A Jumpsuit in the Arizona Desert

A Jumpsuit in the Arizona Desert

A Jumpsuit in the Arizona Desert

It should come as no surprise that while I was staying in a tiki bus at The Shady Dell, I had to take advantage of the scenery. It’s not often that I’m surrounded by a collection of exquisite specimens of antique trailers. Bisbee, Arizona really lends itself to western wear infused outfits. I thrifted this jumpsuit in Casa Grande and it became a staple on my trip. It’s not hard to imagine why a jumpsuit in the Arizona desert is a great choice. It’s roomy enough to not overheat during the day, yet long enough to provide coverage in the cooler evenings. I for one prefer to wear a loose long sleeved something during the day in the AZ sun. It protects me from the harsh rays of the soleil. My go-to is usually a army surplus camo jacket. (For reference check out Road to Nowhere or The Saguaro Park)

OUTFIT DETAILS

BAILEY’S OF HOLLYWOOD black hat – c/o (similar here)
ALDO gemstone sunglasses c/o (similar here)
ALDO rearka earrings – c/o 
THRIFTED  striped jumpsuit
THRIFTED  white western belt
VINTAGE  woven handbag
ALDO  drerissa boots – c/o 

A Western Elton John

The more I look at these photos, the more I get a western Elton John vibe. Perhaps it is the sunglasses! With that said, I do share a birthday with Elton John, so the correlation makes even more sense. When wearing a jumpsuit in the Arizona desert, it’s impossible for me to not add a touch of western flare to it too. Now I can’t wait to go back to AZ. 

photographs – Jesse Sand

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Thrifted Halloween Costumes

Thrifted Halloween Costumes

Thrifted Halloween Costumes

Unlike some people, I am always a last minute shopper when it comes to Halloween. Whether I’m Lucy from Peanuts, Nancy Drew, or any number of characters from the Rocky Horror Picture Show, the outfits come together on the 11th hour. If this seems stress inducing, I promise it’s not. Especially when my thrifted Halloween costumes are bought from Value Village. My best looks are always thrifted after all. They’re always one-of-a-kind and end up being some of my favourite pieces in my normal wardrobe. This year I was feeling inspired by music and decided to create three easy Halloween looks based on different genres. All three looks include pieces that I see time and time again when I’m on my usual thrifting hunt at Value Village.

COUNTRY & WESTERN

Square dancing outfits are ripe with possibilities. They also appear in the dress racks on a semi regular basis; my collection of square dancing frocks is a testament to this. Have I ever square danced in my life? No, but that’s beside the point. Whether you’re a fan of Kacey Musgraves or a true blue Dolly Parton fan, picking the country & western music genre is an easy and fun way to dress up for Halloween. Plus the cowboy boots are a staple for any closet! Can’t find a square dancing dress? No problem! When it comes to this costume, it’s the accessories that truly make it! 

COSTUME ESSENTIALS

  • cowboy boots
  • cowboy hat
  • bandana
  • western style belt

DISCO DOLL

Channel the ghost of Studio 54 into a disco inspired costume. Disco may have had a short run as a popular musical genre but the clothing was without a doubt fabulous. It’s all about being the shiniest haze of glitter. I was overjoyed to find this silver lamé romper while thrifting and it inspired the entire look. Lamé anything is disco incarnate. Achieving this look requires finding items that remind you of a disco ball. It’s very simple! And add a platform heel for some 70s authenticity.

COSTUME ESSENTIALS

  • silver or gold everything
  • rhinestones galore
  • platform shoes 
  • statement earrings

PUNKKKKKKKKK

Now this particular costume is all about revisiting my old roots. As a teenager, I dabbled in this look as my everyday wear. Fortunately my sartorial choices have matured (somewhat) and I’m able to deem this as a “costume” now. Value Village is a treasure trove for old band t shirts and plaid skirts which is truly the staple of this look. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, cutting the sleeves off a jean jacket and spraying bleach all over it will give this costume a genuine punk detail. And what’s a punk costume without a little DIY magic? The whole genre is based on that aesthetic! Also a few artfully placed safety pins are always a good idea.

