Saturday, June 20, 2015

Find me on Instagram

Hello, I hope you're all well. I'm afraid to say Thrift Crush never got off the ground, nor have I had any time to blog here, with a toddler and a baby. If you want to follow my charity- shopping exploits (yes, I am still finding time to charity shop, although increasingly online), you can find me on Instagram at Kelly_Grungequeen. Hope to see you there! And maybe one day I'll be back in this wee space - just not for the foreseeable future! Xox

Monday, February 2, 2015

Canuck parka

Grenfell Handicrafts parka, Oxfam.

Meet my new bestie, a wool-lined canvas cotton coat with embroidered detail and fur-fringed pointy hood.

Do you really need another coat, you ask? True, I have many, but the bulk are ill-suited to my busy life as a Mom. A second-hand ankle-length double-breasted affair, or vintage French swing coat, lovely as they are, don't work that well for a gal living in maternity jeans and UGG boots.

Leather gloves & UGG boots: local charity shop.

This parka, made by Grenfell Handicrafts in Newfoundland, Canada, fits the bill: it works with my life right now, has that folksy look that I like, and is super warm to boot. The cotton exterior has been treated as it's waterproof too, just what I need as I slog around with a double pram in the rain. I wear it practically every day.

Funny how I came all the way to the UK to find a Canadian coat.

I found it while trolling Oxfam UK's website. it was a great deal, considering these retail new for the equivalent of 150 pounds. I'm pretty sure it's vintage (it was listed in the vintage section) as contemporary coats on the company's website look slightly different.

Oxfam online, by the way, is my new thrifting drug. An online charity shop is ideal for a gal who doesn't have the time to check out the plethora of shops in her 'hood. Generally, it's more expensive. But that means you look for the high-end stuff that you won't find locally, like this coat, and like the 1970s Bill Gibb knitwear I've featured in my inaugural post on Thrift Crush (teaser: there will be another Oxfam gem, a vintage tapestry coat by Mulberry, featured there soon).

Thanks for all your well-wishes and words of encouragement. Life is crazy now, but it is good!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

New Year, New Life

It's been a crazy couple months, but I just had to write and show you the latest addition to our wee brood, our most beloved Luke, now 8-weeks old but pictured here a few weeks old (in a darling zip-up sleeper I found at a charity shop, where all my baby/toddler clothing comes from outside of gifts).

We're experiencing sleep deprivation, and the tetchiness that accompanies that, like we've never known it, and, with a busy toddler, let's toss in a good measure of physical exhaustion - and not to forget my raging hormones. But life is good. We have two beautiful, healthy and happy kidlets to be thankful for.

Cashmere turtleneck: Thrifted in France
Wine-hued April Cornell wool dress/tunic: Thrifted in Canada
Vintage 1970s Rafael pendant: Gift
Hat and gloves: UK charity shops
Preloved granny booties: Ebay
Green wool coat with New Zealand label: UK charity shop.

On the style front, I'm living in maternity jeans, cashmere turtlenecks, and my UGG boots - not so inspiring. I'm dealing with about 20 pounds of extra weight post-baby (way more than I had with Adam), so nothing is fitting, and I feel fat, frumpy and generally blekky when I look at myself.

I did manage to dress up for Adam's Christmas concert, and I love the colour combo I came up with on the fly: purple and green, so artsy and dramatic. It made me happy. The entire outfit except for the maternity tights is second-hand or vintage. My latest and greatest find you see here: the marbled green and black wool coat made in New Zealand - I love the puff on the collar!

Dsquared2 trench coat: UK charity shop
Granny boots: Ebay
Rest: New on sale, gifted or end-of-line.

As you know, I have a - um - problem with coats. Too many, in other words. When I found this pink princess-style cord trench with brown leather trim in the local charity shop last month, I almost gagged. The colour is Pepto Bismol pink. Eew! The label: Dsquared2, an insanely over-priced international label started by Canadian twins (coats go for several thousand CAD).

But when I went back the next week, not only was the coat still there, but it had also been marked down by 50 percent. By then, it had kind of grown on me.

It may end up in the growing "sell" heap (for when I start my online shop in oh, five years), but it's in my closet for now. That's the cool thing about thrifting: you can experiment with different looks - and, in this case - labels you'd never dream of buying new.

Not surprisingly, my thrifting passion has transformed with life's recent changes. I don't have heaps of time for prowling the charity shops these days, nor am I making much of an effort with my outfits - comfort and ease are reigning supreme at the mo - but I still have the treasure-hunting bug and have found some beauts on my hunts. Like many busy (or lazy?) peeps, I've discovered online shopping - Amazon for Christmas pressies; for my charity shop addiction.

Lady Soul denim coat: thrifted in France
Gloves and scarf: UK charity shops.

If I can't get around to featuring my finds here in full-on outfits, I may throw them on a body form and add them to my new (though post-free at the mo) blog, Thrift Crush. I feel the need for simplicity these days. Though I still love visiting your blogs when I can, I feel that I'm giving all I can give of myself - my life, my kids, the whole lot - at this time, across all platforms, if you will. I'm craving a curated and - forgive me, it sounds odd - slightly clinical approach to my passion, a place where I can literally list the amazing second-hand, thrifted and vintage/collectible pieces I've found and haven't featured here, and delve into their history a bit more. We'll see if Thrift Crush will even get off the ground. Finding a moment to do anything by myself is rare, so blogging seems an unattainable luxury!