My wardrobe culling... The entire contents of my wardrobe 2 years on.

Last month we decided to climb into the roof space of our house to snoop around for the first time since buying our place. We found no forgotten treasures... or dead bodies... thank goodness.

I imagine that you are wondering how any of this is relevant to wardrobe culling?  Well, the manhole to the roof space is directly over our wardrobe.  The entire wardrobe had to be emptied so that we could move it across the floor to access the manhole.  It was much too heavy to move otherwise, and that's saying something.

While we were at it, we re-modeled the whole room, so I emptied all my other cupboards thinking I would organise everything once and for all.  I assembled everything in the lounge room in no particular order on my clothing racks and I took a picture. 

This is NOT what I saw though the lens:


Rather this is what stood before me:

Disappointing huh? And this doesn't even include the stuff I bought recently, thanks to Country Road's oxymoronic spend and save event!

It's been just over two years since I first began culling my wardrobe and creating what I like to refer to as my 'ideal wardrobe'.  My mission was to create the perfect capsule wardrobe, for work and for play, with most items interchangeable between the two occasions. I had initially hoped that this would occur within 6 months... but I can safely say that 2 years on, I'm not quite there yet.  Who am I kidding?  I have failed.

I have read many other bloggers' blog entries who have culled their wardrobes, all about their culling successes.  I longingly look at their racks scarcely filled with a few select 'pieces' and their couple pairs of ankle booties lined up underneath... what seems to be the perfect capsule wardrobe.  I feel envious reading about excess spare coat hangers and empty space in their wardrobes. I suppose at least this envy for minimalism is not as revolting as being jealous of other people's physical possessions, right?

I guess it's back to the drawing board for me...


Selling on eBay 101 - A quick guide for selling used clothing, shoes and accessories on eBay

A reader recently emailed me and another commented seeking tips for selling clothing on eBay. I hope I don't come across as teaching grandmother how to suck eggs (since so many of my readers already successfully sell on eBay)... but regardless, here is my version of Selling on eBay 101.

The beginning of my eBay selling adventures

I have been selling on eBay since 2006.  I started to sell bits and pieces when I realised one day that I had no more storage space to add to my rather large collection of shoes (approximately 120 pairs at one point), so I had to get rid of some to justify buying any more.

One of the first things I sold on eBay was a pair of boots that I had been storing under my bed for two years after purchasing them. I recall buying the boots for $8 at one of Myer's generous take-a-further-90%-off-the-reduced-price sales. The boots were quite trendy for their time - a slouchy camel suede stiletto boot, but a little too big for me.  Believe it or not, but the boots sold for $210 after I starting bidding at 99 cents! As you can imagine this really fueled my eBay selling passion and all of a sudden I started eyeing off what else I could sell to make (back) some money. The rest, as they say, is history.

Is selling on eBay worth the effort?

Although eBay is not as lucrative as it once was due to the poor economy and most bidders looking to get a good bargain, you may still find that it's worth your while.  Below is a snap shot of my selling totals from earlier this week:

Based on the numbers above, this equates to roughly $36 dollars per item.  Some may say, that this is not worth the hassle... well I wish I were in their shoes! For me, if it wasn't for eBay, there is no way I could justify continuously replenishing my wardrobe. With three mortgages, car loans and bills to pay, not to mention planning home improvements, an overseas holiday and a family in the not too distant future, eBay is my saviour and I am thankful that people buy my stuff!

Getting started

Before you get too excited culling and photographing your items, I will point out that you need to register as a seller on eBay and also have a PayPal account.  If you do not, it's easy to register for both. Each site provides clear and easy instructions.

Building a reputation before you start selling

If you have never sold or purchased anything from eBay, before you start selling, I recommend that you build a little reputation for yourself. Buy an item or two (not expensive) just to get some feedback.  Having some positive feedback helps potential buyers feel confident that you are a not a troll or a robot and that you are capable of following through with a transaction. If you already do have some feedback as a buyer, then you are good to start selling!

