pretty + cheap

made with care

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I don’t usually spent much time on Etsy. Probably because I know that if I did, I’d wake up two days later with a zero balance on my check card. That said, I couldn’t help but notice the adorable handmade tops and dresses in erinleighheart’s Etsy shop. Blame it on the ruffles! Everything in the shop is just too darn cute.

From left: White Halter Sundress, $56; Lemon Yellow Ruffle Bib Front Tunic, $64; Goddess Navy Blue Jersey Knit One Shoulder Ruffle Empire Waist, $49

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pretty in pink

Katie

Walking through the mall last week, I noticed that Betsey Johnson’s windows were lined with racks of 80s-style pouffy party dresses. What fun, I thought to myself.  And then, not even two minutes later, I found a selection of similar dresses at Forever 21.  The Betsey Johnson frock is $435, the one from Forever 21 is $24.80.  I’m sure you can guess which one I’ll be buying.

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wish it was summertime!

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I can’t wait for summer. I always have so much more fun in the summertime, and I can’t help but love warm weather clothes (i.e. this yummy cotton dress from Forever 21.) I know I’m not going to be able to wear it for a few more months, but I tried it on and it looked very pretty, and well, it was only 20 dollars. Ahhhh, Forever 21 is a death trap! I swear, I can’t walk into that store without buying something. But look at this dress. It’s so pretty.

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best dress

I may not be as easy on the eyes as this gorgeous JCrew model, but how can you not love this elegant wool dress? I’m pretty sure it retails for about 180 dollars, but I only paid only 60 after sales/discounts (happy dance! happy dance!) Hands down, one of my best bargain finds… ever. I don’t see the dress online anymore, but JCrew is offering 30 percent off of a variety of other final sale items. Between this dress and my white coat, I have had unbelievable luck at JCrew this winter. It’s definitely worth checking out.

P.S. My red patent belt is from Target and the peep toe pumps are from Nordstrom Rack. Both on sale, obvi.

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dress of the moment

I’ve been seeing colorblock dresses everywhere, but what’s great about this dress from Forever 21 is the skirt has a slightly bubbled silhouette, which means it looks way more sophisticated and expensive than the 23 dollars I paid for it. It’s versatile, too: unbutton the top and you have a slighty more provocative, evening-friendly neckline, or keep the top button fastened for a more cutesy, work-friendly look. I plan to wear this dress with black tights and patent leather heels over the holidays, but nix the tights or leggings and you’ve got a dress that will last you through the summer.

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my new years resolution: shop local

Buying local, whether its veggies or shoes, is becoming even more important for the health of our economy and the environment. When you support local businesses, your money goes directly back into your neighborhood, and of course, with unpredictable fuel costs and global warming on everyone’s mind, shopping local is one more way you can shrink your carbon footprint in 2009. It just so happens that Sloan, one of my favorite boutiques in Portland, had some pretty fabulous sales going on last week (i.e. this silk, watercolor print Kensie dress on for only 20 dollars.) If you live in the Portland area, I highly recommend Sloan for its adorable dresses, vegetarian handbags and infinitely versatile wrap sweaters. If not, do a little research on boutiques in your area, and discover how much fun shopping can be outside of the mall.

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Philosophy

Ramblings about having fun and looking fabulous on a budget.

Katie loves: Libraries, writing creative nonfiction, vegetarian cooking, interior design, getting crafty, and of course... bargain hunting!

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