Tagged: Shopping

Christmas Wish List

Christmas List | The Ultimate

I don’t know about you, but I never get any useful gift ideas from all the lovely guides that everyone puts out there for Christmas. I like to give people weird, personal things, stuff that they hopefully wouldn’t think of and certainly wouldn’t be put on any guide. But for ME? I want all that stuff. Allll the artisanal table linens, the monthly perfume subscriptions, the cozy slippers. Basically I’ve spent the last month navigating a minefield of personal consumption, and there have been some casualties. In fact, there have been so many that I hereby refuse to admit exactly how many of these items I now or will soon own, whether from serious hints to interested parties or by more…direct means. You get the picture.

1. Weekender Love that print!
2. Bird’s Feet Useless, pretty, and a little creepy. My favorites.
3. Rock, Paper, Scissors Necklace Monserat de Lucca also has some killer zodiac necklaces…
4. Decanter and Tumblers Cheers!
5. Butter Dish The cutest butter dish.
6. Cashmere Sweater THE SOFTEST SWEATER. Seriously it is so damn cozy. And it’s such a good shape.
7. Marble Handled Cutting Board Very lovely and hefty.
8. Mesh Flats These are so delicate and flattering; perfect fancy flats.
9. Interchangeable Curling Iron Isn’t this the best idea?? Also so beautiful.
10. Earrings Perfect for Valentine’s Day.
11. Cannabis Chocolates Well now they’re legal in Washington, so…
12. Mini Rider Bag The snakeskin and black hardware are on point.

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4 Favorite Winter Coats

Winter Coats | The Ultimate

Fall shopping insanity is fully upon me now, and all I can think about–and surreptitiously look for when I’m supposed to be working–is boots and sweaters and COATS. Mmmm I love coats.

I tried using a few words above to explain why these four in particular caught my eye, but upon further review they’re totally cryptic and I should probably redo it but I’m not gonna. Instead I’m just adding more down here, for the streamlined and logical experience that every designer strives to give to their blog posts :)

1. SEXY. SO SEXY. Going weak at the knees. Go on sale for half off pretty plz.
2. So many good things going on in the one…the cocoon shape + biker style + leather trim + color blocking + olive being one of those colors? Whoever designed this coat deserves mad props for cramming in ALL the trends.
3. Lovely simple car coat (that comes in camel and black too!) The cut makes it look more like Max Mara than Mango. Which is the dream, isn’t it?
4. CHEAP. SO CHEAP. And it’s really surprisingly hard to find a good leopard coat–I like that this one is fuzzy but not actually furry, and the print is nice and dark, not all crazy contrast-y like many leopard prints.

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Tech Time

Tech | The Ultimate

I’ve been doing a lot of shopping lately for tech accessories–why you ask? Well, I’m of the opinion that the best way to deal with having shitty outdated devices is to bedazzle them, so that at least your phone looks cute even as you curse it while insanely weaving through traffic because it will no longer load Google Maps. Also it is only logical to buy a laptop’s worth of goods rather than replacing your laptop. Obviously.

Things I already own:

The headphones and the universal charger (it comes with a plug that’ll fit any phone, which has already been really fun to whip out and share with my weird non-iPhone-owning friends :), and they’re both lovely.

Things I didn’t know I wanted to own:

Disposable screen wipes! Who’d’ve thought. But they’d be really nice to slip into your laptop case or whatever. Also, after I went to a wedding this summer that had them, I discovered that instant (Polaroid-ish) cameras are SO fun and addictive! Great for parties. Great for party favors!

Things I need but have inexplicably been putting off buying for years:

I NEED a laptop bag/backpack. I’ve been lugging around an awkward case without a handle for absolute ages, and it’s so dumb. That briefcase is technically a men’s one but it so does not look like it, right? And that backpack is insane(ly cool), and has a padded laptop pocket.

Things I don’t need but that are fun to look at:

Pretty phone cases. That brass one is gorgeous, and the Etsy shop has lots of other equally awesome designs.

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Trays For Days

Trays | The Ultimate

How many trays is too many trays? That was a trick question. There’s no limit! Trays make everything better!! Therefore, my goal is to have at least one on every flat surface of my apartment. I just bought #1, no idea where I’m putting it, doesn’t matter. That’s the beauty of the tray–it can go anywhere, be anything. Within reason. Don’t ask it to be a piece of cheese. But serve a piece of cheese? Yes, it can do that.