Terms and conditions

You may also like to consider drafting some terms and conditions.  You may include information on payment, postage cost and your policy as to combined shipping and international bidders, keeping in mind that eBay policies and terms and conditions will overwrite these, if they are inconsistent. It's all well and good to make sweeping statements about when you expect payment and threatening to open an 'unpaid item case' immediately if payment is not received; but keep in mind that eBay allows buyers 4 days from auction end to submit payment before a seller can successfully start an unpaid item dispute.

Photographing your item

Always have clear and multiple photographs of your item from all angles.  I usually photograph the garment from the front and the back. I photograph the label and any details including flaws. Details may include the lapels on a jacket, the texture of the fabric, any pockets or zips and buttons. Flaws may include any stains, pulls and holes etc.  I try to take my photographs in natural light.

You want your photos to be the best possible representation of your item. The photos will help protect you against disputes and from receiving negative feedback on the basis that the item is not as described. It's unfortunate, but there are a minority out there who are fraudsters. A person such as this will receive your item in perfect condition, but complain regarding a non existent flaw to try to get a refund. Cover your bases.

I've noticed that some people only ever post stock photographs of the item that they are selling. Although it's nice to see the item how it was originally marketed, I like to see the actual item being sold when shopping on eBay- especially if the item has been used (eBay has recently implemented new policies about this). On this basis I do the same for my bidders when listing my items - clear photos of the ACTUAL item that I am selling. Also be aware that some companies actively protect their intellectual property rights and if caught using their photographs eBay will be notified by the rights owner and your listing will be taken down.

Preparing an item description

There are two schools of thought when it comes to item descriptions... "less is more" and "more is more".  I'm of the "more is more" school of thought.

First. Clean your item! Receiving a smelly and dirty used garment in the post is not pleasant. Do not sell dirty garments.

Be honest about the condition of your item in your description. Don't try to pretend that a flaw isn't there.  If you can see it, so will your buyer. I would rather deal with a buyer who is pleasantly surprised by the condition of my item than one who is disappointed. Look out for deodorant stains, seam slippage, pulls and general stains.

I almost always provide measurements for the item that I am selling. Although providing measurements does not always prevent potential bidders from asking stupid questions about fit, it does prevent 5 questions asking for item measurements.  I take measurements of my items lying flat (e.g. across shoulders, armpit to armpit, across waist, rise, across hips and length).  I always try to provide an inner sole measurement when selling shoes and if the inner sole is inaccessible, then I provide my foot measurement and a description of the fit on me.

Your item has sold. Now what?
  1. Send your buyer an invoice - generated from your eBay sold items dashboard.
  2. Wait for payment.
  3. Once payment has been received, pack (always use tissue paper) and send your item
I am guilty of recycling tissue paper from Net-a-Porter... that's some expensive tissue paper right there!

I hope that this post was helpful for someone out there.

Please let me know if you would like me to write about any other aspects of selling on eBay. For example, have you set your buyer requirements strictly to reduce your number of non-paying bidders? Or how about tips for chasing payment and opening unpaid item cases.  If you never have opened an unpaid item case, you should start, not only will you get back your final value fees (if the buyer does not pay), but it ensures that the buyer requirements tool functions for all.

Happy selling!

June: a month of extreme culling and shopping

I toyed with the idea of commencing this post with my name followed by the declaration that I am a shopaholic... but I will not. I will save this opening sentence for another month.

In June I culled over 30 items from my wardrobe.  My eBay tally from these sales exceeded well over $1,500.

I'm not sure how much I spent on new additions to my wardrobe, but I can guarantee that it was less than the above mentioned amount because I have some eBay proceeds left over.

Pictured below are just some of my purchases.  One is being worn to death, one was culled tonight, one has proven to be less comfortable than I imagined and one has not yet been worn. Can you guess which is which? What I am trying to illustrate here is that 2 years on from commencing my ideal wardrobe journey, I still make mistakes when shopping.

