(Long Overdue) Clothing Budget: Fall 2018

Screenshot from 2018-12-15 11-18-11
Hellooo fall.

Work has been so busy lately that I haven’t had much time to shop, read blogs, or update this clothing budget series. I really just need a breather! I don’t think I’ve had a completely work-free weekend since the summer. The whole semester felt like I was running around frantically, putting out fires everywhere. No relaxing Saturday mornings with a cup of tea and my favorite armchair to work on this ol’ blog. But thankfully things have finally lightened off a bit. Proposals are written, papers are submitted… now just 50 final exams and projects to grade, lol. With the end of the year coming up quick, I figured it was time to summarize my fall 2018 shopping. Here we go!

  • Wrap blouse (Ann Taylor. $30): This is top is amazeballs! It  reminds me of the Fey top from MM Lafleur, but it has a bit of wool in it, so it’s quite warm. I wear it with a Uniqlo Heattech top underneath, and it feels nearly as warm as a proper sweater, despite being thinner by design. The drape is lovely with the bit of wool content. I hope they more colors next year! I’m even considering purchasing the pink color this year, and I never normally buy duplicates. Now that I have this top, I’m considering the MM Lafleur Soho skirt to go with it and complete the bodycon evil witch look 😉
  • Wrap skirt (Ann Taylor, $70): Hm, another wrap design… what can I say, I like wraps! I normally love purple, but somehow this skirt is not integrating into my wardrobe as well as I thought it would. I’ve only worn it once since I got it. The skirt is a bit heavy and a tad too large for me, so it’s not as flattering as I thought.
  • Wool miniskirt (Uniqlo, $30): I like wearing these with my knee-high black suede boots. I was concerned that this would look too schoolgirl for a grown woman, but it’s not too tight, and reasonably long enough to look fine.
Screenshot from 2018-10-17 21-10-55.png
On the chopping block.

Normally that would be the end of my post, but that would be pretty short, so I figured I’d talk about some things that I donated or sold. To do this, I dusted off the ol’ eBay account and listed a few things:

  • Lululemon backpack: I gushed about this in August’s budget, but after using it for a month, I’ve found the lack of interior pockets is a deal-breaker. I still love the comfort of the straps and the overall roominess. But it’s missing some more smaller pockets on the inside to hold keys, chapstick, pens, etc. The interior is also pitch black, so I’m constantly fishing around for things in the one giant compartment.Bought for: $110, one month ago. Sold for: $100. This one had very few watchers/views, but bidding ramped up quick at the end, so I was pleasantly surprised by the final sell price.
  • Madewell transport backpack: I bought this a few years ago after being inspired by Emma Stone’s style (love her street style!). I still really do like this, but it doesn’t fit my current 13″ laptop, which is again a deal-breaker. And I can’t think of that many other occasions where I need to carry a large backpack around. The only other leather laptop backpack I’ve found is the Cuyana Large Backpack, but I’m not that fond of the style. It looks like a copy of the Mansur Gavriel backpack, but with pockets. The search for the perfect laptop backpack continues…Bought for: $200 a few years ago. Sold for: $90. This one had a lot of views/watchers at the beginning, but after an initial burst, bidding was quite slow. I was expecting a slightly high final sell price, but I suppose the age of the bag and a couple of markings counted against it.
  • Lush long-sleeve blouses: I bought two of these blouses on the recommendation of Putting Me Together, one in red, and one in olive. I did like them, but eventually some oil stains got on there, and wouldn’t come off. With more expensive fabrics like silk, I find the stains can be washed off or absorbed into the fabric and aren’t that visible, while with cheaper polyester like these blouses, the stain just sits on top and can’t be removed. Donated.

And that’s a wrap for the year! (I count my “shopping year” as December to November, inclusive.)  The total for the season is:

Fall 2018 budget: $300  – $130 = $170

I did buy stuff around Black Friday but I’ll include that in next month’s post. In total this year, I spent $1350 on shopping for clothes, shoes, and accessories. My past years were about $2000-3000, so I consider this good progress! I’m working a summary post with tons of statistics from my last 5 years of shopping (I’m an Excel-o-holic, ok? 🙂 ).

4 thoughts on “(Long Overdue) Clothing Budget: Fall 2018

  1. Congratulations about being done with the semester and being able to relax a bit. And darn about the Lululemon backpack, but it sounds like you were able to recoup most of the cost, which is great.

    With Ann Taylor, in my past experience, their clothes can be very hit or miss. Some things are great, in which case, they feel like a total steal with all their sales, but a lot of things end up being a little off in some way, even if they’re perfectly work-appropriate and sort of necessary evils in my wardrobe for that reason. I may just be really picky about a lot of work clothing, but a lot of those categories of clothes are just really dull and not that fun to wear.


    • Thanks! It’s great to get back into blogging again. I missed commenting on your recent posts, but I’ve still been reading everything. Congrats on reaching 4 years of blogging! That’s amazing!

      Yeah, I’m still not exactly sure how to make work clothes fun. I *think* I like my work clothes now and find them relatively interesting, but is it just because I’ve gradually become a more boring person, style-wise? Would 5-years-younger Jess have liked my current work clothes? I think I have it easier than you, though, because my workplace is pretty relaxed. I haven’t devolved to the sweatshirt/shorts/t-shirt combo of my colleagues yet!


  2. I kind of love that your shopping year is December through November. I was actually thinking about doing the same thing because I do a quarterly budget which restarts in December, plus I usually do so much shopping around Black Friday (which usually counts in my December/winter budget) that it’s a good starting point!


    • Haha, totally agree that it feels good to have Black Friday at the start of the shopping “year”! And also it feels like you get a bunch of shopping out of the way for the rest of the year, instead of starting over with a new budget in Jan and feeling like you have carte blanche and need to spend it. Somehow in my mind, Sept – Nov are the fall months, and Dec-Feb are the winter months, which is why I originally set it that way.


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