(Sorry I’m talking nonsense, I’m a bit dazed from spending three hours taping off all the fiddly little hardware bits on a trunk in preparation for painting it. The next post will be much more legitimate, I promise.) Trays forever!!

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Everyday Tees

Everyday Tees | The Ultimate

Up until recently, I worked in a regular office, and wore regular office-y clothes–skirts, silk blouses, etc. I didn’t much question my sartorial decisions, and neither did anyone else. But about half a year ago, I started to work from home. And I immediately noticed that most people when I told them about it, would say, “Oh yeah? Sweatpants all day every day?! NICE.” (Or, you know, something along those lines.)

To which I would answer with an emphatic NOPE; it is not nice. On the days that I spend sprawled braless, sweat-panted, and generally unkempt on the couch, I do not feel good about myself. AND I’ve noticed that those days seem to mysteriously correspond with the ones where I find myself shoveling off-brand Froot Loops from the box into my mouth at any moment when I don’t need both my hands on the keyboard. What I’m trying to say is it’s a snowball effect.

On the other hand, it’s ridiculous to wear anything near as nice as my old clothes when the only being that’s going to see me before nightfall is Lucy. And she doesn’t judge. (In fact, I think she likes the Froot Loop days the best…) So usually I manage to compromise, and that means a lot of soft and comfy, but still very pretty tees. I’m always on the hunt for more, so here’s a handful that I particularly approve of! Some I own and love (#2, #5), some I just bought and am quite excited about (#6, #8), and the rest I’m seriously considering (ie waiting for my next paycheck).

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Let’s Go Camping

Let's Go Camping | The Ultimate

For the most part, I am that very girly girl who likes manicures, champagne, Jane Austen; dislikes beer, sporting events, sweatpants. But I make a rabidly enthusiastic exception for camping. It doesn’t really matter to me whether it’s a miles-long backpacking trek through the wilderness, or day drinking at a campsite ten miles out of the city. I love it all!

And, as with pretty much everything else in life, it’s even MORE fun when there’s cute stuff to bring along. Every year I like to add a few things to my camping arsenal (which I keep in my trunk at all times, because you never know). So here are some things that I either have and love, or that I’m considering getting soon.

PS I had a hard time narrowing down all the things I wanted to include from Izola; even their stuff that clearly isn’t for camping is just as clearly perfect for camping (case in point) Also their flasks are amazing. I want ALL of them.

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Jim Jams

Jim Jams | The Ultimate

For the past few weeks I’ve been toying around with the idea of buying some dedicated sleepwear. This is partially because I have a terrible habit of just passing out in whatever I’ve worn during the day…but also because I have this fantasy of myself sashaying around in something cute before bed, probably with a face mask and a sophisticated novel.

But when I actually started shopping around, I found myself caught up in an existential crisis. I couldn’t make up my mind about basic questions of comfort and practicality (How warm did I want to be? Was I really willing to put on two whole pieces of clothing just to go to bed in?) But the important question, and what my confusion really boiled down to was, what was my sleepwear style? Did I fancy myself a no-nonsense button-down kind of gal? Maybe I was best suited to a fluttery nightgown sort of situation (accompanied of course by an undone fishtail braid). Or was I more of a lace trimmings and booty shorts lady of the night??

I soon realized how ridiculous this train of thought had gotten, so I tabled the motion and went with my gut. So now instead of wearing real clothes to bed, I just wear this guy at all times. Progress!

Onesie With Ears | The Ultimate

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Mirror Reflections

Mirrors | The Ultimate

  • Top Row:
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • Bottom Row:
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6

Back to decorating my desk area! Which maybe on my next post I’ll actually show you. I have a really unattractive “before”, but as of yet the “after” lives only in my dreams.

Anyway. The next item on my to-buy list was a (hopefully) big-ass round mirror. (I actually plan on using the desk almost entirely as a vanity–I don’t like to stare at myself while I work or anything, I swear!). I knew I wanted a round one to mirror (ha!) the round shape of my headboard…something you also haven’t seen, but patience, grasshopper. But then I stalled for quite a while because I couldn’t make up my mind between the two different styles I was considering. Did I want something simple and almost masculine, which would complement what I’ve got going on (in my head in the) rest of the room? Or did I want something a little fancy and glamaaa? To break up all the streamlined-ness?

So I’ll tell you right now what I reeeally wanted was #6, the Restoration Hardware salivation-inducer that is double the price of the next most expensive option. Isn’t it the perfect combination of all of the qualities I just discussed?? WAH. Moving on. Then it was between #3 and #4. I lurve me a good Venetian mirror, and that one is gorg. But it wouldn’t have looked right with the lamp I decided to go with. I briefly considered redoing everything, tearing out my hair, or never finishing it at all, but in the end I decided to go with #4.