Witchery knit (culled) , Mimco scarf (worn to death), Witchery leather front leggings (still with tags) and A.P.C. booties (disappointingly uncomfortable).

Apart from these purchases, I also bought a chunky Country Road cardigan.  This cardigan was culled tonight, as well as the Witchery knit, after I decided that chunky knits should only be worn by those who are not so chunky.

Also hanging in my wardrobe next to the unworn Witchery leggings, are my unworn Everlane purchases - two silk shirts, four t-shirts and a cashmere cardigan. I'm looking forward to wearing these, but lately, due to the long mentally exhausting hours I've been putting in at work, I grab to wear what's easy and familiar. All the things I wore last Winter... why do I even bother shopping for new stuff?

Images sourced from:, and

DIY: Sprucing up a crusty bathroom on a budget!

For the past three months (gosh it took ages) we have been sprucing up one of our bathrooms.  We probably could have done it quicker had it not been for laziness, out of stock items and problematic plumbing - but we got there in the end. I will not go into chapter and verse about what we did and how we did it, but instead let the pictures do the talking.

Here are the BEFORE pictures:

I am not the biggest fan of classic heritage bathrooms (unless done well), but because we plan to do a complete renovation down the track, we did not want to invest too much effort and money into this project.  You can't tell from the pictures, but we were dealing with leaking and corroded taps, chipped enamel fixtures and a water damaged wood vanity.  We set our budget at not more than a few hundred dollars.

In the end we sanded back, re-stained and varnished the vanity as well as replaced all the tap ware and fittings. We came in well under budget thanks to some great bargain finds at Bunnings and Recollections and reviving what we had (basin, vanity and mirror). I also replaced the wooden door knobs on the wood vanity with some nice shiny stainless steel ones from IKEA to match with all the other chrome fixtures.

Here is what our bathroom looks like now:

I'm pretty happy with the results, but in hindsight, I wish I had gone a shade darker with the stain... there's always something!

May Purchases... Thank you eBay saved searches!

Do any of my readers utilise eBay saved searches? I do and this is the second month in a row where something I have been looking for for months has finally turned up. Maybe due to the wardrobe culling trend taking the world by storm? And maybe this is was my sinister plan all along... to write about how good it feels to cull and eBay and then snipe all your culled bargains on eBay.

Anyways, back on topic, May was another lean month in the spending department (possibly I was subconsciously preparing myself for the blowout that June would prove to be - more on that another day). I have spent just under $200 and added the following items to my wardrobe:

Weekend by Jane Lamerton striped short sleeve top, Witchery long sleeve leopard sleeve sweat and Country Road 'Sian' biker boots

The Country Road boots are the same style that I took to the US with me last year and then unceremoniously culled (maybe a little before their time) to make room in my luggage for all the shopping that I did.  I have missed them a lot, but now I have them back!  The morning of the auction ending I set two alarm clocks to remind myself that I had something to bid on and and then I patiently sat in front of my laptop and sniped them in the last seconds. I was red faced and my heart was pounding and my boyfriend thought I was a lunatic... but I got them in the end... I got them! So happy.

The Witchery Philip Lim knock-off leopard sleeve sweat, found on the sale rack, was acquired using mostly Witchery reward vouchers and it is for wearing around the home. I'm now on the hunt for some funky tracky-dacks (tracksuit/sweat pants) to go with it.

I found the Weekend by Jane Lamerton navy and white striped short sleeve top during one of my de-stressing lunchtime "walks". There was only an 8 and a 14 left on the rack (reduced to $25 from $59.95) and I opted for the 14 for a loose look. Given how happy I've been with my three quarter sleeve Jane Lamerton tops I bought last year, I think this was a good buy and it is unlike all my other striped tops.

