the dress, which is the cut of my favourite Lazy Oaf dress pieces, which is referred to as a ‘Sally Sack dress’ (see below to see how one of my favourite Lazy Oaf wearers @reina_roo on Instagram styles it). This is the one piece I’m super tempted to get from the collection, as I know I wouldn’t regret it -I’m hoping it will still be available in March (but I know that’s a long shot with Lazy Oaf pieces- if you like a Lazy Oaf piece I very much recommend buying it then and there whenever possible because they only stock limited runs and finding the item after that can be hard and pricey).

So basically the one piece of the collection I am definitely going to invest in is the cute Betty Boop pin, as I like to try to have something from every Lazy Oaf collection (though that’s not being going well recently) and I love and am trying to collect more pins.

Little Viking Vintage

Now that I’ve sufficiently obsessed over the new Lazy Oaf collection let me talk about things I’ve actually bought. All of these are from the lovely Little Viking Vintage, so are unique to me, which I love, and as always were purchases I’ve been wearing again and again.

My favourite purchase was a beautiful silver and black onyx necklace. I got this because I’ve been noticing more and more how terrible I am at accessorising and wanted to change this. This looks amazing with a playsuit and crop top combo I bought recently (and basically is the only outfit I ever post about).

Ginger Hair Don't Care

I also got this pale yellow blouse for £9! It’s see through so I’ll wear a tank top underneath it but would look totally lovely I think with a nice long flowing skirt for when spring arrives.

Yellow blouse

The final thing I got is this bucket bag. It can’t hold a lot of items or weight because of its design but it makes me look a lot more fashionable than I actually am, and I love it. Also, I’d rather it get reused personally than waste it- see this post if you a bit confused about what I’m referring to.

Bucket Bag

Grace and Frankie Season 4 

I’ve been a fan of Grace and Frankie since the start. First of all, I love anything with Jane Fonda in, and second of all the show itself is hilarious and beautifully written. It’s not often (or more like barely at all) you see shows targeted at or featuring people over 50 on TV, and although I know why, it’s really a shame. I might be a while until I feel some of the problems of ageing but doesn’t mean I don’t want to know what they are or that I find them any less engaging than other problems I can’t relate to. I mean the majority of shows targeted to my age group would have me confronting someone at a masked ball, which I think somehow is unlikely to happen!

The show keeps up its momentum this season though I hope the show talks about it the way in which the children of Grace and Frankie approached the main issue of the season in a way that was not completely fair, next season.

Tofu scramble

Most of my attempts at cooking tofu at home have been fine, acceptable, but not as nice as the tofu I have eaten out. This recipe though I really enjoyed, though I only followed it loosely. For one thing my scramble isn’t yellow because I didn’t have any turmeric and instead of shallots I simmered garlic instead, and just had chilli powder, salt and pepper to flavour mine- it was however delicious (I also used soy milk as my milk substitute and it’s was great- soy milk is definitely my favourite milk substitute I’ve tried).

 

Tofu Scramble

I had mine with dairy free butter and spicy sriracha (a spicier version- I’m not saying Sriracha is spicy in itself). 

Turtles All the Way Down 

I have already wrote a review on this, however, I wanted to mention it briefly here, as I really enjoyed this book. I would also definitely recommend it for people both suffering with mental health issues or those who are not- it does a very good job at showing how both people cope with situations that arise in the life of someone who has mental health issues.

Turtles all the way down

Hamilton soundtrack 

This has been my favourite for more than a few months now and I keep forgetting to proclaim my underlying love for this soundtrack. Seriously, I probably listen to it at least once daily. I am very eagerly waiting for the day when I can finally get tickets to go see it in London.

The Women’s March 2018

I just want to give a shout out to everyone who attended the Women’s March both this year and last year. I couldn’t spare the money to attend this year (for the train ticket to London) but I very appreciative to everyone who took the time out of their day to make sure the important issues the march stands for were heard. Next year, I will be part of that crowd.

So there it is- my January. It’s been a bit of a long and cold one. Both mentally and literally. Here’s hoping there will be some more warmth coming up (though not too much as I am not ready for full on summer sun yet or ever- I’m thinking more Spring weather would be nice).

April

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