This Week in Cosmetics: Nail Polish

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Colder weather getting you down? Time to change up your nails! Nail polish can add that extra something to any outfit, keeping things sassy and/or classy…

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1. Michael Kors Sporty Nail Lacquer in Spotlight

This may not seem like a particularly autumnal color, but trust me, it matches anything and everything all year ’round. I own this one and can say that two coats is all it takes for opacity. Plus, the bottle is SO SHINY.

2. Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Polish in Crystal Clear

I’ve tried tons of topcoats, from $5-$20 a bottle. This is under $2 and I must say it’s my favorite out of any that I’ve tried. Good ol’ Sally Hansen.

3. Butter London Come To Bed Red Nail Lacquer

I don’t have this particular shade, but I do have other Butter London colors and am definitely in love. This candy apple red is perfect for fall…now I really want a candied apple, sigh.

4. SEPHORA by OPI Nail Colour in Thyme For a Mani

This is my go-to shade for this season. I love pastels, but when fall rolls around, I dress in darker shades and like to tone it down a little. This shade is sold out, but there are a few available at this eBay link. The formula is great and I get a solid gray color with about three coats.

5. Chanel LE VERNIS NAIL COLOUR in 631 Orage

Ahoy! Chanel always nails navy (I will own one of their navy boucle jackets one day–I WILL) and this polish is no exception. Navy is another versatile color that will match any jewelry you decide to adorn your hands with.

If you’re balking at the expense of nail polish–everyone knows that bottles dry out and you never get as much use as you’d planned–don’t worry! There are several thrifty ways to buy nail polish. For discontinued, wide-release shades, I like eBay. Polishes tend to be the same price or less than retail. For classic shades of OPI, usually reds and pinks, I check out hair salons at the mall. They often have $3 and $4 racks of brand-new OPIs that are either past season or overstock. (As you probably know, most polish companies basically release the same shades under different, clever names each year.) Similarly, I always check out TJ Maxx–they carry tons of Butter and Julep products–and even Nordstorm Rack.

Happy polishing!

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A year ago today…I picked my favorite products for “eyes, lips and fingertips!”

Brand Spotlight: French Connection

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French Connection is a brand that I’ve liked for many years now. Back in high school I started seeing it in thrift and consignment stores a lot, and I’ve always enjoyed the feel and fit of their tops and dresses (Crisp sheaths! Fit and flare!). Based in London and fairly new at 42 years old, the brand runs true to size and certainly toes the line between fast fashion and stylish, durable product:

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Either way, there’s no mistaking that cheeky “fcuk” sign. My mom actually gasped the first time she saw it on Newbury Street in Boston when we were shopping together one day. Anyway, here are a few of my favorite campaigns by them:

This whole series of ads was very cool. I like catchy sayings and interesting facial expressions in advertising; it’s a nice change from the usual.

This one is so soft and rosy and springlike. I love the color palette here–it’s definitely romantic.

Not much to say here, except you go, girl! And cute shoes.

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Finally, the current front page of the website.

Some wishlist items:

A couple of thrifted finds:

I won’t lie–French Connection is one of those brands that isn’t always on my radar, but every once in a while I think of them, and fondly. Whether I’m happening upon one of their cute bicycle-print tees at TJ Maxx or passing a well-cut dress in a department store window, I always feel like they’ve hit on something both timeless and current.

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A year ago today…Ash gave us tips for when we’re feeling uninspired where fashion is concerned!

Haul: Salvation Army Labor Day Sale

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Admittedly, this post is a little late, seeing as Labor Day was weeks ago. But Salvation Armani, as I like to call it, has sales all the time, and their holiday ones are the best–I couldn’t resist sharing my particularly good haul this time.  I hit up the SA in Chelsea 208 8th Ave and scored big time; the entire store was 50% off.

Banana Republic x Mad Men Collection Pumps in black suede, $3

French Connection Wizard Cotton Dress in teal, $3.50

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Zara Lined Pencil Skirt with Panels, $3

Parker Sheer Block Dress in black and white, $5

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J. Crew Silk Blythe Blouse in navy, $2.50

Urban Outfitters Cooperative Box Pleat Skater Skirt in black, $3

I definitely hit the motherlode. The store was small enough that I was able to go through every single rack in just about two hours. There was no fitting room, but I employed my favorite nifty try-on techniques like a boss. Success! I can’t wait to go back.

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What I Wore: Internship Style

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This is only my second week interning, but I thought I’d share a few of the outfits I’ve been wearing. I hope you find some of these tips useful, and I’d love to hear about your own interning fashion experiences! Mirror selfies are not ideal, of course. Anyway, here they are!

