Archive for the personal shopper Category

Gifts For Mother’s Day

Posted in budget shopping, non-animal testing, personal shopper, shopping on a budget with tags , , , , , on April 30, 2017 by sorceressofthedark

Fullscreen capture 4302017 123441 PMYikes! Mother’s Day is two weeks away and you have no idea what to get Mom. She’s been giving you hints but you just haven’t picked up on them. Have you been listening?

What she really wants, above all, is your time. That costs absolutely nothing, but your time. It’s free. It’s truly the gift that keeps on giving. It’s a memory that she will hold dear.

I could list all the perfumes she would enjoy, or shoes or clothing she might wear but in reality? As children mature, leave the nest and begin their own lives, Mothers miss them. They’d love to just enjoy an afternoon with them that didn’t involve their children rolling their eyes because they think they’re better than them, because they think their parents are out-dated or because they believe their parents are old-fashioned.

I remember when I was raising my children and swore to myself that I would never say these words to myself that my parents/in-laws were saying: “Back in my day…it was a better time because…”.  But now, I watch my children and yes, grandchildren and think those words. Oh My God. It’s happened.

I was recently sitting with the other Grandmother at a function and the words came out of our mouths. We sat there talking about our grandchildren’s futures. About our children and how their lives were compared to ours were in relation to employment and raising children. We reminisced. We wondered how our world had evolved into this tech world for our grandchildren who rarely go outside to play. We wondered about their freedoms or lack thereof.

See, we’re not old-fashioned. We understand what our world is turning into. We have decades of experience. You, who are younger,  don’t yet. You’re still in that continuum of today where you’re accepting. We grew up in a world where 1984 by George Orwell was required reading, Ray Bradbury made us wonder and Rod Serling pushed us over the edge. Well, some of us. And we’d like to share that with you. If for no other reason than to make you think and wonder.

We want you to realize that this technological world that you embrace without thinking may not be so wonderful. That all those posts and photos you share aren’t in the best interest you think they are. We want you to know that fresh air, sunshine, green grass and our environment is important.

But some of you may not know this if you don’t spend time with your Mothers. If you don’t choose to listen anymore because you believe your Moms are old-fashioned and just not savvy enough.

This Mother’s Day, give your Mom your time. Just spend the day with her, talk and listen. Discuss the world. Discuss issues. Don’t argue. Give her the gift of being a Mom. That’s the best gift in her world you could ever give her.

Oh, one more thing.  It’s a gift that’s not tested on animals, so that should make her happy, too.

“Teach Your Children”


You, who are on the road must have a code that you can live by.
And so become yourself because the past is just a good bye.
Teach your children well, their father’s hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams, the one they pick’s the one you’ll know by.
Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of tender years can’t know the fears that your elders grew by,
And so please help them with your youth, they seek the truth before they can die.
Teach your parents well, their children’s hell will slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams, the one they pick’s the one you’ll know by.
Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

-courtesy of



All works past, present and future are protected under a CCC. Creative Common License, Kaarie Blake Musings by Kaarie Blake is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-Noderivs-3.0-Unported License.


DIY Subscription Box-Part 2

Posted in 99 Cents Only, budget shopping, cruelty-free skincare, Disco Dollar, Dollar General, Dollar Giant, Dollar Tree, E.L.F., L.A. Colors, personal shopper, Real Deal Dollar, shopping on a budget, subscription boxes, Wet 'N' Wild with tags , , , , , , , on July 19, 2016 by sorceressofthedark

Part 1 talked about how to put together your own Subscription Beauty Box for under $12.00 and have that box worth many times over what you paid for it. Isn’t that what beauty boxes are all about? I know, I know, for some, it’s getting the box in the mail, for others, it’s the surprise of what’s in the box, still others just enjoy having someone else choose products for them.

But if you’d like to choose your own products, are pretty savvy about what’s out there on the market and what’s actually in those products, then it’s pretty darn easy to put together a beauty box all on your own. There’s also no waiting for the mailman!

With all that said, they make great gifts for family and friends, you can store them easily ahead of time for when you might need a gift, and you can make these boxes for guys and kids, too. Since you’re choosing what goes into the box, you’re the creator. It’s all about you and whomever the receiver will be. So just have fun!

