work the neighborhood


Hi friends, Jessi here:)
After I wrote about getting my groove back a few weeks ago, I had a few people email me or call me with suggestions or offering help to figure it all out. I'm slowly trying to get some of those women to help me write tutorials to share their wisdom with the world (or the handful of the world that reads my blog) and this is the first! Erin has some awesome tips for making your money stretch in the fashion world. Check out her blog here and you'll want to read this pronto - cause she's always looking amazing. And of course, her sweet, adorable, want-to-eat-her-up baby doesn't hurt! http://blog.n-toft.com/

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All summer long, I feel like I've been extra sensitive to the noise in the world. In the figurative sense. I'd start feeling like every bit of information/art/news story/beauty/design/statistic/fashion/ impression/opinion that I consumed was slowly paralyzing me, rendering me dizzy and ineffective. I know that sounds dramatic, but that's just how it felt sometimes.

For this season, I felt the need to perform major surgery on my lifestyle and everyday habits; to strip away the unhelpful noise in order to keep my brain and heart functioning properly. Let's call it the "throw off everything that hinders" plan. It included action steps like "unfollow visual inspiration and design blogs and even all the famous ones" and "stop getting cookbooks at the library that would only stare at me blamingly for three weeks" and "take most of my clothes to the consignment store." And one big thing was this:

Stop online shopping.

Ouch. Shopping or browsing online is fun and sometimes very useful when you need something specific. But for me, looking at a little online "inspiration" would eventually turn me into a drooling, lustful mess, convinced I needed to juuuuust these six new things to feel cute. And then I'd get frustrated that I couldn't decide between the eighty options, or justify spending money. And then it would turn into a not-so-subtle undercurrent of dissatisfaction and covetousness. Not a lifegiving activity for me, let's just say.

The problem with the internet is it's billions of options, and apparently, what I need for a peaceful mind is fewer options, fewer things to think about. So! In attempt to work on my fall groove ( like Jessi wrote about the other day), but avoid the pitfalls of the internet or mall, I decided to instead shop local. Verrry local. As in, my neighborhood driveways.

Yes, garage sales. They thrill me to no end. Stick with me, fancy people.

Definitely fewer options there. But when I found something that I liked, I was completely thrilled and only one dollar poorer. And let me tell you, I had some fun times driveway-hopping this summer! Niels would let me run wild for an hour or two, and I'd return with goodies like these:





































Those things are kind of cute, right? The jeans are my new favorites, I feel like they were sewn together by angels just for me. Or child laborers working for F21. Either way, they were four dollars well spent.

And can I tell you a ghetto secret? Don't tell anyone, because it's slightly creepy and I have pride. Every now and then, I'd come across some super nice clothes that weren't my size, or just maybe a little too southern baptist for my taste. At only a dollar-ish each, I would buy them anyway and add them to my consignment store pile. And then shop there with the proceeds. Boom, fall wardrobe complete.

Maybe I should call this post "How to shop for yourself with zero money" or "Get friendly with your local consignment store!" or "Simplify your life: shop driveways." I haven't decided on the title yet, but the moral of the story is all three of those things.

What do you say, ladies? You, a twenty, and a cup of coffee this Saturday? Sounds good to me.