Edited to add:

Don't know how eBay saved searches work?

You can save your searches on eBay.  You will be emailed daily (if you so elect) when items matching your search terms are listed.

After entering your search terms in the search box, simply click "Save Search" (circled in red below):

A pop-up window will come up where you can elect to be emailed daily when items meeting your search terms are listed:

Never miss an item you have been searching for!

Images sourced from:,, (archives) and

All Day Heels follow up...

I think it is only fair that I do a follow up post about my experiences with All Day Heels after recently receiving this comment on my last post from Sara Yared from All Day Heels:
Just for transparency, I’m Sara from All Day Heels. I hope you don’t mind my posting here but I was wondering if you’d had another chance to try out Insolia? You did mention you had bought more a while back so I was curious to see if they’d worked out for you? I'll try and elaborate a bit on them to give you some answers.
Firstly it sounds like you did try them in a pair of already very uncomfortable heels? Here's the thing. We say that you can typically wear your heels around 3 - 4 times longer in comfort when wearing them with Insolia. This is great for a pair of heels you can usually wear for 2 hours as you should then, by extrapolation, be able to wear them for 6 - even 8 - hours. Not so good, however, for a pair of shoes you can only wear for 5 minutes before they start to hurt. You'll only then get maybe 15 or 20 minutes wear. In other words there is only so much 'correction' they can do :)
Also, you are correct in saying that not all shoes are created equal. I have found varying degrees of success depending on the shoe I put them in. I’m not even sure myself if this is just tine degrees of placement or the shoes but I have definitely noticed they work better in some shoes compared to others.
As far as placement goes the trick is to have the tiny raised ‘bump’ at the front of your heel so it can rotate the bone and ‘lift’ you. You should feel some pressure, just not pain.
In regards to the backing strip, I couldn’t agree more! We’ve now improved this feature and our next batch – arriving any day now – has a vastly improved backing strip that you can peel off in a cinch.
Finally you are right about high arches. The shape of the Insolia contour is quite similar to the shape of the bottom of a foot with a higher arch. The "sameness" of the foot bottom to Insolia contour tend to negate some of the weight shift effect. Interestingly, some of the women who have higher arched feet do not need Insolia...they are already comfortable in HH shoes.
It is possible they just don't work with your feet and it's why we offer a money back guarantee. And we really do encourage people to take us up on this if they can’t get them to work.
You can see more about how they work here:
Best regards and thanks again for your fair and honest review."

I should be honest in writing that when I first tried All Day Heels I was looking for a product to put in my most uncomfortable shoes to make them comfortable. I know, I don't ask for much at all - only a modern day miracle of science!

After years of running around the city to and from work and at work in the most glamorous high heels, one day (around the time I hit 30) my feet just let it be known that enough was enough.  This made me quite sad, especially after I piled on a few kilograms... as there is nothing like a pair of heels to add some lift and elongate the body to appear slimmer.

Since failing to see any results when using these All Day Heels inserts in my D&G pumps (which by the way I ended up selling on eBay), I decided to try these inserts in a pair of mid-heel Country Road points.  These points seemed like the perfect candidate, since after only wearing them once they caused some pain in my metatarsal bone below my big toe (don't be too impressed, I had to look up the name of this bone). It may have been the combination of points plus heels that did it, but I was devastated to be in pain after paying $100+ for a pair of shoes which appeared seemingly comfy in shop, but weren't.

I write this post to inform you that after trying the All Day Heels inserts in these Country Road points, the heels are still a part of my shoe collection. Although, not my most comfortable heels (my round toe Country Road pumps win that prize), I can actually wear them now without feeling like I have just broken my big toe after only taking a few steps.

Thus far I have not tried the inserts in any other shoes as I have not felt the need after culling almost all shoes which were uncomfortable and otherwise shopping for shoes more wisely.