Another way to put together a box and be surprised is to get together with a friend and go shopping. Both of you put together a box and then exchange boxes. This way, you’ll both be surprised at what’s inside! (Just make sure your friend knows what you like!)

So here is Sorceress Of The Dark’s Beauty Box #2:


Cost: $11.00


  1. Claudia Stevens Eye Fix Mix Anti-Wrinkle Eye Cream-this rich cream contains prunis amygdalus which is sweet almond oil, sesame seed oil, theobroma cacao, shea butter, and mango. It hydrates the under-eye area exceedingly well. Retail: 7.99.
  2. Skin Nutritions New York Age Defy Dark Circle & Puffiness Serum-this roller with serum has green tea extract, vitamin B3 and vitamin C. Just roll it under your eye to de-puff and help those dark circles. Retail: $4.00.20160715_220159-1
  3. E.L.F. Shimmering Facial Whip in Lilac Petal-I’ve used this whip over and over! It’s a highlighter, it’s a lip gloss, it’s a blush, it’s an eyeshadow, it can be used so many ways. The color is a light coral that’s slightly shimmery, perfect for summer and goes great with a tan! Retail: $4.95.
  4. Sassy & Chic Blender Sponge-Yes, I realize this isn’t the $20 something infamous sponge that so many love and swear by. But not everyone can afford that sponge. So for those that can only afford a much more reasonable alternative, here it is. This type of blender sponge is used wet. You squeeze out the excess moisture and then you blend in and out your foundation, BB Cream or whatever you’d like. I’ve used it on blushes, BB Cream, even when I use a bronzer as an eyeshadow (I’ve received a few of bronzers in my two beauty boxes so I want to get rid of them this summer….lol). It works just fine for me and it’s cleanable. For a buck, I’m happy. Retail: 5.45. 20160715_220419-1
  5. Dr. Marvey Nail Grow-I’m anxious to try this! I’ve heard good things about this product line and how it’s helped others grow and maintain their nails, so I’m definitely willing to give it a try. Retail: $6.00
  6. LA Colors Color Craze in Meadow-I love this color and I’ve been using it so much this summer! LA Colors doesn’t chip and lasts at least a week on my nails. Retail:  $5.45.
  7. Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips 320 Kitty Kitty-I’ve been using these nail strips for years and always will. They last until my nails start to grow out! They are well worth the money! Retail: $4.50.SOTD10
  8. Wet ‘n’ Wild Coloricon Brow + Eyeliner- this was a two pack in two colors-656 A White and 699C Turquoise. They sharpen easily and are soft so they don’t tug on your delicate eye skin. I love the turquoise, beautiful color and white is great for opening up my eyes.Retail: $1.50.
  9. Wet’n’Wild Megawear mascara-color is very black. This is a good general mascara that doesn’t clump or smudge. It removes easily. I like wearing this type during the day for a more natural look. Plus it’s cruelty-free! Retail: $3.00.
  10. LA Colors All-n-One Lipstick Blush + Eyeshadow in Pink Satin-I love this stick! It really does work for a lipstick, blush and eyeshadow! The color blends so well, it just rolls up so no sharpening is needed and it’s a soft, blendable color. Retail: $8.95.SOTD11
  11. C. Booth Skin Below The Chin in Iced Lemon Body Cream-Love the scent and it’s so creamy and hydrating for my skin! Retail: $4.99.

I paid $11.00 for these eleven items, but retail value for all of them totaled $56.78! So this beauty box I put together is worth more than 5 times what I paid for it.

If you ever feel like curating your own beauty box, it’s simple. If you’re unhappy, disillusioned, or just don’t have the funds to tie-yourself into a monthly box, here’s an alternative. Head on down to a Dollar-type store near you and take a look at what’s in their beauty aisle. You just might be surprised. Take  fifteen dollars with you as your limit and see what kind of “box” you can put together for yourself. You’ll have loads of fun and you just might surprise yourself!

These are my choices from my local Dollar Stores. I deliberately chose the cheapest route for this “beauty” box posting and the last “beauty” box posting. I realize there are all kinds of incomes in our world. I also realize there are all kinds of beauty “buys” available.

Just because a product is sold in a higher-end store doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you, and the same works that if a product is sold in a lower-end store it doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you, either.

