Goodwill Hunting: Houndstooth Dolce and Gabbana Heels for $5

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Sorry if I sound like a broken record but if you still need a reason to try second hand shopping, maybe this will push you over the edge: beautiful, houndstooth leather, made in Italy, like brand new Dolce and Gabbana heels for five dollars. FIVE bucks! When I found these babies at my local thrift shop, I just couldn’t believe how pristine they were, and check out the funky cutouts on the sides of the shoes, too. To think, if you bought these at the D&G store, they’d run upwards of 300 smackers, and here they were at a second hand shop for 1/60th the price just because someone didn’t want them anymore. Isn’t the world strange sometimes?

Have an unbelievable thrift shop find you want to share with other Clossette readers? Submit it here and we’ll take a look!

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Current Obsession: Jelly Bags and See-Through Purses

Current Obsession: Clear Bags and See Through Purses

Vintage Moschino Clear Bow Tote – AU $165 on Claire Inc.

Remember when see-through bags were all the rage? Whether it was a clear Polo Sport bag, a lime green jelly purse from Delia’s or that tea-colored Louis Vuitton that Stacy Dash rocks in Kanye’s All Falls Down video, these transparent totes were fun statement pieces a few years ago and now I’ve been seeing them all over the pages of spring fashion mags. My favorite ones are the vintage pieces made of lucite and the ones that are slightly tinted so you don’t bare your whole soul – the entire subway car doesn’t need to know that you’re reading I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell. The fact that these crystalline carry-alls are now back “in”, is also a great example of the fact that if you really want to be fashion forward, all you need to do is dig up the stuff in the back of your own (or someone else’s) closet. Flip through the pages below to see and see through all 12 of these vintage and secondhand pieces of eye candy.

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6 Items Fashion Diet Day 5: The Angry Snowman’s Revenge

6 Item Fashion Diet Day 1, fashion diet, diy fashion, snowman dress, yuka yoneda, clossette, second hand clothing, 6 items challenge, six items challenge, anti consumerism, sustainable fashion, slow fashion

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It’s Day 5 of my fashion diet and it’s hot as Hades, so I decided to don my Clossette angry snowman dress. Why is he angry? Well I think that’s obvious, but I’ll leave it to you to come up with your own back story.

Day 5 Outift: An Angry Snowman’s Chance in Hell

Angry snowman reversible mini dress: Made from a $4 t-shirt following these DIY instructions.
Coral bib necklace made of tagua: A gift from The Andean Collection
Wooden bangle: Purchased in the Bahamas
Nautical wedges: TOMS Shoes

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Wondering what my 6 Items Fashion Diet is and why I’m doing it? Click here to get the whole scoop.

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6 Items Challenge Fashion Diet Day 1: Kaleidoscopic Kimono Flow

6 Item Fashion Diet Day 1, fashion diet, diy fashion, fashion diy, yuka yoneda, clossette, second hand clothing, 6 items challenge, six items challenge, anti consumerism, sustainable fashion, slow fashion, fast fashion,

6 Item Fashion Diet Day 1, fashion diet, diy fashion, fashion diy, yuka yoneda, clossette, second hand clothing, 6 items challenge, six items challenge, anti consumerism, sustainable fashion, slow fashion, fast fashion,

I’m officially on a diet! If you think that’s pretty uncharacteristic of me, hear me out. For this diet, I’ll be counting clothes instead of calories. For the whole month of July, I’ve pledged to wear only 6 items of clothing to show that true style isn’t about having more clothes; it’s about having a curated closetful of quality garments – and knowing how to make a little go a long way. Follow me and my fellow fashion dieters as we challenge ourselves to mix and match our 6 items and get creative to craft 30 different outfits using our limited garb.

So why are we paring down our wardrobes like this? The 6 Items Style Challenge was started by Labour Behind the Label, a campaign that supports garment workers’ efforts worldwide to improve their working conditions through awareness. Most people don’t know how little these women, men and in many cases children get paid so that you can buy a skirt for $12 or a shirt for $10, but if you’re reading this, I hope the one thing you take away is that our desire for cheap, fast fashion is hurting people around the globe. Although having just 6 items to wear might be on the extreme side, the point of this exercise is to show that it can be done and also hopefully will make people see that we simply don’t need that many new clothes!

Check out my very first outfit below and if you’re interested in learning more about the cause, read an interview about why I decided to take on the 6 Items Challenge here.