It's good to know though that if I do buy a dud pair of heels I can try All Day Heels in them to improve their comfort somewhat.  I do believe that sometimes miracles do happen, but just not the turning heels into flats type of miracles...

**In case anyone is wondering... I have not received any payment in money or in kind for writing this post.  I only felt that I should finally write a follow up post since I said that I would many moons ago.

Short, sharp and shiny April wrap up... almost in June

This month and last month we have been busy sprucing up what we affectionately refer to as the "crusty bathroom" or the "cats' bathroom" (since that is where the kitty litter trays live). I will share before and after pictures as soon as our little project is complete.  As per usual, this job has taken much longer to complete than anticipated and there isn't even any tiling involved!

I have been feeling a little jaded about almost everything lately - my job, my wardrobe, fashion in general, hence why I have been rather quiet in blogosphere, but to keep the momentum going I thought I would just quickly summarise what I've been buying lately (not much).

Wardrobe additions 
  1. Sussan leopard print tube skirt (see previous post). I have not worn this yet... hmmm.
  2. Sussan green jewelled necklace (see previous post).  Amazingly this did not cause the back of my neck to get inflamed, albeit I only wore it for a short period of time.
  3. Sussan blue jewelled earrings (see previous post).  Ditto re ear lobe inflammation.
  4. Country Road metallic linen jacket.  This is by far my most exciting purchase in years. It's a direct replacement for a jacket I wrote about in this post. It popped up on eBay and I did not hesitate to snap it up immediately (well I waited until the last second to bid like I always do).
  5. Witchery navy blue silk shirt with lace sleeves. Very pretty. I wore it to a degustation dinner (OMG so expensive! Never again, or at least not until we win lotto!) two weekends ago.
  6. Witchery navy blue ribbed cuffed pants. I wore them last weekend to breakfast with my Dickers.  Not too sure about this combo (and neither was my boyfriend) but I wore it anyway (refer back to my comment about being jaded).

I spent less than $200 on fashion items in April thanks to some vouchers I had.  This is not to say that I wasn't tempted to spend more, however I exercised an insurmountable amount of will power on many occasions and refrained from buying a number of lovely things.  Regardless of the fact that I am still recovering from the mega credit card bill from a couple of months ago (hence a little poor), I have been directing pretty much all disposable income towards things for the home... little things, but it all adds up.

Not a sponsored post... shopping at Sussan with someone else's money!

Last Thursday night I trundled along to an exclusive Sussan Adelaide Store Event hosted by InStyle magazine.  And no, this is not a sponsored post... I was in fact invited along by my boyfriend's mother, "S" (hello if you're reading!), as her plus one after her friend piked out.

The event was well organised.  There was food and drink along with 20% off store wide as well as a chance to win a $200 voucher... which I won!  Each guest was also given a 'goodie bag' upon leaving the store.

The highlight of the event was a Winter fashion wrap up by Instyle's Fashion Director, Katherine Green, who spoke very well about this Winter's style trends and how there are no rules.  She went on to provide some simple styling tips, such as aiming to wear three colours when putting together an outfit (so as not to look "flat") and when wearing patterns and prints - to pick one colour from the print as the accent colour.  Further statement jewels were touted as THE accessory to inject life into one's existing wardrobe. Most of the shop girls and Instyle crew were wearing said statement necklaces over their silk shirts buttoned all the way up to the collar with the necklace sitting tightly underneath the collar. It looked quite cool. 

The navy and black clad Katherine Green issued a plea to her audience not to be afraid of colour, pointing out that one could wear the latest coloured jeggings, if not keen on wearing colour around the face.  I'm not sure where you all stand on this issue, but I definitely will not be seen wearing the true 'jeggings' as pants, opting instead for coloured jeans and trousers.

