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x goals before x

22 Jun

Huh? you say?

x=your age.

Ah! You guys…I am attempting one this year. I put together x number of goals , some mini/low-impact , some life shattering , some achievable and some definitely-not-happening goals until my next birthday.  I am not mentioning them specifically since I am not one to say “DO this” . At least not anymore. Who is to say my goals are good enough for the populace in general? However, they are good enough for me.

Now, like I mentioned above, 2 goals are not going to happen. I realized that as I was putting together the list (it took me 6 days to come up with them, go ahead laugh at me). It feels very sobering to write this but I am old enough to understand what is in my comfort zone, what is outside and what is so far from my comfort zone that it feels like a dot in the nano range. I want them in there so that I can remind myself that not all things are achievable and there is a limit to ‘me’. If you didn’t laugh earlier, here is another cue.

I have a theme for this year. Brighten. Here is how why this happened. A month ago I found a spider under a toilet brush holder in my bathroom. Usually I scream, then grab a broomstick and whack it. As it happened I decided to let him stay there until he bothered me. He stayed there for 2 weeks before annoying me. I whacked him. Case closed. Only no. Another spider occupied the abode. I waited a week before whacking him. A week later, a mini third one decided to make it his home. I started wondering why? Why did bad things keep moving in there? why were they attracted to the dark place ? Because every time I got rid of them, the dark place still existed. It reminded me of my mind. It does not suffice to just get rid of dark thoughts. It is essential to make my mind bright and let in positive thoughts. Only by changing the landscape can I prevent negative thoughts from entering.  So there you go, this the year when I cultivate a better healthier mind.

I managed to turn a motivating goal post into a dull philosophical one but I am growing old folks. By the way, if you were wondering about Hari (mini spider) he still is hanging around. Atleast a week old now. Sigh!

Everlane review

12 Jun

I have no idea if anyone is reading my blog at this point but I am still determined to get the truth about Everlane’s shitty clothes out there. I know that most blogs push everlane as THE place to buy basics. Yes, its easy to find one store to buy everything in my checklist. But how does the quality fare? A big fat zero my friends. In the past year I’ve purchased 6 items from Everlane. A silk tank, 3 cotton tees, a merino wool knit and a linen tank. All were purchased with my own money . Thereby you can rely on me for some truth.

Cotton quality: All 3 of my t-shirts have gotten comically large in the past year. I know that cotton shrinks after the first wash and then sort of billows later on but this was unexpected. It wouldn’t be that ridiculous if you forget that they are larger on me post partum than before my pregnancy. Yes, my thoughts precisely. $17-$20 was the average cost of the tees. Threw out the black one after 10 wears.

Knit quality: Admittedly I only have one piece of merino wool knit or silk to complain review about but hear me out. It has magically begun pilling (very mild) after 3 wears WITHOUT washing. Sigh..I did use a fine comb to remove them but they are going to require SO much babying in the next few years. $65 on sale you guys. Consider me pissed. Do you know who makes better quality knits? Joe fresh. Merino wool sweaters for $20 a piece. 60. That’s the number of times i’ve worn my olive green sweater before discarding it.

Silk quality: Moving on to my top most hated category. I wore the “silk” (HAHA I might as well get some laughs for my money) tank thrice before hand washing it like I do with all my other silks. It went in the way of Amanda Mcready, I mean gone baby gone! It is thoroughly wrinkled. There is a slightly visible stain, from what? That I do not know. It is not from any food particle. Perhaps the tank has some super power wherein it attracts stuff to result in nasty stains. If that seems far fetched to you, my next best  guess is the air that we breathe. Yesterday I heated my iron and tried to salvage it. It seems wearable now. But do you know what silk is supposed to be? Its a tough , semi-breathable fabric . $65 for low quality crepe. If you are in doubt, ask my $50 Ann taylor tank which I bought in 2010 and have worn atleast 20-30 times. It is in pristine condition by the way and will last another decade.