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Day 1 Outift: Kaleidoscopic Kimono Flow

Multi-colored sheer top: Thrifted for $6
Mom jeans: Thrifted for $4
Eat a Dick heart pendant necklace: $40 from In God We Trust
Tory Burch flip flop sandals: Gift from Krissy on her bachelorette party
Plaid purse: Rugby by Ralph Lauren
Sunglasses: Chanel

The sheer top and mom jeans are 2 of the 6 garments I’m allowed to wear this month so I’m sure you’ll see them again…

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13 Dreamy Party Dresses to Wear to Weddings This Spring

spring dresses, eco dresses, secondhand dresses, dress to wear to wedding, spring dress, eco dress, secondhand dress vintage dress, clossette, closette, green dress

spring dresses, eco dresses, secondhand dresses, dress to wear to wedding, spring dress, eco dress, secondhand dress vintage dress, clossette, closette, green dress

Spring brings weddings, garden parties and other occasions that have already begun filling me with anxiety, panic and a textbook case of the “What the #$!* should I wear?!!!”s. Spurred on by the warmer air, my yearning for the perfect dress has had me daydreaming and websurfing – though not during work, of course ; ) I thought I might share my “research” with all you gals out there who are in need of some inspiration. So without further ado, here are 5 pages of 13 pretty spring dresses to get lost in.

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Birthday Dinner at Dirt Candy

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Dirt Candy” may not sound like the most appetizing name for a restaurant but once you realize what the moniker refers to – veggies, of course! – it makes a lot of sense. My kickass family treated me to a sweet and savory seasonal meal at this truly innovative eatery for my birthday and color me impressed. If you haven’t checked it out yet, I highly recommend it (don’t miss the jalapeno hush puppies!). As many of you know, I’ve faced the omnivore’s dilemma for many years now and have succumbed to the succubus that is succulent steak, sausages, saveloys – you name it – every time they crossed my plate. Maybe it’s because I never liked veggies enough or had them prepared in a truly delicious manner, maybe it’s because I’m just weak. But all of that changed recently when I checked out the killer spread of vegetarian truffles, empanadas, pizzas and even sushi at the Healthy Food in Fashion event a few weeks ago. It really opened my eyes to all of the different ways to indulge without an animal having to be slaughtered. I guess I could keep rambling on about this but since this is technically an outfit idea post, let me get to it!

I’m not exactly sure what kind of theme is going on with this en-som – maybe Upper West Side lady meets stewardess?

Navy blazer: My mom’s, from her days at Northwest Airlines
Camel dress: Mango circa 2009
Chainlink purse: Thrifted – it was only $9.99!
Grey Genesis booties: On loan from Naya Shoes for the Renew Your Soles 5-Day Style Challenge (more on this soon!)
White pashmina scarf: Purchased on the street back when I worked at Rockefeller
Scissor necklace: From the Clossette “Use Your Own Chain” collection

Food descriptions after the jump!

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Costume Idea: Be a Bodacious Bodega for Halloween

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Why be a run-of-the-mill sexy stewardess, cop, racecar driver for Halloween when you could be a bodacious bodega? Okay so I didn’t come up with this idea myself – I have to give credit where credit is due to mad genius Lisa Mayock who I saw wearing it first – but I thought it was such an original costume that I had to make my own version. I’m not sure what she used for hers, but for mine, I started by recycling a pizza box (nice excuse to treat yoself, as Aziz would say) and adorning it with your standard bodega accouterments – lotto signs, Metrocard signs, ATM signs (a lot of signs, really). Just a little warning though that this costume is a bit perilous if you have little to no self control when it comes to junkfood. I’m typing this with orange fingers right now…

I’m going to post a complete DIY on how to make this bodega costume from scratch on Inhabitat tomorrow so check for it there. I also saved all of the sign graphics I used as jpegs so if you want to be a bodega for Halloween but want to save yourself the trouble of hunting down all of the graphics, email hello[at]clossette.com and I’ll send them right to ya!

More eco-friendly Halloween costume ideas >

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Halloween Costume Idea: 1950s Sockhop Girl

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If you’re looking for a Halloween costume that covers more than 15% of your body surface (doesn’t it seem like they’re hard to find nowadays?) but is still feminine, why not be a 1950s sockhop girl? It’s a costume that’s relatively easy to put together yourself either with items you already own or with stuff you can pick up at your local thrift shop, or you can buy the one you see above here!

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Halloween Costume Idea: Cher from Clueless

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If you grew up in the 90s, you probably remember Clueless and the movie’s adorably naive main character, Cher. This costume is pretty easy to put together and is almost instantly recognizable. Somehow everyone that saw this “got” that I was Cher – despite the fact that I’m Asian and have black hair – so I think that says a lot about the iconic power of the chunky cellphone and 90s yellow plaid blazer. Create the costume with items you already own, stuff you can pick up at your local thrift shop, or you can buy the one you see above here!