I’ve bought creams from famous brands that cost me $125.00 that gave me milia (bumps), greasy skin and didn’t do what they promised to do. I’ve also bought jars of creams that cost me a few dollars that really surprised me in how well they did their job. You just never know how well a product will react to your skin. Also, each dollar-type store carries different brands at different times, always rotating merchandise very quickly!

I’ve seen E.L.F., NYX, Milano, Revlon and more available. There are lipsticks, blush, BB Creams, powders, blush, you name it. You just have to always check.

My next DIY Beauty Box will be from online shopping.



All works past, present and future are protected under a CCC. Creative Common License, Kaarie Blake Musings by Kaarie Blake is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-Noderivs-3.0-Unported License.

All products purchased by Sorceress Of The Dark for this post.


DIY Subscription Box-Part 1

Posted in 99 Cents Only, cosmetics, cruelty-free, Disco Dollar, Dollar General, Dollar Giant, Dollar Tree, E.L.F., ingredients, personal shopper, Real Deal Dollar, Sephora, shopping on a budget, subscription boxes, Target, Target stores, Wet 'N' Wild with tags , , , , , , , on July 18, 2016 by sorceressofthedark

I have this really great Dollar Store near me (actually 4) but only one of them has this beauty aisle where I can score these super deals for a buck each. I love to go in and check out what’s hanging on those pegboards!

Believe me, I love places like Sephora and Ulta, and I hang out in those places too. I’ll hit Target too to see what’s new in their beauty aisles. After I’ve checked the perfumes at my local TJMaxx, Ross and Marshalls, I’ll always see what’s in stock in their beauty departments, as well. You just never know what you’ll find.

I’ve already told you that I now order the monthly Target beauty box and I also subscribe to Play! by Sephora. Those are the two boxes that I’ve decided on after much reading and comparing of all the boxes currently out there in the subscription box world. A person can go absolutely nuts spending their money on boxes sent to them with merchandise picked out by someone else. I’m not saying it’s not fun and if you have the funds to do it, and want someone else to curate a box for you and sometimes be surprised (sometimes you get to see what’s in a box ahead of time, sometimes you get to choose an item of two in a box ahead of time), then go ahead and have loads of fun subscribing!

I personally chose Target and Play! by Sephora (two opposite-end spectrum boxes) for a reason. For Sephora, it’s so much fun to dip into high-end products that I really doubt I could constantly afford or justify (looking at you Sunday Riley Good Genes).  Some of the products I can, some I just would never. As for Target boxes, I can afford anything they decide to put in their boxes.

But here’s the thing that I have noticed with the boxes. Although Target will send one or two full-sized products and the rest in the box are tiny samples, Sephora puts in little samples or sample-sized products and many of the items in their boxes are labeled “samples-not for resale”. Hmmmm. That doesn’t make me happy when I pay for a box. Even though these are higher-end products, they’re still gratis given to them by the respective companies and Sephora is still stuffing them in a subscription box for re-sale.

So I started wondering what kind of beauty box could I put together if I went into my local Dollar Store and spent under $12? What kind of value could I put together myself? Here’s two beauty boxes that I put together that I think are great values. Anyone can do this themselves and have loads of fun doing it!


Sorceress Of The Dark Beauty Box #1:

Cost: $11.00


Products: 1. Wet ‘n’ Wild Coloricon Brow + Eyeliner in 649 MinkBrown/650D PurpleViolet-These are so soft and spreadable. They don’t pull on your lids and you can sharpen them to a point. You get two in a package. Retail: $1.50

2. E.L.F. Persimmon Essential All Over Color Stick-Love this stick! It really is an all-over color stick! I’ve used it as a blush, a lipstick and an eyeshadow. It’s blendable, soft and creamy. Retail: $5.99

3. LA Colors Bold Lash Mascara in Very Black-Small enough to tuck in your purse. Not a mind-boggling mascara, but one that will give you a clean, everyday look for running around town doing errands. Retail: $5.00

4. Wet ‘n’ Wild On Edge Longwearing Eye Pencil Fergie Hypersky A253-Gorgeous eye-popping blue that’s so soft, non-tugging and can be sharpened. Love it for the summer! Retail: $5.25


5. Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in Spring Fever- I’ve been using these for years and love how long they last! The paisley flowers are perfect for summertime! Retail $4.05