I spied that Sussan took some inspiration from last season's J.Crew collection in designing their 2013 Winter ensemble... The most telling piece was this sequin chevron dress:

Images from and

This sequin fabric has also been cut into a very flattering tube skirt, which according to Katherine Green, sequin skirts are suitable for dayMaybe if you work in a creative field, but not me... I opted for a skirt a little more neutral (yet still edgy for a corporate office) and some statement jewels:

The grand total of my loot was $3.85 after using $100 of my winnings - the other $100 I shared with "S"

Thanks Sussan and Instyle magazine!

March... Bumper eBay sales but only one wardrobe addition!

In the month of March I sold in excess of $2000 worth of old stuff... 67 items to be exact.  When I say old, I mean clothing sporting the old Country Road label and pieces by brands long forgotten.  I also sold some coveted pieces from years gone by, such as the Chrissie coat by Lover the Label and the "Twiggy" dress by Sretsis.  Gone are also a number of items I had been hoarding in my so called 'twilight zone' - I decided it was time to let go. It feels so good to be free of this stuff!

After paying off our enormous credit card bill for March which included things for the home and a number of indulgent nights on the town in February, I only had enough spending money left to buy one item... the following dress from Country Road:

If you are like me (a little fat from eating too much cheese) and enjoy filling your wardrobe with lots of boring pieces, I implore you to go and try this dress on. It is so amazingly flattering on!  In it, I look two sizes smaller than I really am... the size label on the dress is two sizes larger than all the stuff I sold.  It really is a great dress.

February... Wardrobe additions and finally putting a dent in my cull pile

I'm still here... still culling... still eBaying... still shopping!

For the last couple of weeks I have really focused my energy into finally photographing and listing all my culled items.  It's a massive task, but seeing racks and tubs of stuff which could crystalise into cash was really starting to grate on me.  So just the other day I spent 5 hours washing, ironing, and photographing, before finally sitting down to list the items on eBay.  I presently have 41 items on there - the most ever!  This after already having sold a fair few items over the past couple of weeks.  I'm actually getting rid of more stuff than I'm bringing into the house lately, which feels awesome!

Some items are surprisingly popular, while others are just sitting there looking like they might not sell.  6 years ago, had I listed a bulk lot of Country Road and Witchery tops, bidders would be falling over themselves to try to secure a bargain. Today, my listing has 1 watcher. That's right, 1 watcher!  I smell a recession...

Anyway, part of the reason for my furious eBaying is that in February I completely exhausted my eBay kitty which I had diligently saved since last October.  I also spent all the Myer One vouchers which were burning a hole in my wallet (so much for saving them for a new laptop).  Although I've done my bit to keep the economy spinning, it makes me officially poor. Well, poor in the sense that I can't buy what I want anymore (a first world problem, I know. It's not like I actually need anything).

So what did I buy, I hear you ask:
  1. T.L. Wood dresses x 3 - the sleeveless ones are so comfy like you would not believe and machine washable too. I also think the black spotty one will look good layered in Winter.
  2. SABA white t-shirt - I actually don't really need this, but I bought it to make up the amount to be able to use a $50 voucher SABA sent me. It's loose and comfy.
  3. Country Road embellished shoulder 3/4 sleeve top - I was tossing up between the navy and the khaki stripe and ended up going for the khaki to wear with my taupe IM Dickers as the matchy-matchy element of my outfit.
  4. SABA breton tops x 3 - I love these.
  5. Country Road black ballet flats - the jury is still out on these.
  6. Rag & Bone "Newbury" knee high boots - I stalked these online all season. 

I will sign off on this blog post as I always do and say that my pant and skirt wardrobe is severely lacking.  Although I am moving forward in that I did have a bit of an Oprah light bulb moment today whilst trying on all the skirts in Country Road. I realised that I shouldn't even go there until I lose some weight. It's pants for me for now...