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Why I Don’t Buy New Clothes and Why You Might Not Want to Either

Why I Don't Buy New Clothes and Why Probably Don't Want to Either, Why I Don't Buy New Clothes, the story of stuff, annie leonard, clossette, closette, thrift shopping, vintage shopping

Why I Don't Buy New Clothes and Why Probably Don't Want to Either, Why I Don't Buy New Clothes, the story of stuff, annie leonard, clossette, closette, thrift shopping, vintage shopping
Taken at a secondhand shop in Katano, Japan

I don’t buy new clothes. It’s made me the recipient of many a raised eyebrow, and just like asking a vegetarian out to a steakhouse, I’m probably not the first person you’d ask to go to the mall with you. “Oh, you don’t? Hmm, okay…” has been the usual response, and the few friends who I have taken thrift shopping with me seemed a bit ill at ease – “Someone else wore these, right?” Having worked in the sustainable fashion world for so long, the reasons for my shopping abstinence are so obvious to me but I’d be lying if I said I’ve explained them clearly to others. But what’s the point if the only people gaining knowledge about buying clothes in a more responsible fashion are the people who already do it? So let me take this opportunity to explain my reasons to you. I could be totally wrong but I think if you read this, you might rethink how and why you shop. This is in no way meant to be preachy or didactic, so I hope it doesn’t come off the wrong way. I just think it’s information you might want to have. So if you read it and hate it, just discard it from your mind. But if it makes sense to you, there is a possibility that it will change your life for the better.

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Halloween Costume Idea: Breakfast (Literally) at Tiffany’s

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Any girl can be an instantly recognizable Audrey Hepburn with just a few simple items almost everyone already has. Click here to see how you can do it with stuff from your own closet or from your local thrift shop.

And for even more Audrey-esque inspiration, check out Everything Audrey’s roundup of the best dressed bloggers sporting Holly Golightly style here.

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Halloween Costume Idea: “Golddigger”

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Kanye West may not be saying she’s a golddigger, but this costume certainly is. This wonderfully tacky getup (complete with horribly uneven shoulder pads) is a punny play on words that’s sure to get you some attention – whether it be good or bad. You can put together yourself either with items you already own, with stuff you can pick up at your local thrift shop, or you can buy the one you see above here!

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Check Out My New Thrift Shopping Series “Goodwill Hunting” on Ecouterre!

bargain fashion, Bayside Thrift Shop, eco-fashion, ethical fashion, Flushing, Goodwill Hunting, green fashion, new york city, Queens, secondhand clothing, secondhand fashion, Sustainable Fashion, thrift shops, thrift stores, vintage clothing, vintage fashion, ecouterre, yuka yoneda, clossette, closette

Whether you care about saving the environment or you just want one of a kind clothes for cheap, that here are so many reasons that thrift shopping rules! But it doesn’t get the best rap. I don’t know if it’s the fact that it has the word “thrift” in it, or the fact that people are just loathe to buy things that were previously owned by others (which kind of doesn’t make sense to me since even when you buy something “new,” it was most likely tried on by dozens of other people or even taken home to someone else’s place and then returned). Either way, I believe firmly that secondhand shopping is a first rate experience and that it’s actually the wave of the future. That’s why I decided to introduce as many people as I can to the joys of thrift shopping with my new series on Ecouterre – Goodwill Hunting! For the very first installment, I headed to the NYC area’s second oldest secondhand store, the Bayside Thrift Shop and end up scoring an entire outfit for $21! Read on to see everything else I picked up – including a pair of summery tangerine sandals for just $5 and a preppy belt for a buck.

READ ON >

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HOW TO: Make Slightly Too Small Sandals or Slides Fit

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Vintage and secondhand shopping has so many perks – you can score incredibly special, quality pieces that would normally cost more than your rent for crazy cheap, and a lot of times they’re practically brand new. Such was the case with these beguiling Louis Vuitton wedge slides that I picked up at a consignment shop for a price that you probably wouldn’t believe (and I’m not talking about in Chinatown). The only problem was that they were ever so slightly too small (as you can see from the photo above). It’s an issue that comes up frequently with thrift shopping since in most cases, everything is one of a kind and you can’t just ask the stockboy to bring you another size. I kept asking Diana, who was with me at the time, if she thought I should still get them and because of her reassurance, I took the plunge. But of course, when I stepped out of the house with them for the first time, I paid the price (as evidenced by the bandaid you see). And I had to agree that my heel jutting out of the back of my shoe like a cliff wasn’t exactly the most attractive look. Then I realized there was an easy fix! Read on to see what I did and how you can make your own slightly too small sandals fit.

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GOODWILL HUNTING: Goodies We Found at Mint Thrift Shop in Katano, Japan

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I’d never been to a thrift shop in Japan so one of the first things on my itinerary when we arrived in Kokura was to visit a neighborhood secondhand store. A quick Google search yielded the address and website of Almost New, a “recycle” shop in Katano, which is just a 15 minute walk from my grandma’s. And, the website promised, sitting right atop Almost New, I would find Mint, a clothing store filled with secondhand goodies. Yatta! Click through the gallery for some pics of what I bought (for a bargain). I’ll write more about Mint (and find the website for you) when I have a chance!

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