6. Sally Hansen Nail Stickers in Faux Real- Perfect for year-round. Retail: $2.50

7. Sally Hansen Salon Effects Reverse French Real Nail Polish Strips in Red My Tulips- I adore this color for the holidays and can’t wait to use them! Retail: $5.25


8. A & D Ointment- I’ve been using this for an eye cream periodically. I like to switch up my creams because I feel skin becomes used to the same formulas. A & D has Vitamin A (as retinyl palmitate) in it. It belongs to the family of retinoids, is less irritating but should not be used on your skin in sunlight. It is good for cuticles, a hand and foot cream, also. Retail: $5.45

9. Global Beauty Care Retinol Makeup Cleansing Wipes 30 Count- I’ve used these countless times when I’m too tired to properly wash my face. They do take off make-up well. Retail: $6.95.

10. SkinNutritions New York Age Defy Ultimate Dark Spot Corrector-This contains Kojic Acid (a skin whitener), Ascorbic Glucoside (a form of Vitamin C), and Polypeptides (moisture-binding, anti-aging) and many other ingredients. Retail: $2.50


11. C. Booth Skin Below The Chin Spun Sugar Body Cream-this smells so good! It’s extremely hydrating for winter-time! Retail: $4.99

Although I only paid $11.00 for these 11 products, the value I could estimate from the Web was $48.93! So this beauty box I put together was worth over 4x what I paid for it , had all full-size products in it, and I chose all the products myself so I know I’ll use them.

I feel as long as I’ve done my research on products and ingredients, checked out what others have had to say about products and then made a rational decision about tossing that buck at the clerk, I’m just as happy, hell, happier that I’m walking away with a BUNCH of stuff for under $12 bucks. It’s as if I curated my own subscriptions box!

I’ve done a second box just to show that this isn’t a one-time thing. Check out the next post to see what’s in Sorceress Of The Dark’s Beauty Box #2!



All works past, present and future are protected under a CCC. Creative Common License, Kaarie Blake Musings by Kaarie Blake is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-Noderivs-3.0-Unported License.

All products purchased by Sorceress Of The Dark for this post.




What Perfume Should I Buy My Mom?

Posted in perfume shopping, personal shopper with tags , , , , , , , on May 4, 2016 by sorceressofthedark

What perfume should I buy my Mom? So many perfumes to choose from! So many Moms with different tastes! You’d like to give her something she’d like, something special, a gift that would make her smile. So how to select a perfume for your Mother?

If you know the perfume she wears, the answer should be simple, right? But don’t buy her just the perfume she wears. Buy her the accompanying products that go with the perfume. Buy her the perfumed lotion, the perfumed cream, the perfumed mist, the perfumed talc…whatever else is in the line of her favorite perfume. Why? Because generally speaking, women who don’t always buy perfume for themselves, will rarely spend the money on the extras of the perfumed line. That’s the special gift she’ll love. And if you have the funds, also buy her the perfume to go with it.


If you don’t know her special perfume? I’ve said this before, don’t just buy her a perfume suggested by someone else or by the fragrance consultant at the store. They don’t know your Mom. Perfume is a personal product that only the wearer can choose. But, women love perfume, so don’t think that you shouldn’t buy a perfume for her.

You can buy a perfume sampler. Department stores, cosmetic stores and online stores sell them. Perfume samplers are kits of samples or smaller size bottles made by a company that introduces the wearer to a number of their (usually) best-selling perfumes. It’s an ideal way for a consumer to test out perfumes and find new ones for them to enjoy.


You can find perfume samplers at stores like TJMaxx, Ross or Marshalls,,, Ebay online or at the fragrance brand itself. If you go to the brands sites, some of them offer specials on their purchases. It’s like a perfume gift that keeps on giving. Mom will be able to test out a variety of perfumes for weeks and have loads of fun while she’s testing them out. She can layer the different perfumes or wear them separately. So much more fun than one bottle!

Most importantly, do not think about age when buying perfume for your Mom. Age is never a factor when a woman chooses her perfume. Her nose is. Never insult a woman by saying she should wear a certain perfume because it fits her age. Remember, it’s the woman  that rocks the perfume, not the perfume that rocks the woman!



All works past, present and future are protected under a CCC. Creative Common License, Kaarie Blake Musings by Kaarie Blake is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-Noderivs-3.0-Unported License.