The linen tank has been the only saving grace for a such a widely acclaimed company. It seems durable and  the white has not faded . But I remain skeptical of Everlane. My 2 cents. Don’t waste your money supporting this dubious retailer.

 

2 weeks in…

31 May

I find it extremely hard to stick to my goals 2 weeks in. During memorial sales events I was tempted by so many things having somewhat regained my pre pregnancy size. But I desperately needed work wear bottoms and wanted to buy several pairs of pants/jeans. Finally I bought 1 after hemming and hawing for 3 days. I have exactly 4 pairs of fitting pants now. The other 8 are mocking me while languishing in my closet.

June, will see my birthday and anniversary. What about my anniversary gifts? What about the fact that my most favorite top is coming apart? Also, given the change in my postpartum body, is this the right time for such an approach? Maybe not, but will it ever be the right time? I do plan on relaxing my goal to allow for undergarments . God knows, the last thing I need at this point is guilt over a pair of replacement panties.

Right now I am at 6/12 items. I am still going to attempt to stick to my goal. I’ve been taking outfit photos and realized I’ve been wearing the SAME pants over and over. I told myself that if I fail and end up with 30 items that is still 82 less than last year and I will have to feel good about that. Peace out.

Recommitting to a new approach in 2017

19 May

I’ve been very silent on this blog especially on one of my favorite hobbies, fashion. I started this blog after my daughters birth to share my love of all things girly. The truth is that pregnancy reminded me yet again about how unsustainable this hobby is. Fast Fashion is the second most polluting industry in the world. IT is also an industry which supports a ton of livelihoods through sweatshop like conditions. I’ve felt guilty about both. In fact this is extended to all aspects of my life. I have tried very hard to justify purchases of “cute new things” across the board (Kitchen, toys, organization etc). I have been re-purposing shoe boxes, sheets, glass containers etc. The hardest part is toys to engage kiddo.

I’ve looked at certain minimalist blogs and find them really hard to follow. No, I am not going to downsize and live in a 500sqft apt and throw out every single thing I own. I still have decor on my wall, books, furniture, appliances etc. Throwing out everything is not practical to me. However, I am willing to change my mindset to consume needlessly. Reducing waste is interesting to. I will no longer throw out brand new things which could be loved by someone else. I definitely have to read more on this subject.

That said, since the end of February I started slowly shopping again. My approach has been for a lack of better term better.This time around, I have been sourcing items from sustainable luxury options. After a few months , here is my experience.

In 2016, I added 112 new things . This includes every single purchase such as Clothes(including scarves), lingerie, handbags, jewellery / watches and shoes, makeup, skincare and books. Its perhaps not a terrible number. In 2017 so far, I have added 12 things for myself in the past 12 weeks. That is almost 1 thing a week. However only 5 of them are new. 5 new things in the first 5 months of the year. Maybe I can restrict myself to 7 new things for the next 7 months this year? TO be clear , I can participate in purchase of consignment goods. Ok, even if I can, there are problems with this approach. All I am doing is deferring participation in the consumerist cycle . I am also depending on over-consumption by others. This is definitely not a long term solution. What would that be? Don’t buy any non-essential and waste less. In the meanwhile I am content with my resolve to restrict myself to 12 new things this year. Wish me luck!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walking away

26 Jul

Over the past few months I’ve bit my lip extra hard when experiencing rude behavior because of who I am (insert caste, race, country etc.) , not because of my actions. It is very hard blaming some people though because they seem to directly reflect their parent’s opinion or a popular politically incorrect opinion. I can’t dislike them but I can dislike the actions. Here is a theorem:

For every race, religion, country, <insert differentiator> there will be a subset of jerks. Infact some SAHM’s are jerks, some working moms are jerks. These people will discriminate based on something which can be utterly baffling to normal folks. A common thought is to take it personally . Such actions reflect only on the wrong doers part.Walking away and smiling at the ignorance is a decent way to tackle such kind of pettiness.

