Tag Archives: anthropologie

sale spy: mastering the mid-season sales

{Editor’s Note: Every year, mid-October rolls around, the fall sales begin, and I’m in a retail panic. Friends & Family is always first…should I go for it, or wait for the first round of markdowns? Is it too soon to be thinking about holiday buys? But this year, I have a secret weapon: SMC’s own Sale Spy, here to lend her expertise to the best sale season of the year!}

Sale Spy’s picks: Painted Ikat dress, Anthropologie, $80 from $158 / Woven silk pencil skirt, Valentino, $239 from $795 / Sandwashed silk tee, J.Crew, $35 from $110

Roxanna K.K. ~ Friends, it’s my favourite time of year: the mid-season sales! (wait – do I say that every sale season? Well, I heartily mean it every sale season. I am always envisioning the unlimited sale possibilities…)

Anyway, I really do love mid-season sales. Now, for a sale devotee, you’d think I’d go crazy for the hard-core post end-of-season sales in January and February, and while I do love finding some crazy bargains at that time, the October/November sales offer so much more possibility. Here’s why:

The selection. At this point, stores have only gone through 1 or 2 rotations of fall merchandise (they typically change every 6-8 weeks,) so there are still plenty of sizes and colours in stock.

The season. You can actually buy something now and wear it from tomorrow to the end of the season. No hoarding clothes for next year or trying to squeeze in the last few wears before the season ends, as I am wont to do after end-of-season season clearance sales.

The trends. This is most important in my book. At the beginning of fall, there are so many trends to shop but you have no idea which will actually last through the season and beyond. At the mid-season sales, you’ve had a chance to see what sticks, and can now pick it up for a significant discount. For example, it’s worth splurging on silk blouses, leather details and colour with a capital C (especially fall staples like oxblood and mustard). However, neon, crazy prints and peplums, while still around, won’t have the same lifespan.

Some tips on shopping these sales:

+ Hang on to those receipts! Many big name stores will reduce merchandise initially and then have an additional markdown on sale merchandise a few weeks later. I get the merchandise at the first markdown for the best selection, but I will then get a price adjustment or buy it again if it is further reduced, returning the original item. This year alone I have saved hundreds of dollars this way (don’t ask how much I’ve spent!)

+ If you had your heart set on specific mid-priced items that are now on sale, go ahead and buy them instead of waiting for them to be reduced further (a lot of merchandise disappears from now until Christmas.) On the other hand, if there are more expensive pieces you have in mind but haven’t found exactly the right one yet, hold off buying them at these sales. There will still be two more rotations of merchandise and much steeper discounts heading into Thanksgiving and Christmas.

+ Investment items like jewelry, bags and fragrances may go on sale closer to the holiday season because they are good gift-giving items, so hold off on these for now as well.

Good luck, and happy sale-hunting!

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all in the details: the nautical tote

Kate M.W. ~ Around this time of year, I start demanding something a little different from my handbags. Sure, my day-to-day work-appropriate classics still reign Monday to Friday, but I’m now looking for something that longs for casual kick-around weekends and that can stand up to the structured jackets and tendency towards layers that my wardrobe takes on. I look for duffel or hobo bags whose focus isn’t necessarily structure, and whose colour isn’t limited to black. When I came across the Sea Duffel from AANDD I immediately stopped: deep wine colour, playful rope accents, and just enough shape to keep from looking disheveled.

Sea Duffel, AANDD, $484

Inspired by the rope detailing, I immediately thought of stripes (blame the nautical connection) but opted for a sweater that could easily be a foundation for many an outfit. Though there’s a natural tendency to use dark wash denim, your favourite medium or light-wash jeans still work at this time of year and contrast nicely with the depth of the navy in the sweater and the colour of the bag. And of course, since I’m known for arguing that a good jacket is a fall fundamental, I’d look for an option that provides ample contrast: an olive green with a particularly structured nature. That, and this particular one from Emerson Fry was just too good to resist (apologies for retail indulgences!).

Etienne Bar Stripe Crew Sweater, Cardigan, $195 / Matchstick Jeans, J.Crew, $148 / Army Coat, Emerson Fry, $485

In an effort to make sure that the details of the outfit aren’t too distracting, I’d stick with one category and go from there. Since the sweater already has stripes, I’d skip a necklace and go straight for a wristful of bracelets and simple pearl studs in my ears. Mimic the olive tone of the coat with this woven chain option, a cool pearl-capped bangle, and an oversized tortoise shell link to bring in the colour of the handbag. Speaking of that colour, dare to let it nearly match when you’re choosing your footwear, in this case a pair of classic boots. Either let your jeans hang down over the tops, or unzip them slightly at the back and let your jeans rumple down into the top of the boot. On a brisk but bright day, bring in your favourite navy-based scarf and classic shades.