How To Buy Perfume For Your Girlfriend

Posted in how to buy perfume, how to buy perfume for your girlfriend, perfume shopping, personal shopper, shopping with tags , , , on January 14, 2016 by sorceressofthedark

Screen CapturesWith Valentine’s Day approaching, it’s time for that perfect gift for your woman. Flowers? Sure. Chocolates? Expected. Lingerie? We know you get us that for you. Perfume? What? That’s scary stuff in a guy’s mind. We know you want us to smell good but how do you go about picking out a fragrance for us? Here’s some tips on how to choose a perfume that just might bring a smile to your lady’s face.

It’s time to get in tune with your special someone and start looking for clues. Now’s the time for you to start sleuthing around without her knowing so you can choose a fragrance she will absolutely love.

Perfume is a personal choice. There have been over 68,000 perfumes produced in the world. It may seem like a daunting task, but there really are some simple, basic rules to follow and signs to look for and you’ll be able to choose a great fragrance that will bring a smile to her face.

The Untruths or Think This and You’re a Fullscreen capture 1142016 124300 AM.

1. All women like fruity-smelling perfumes. You know, the kind that smell like apples or plums or pears or whatever fruits you can think of at the moment.

2. Younger women really, really like candy-smelling, out-of-the-bakery, sweet concoctions that are cavity-inducing.

3. Older women, (pick your age here, can be anyone, it’s all relative), adore heavy perfumes that stink up a room like a funeral parlor. They’re commonly called grandma perfumes, quite erroneously.

4. Vintage perfumes are only for older women, because, after all, they smell like grandmas anyway, so your SO won’t appreciate a vintage fragrance.

5. The perfume her BFF wears smells great on her so if you buy it for your SO it will smell great on her, too. So very wrong in so many ways. Do not, ever, buy the same perfume for your SO that your sister wears, or your mother wears, or her mother wears, or your neighbor wears…you get the picture here.

6. Bigger is not always better. I know you think it is, but it’s not. It’s the quality and what she likes. No matter how many times we say it.

7. Just because you bought, she’ll love it. Get real. She’ll maybe pretend to like it. You know that word, right?

8. The Sales Associate told you it’s the most popular perfume being sold this year. So what?

9. The Sales Associate told you it’s a “classic” and every woman should own it. Again, so what?

10. It smelled good on the paper the Sales Associate gave you so you bought it because she told you to. And you have no idea what it really smells like on her or if it’s even something similar to something she wears.


Now on to the Truths Of Buying Perfume SuccessfullyFullscreen capture 1142016 12302 AM

1. Her personality will give you a clue. Is she quiet, playful, flirtatious, serious, sporty? There are types of perfumes and notes in perfumes that address certain personalities. Perfumes can be quiet, loud, bold, serious, sweet, floral, gourmand(food-like), oriental and more. Smell them and see if any remind you of her and what she wears. I could go into a dissertation on what actual notes mean but if you’re clueless about perfumes, it really doesn’t matter. Sometimes, it’s just too much information.

2. Take a look at the perfumes she owns. Make a note of the brands and names. Here’s where your computer comes in. Google the names and see if there are any similar ones. Walk into a department store, Sephora,  Ulta or similar store and ask a Sales Associate for their opinion on a similar perfume. Make sure you smell it first to see if it reminds you of her perfumes. Don’t buy it immediately. Have the SA spray it on a piece of paper and walk around with it for a few hours. It can change drastically during that time.

3. Does it have to be expensive to impress her? Not really. What most women want is something that they know you spent time on thinking about them, something that will tug at their heartstrings. Did you spend time thinking about the perfume you’re buying? Or did you just think that if you laid down a lot of money that would impress her?

4. The perfume you buy just has to have her name written all over it. It has to remind you of her. Even if you buy her her favorite perfume in a set of a bottle of pure perfume, a body creme, a shower gel and a purse-size spray all wrapped in a gift package, you’re still telling her that you thought enough of her to say that you know she loves that fragrance and you want to wrap her in it head to toe.

5. Know how much you are going to spend. Pure perfumes can cost upwards of two hundred dollars and more. Perfumes come in different concentrations. Pure perfumes are the strongest and most concentrated. Known as perfume, extrait or parfum, they are the most expensive. They will also be the smallest bottles. Next is eau de parfum, followed by eau de toilette and then cologne. Buy her the best bottle you can afford.

