I wrote the other day about great places to find cheap clothing, and TJ Maxx was one of those places. In search of a suit for Meg, dress pants for Erin and a Sprom dress for Lena, the four of us ventured to cambridgeside for a day of shopping. In the middle of our shopping adventure, Lena read a blog post on Beantown Prepster that TJ Maxx had a new shipment of Lilly Pulitzer. Since Lena is obsessed, we rerouted there and she found at least two dozen pieces to try. Lena left with patterned pinapple bermudas, a pair of lime green capris and a sleeveless collared ralph lauren polo in a sky blue. She managed to snag all that in $120 – less than the bermuda’s wouldve cost on their own at full retail price!
I was a very good girl and only bought a set of 4 pairs of aerie undies leftover from vday, which were justified by my $5 coupon that i snagged for trying on a bra [of course in a C, since the whole world of cute bra makers refuses to make 32Ds. argh!]. So I managed to spend $6 on 4 pairs of underwear – not bad at all. At TJ Maxx I definitely was lacking the energy [and the financial means] to spend serious amounts of time digging. I did browse through the denim but all the Seven’s and True Religions I found either weren’t the style I was looking for or not at all in my size. I guess going on a Saturday evening isnt ideal for that type of thing. In wandering the store, Erin and I stumbled upon the bra section, in which I discovered a number of 32D Walcoal bras. I was in bra heaven. These bras normally retail at Nordstroms or Macys for anywhere from $60-$80, and my poor mom pays full price for them for me because she knows theyre the only bras that fit me well. So I found THREE of them for $13 each – $38 bucks for 3 bras when one normally costs me $60… absolutely no complaints there.
Meg found her suit at New York & Co for $80 which was an incredible deal, I had no idea but they apparently have a 25% AAA discount, pretty sweet. Lena did some damage at J Crew as well, all in their wonderful sale section, and Erin found a hot pink boyfriend cardigan for 25 with her 15% student discount – always key at J Crew. I toyed with getting these babies
but decided I’d wait til I hit up the outlets when I’m home in June. For now I’ve got my trusty reefs and my very last AE purchase:
They’re basically knock off Tory Burch, but I love them anyways, and I just absolutey cannot wait for flip flop weather to arrive!!
After our very successful shopping trip we hit up PF Changs for dinner, which is always delicious. And now it’s sunday afternoon, I’m back at home procrastinating doing my work by writing about fashion. What else is new?
I know, I know – I shouldnt be shopping. I shouldnt even be thinking about shopping. But Erin and Lena are both speech pathology majors, and they have a speech dance [“sprom”] that Erin is taking me as her date to in a few weeks, and Lena needed a dress. Since Lena loves Lilly Pulitzer, we went to the “in the pink” Lilly store on Newbury Street. When she was in France last week, Erin got a duffel size Longchamp, which she wanted a long strap for, so we were going to go to the Longchamp store as well.
At Lilly, Lena tried on a ton of dresses, all of which looked great on her. The initial problem was probably that all of Lilly’s dresses, while really fun and bright, aren’t the kind of semi-formal cocktail dresses that we were looking for. Although most of the items in the store weren’t my cup of tea, I have to admit that all of the dresses were incredibly flattering on Lena. There’s something about the cut of the dress which really suits her. Now that I think about it, I have a very simple boat neck Banana Republic dress in a khaki color that is much more flattering on me than I thought it would be when my mom threw it at me in the fitting room just because it was on sale.
Anyways, like I said, the majority of this stuff I cannot see on myself. As my friend Kate put it, Lilly Pulitzer is “like vera bradley but more expensive”. While I will admit that the online site doesn’t do the dresses justice, I think my problem with the store in general is just that it’s very very expensive and all of the items are all one specific type of look. Of course I love the flowery, bright, summery feel, but the price tag just scares me. It feels very wealthy martha’s vineyard type, which part of me adores and part of me wants to roll my eyes at.
The store in general was just very overwhelming. There were so many items and so many bright colors – I felt like I could’ve spent hours just looking through the racks. There were two sales ladies, one of whom was super sweet, friendly and just incredibly interested in sprom and finding a dress for Lena. She complimented Erin’s Longchamp and was talking to us naturally – she was truly a sweetheart. The other girl, who was very clearly the manager, was older and clearly much more motivated in the sale of the dresses, not getting to know Lena and really help us find what we were looking for. I think the manager’s attitude really put Lena off. It felt like she was pressuring her to drop almost $800 on just two dresses, which as a college student Lena clearly can’t afford. Where as the other girl seemed more understanding, the manager just had a disgusted look on her face when Lena said she was going to wait and mull it over. We eventually left empty handed, but below are all the dresses Lena tried and her thoughts/reactions to all of them.
Like I said, the picture truly doesn’t do the dress justice, and I know that it looks slightly frumpy, but when Lena had it on it really looked so cute. The manager was wearing it also, and I really liked it on her as well. Problems with the dress were 1) it was $288 and 2) it’s meant to be a summer dress, but its thicker material and more coverage on the neck and arms might not make it an ideal thing to be wearing out on hot days, especially for Lena because she tends to overheat.
This dress had sequins on it, which I really liked. The pattern wasn’t my favorite, and the other two Pulitzer dresses that Lena owns are this cut. At $348, Lena decided to pass.
This one was probably my least favorite, just because it’s so simple and I felt like it wasn’t as flattering on Lena. The ruffles at the bottom were slightly overwhelming, and with a price tag of $400, we decided to pass.
This one is definitely my favorite of all the dresses. Of course, it’s also priced at $398, which made Lena very hesitant. We felt that of all the dresses, it was one of the more appropriate for sprom. The picture doesnt show it very well, but the center of the dress is macrame, but shiny-like beads over it. I know it sounds too intense, but it really was flattering on Lena. Of course at that price, we had to leave the dress hanging on the rack, and Lena wasn’t as in love with it as Erin and I were, so we left.
We then headed to Longchamp, who informed Erin that they dont have long straps and I fell in love with a $215 wallet. Oopsie? I resisted though, mostly because I could feel the sales associate’s judging eyes on my target puffy jacket & my forever 21 purse. Clearly I am not good enough to own a Longchamp wallet.
Then we headed to H&M, because after Lena’s frustration with Lilly, we decided we could find her something just and cute, but more appropriate and way less expensive there. I became infatuated with a purple faux suit jacket which I ended up purchasing for $34.50 [I can wear it to interviews AND to work when I get a job, and the color screams me and it’s just so unique and fun]
I also got this scarf for $7 which I am debating how I will wear – its tricky because it’s basically a big square of material, but I love the colors and I just have to figure out how to tie it around my neck without looking too silly.
Erin found this absolutely adorable trench coat, which she’s been saying she needs for ages, so that was a huge success.
Lena found a great dress, which of course I dont have a picture of and H&M doesn’t have a website but the top is a sort of scrunched white material and the bottom looks like longer, navy pencil skirt that has the top tucked into it. We decided with pearls and some cute pumps she’ll be all set for sprom.