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I work in a big, fancy office, but I’m lucky that the dress code is relatively flexible. Here, I’m wearing a thrifted striped Ralph by Ralph Lauren shirt. This may be my favorite shirt that I own, since it’s so versatile with its navy stripes and ivory background. It pairs nicely with these lapis J. Crew Cafe Capri pants (last seen here), which I scored on sale for around $15. As for jewelry, an intern must always be on time, and this Kate Spade watch matches everything I own (from Poshmark). The striped Kate Spade bangle, spiky Stella & Dot bracelet and metallic-y Kate Spade flats are all eBay finds.

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Obviously I got down to business with this outfit. Like I said, I’m afforded decent outfit freedom in my office, but I felt very classy this day in a comfortable pencil skirt (Zara, $5 from Salvation Army) and loose Vince top ($9 on eBay). My tip for the ideal draping look is to suck in and tuck your top into your bottoms until the fabric is taut, then relax your body and tease a little fabric out on every side. Calf hair Cole Haan x Maria Sharapova flats ($22 at Buffalo Exchange) kept things interesting. The glasses are Kate Spade and were a birthday gift, and the vintage Fendi bag was my grandmother’s.

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This outfit is the most casual of the three, but looks fairly polished in person. I’m wearing head-to-toe J. Crew here, and really, can you ever go wrong with that? The top was around $20 on eBay and has served me well through several seasons since the fabric is slightly weightier than many of their regular boatneck tops. The black Minnie pants in stretch twill were one of my buys from the Distribution Center ($20). The black suede Cece flats are from eBay, and I have Dr. Scholl’s inserts in them to stay extra comfortable.

Three rules I’ve been living by:

1. With all the walking I’ve been doing, flats are a must. My mood may change in the coming weeks, in which case I’ll carry heels with me and change when I get to the office, but for now I’m feeling pretty cheery towards my extensive collection of no-heeled shoes.

2. When it comes to a carry-all bag, go big or go home. It’s not pictured here, but I have a simple black nylon tote that I use to haul around my gym stuff, lunch, water bottle and other assorted nonsense. I’m not concerned about the style too much because it’s lightweight and the only people who see it are myself and others on the subway or whatever, since I throw it under the desk the second I get to work. I usually carry that along with a pretty crossbody to hold my wallet and wear on lunch break.

3. Ironing is important. I now wear a few more wrinkle-prone pieces than I did to classes in college, and I make it a point to pick out my outfit and iron it, if needed, the night before. Even t-shirts or simple tops can get wrinkly, and it’s unprofessional. Ironing takes five minutes and provides instant and satisfying results.

Enjoy!

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Change is in the Air

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Happy (almost) fall! It’s not yet Tuesday, but if we didn’t get excited about any and all holidays and other milestones, we wouldn’t be human. The leaves haven’t even started changing in my new neighborhood yet…

…Which brings me to the point of this long overdue post!

A little over a week ago, I made the move to my favorite city on earth – New York, NY! Perhaps equally exciting is the reason I moved here, which is to intern at Us Weekly magazine. As an aspiring entertainment journalist, this is an amazing opportunity and excellent stepping stone. This is my second week at the internship and I’m starting to get into the swing of things.

I’ve also been getting used to my new apartment, learning how long it takes to get around and overcoming challenges such as grocery shopping (only buy what you can carry!) and the cost of eating out (meet friends a few times a week, not every day!).

I’ve already got a few favorite spots in the city, including the Columbus Circle Maison Kayser, Trader Joe’s at 72nd street and Crunch gym on 23rd; I joined for the classes and have had nothing but good experiences so far. This location is by far the prettiest, though it’s right across the street from the madly enticing Doughnut Plant, which basically makes this location the cruelest of jokes.

As for what’s in store for the blog, I changed the header style (above) and post signature (below). I updated the theme about a month ago, and these changes mark the final step in the new overall look of the site. Let me know what you think!

So there you have it – autumn, a new city and a new internship – three changes that I’m definitely enjoying. As for what I’m looking forward to this fall? I foresee plenty of delicious food, crisp and clean fall fashion and interviews with thrift shop owners. Can’t wait!

P.S. – Can you believe it’s already been over a year since Thrift Class first came about? Time flies when you’re thrifting your heart out!

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A year ago on the blog…Ash reviewed The September Issue!

 

Hiatus

Hi, everyone!

The blog will be going on hiatus while I figure out some stuff (job, apartment, etc.). I love posting regularly, and I just can’t do that right now. Enjoy the last days of summer, and I’ll hopefully be posting again by next month!