6. Perfume is a personal experience. I am a firm believer that no one can easily pick out another person’s perfume. Every person has different olfactory experiences and memories that they bring to the table with them when they smell perfumes. The truth is, it’s just very difficult to pinpoint what someone will like. With that in mind, it’s best to follow what they already enjoy. If they like citrus scents, go with that. Vanilla-based, tell that to a Sales Associate. Coconut, same thing. But it’s really best to tell the associate the names of the perfumes she already owns and stick with the same types.

7. There are perfume samplers on the market being sold where you can mix and match different perfumes to make your own scent. Or the samplers contain a variety of perfumes in the box so she can sample different ones. Just google perfume samplers and you’ll see a variety of great gift ideas.

8. Go shopping to a department store for something else, meander through the fragrance department and see what she looks at, sprays on and likes. Take notes with your phone. Pretend your texting or playing a game or whatever you do on your phone. Act bored so she doesn’t know you’re really taking notes.

9. Buy her rollerballs of her favorite perfumes. Rollerballs are handbag-size versions that are inexpensive and can be found at stores like Sephora, Ulta or online. Wrapped together in pretty wrapping would be a great gift for a perfume lover.

10. If you’re totally stumped, just ask her. She’ll tell you. And make sure you come through.

Fullscreen capture 1142016 11555 AMHAPPY  VALENTINE’S DAY!



All works past, present and future are protected under a CCC. Creative Common License, Kaarie Blake Musings by Kaarie Blake is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-Noderivs-3.0-Unported License.

Why Do People Buy And Wear Those Things? Questions & Answers…

Posted in american apparel, color red, color wheel, designers, dressing from years gone by, jeggings, online retailers, online shopping, personal shopper, runway clothing, runway designers, shopping, skinny jeans, womens fashion with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 25, 2011 by sorceressofthedark

Why Do People Buy And Wear Those Things? That’s my title for this blog I began just about a year ago. I wanted to talk about fashion and the impetus behind it. What pushes a person to walk into a particular store to look at their goods? Once they’ve made their selection and purchase, why did they? What made them feel good enough to part with their money and want to dress themselves a certain way?

The same formula doesn’t apply so stringently to online shopping. Online shopping is blind shopping. You’re not talking with anyone. You don’t look eye-to-eye with a salesperson. You don’t have any guilt about not buying something. You can’t try on the clothing, or feel the material or walk in the shoes to see how they look on your feet. No mirror to look into and decide if what you’re trying on is a “feel good outfit”. Online retailers must offer something special to their customers to make them want to buy from their site.

We already know about the online shoe shopping clubs. We know about the contacts called TOS (terms of service)  they tell you to read before you sign up for their $39.95 specials but the consumer never does and then they’re so sorry later because their credit card is charged every month whether they buy from the online site or not. Scroll down and read what consumers have to say about the shoe shopping clubs here on a former post:

Beyond all this exchange of consumer goods and money, what makes a consumer return? Return to the store or return to the online-shopping experience? Why do people buy and wear those things?

Besides that, a new phenomena has occurred in the industry with online shopping where there are more returns than before. Why? Because people are shopping while under the influence. And while under-the-influence, that neon-green dress might look very cute online on the model but when it arrives to you and you unwrap it, you wonder what made you buy it after all. Hence, the heftier returns.

People are also playing games with their phones and ordering outfits to see who can put together an ensemble and have it completed and delivered first. All of these factors are not helping the retail industry. They hurt sales. They hurt forecasts of future sales. And they also hurt trends.

A lot of factors go into the retail experience. Statistics attempt to track what the public is seeking to purchase. It’s economics for the industry. Companies start up and disappear. Others go into bankruptcy for a variety of reasons. Do consumers really care? Consumers main concerns are trendiness, cost, durability of product and animal-testing.

Around the world, people log on to their computers and wonder about vintage clothing and vintage designers. People look to past decades for inspiration and for ideas for their wardrobes. So do designers. You can see fashion recycle as the various decades are re-hashed.


Greta Constantine Fall 2011 for Aldo Folklore shoe boot.

Greta Constantine Fall 2011 for Aldo Folklore shoe boot.


Etro Past Collections.

Etro Past Collections.