Monogram Plush Wrap, Banana Republic, $75 / North Country Boots, Anthropologie, $258 / Highstreet Sunglasses, Ray-Ban, $145 / Pearl-Cap Bangle, Majorica, $85 / Oversized Pearl Studs, Juliet & Company, $21 / Woven Charm Bracelet, Brooks Brothers, $68 / Tortoise Link Bracelet, Loren Hope, $40

Inspired by a bag like this, it’s easy to make sure that adjectives like playful and fun don’t get lost amongst the layers of autumn, since by now we all know that they’re easy to play up, if you keep it all in the details.

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get gifting: a happy housewarming

{Editor’s Note: Happy Labor Day, friends! I hope you’re off doing something exciting, and not stuck at the office, pretending to work but actually just reading SMC to pass the time. I’m so happy to introduce you to our new columnist, Jennefer, who’s about to be your best friend when you’re on the hunt for a gift. Bookmark these…I guarantee they’re going to come in handy!}

Jennefer ~ Welcome to the land of the gift-obsessed! I’m a compulsive gift-shopper, and what was once an innocent hobby has now turned into a full-fledged addiction…complete with a room in my home dedicated to all my “you never know when someone will have something to celebrate” purchases. I can’t wait to share a few of my favorites with you!

First up: housewarming gifts. This time of year always seems to bring on a bevy of housewarming parties. Friends spent the summer relocating, and are finally ready to show off their new digs. Moving into a new home is a big deal, and it deserves to be celebrated! As the dedicated friend/sister/employee of a lucky new homeowner, it’s your job to pony up with not only something fun and creative but useful. Here are a few of my absolute favorite housewarming gifts to give and receive:

1. I consider wine to be the fifth, and sometimes only, food group. And there is nothing better than sitting on the porch sipping vino without the worry of breakage. Which is why I love GoVino. A set of 8, especially when paired with your favorite bottle of wine (mine is The Prisoner – I should own stock in that winery) makes a great, affordable gift…and will come in handy until your pal unpacks her crystal. {GoVino Wine Glasses, $28/8}

2. A sassy, vintage-style apron is a perfect gift for a girl that likes to putter around the kitchen. On first glance, an eye-roll may ensue, however once they give it a spin, there’s something about that girly, retro vibe that always makes it a favorite gift. {Jessie Steele apron, $30 / 3-D Toile Full Apron, Anthropologie, $32}

3. For friends enamored with the culinary arts, an old-school, hand-cranked pasta machine is another go-to. This is one of those gifts everyone wants to try, but no one wants to splurge on for themselves. Plus, even if your friend never uses it, they look great sitting on a kitchen counter (much like the Kitchen-Aid mixer I got for my wedding and never use). {Marcato Altas Pasta Machine, $100}

4. If you’re a traditionalist, a beautiful bouquet is always a winner. Nobody has more beautiful flowers than Calyx, and their orchid bouquets are just breathtaking. Send one of these and you are assured to be invited for dinner again and again, so the return on your investment makes these a surefire winner. {Captiva Orchids, Calyx Flowers, $60+}

5. Monogrammed and personalized gifts amp up the thoughtfulness factor, and prove you didn’t pop into Target last-minute on your way to the housewarming party. It is the advance planning that really makes these gifts special. Two of my favorites for a housewarming are a monogrammed welcome mat or a personalized throw pillow. They can be more of a splurge, but they’ll be used every day and make great conversation starters. {Monogrammed Door Mat, Pottery Barn, $59+ / Custom Pillow, Uptown Artworks, $149}

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all in the details: shimmering sailor knot necklace

Kate ~ Transition, transition, transition. Every blog, every magazine, everyone discussing fashion for this upcoming season is mentioning transition pieces (…myself included). While the natural thought pattern for transitional accessories normally just turns to the addition of hats and scarves, or swapping neon for deep jewel tones, there’s always the option of allowing the dazzle and sparkle to play double duty as well.

Case in point? This necklace from Ranna Gill pays homage to to the nautical knots trends of spring and summer, while also feeling readily at home with deep golds and subtle colour for fall (cobalt, maroon and pale pink). It’s substantial enough to pair with a cardigan or sweater, but also not too overwhelming for a t-shirt and jeans.