January purchases and contemplating some future wardrobe additions

January shopping highlights

A few marginally successful eBay sessions resulted in some spending money for me, so in January I purchased the following items:
  • Veronika Maine vibrant blue silk blend tank
  • Etoile Isabel Marant faded khaki linen blazer
  • Etoile Isabel Marant Ariana knit jacket (pictured above)
  • A.P.C. striped boat neck knit (pictured above)
  • SABA silk front white tee (this has proven to be an awesome staple!)
  • Missoni grey toned zig-zag infinity scarf
  • Witchery sleeveless gather dress
  • J.Crew black and white silk boy shirt in heart throb (pictured above)
  • J.Crew red mini skirt 
Hopefully the J.Crew pieces fit.  They are sitting at my US parcel forwarding address while I wait for one more parcel to arrive.  I have loved the black and white heart print blouse from day dot and the red skirt appeared long enough for work, but we'll see.  Fingers crossed.
I'm sort of at the point now where I justifiably cannot buy any more discretionary clothing items without afterwards checking myself into a rehab clinic. Slap me if I tell you I have no tops to wear to work, as I have worked hard to fill this particular gap this Summer.  I just need to get into the habit of regularly steaming and ironing.

The gaps in my wardrobe are now blatantly obvious and I will focus my energy now into filling these. My major wardrobe gap is work suitable bottoms (skirts and trousers)
I seem to have a lot of average fitting pants and skirts.  Come Winter, I will need some new work dresses.  Some of my favourites that I have been wearing for the past two years are looking tired.
I would also like new pair of knee high boots this Winter (incidentally a pair I have been stalking just went on sale), and I would not say no to a new pair of leather ankle boots (maybe tan?).

My black J.Crew ballet flats are looking a little battered too as I have started walking to and from work a little more, but I do not change into sneakers.  No longer do I look down at my feet and feel polished. This must be fixed ASAP. 

I also have a wedding to attend in mid-March, if I can I would like to avoid buying something new, but we'll see.

On ALWAYS loving what you buy yet hating two-thirds of what you already own

"Women usually love what they buy, yet hate two-thirds of what is in their closets." - Mignon McLaughlin

Does the above statement apply to you?  

Photographed below is how much I have managed to cull since moving into our new place.  Granted the contents of one of the tubs are the items that I was not quite ready to cull the last time, but I am now.

I'm doing my best to eBay the Summer appropriate items now and as soon as it's March I will try listing the coats, wool jackets and boots (not pictured).

Back to the quote. Did I love everything at the time I bought it?  Yes and no, but each piece certainly spoke to me at the time of buying it.  Do I hate it all now?  Well "hate" is a strong word, so let's just say that each piece does not fit in with my lifestyle and now given limited wardrobe space I am ready to let it go.

For example, although I adore the look of the Lover Chrissy coat, the three-quarter turn up sleeves drive me crazy.
Lover coat

For me the coat is only appropriate on a certain type of Winter's day - one which is mild and not windy, otherwise my wrists and forearms get cold.  I also find that sleeves poking from underneath look a little odd unless very fitted.  And full length sleeves of corporate jackets just look plain wrong!  Therefore in my life this coat is only appropriate to wear on weekends - those which are mild and not windy. In other words the Lover Chrissy Coat planets are aligned maybe once each year. It must go.

The same can be said of an amazing Thurley belted cape that I own. It looks fabulous, but it's not a piece that I gravitate towards, so gets it worn maybe once or twice a year. Does it deserve a spot in my ideal wardrobe? I think not.

Also given that I have vowed to myself to only spend eBay proceeds this year, and my determination to achieve this mystical ideal wardrobe of mine... suddenly two-thirds of the contents of my wardrobe looks eBay-able! I don't hate two-thirds of my clothes, but I just don't love all the pieces enough or wear everything enough to justify keeping it.

A cosmetics spending ban... a year of shopping my stash!

The makeshift vanity table I blogged about some months ago now, is no more. It was put out with the hard rubbish when we moved.

Whilst still on holidays, I spent the day today collecting up all of my makeup from various handbags and boxes stashed in multiple rooms of the house and put it all in one spot... 2 and a half months after moving into our new home.