Vintage Pink Fashions Worn Today.

Vintage Pink Fashions Worn Today, Some New, Some Older.


Fashion Repeats Itself.

Fashion Repeats Itself In Photographs And On The Runway.


Classic clothing that is enduring in style lasts. Consumers admire looks worn by top fashion models of former decades and look to these images for their own wardrobe ideas. They look to Hollywood icons of days gone by for fashion classics and designs.

With all of this shopping, what are people asking about clothing, about fashion, about trends? Not in any particular order, here are ten random questions I’ve received lately (I’ve para-phrased them) from my readers. Answers following…

1. Is plus size stylish clothing? Any size clothing is fashionable. You are an individual that makes the clothing. Never let your clothing make you. A person carries themselves with dignity in any size when they walk with confidence and comfort. Let you dictate what size is healthy and comfortable for you!

2. Is size 8 the international standard for clothing size? Now this is a can of worms! There is no standard size any longer in any country. There have been many arguments about sizing of clothing, vanity sizing and standardized sizing of manufacturers. In the last decade, the sizes 0 and 00 have been introduced.  If you are a buyer of vintage clothing and you shop thrift stores, it is imperative to try on the clothing  because measurement sizing changed through the decades. Some high-end manufacturers down-size their clothing so that it would appear their clothing sizes are smaller, making their consumers feel “better” in their clothing. European manufacturers have different sizing codes versus American manufacturers. If you are shopping in a store, it’s easier to try on the clothing. If you are shopping online, most sites offer measurement standards for their brands for you to compare your body to the item you are researching. Confused? It is frustrating. Basic answer to the size 8 question? No. You can read more at these links.

1. Vanity sizing: izing.

2. Size 0:

3. US Standard Clothing Sizes

4. European Standard for Clothing or EN13402:

Womens International Sizing Chart 2011.

Womens International Sizing Chart 2011.

3. Do real women actually wear high-fashion? Of course they do. Somebody is wearing the clothes in the pictures we all see…

4. Do real women actually like high-fashion? Can’t answer that one for everyone but I can answer it for me. I enjoy seeing the creativity of the minds of others. It’s fascinating to see what another person thinks what will look good on a woman’s body for the next season and how they influence fashion styles in the lesser markets that copy the designers. Remember how knock-offs are made? See this post about the runway:

5.Why do women buy up and coming designer clothing? The excitement of something brand-new, the freshness of the designer, the quality, the look. New designers don’t have an easy life. Ever watch Project Runway?

6. Do real people wear jeggings? Absolutely. The original “jeans and leggings” phase back in 2010 that created “jeggings” evolved into skinny jeans with zippers that some people may confuse with the original jeggings. Here’s that post with the pics:

7. What colors can I wear with red? Need I say more?

8. Why don’t I wear the things I buy? I could say much here, but I will zip it. Did you look in the mirror and try it on first? Here’s an idea…take your smartphone and snap a pic in the dressing room of whatever you’re deciding on. (ok, put your camera on silent) It’s your money you’re spending and if the item is expensive you want to see exactly how it’s going to reflect, right? As your shopping the racks you can take a look at the photos and then pick what looks best from your photos. Believe me, photos don’t lie and you’ll be happier. If it’s online shopping, sleep on it. If whatever you picked out the night before still makes you happy in the morning, order it. Don’t join clubs and let them pick for you. Be an individual.

9.Why do people buy what they do? Because initially they wanted to buy something to make themselves happier, or they needed an outfit for Saturday night or an event, etc… because they can and they do. People, ok,  probably more women, will always be shoppers. They will always be looking for that ultimate outfit to put together that will make them feel good about themselves.

10.What do famous people wear? Many labels, many designers. I’ve listed some actresses, some models, some designers. There are magazines on the market that will tell you the labels of what mostly Hollywood people wear. Frankly, what they want to be seen in is expensive clothing that runs in the neighborhood of a thousands of dollars per outfit. Some have personal dressers and some dress themselves. Copying is flattery to that person but remember, you are an individual. Be an individual. Take pieces and mix them up to create you.

Instead of introducing designers or particular trends in this post, I wanted to talk fashion after realizing readers had real questions and were curious about fashion. I believe everyone can be fashionable. Trendiness is easy. Look at magazines and see what’s in style. Class and elegance is an art. Individuality is born within the individual. Yes, that is redundant.  But it must be. Individuality is personal to each person’s style. It can’t be copied, although it often is attempted. Elegance must be cultivated. Elegance is a look that is worn with any style of clothing, but born with an attitude. It cannot be imitated.

