Wednesday 3 September 2014

Thrifted Work Wardrobe

I had an interesting experience last night.  I will explain the "interesting" part later...

I had the pleasure of shopping with a lovely young woman, Jenise, a newly graduated nurse heading to her first community job in a small Alberta town.  Jenise has been wearing scrubs throughout her clinical training and needed some business-casual basics.  Her mom, another awesome VV Boutique Style client, is also a nurse and both concur that comfy pants and easy-to-wear layers are the way to go when you're doing home visits and traveling about the countryside.  Jenise and I hit the aisles and, as usual, found plenty of great options!
First up, we hit the shoes and Jenise totally scored!  These are mint condition Miz Mooz t-straps!
Colour me green.

Jenise also found black Converse sneakers - can be styled up for work or down for weekend - and Life Stride peep toe wedges.  She's not so sure about the socks and sandals trend, but trust me, it's happening and why not get more cool-weather use out of these stunners?!!
At a mere 22yo, Jenise can easily pull this look off with denim, skinny pants or skirts.

Next up, we hit the pants and blazers.  Jenise was a great sport about trying things on in the aisles!  She wondered whether blazers might be too dressed up for her new role, but I say, better to dress UP than down and, at thrifted prices, why not wear a blazer instead of a cardi?
The basic black button-up had pretty details and looked great with this lightweight casual seersucker blazer.
In fact, the blazer was very versatile with its grey stripes!
Jenise can even do a little stripe-on-stripe action with this top, demonstrating the no-fail "short over long over skinny" fashion formula.

Jenise also scored a basic black blazer and a wool grey blazer.
This blazer needs a quick trip to the cleaners for a thorough pressing but it is well worth it...
This theory blazer would retail for a few hundred at least.

Jenise picked up some cardis too including something that is on my hunting list...
Leopard print is THE neutral of the season.  This would look nice with her Miz Mooz.
I just have to pause a moment to wipe a tear (of envy).

Jenise and I discussed a simple way to approach building your wardrobe: start with basic functional pieces, add in some fun pieces and conclude with finishers - that might be a finishing layer to fulfill the Rule of 3 or a scarf or simple necklace. 
This top is but one example of a piece that Jenise can wear under a blazer or cardi for work or with denim on weekends.  
The pretty lace and open-knit weave elevate from a functional shell to a FUN favourite!
Illustrating the Rule of 3.  Without the necklace, the outfit looks incomplete.

Jenise found several pairs of work trousers despite my lack of photographic evidence.  When thrifting, you have to try on A LOT of pants to find a few so we just blitzed through them as quickly as possible.
This silvery grey pair was new-with-tags!

 As usual, the staff at the 34th Ave location were AWESOME!
As usual, we closed down the store.

Jenise found so many great pieces - a chambray, cool button-up, pants with funky details, polka dot scarf, sagey-mint pants, pops of print and colour!  She got 26 pieces at an average cost per piece of $8.02 or $10.91 including my thrift consultation fee.  I gotta say, that's a little higher than I like to see but we did not have any filled sticker discount cards and it was not a sale day.  Nonetheless, those sandals would retail $100 or more and we already discussed the blazer! 
Even at full VV prices, Jenise did well!

What made the night extra-interesting was my predicament... helping Jenise, a 22yo gorgeous girl with a body like an Olympic volleyball athlete, then there was a troop of tall blonde German women at the fitting rooms, 7 of them.  SEVEN.  All speaking a foreign language looking all chic, mulling about.  That's a lot of tall(er) blonde(r) youth for this 40yo to handle at once.  Luckily, I'm a professional so I just held it together and came home for 8 steins of beer in their honour.  Kidding, I don't like beer.  It was wine.  

Jenise has everything she needs to get going on her next life adventure!  Thank you so much for the fun shopping trip, Jenise, and best of luck in your new job!

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