My makeup is all organised once more!

My makeup now all lives in the bathroom - within easy reach to use everyday.

Last year, with a trip to the US and my discovery of mail forwarding services (hello Sephora), I have a further stash of unopened products and plenty of deluxe sized samples (generously given away in the US every single time one buys anything remotely cosmetic) which I have not photographed.  I think I own a lot of cosmetics for a woman who likes the 'no makeup' makeup look, so I have decided that this year I will go on a cosmetics spending ban.

I do not foresee this to be a problem as I wouldn't call myself a makeup junkie, but having previously had a relatively large amount of disposable income (prior to buying our new home), I pulled the trigger on all the lemmings which developed throughout 2012.  Enter 5 new eyeshadow palettes, about 20 new lip products and all new foundations after my favourite L'Oreal one was discontinued, not to mention everything else.

My rules are very simple - this year I will 'shop my stash' throughout the year and only buy what I NEED:

Clinique Moisture Surge Intense Moisturiser
Shower Gel
Kosmea Radiance 24/7 Youth Boost
Ellis Faas Concealer
Eye Cream
Butter London Hardwear PD Quick Topcoat
Sephora Instant Nail Polish Remover

BB Cream & Tinted Moisturiser


Powder & Bronzer

Eye Shadow & Liner


Blush & Highlighers

Lip Colour & Care

Nail polish

Hair products (excluding shampoo & conditioner and colour)

 * These are my Can’t-Live-Without-Holy-Grail-Products, but I will only purchase if nothing in my stash proves suitable. 

If I'm ultra organised, I might even do an end of month empties post each month, including a small review of each product that I have finished.

Do you own more eyeshadow than you can use up in 5 lifetimes?
Do you find yourself hoarding cosmetics?
Do you find yourself buying a new product before finishing the one that you are currently using?
Do you own more than 3 nail polishes in a similar shade?

My answer to all these questions is YES.  If you have answered yes also - then maybe you too should re-assess whether you NEED to buy anymore (at least for this year) and instead shop your stash.

The way I see it, each dollar I save on cosmetics, I can re-direct into buying small things for our new home.

2012 shopping wrap up

After buying the one Topshop top in Melbourne back in October, I managed to not buy anything until just recently, probably because I was too busy living life in the fast lane to shop.  I nevertheless managed to list a few things on eBay which sold and I saved the proceeds for a rainy day so to speak.

Needless to say there were a few 'rainy days' in December and it bucketed down on Boxing Day...

Apart from the peachy pink top (which I have since returned because I decided that it was not perfect on me), I bought:
  1. Kate Sylvester cotton sundress (eBay);
  2. Country Road viscose tees in white and pale grey (using Spend 'n' Save voucher);
  3. Camilla & Marc bird singlet (David Jones);
  4. Veronika Maine striped silk tank;
  5. Veronika Maine jade green silk tank;
  6. Kachel polka dot shift dress (David Jones);
  7. Nudie High Kais in dark blue organic denim (David Jones);
  8. Seed soft blazer in marine blue (David Jones);
  9. Country Road mid-heels in black and tan; and
  10. Country Road ballet flats in jade green and blue (using Spend 'n' Save voucher).
When I put it this way (and I cheated even by placing the items which I bought in two colour ways in one row), it seems that I have bought a lot... Who am I kidding, I have bought a lot!  I must say though that I am pretty pleased with almost everything.  In a sick and twisted way I am *almost* looking forward to going back to work in a week's time, so that I can wear my shiny new things.

The striped tank is amazing on and the polka dot dress makes me look 5 kgs lighter - both winners!

Praying that the mid-heel shoes prove to be comfortable

By the way, I am shopping off a list now (with eBay proceeds only), and this pretty much ticks off all the items on my Summer wish list (with the exception of a few items which I'm still looking for) and one item off my replacement wish list (the jeans).