I just got it today and it’s gloriously large and in charge. The finish is actually quite coppery, which isn’t what I’m going for so I’m going to lightly spray some gold over it, but leave a little copper peeking out for texture and whatnot. The only disappointing thing is that it’s beveled!! Which is not AT ALL noticeable in the product photos, and which in theory I hate so much…but in practice it’s actually not that noticeable IRL either, so I’m going to deal with it. Unless the Restoration Hardware one goes on sale, in which case it will be MINE.

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H&M PSA

H&M | The Ultimate

I need to interrupt my regular programming to tell y’all that there are some seriously high-quality, gorgeous basics to be bought at H&M, right MEOW! (God bless them by the way for finally doing eCommerce, remember how annoying that was when you actually had to struggle through crowds to snatch up this stuff?)

Anyway. It all started when I espied the leather jacket during one of my regular online H&M perusal sessions (Tuesday nights are pretty crazy around here). I clutched spasmodically at my keyboard, suffused with the near certainty that it was identical to the one my friend had bought last year and subsequently flaunted in my face nearly every time I saw her. As someone who already owns an embarrassing number of leather jackets, I can tell you that this jacket is not amazing just for the price; it’s one of the best classic shapes I’ve ever seen. When she confirmed that they were the same, I bought it without hesitation (closet, say hello to #8…)

(FYI it runs really small! I went two sizes up.)

Secondly, the cashmere scarf called my name. Not much to say about this, apart from the fact that clearly everyone should own one, and clearly this is the best price you’re going to find.

Lastly…so maybe I’m the kind of person who takes glamorous winter vacations. Or maybe I just shop for swimwear in January in an effort to scare myself into looking acceptable in it come summer. Either way, their swimwear right now is so pretty that I actually bought a bunch of different pieces. Initially I was most excited for this one, but it made the girls look…like they were boys :.( It would be gorgeous if you have any cleavage to speak of though! But the white bikini is a dream; it’s just alarmingly comfortable and flattering. I will say that the bottoms, though they’re lined, could be…even more lined. But they were like $10 and incredibly flattering, so I’m keeping them. I may just never get them wet.

So thank you H&M, for making more expensive brands look ridiculously overpriced. Oh, and just in case you’re as cheap as me and you felt the need for even more cheapness, you can get 20% off with a coupon code. Mwah.

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Meet Rockie

Rockie Bag | The Ultimate

Several years ago I had the shopping experience that is the dream of all shopping people, everywhere: I wandered aimlessly into a crappy little thrift shop, and five minutes and $50 later stumbled out with a perfect vintage Chloé bag held in my triumphant claw-like grip. I spent the next three years walloping the exterior of that bag all over dirty college-apartment surfaces, and turninf the interior into my personal recycling bin/candy horde. Basically, I took very bad care it. But she still looks amazing: worn, but in a casually awesome “Oh this old thing, I found it for $50 in a thrift shop in college” kind of way. Supes legit.

Now I realize this story is (seemingly!) unrelated to my friend Rockie (alternatively known as the “Black Wang”). But the point that I’m coming around to is that, before Chloé, I bought pretty nice leather bags. I accepted the fact that I was going to run them into the ground after a few years, and then I’d have to buy more. After her, I was spoiled for life. I didn’t buy another bag for ages. Instead, I embarked on an impossible quest for her indestructible, beautiful, and ludicrously inexpensive equivalent.

I did finally realize that such a score is a once-in-a-lifetime event, and I gave up on the price tag aspect of my search. But this made it even more difficult to take the plunge. I realized that the kind of bag I was looking for would be at least $800, which is like three trips to Vegas and not something I take lightly. Enter Ebay. I finally found a deeply discounted (but new!) Rockie, and made our relationship official.

A quick breakdown of how Rockie made the cut: I love his casual duffel-inspired shape and obviously the studs and perfect nubby leather. But he’s more than just for looks: he has both inner and outer pockets, is surprisingly capacious, and his lining is thick, silky, and durable. Some might prefer the Rocco, but they’re too large (and heavy!) for my needs. His only fault is that the shoulder strap is oddly short for wearing cross-body (unless you’re pretty little–I’m 5’6 for reference).

PS If you’re as into discussing the relative merits of investment handbags as I am, then you should check out The LifeStyled’s very informative post–girl knows her handbags!

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