Shimmering Sailor Knot Necklace, Anthropologie, $118

A necklace like this presents a unique opportunity to pair casual with dressy. A simple navy sweater that borders on loungewear adds ease to a multi-toned patterned pencil skirt with metallic thread. Because the necklace and skirt have similar colour palettes they complement as opposed to compete with one another. The sweater keeps things from being overly fancy and lends a daytime essence to the outfit.

Studio Sweater, Gap, $40 / Floral Brocade Pencil Skirt, J.Crew, $168

Since there’s a lot going on balancing the necklace and the skirt, your details need to be crisp and unfussy to tone down the overall look. Tiny hammered studs are the only other jewelry I’d suggest, aside from an understated brown leather band watch and perhaps some dainty gold rings. Instead of extra jewels, have fun with a warm medium burgundy nail polish – metallic or creme, you choose! A structured ladylike handbag maintains the feminine tone alongside simple brown ballet loafers. Furthermore all of these pieces will move seamlessly between the seasons as hardwearing staples.

Wallace Watch, Fossil, $85 / Tramp Stamp or Shag, butter London, $14 / Stackable Band Rings, Stella & Dot, $39 / Willis Bag in British Tan, Coach, $298 / Carmel Tiny Hammered Studs, Gorjana, $22 / Calfskin Ballet Loafers, Brooks Brothers, $118

Picking pieces that transition from late summer to fall is crucial at this point in the year.. Mixing transition with bold balance (metallic thread pencil skirts and sparkling necklaces) is a fun way to bring the light of summer into a refined fall. Statement and staples, it’s all in the details.

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friday finds

Happy Friday, friends! Is it 100 degrees where you are too? Terrifying. So, you’ll forgive my brevity today if you picture me blogging on the couch with a hot laptop sitting on my legs. Let’s get straight to business!

Net-a-Porter got a new fall delivery today, and I’m choosing to ignore the heat by coveting a few fall goodies.

Cashmere two-tone sweater, Clu, $305 / Leather-trimmed cardi coat, Vince, $485 / Wool peacoat, Burberry Brit, $1195

Of course, in reality, that Vince coat might make me look a little like an off-duty judge. And the Burberry peacoat is completely the wrong color for a pale girl like me. But I still think they’re gorgeous.

But then I have to ask about this: are we really doing dickies again? Granted, this one is pretty hip. And it’s by Miu Miu. But still…dickies?

Sigh. I hope not. In the category of great sale finds today, if you happen to be a student, know a student or want to be unscrupulous and exploit the completely illegitimate code I happen to have in my possession (email me), you can take 20% off at Topshop this weekend. Just sayin’.

Koko ballet flats, Topshop, $80 / Rhinestone triangle set, Topshop, $18 / Epaulette silk tee (also in white), Topshop, $110

Our intrepid Details columnist, Kate, alerted me to serious fashion news: the lovely ladies behind Sigerson Morrison have finally re-emerged with a new line! Enter Pied Juste, being sold exclusively at Anthropologie right now. Get a peek and buy early – their prices are pretty well guaranteed to go up in future seasons.

Last but not least, it’s Pinterest time. I’m always looking for a new way to tie a silk scarf…I find them uniquely challenging. But the Duchess has it nailed here. I’m assuming she has staff to follow her around and ensure it doesn’t budge, as whenever I try this, it’s a constant struggle to keep it from slipping off my neck and into my cappuccino. Still, the result is impeccable. And if you want your own “official Olympic scarf”, you can find hers right here.

Have a wonderful weekend, all! Stay cool, and I’ll see you back here Monday, when you’ll get to meet the first of our new guest writers. Can’t wait to make the introductions!

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all in the details: kate spade kalla

{Editor’s Note: Oh, I adore these shoes! And while I have to admit, I’m usually a wee bit skeptical of khakis, I trust Kate implicitly. So, if she says khakis…well, I’ll at least try them on. Any excuse at all to sport those fabulous heels. Nice pick, Kate!}

I’m always partial to a little colour in my world, so thank goodness for colour blocking and summer trends always being in tune with that sentiment.  It looks like the trend is going to be making a subtle transition into fall as well, so even more reason to find a way to work it into one’s wardrobe.  These heels (a new pre-fall release from Kate Spade) definitely follow suit, and provide an excellent source of outfit inspiration.