COSTUME ESSENTIALS

  • PLAID!
  • What’s a punk without some studs?
  • distressed + bleached denim
  • motorcycle or doc boots
  • a band t shirt

Thrifted Halloween Costumes

Halloween is a time to enable our inner child and what better way to do so than dressing up as your favourite musical genre? Whether it be a groovy garage rock foxy lady from the 60s or a teeny bopper pop princess from the 80s, your imagination is the limit! And when it comes to searching for the essential pieces, thrifted Halloween costumes are easy to put together when you shop at Value Village! It’s the best place to find one-of-a-kind pieces that will make for a show stopping costume. I think these outfits speak for themselves. 😎

Photographs – Jesse Sand

This post is sponsored by Value Village. All opinions on this blog are my own.

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Goldfield Ghost Town

Goldfield Ghost Town

Goldfield Ghost Town

Goldfield Ghost Town is located in the exact place you would expect to find it: Arizona overlooking the Superstition Mountains. Like, come on…. there’s a place that has such an auspicious name? Of course I needed to visit. And as it happens, the ghost town is cute, photogenic, and has a few things to do! I have mentioned it previously in my Mesa Arizona City Guide, but here’s a closer look at this western treasure.

A Ghost Town To-Do List

One would think that going to a ghost town would be just that: visiting a town that’s been abandoned and void of any activity aside from urban exploration. But you’d be wrong. Dead wrong. The Goldfield Ghost Town has a flurry of activity happening in every corner – it’s not a place for ghosts to chill by any means. Some fun things you can do there are:

  • Firstly: take in the EPIC view of the Superstition Mountains!
  • get ice cream (I tried it and can vouch for its deliciousness
  • go on a zipline (I passed on this activity as heights and speed aren’t really my thing after eating ice cream)
  • check out the saloon complete with boots hanging from the ceiling
  • there’s a bordello tour! 
  • take a mine tour and appreciate how hard that job is
  • if you’re not squeamish, there’s a reptile exhibit 
  • For more suggestions check out their informative website here

OUTFIT DETAILS

BAILEY’S OF HOLLYWOOD black hat – c/o (similar here)
THRIFTED hawaiian dress
LEVIS customized jacket – c/o (check out the Levi’s Tailor Shop post here)
THRIFTED  white western belt
ALDO  drerissa boots – c/o 

Goldfield Ghost Town

Goldfield Ghost Town is a western kitschy gem in Arizona but the fun doesn’t stop there. If you’re ever in the Palm Springs / Joshua Tree area I would recommend swinging by Pioneertown. I always make a point of popping by whenever I’m nearby if only to grab a meal at Pappy and Harriet’s. Of course I’ve blogged about that ghost town too so be sure to check out this post and this post. For more ideas of what to do when you’re visiting the Mesa area, be sure to check out my Mesa Arizona City Guide!

photographs – Jesse Sand

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Queen Street West

Queen Street West

Queen Street West

Fall has arrived abruptly as per usual. Will I be posting summer-ish looks well into the fall? Yes, yes I will. Half of the time I’m sneaking away to Arizona anyway so why adhere to weather? Dress for the weather you want is what I always say! This coming from a woman who’s had the first stages of frostbite on her feet may not be a vote of confidence though. 

With the first frosting on the grass and a golden tinge to the leaves, I always reach for this mohair magic mustard coat. And after many mendings to the lining and hem over the years, I hope it will continue to be a closet staple for several more years to come. It’s the best. It compliments my blue eyes (my opinion) and it’s so dang 60s chic, I love it to shreds. That might be a literal statement if I continue to wear it so regularly. Here is my latest MMCOOTD (Mustard Mohair Coat Outfit of The Day) dressed for a Queen Street Edge.

The Mustard Mohair Coat

I’ve written more than one love letter to this particular coat. Curious how else I wore it? Perhaps styled with a rusty ultrasuede dress at COPS Doughnuts Toronto. Or perhaps a self titled post like The Mustard Mohair Coat? I think it really showed it’s true glory styled with a plaid shirt in Hyde Park though. That and the million other times it appeared on my Instagram feed such as here and here.

OUTFIT DETAILS

RAYBAN aviator sunglasses
VINTAGE mustard mohair coat 
THRIFTED  blanket vest
UNKNOWN old turtleneck, not sure where it’s from 🤔
LEVIS
mile high super skinny denim – c/o
FENDI vintage bag – thrifted (similar here)
MATISSE caty boot – c/o 

Queen Street West

Now that we’ve established that this coat is my everything… I’d like to make mention that this outfit is 1/2 thrifted and 1/2 not. I say this because mixing old with new has always been a major component to my style. Mixing old and new doesn’t have to look like you’re stepping out of a time capsule; although I do enjoy dressing like that too! I’m always championing thrift over new and I hope this serves as some inspiration on that. And perhaps maybe even serve as an example of how a really special piece can be worn year after year and still look fresh because of its interesting cut, lush fabric, and unique shape. Buy for love AND longevity. 