Mini Goals..

16 May

1)Do Classes – DONE! Attended 4 vinyasa yoga classes 🙂

2) Complete mini-me projects – DONE! (1 board game from scratch, decorated the room with her and spending plenty of time during our vacation)

3) Positive workaround – My hardest goal this time NEUTRAL. I dont know, I had both positive and negative moments. There were 2 particular moments when I was calm and assumed that the attendant had a bad day. There were atleast 3 moments when I was quite irritated. It is super hard to be empathetic towards people who treat you like crap based on your age/sex/race)

4) Donate either 3 hours of time or $100 (probably to Akshaya patra org) – FAIL. 1hr donated. $50 bucks donated so far. will do $17 more

5) Read/Listen to a work of fiction and one of non-fiction -> 1/2. Dan Ariely’s “the upside of irrationality”. Couldnt finish pulp fiction “l.A dead” because I started reading it at a cabin and had to leave for hte next one.

Oh And for the new experience..2 words: Spin ClassIt was intimidating to be in a class where I was one of the fatter ones ..(HAHA)…..AND where everyone had abs at the minimum and upto 6 or 8 pack.  Not kidding or exaggerating, this is a fact.

I am giving myself a score of 3/6. Huh, next months goals.

  1. Start learning a new language
  2. Learn a new skill
  3. Spend an unplanned day with no scheduled stuff. I’ve scheduled an activity or errand every day in the past year so this is going  to be the most challenging goal this time.
  4. Go 30 days without buying a single WANT thing in categories such as clothing/skincare/home related purchase etc -This is my 2nd attempt in the past 1 year to do a 30 day fast on everything (could be a $1  nail polish) that is a want and its very hard. Last year I made it to 12 days before buying an earring. This time I am on day 17. 13 more days!
  5. No processed food for atleast 20/30 days until Mid-June.
  6. Stay away from distracting mediums like facebooks/forums/ etc.

As always, look forward to one new experience !

Edit: The past 2 weeks hve been super rough. Extending goals to end of June. Lets see.

Well made stuff

21 Apr

You guys (and I know there are enough because of the blog views) , here are a few stores that you could buy well made, high quality but affordable stuff from. You know thats my mission this year. This is not for those who get tired of the same clothes but if you are like me and wear a piece until it rips apart then these will certainly last longer.

  1. Silk Skirts – Anna Sui for Anthropologie , Tracy Reese are two brands I have tried in the past few months, granted you have to wait for a major sale. I accidentally threw the tracy reese skirt into the laundry and it came out with no tears and so I keep doing that. Tough silk = win.
  2. Pants – Old Navy. 98%cotton, 2%elastane for chinos. I got mine more than 6 months back and still look new. I thought to myself 6 months isnt long even if you wear a pant twice a week. Then I realized I have one from 2 years back. THAT has been worn 2-3 times a week. Y
  3. Shoes – I never buy shoes from the same store. Probably have tried around 30+ brands in U.S. So trust me when I say that 2 names stand out. a) Naturalizer b) Latigo. I bought this exact pair about 3 months back and it is a hardy shoes to wear if you don’t have time to spend on maintaining shoes.
  4. Pencil skirts  – Alfani, Ann taylor . I threw out some of my recent ill fitting , low quality pencil skirts when I was cleaning up my wardrobe but found 3 of them from 5 years back . 2 AT’s and one alfani. They are holding up unbelievably well after close to 5 years and I wear them atleast 10-20 times a year.

I am not encouraging or enabling you to buy more . I think that having well made stuff that lasts is very reliving . I still need to find a place that makes good quality cotton t-shirts and good quality button up skirts.J.crew’s crewneck tees don’t fit me well and I am sick of buying a grey t-shirt every single year.

On the same note, I have looked into my wardrobe and felt good for quite a while now. THe only thing that nags me is the utter lack of fitting tops, everything I have is boxy and flowing.