Kalla Heel, Kate Spade, $328

The colour combination and styling of these shoes is incredibly classic, and yet right on trend. The teal and yellow combination makes them appropriate for late summer cocktails, and yet they’ll feel equally at home as autumn arrives and earthy, leaf-changing tones become apparent. Kate Spade heels are always one of my favourites – despite the height, I never feel like I’m teetering around. They’re sturdy, and surprisingly comfortable (though I’d still recommend breaking these in by throwing a small solo dance party in your living room while wearing thick wool socks in the shoes).

For the foundations, I’d keep it neutral.  Lighter-toned bottoms courtesy of a pencil skirt or khaki cigarette pants won’t compete with the shoes.  Remembering that it’s still summer, I’d go with a relaxed dark blue tank.  Given the style of the shoes, your outfit should aim to maintain a casual but refined nature.

Heritage Ankle Jean, Talbots, $90 / Blue Depths Tank, Trouve, $54 / No.2 Pencil Skirt, J.Crew, $70

The other details are a great place to play with extra colour, so that it becomes a series of surprise accents. Try jeweled earrings that pick up on the tones of the shoes, accented by a simple stack of interesting bangles. On the other hand, bold coloured studs and a coordinating long necklace might be more your style. In either case, if you’re in the mood to tuck in the shirt, I’d add a bright patent skinny belt – because I can’t resist a touch of fuchsia.  Add a small yellow cross-body bag, and you’re set.

Clear Sea Earrings, Anthropologie, $32 / Wire Nugget Bangles, Citrine by the Stones, $287 / New Bond Street Ettie, Kate Spade, $248 / Skinny Patent Belt, J.Crew, $40

Given the shoes, the outfit should really make an effort to string together fun summer colours.  They should inspire you to be playful yet refined…something easy to achieve when it’s all in the details.  ~Kate

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trend to try: printed pants

{Editor’s Note: Our intrepid Trends expert, Ms. Kim Brandt is back to talk about a trend I’m seriously feeling this season: the printed pant. Having just nabbed this pair (from Talbots, of all places), I can hardly wait to see her suggestions for successfully pulling off the look. Sadly, Kim is going to be taking a little hiatus from her post here while she settles in at a fabulous new job, but I’m crossing my fingers she’ll be back soon!}


We’re getting to the point where y’all are getting to know me a bit. So, I’m sure this post comes as a shock (not)…we’re talking all about prints today.  I am a big fan of the patterned pants trend happening right now. It takes a bit of confidence to pull off, but styled right, it can really work for you. I’m definitely (ahem) bottom heavy, so because of my body type I need to be really careful how I wear this one.

If you’re super tall and lean (read: model), you really don’t need my advice; you can wear anything. But if you’re anything else, this look is all about balance. Particularly if the pant is a skinny style, this look is best worn with a long, loose top, statement jewelry, and heels, though a funky loafer may work if you’re blessed with extra-long gams.

{Images c/o Anthropologie / Madewell / Whitney Eve / Natalia Vodianova, via Style.com}

If you’re especially lower-half-conscious, pair the printed pant with a sleek, loose fitting top, a long jacket, a heavy piece of metallic jewelry (think chunky watch or vintage chain necklace), and heeled booties or gladiator sandals.

{Images c/o Tory Burch, via Style.com / Vanessa Hudgens (we think), via Style / Olivia Palermo, via Mr.Newton}

For those that are blessed up top, pair the print with a shirt that has a bit of defined shape.  A tailored blazer or belted blouse is a great solution. Depending on the cut of the blazer, pair with some great drop earrings and then, as always, heels on the bottom. Be careful not to pick too narrow a heel; it’s all about balancing the shape from head to toe!

{Images c/o Dries Van Noten, via Style.com / Beyoncé, via People / Chanel, via Style.com}

So, tell us: Are you going to be rocking the patterned pant this Spring? ~Kim B.

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on my radar: athena procopiou

I came across Athena Procopiou‘s incredible scarves in one of my (too) many fashion mags earlier this year, and I haven’t been able to get her out of my mind since. You know I love a good scarf, friends, but these? It’s almost too much beauty to take.

Athena’s modern, ethereal designs have a bold, graphic quality that I just can’t get enough of. I’ve loved all of her collections, but her latest, Frida, is inspired by all of the beautiful, swirling colors of southern Spain – think flamenco dancers and Feria. They’re all made of a supersoft modal/cashmere blend, so they’re light as a feather, but still cozy and enveloping. Obsessed doesn’t begin to cover it. I’m dreaming of these scarves day and night, and counting the days until I can make one mine.

If you’re feeling flush, head to Net-a-Porter, Liberty of London or even Anthropologie (where, gasp, I just spotted one on sale!) to check out your options.

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