We are all born an open palette. How we design ourselves is up to ourselves. With that said, continue to buy and wear those things with impudence and style.



Why Do People Buy And Wear Those Things? Layer, Don’t Cover. Balance, Don’t Bulk.

Posted in Christopher Peters, clothing, color wheel, complementary colors, Creatures Of The Wind, designers, ETRO, fashion, layering clothing, online shopping, personal shopper, Rudolph Nuyeyev, runway clothing, runway designers, Shane Gabier, vintage clothing, womens fashion with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 12, 2011 by sorceressofthedark
Creatures Of The Wind Fall/Winter RTW 2011.

Creatures Of The Wind, Fall/Winter RTW 2011.

There’s a chill in the air at nighttime for some us. Daytime is still warm enough to dress lightly but once the sun sets it’s time to start layering clothing to ward off some of those chilly evenings.

I know I’m not ready for bulky winter clothing. I don’t want to haul out my winter coats or even start looking at them in the stores. Although I do want to know what’s available and stylish for the season, it always seems I want to hang on to whatever warm weather is left before I let go of my entire warm weather clothing and dive into the winter pile of soft knits and wools.

There’s an easy way to ward off those evening chills that seem to settle in after the sun sets. Layering your clothing is an efficient way to keep your body temperature even through this transitional time of year for the people who have seasonal weather. Layering clothing is fun. It makes your outfits go farther, look quirkier and gives you more style.

Creatures Of The Wind, relative new designers on the runway have mixed materials together in layering for their Fall/Winter RTW 2011 Collection. It’s a chicago based collection with Christoper Peters and Shane Gabier as the main designers. Their Spring RTW 2012 Collection boasts psychedelic colors with mixing and matching fabrics again. Their collections appear romantic, magical and very appealing.

Creatures Of The Wind, Spring RTW 2012.

Creatures Of The Wind, Spring RTW 2012.

Layering is about mixing and matching your clothing. It’s about taking materials that look and feel good together, but also complement each other. Matching exact colors is not mandated or necessary. As a matter of fact, matching exactly is boring for everyday wear. You want to make your clothes work for you, not work for your clothes.

Start with shades and hues of the same color to blend your layers successfully. Add an opposing  color from the color palette for variety that you enjoy. Mix and match plaids and flowers within the same color family or take opposing fabrics that blend together to create appealing layers around your body. Experiment until you feel comfortable.

Etro, an Italian fashion house was founded in 1968 by Gimme Etro. It is a family owned design house. Menswear has been headed since 1990 by Kean Etro and his sister Veronica directs womenwear. Gimmos eldest son Jacopo and and brother Ippolito also work for the fashion firm. They also manufacture fabrics, furnishings and fragrances. Read more at :

Etro Fall/Winter RTW 2011.

ETRO Fall/Winter 2011.

Veronica’s womenswear line showed beautiful, rich colors, classic styling and a signature east-meets-west flavor. The accessories are bold statement-making. Layering of clothes showed an ease of rich colors blended beautifully.


ETRO SS collection 2012.

ETRO SS Collection 2012.


The ETRO SS 2012 Collection of womenswear showed muted colors blended together beautifully in a pleasing palette to the eye. Materials flowed elegantly and with careless romantic abandon.

The ETRO site also has links to color palettes, creativity and some of their own personal collections of clothing. There are some photos of vintage clothing and of Nureyev’s costumes.

Layering shows on the runway in all forms. It can be in materials or in colors. The choices are endless. You can choose the same color family to create a classic look. You can throw in one contrasting color from the color palette to pop an outfits look.  Choose different materials in your clothing to layer for interest. Add jewelry that’s more chunky when you are layering to balance the layers.

The more clothing that you are layering, the more attention you put towards your accessories. A lot of layers does not necessarily call for a lot of jewelry. What it does ask for is a chunky bracelet and a larger ring for balance.  Top it off with a felt fedora for balance.

Balance, don’t bulk. Layer, don’t cover. Have fun dressing. Because that’s why you buy and wear those things. Have fun in your closet this week.



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