As always, thanks for stopping by!

photographs – CC Ruth

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A Little Western Flare

A Little Western Flare

A Little Western Flare

Having a little western flare with any of my outfits has become more commonplace over the last few years. This outfit is no exception. I found the tiered square dancing skirt on a thrifting spree and it works oh so well with my white cowboy-esque boots. Then topped off with a Bailey’s of Hollywood hat. Keep scrolling for all the details.

OUTFIT DETAILS

BAILEY’S OF HOLLYWOOD black hat – c/o (similar here)
BANANA REPUBLIC earrings – c/o 
THRIFTED  leopard belt
ARITZIA top 
THRIFTED square dancing skirt (similar here)
ALDO  drerissa boots – c/o 

On an unrelated note, I love the Edmonton Public Library. For the past 10 years, it’s been my go-to as opposed an endless mountain of books. Have you ever tried to move a ton of books? I have… in addition to my record collection. Might I advise that only keeping books you absolutely love is the only way to live (and move). Get 👏 A 👏 Library 👏 Card 👏. 

And on a related note, for more outfit posts, check out my Style section.

Photographs – Jesse Sand

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Back to School Thrifting

Back to School Thrifting

Back to School Thrifting

While my schooling days have long since been completed, I still love a good Back to School Thrifting session when autumn rolls around. I’m a firm believer that one does not need to attend school to achieve a studious look! And for those who are actually heading back, thrifting is definitely the way to go. It’s the best way to find unique pieces for reasonable prices all while reducing carbon footprints. If those aren’t reason enough, maybe this (nearly) monochrome look may inspire you! It’s a creation from my weekly trips to Value Village – my favourite place to thrift. Whether it’s a new tiki mug or a scarf to tie around my purse straps, I never leave empty handed. As an experienced thrifter, I have a few tips for adding some vintage flare to your back to school shopping.

Say Yes to Berets

What says back to school more than a beret? I have found so many, I nearly have a colour wheel of berets including this wool pinkie one. They’re so easy to style and go with just about everything. Bonus if you match the beret with your entire outfit like I decided to do. It’s a bold statement but it’s channeling my inner Cher Horowitz from Clueless. Add a dash of the Funny Face THINK PINK song and you’re on your way to a very referential lewk.

Brooch It

For anyone dipping a toe into thrifting, I suggest hitting the jewelry and accessory sections first. While the volume of items in that area is substantial, it’s also a lot less overwhelming than the racks of clothing. Plus, jewelry is easier to incorporate into your already existing wardrobe. My favourite accessory to mix and match are pins and buttons. I love collecting my initials, cameo pins, and ones with funny sayings then pinning a group of them onto my jackets. It’s a great way to personalize a denim jacket or add a little interest to an all pink dress. Yes, that collar just needed a little something extra and the polar bear fit the bill!

A Classic Backpack

A backpack is a back to school staple. In fact, it’s just a practical bag for life in general. Can you guess the best place to find unique and rad vintage ones? If you guessed thrifting at Value Village, you’d be correct. I scooped up this 90s teddy bear backpack as soon as I saw it. (TIP: always grab things you’re interested in because they might not be there when you come back!) It really added a pop to the otherwise monochromatic look while giving me even more Clueless-esque accessory points.

Playing With Colour

While basics are great to have in any functional wardrobe, I do love finding outlandish 60s pieces that jump out. Things the colour of candy or patterns that look like a grandmother’s couch. Playing dress up is a great way to meet new people – trust me on this one. The people who come up and compliment your outfit could be your next best friend. Walking around my neighbourhood in this look I made a few elderly women smile but also chatted with a girl about her dog after she praised my pink lewk. A bold look is a great litmus test for like-minded people, that’s for sure.

Back to School Thrifting

I hope this served as some inspiration when second-hand shopping for back to school clothes! One of my favourite times of year to thrift is right now. There’s so much dreamy wool to layer and tartans to be mismatched. It’s a maximalist power clasher’s dream and I cannot wait to share some more of my fall outfits I’ve thrifted from Value Village! If you’re a fellow thrifter, I would love to hear what your favourite find has been so far!

Photographs – Jesse Sand

This post is sponsored by Value Village. All opinions on this blog are my own.

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