Dressy on a Dime

I take a lot of pride in looking like a million bucks on a shoe string budget. Just because I don’t make exuberant amounts of money doesn’t mean that I have to sacrifice the glitz and the glam. My mission is to spill all of my frugal thrifting secrets and prove to people that high end designer pieces are  hiding at your local thrift, consignment, and vintage stores.  IMG_0213 Someone’s throw away become my treasures at these wonderful second hand stores I frequent. This Ralph Lauren gown is the perfect example of looking dressy on a dime and definitely a treasure in my book. I mean, look at the details on top of the sleeves! It’s the perfect 20’s style dress.IMG_0203IMG_0212 A dress like this will blend well in any fancy pants parties and no one would ever know that you got it second hand for $25 bucks! Unless you tell on yourself like I do ;)  I threw on my sparkly vintage earrings (SPCA thrift) and my second hand Jimmy Choo’s ($40 at Crossroad’s Trading Co) and I was ready for a fabulous night on the town. Now, if only I had somewhere to wear this beautiful dress to…IMG_0209

For something a little more vintage I found this stunning 50’s lace and velvet dress at the Alameda Antique Faire for $10! I’m normally one to bargain for everything at antique faires, but when the dealer said $10 I took it. It’s just exquisite and look at the delicate  floral lace. IMG_0162

The sweet heart neck line is just darling and flattering on so many different body types. The construction of the dress is just incredible, too. The top has boning and molds to the body perfectly – they just don’t make them like they used to! Going along with the floral lace, I opted for a vintage floral necklace from Thrift Town ($5.99) and floral vintage earrings from the Alameda Antique Faire. ($5)


Next time you have a nice event to attend don’t forget that you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars. Your next glamorous outfit is right around the corner at your local thrift, vintage, or antique faire for pennies on the dollar.

Please let me know if  you have any thrift or styling questions! Would love to help. Love, The Dress Fiend


Bohemian Days


My style is ever evolving, but one thing is always constant – my love for vintage. 60’s fashion will always remain my favorite era for vintage, but as of late I have been sneaking over to the 70’s side.
Vintage and thrift shopping speaks to me in ways that no contemporary new department store can. My style is a direct result from my years of exploring all the different aisles upon aisles of second hand wonders.
The other day I dreamt of hot summer nights with a beautiful dress that flowed in the warm breezy air. I dreamt of beautiful head scarves, big sunglasses, and a smile that glistened from ear to ear.  Lucky for me, I dream of ensembles for inspiration and sometimes I’m lucky enough to find my dreamt up looks in my favorite thrift stores.
My Bohemian flowing dress dreams came to fruition this past weekend at my beloved Freestyle Clothing Exchange thrift store. IMG_0613They have a small vintage section, but because they are meticulous about what they buy from people it’s always good! The beautiful floral print flows with the greatest of ease in the hot summer winds. IMG_0615

And you can never go wrong pairing that perfect vintage dress with an even more perfect pair of vintage 70’s glasses. IMG_0609Big shout of to my friend Omonivie of Tula in Bloom for making the beautiful earrings I have on. IMG_0617She’s a true artist, check her out: http://www.tulainbloom.etsy.com
Also, if you are in Sacramento please check out one of the 4 Freestyle Clothing Exchange’s for some of the best vintage: http://www.freestyleclothing.com
Outfit details:
Vintage 70’s dress, Freestyle, $12
Vintage 70’s shades, Sac Antique Faire, $2
Espadrilles, Freestyle, $15

She believed she could so she did

  Today’s post is short and sweet:  Dreams can become realities if we stop for a moment and realize that anything is possible when we work for it and believe in ourselves. Everyday when I wake up I start my … Continue reading

The Launch x Fashion show 2013

Last night was a wonderful night filled with fashion, creativity, determination, and a spectacular show! I had the honor of helping out with the Launch x Fashion show and saw what it was like to produce a fashion show from beginning to end. Image Boy do I commend Lisa Kennedy and Sandra Yan-Crowell for producing such an impressive show last night at the Tsakopolous Library Galleria. Image (super cool bamboo jersey dress by the designer Frock LA – loved this collection!)

It was a delight to meet and speak with a previous Project Runway star and hear about how he makes his own knits, textiles, and designs. The star I am referring to is Joseph Aaron Segal of last seasons show. (Pretty Snake is his label) I mean, how fun are these candy leggings and headbands?! Makes you smile and feel like a kid again. ImageImage

You’re probably wondering what thrifted frock I wore to the event right? Well, since we had to wear all black I opted for my finest vintage dress purchased a couple of months ago at the Sac Antique Faire.Image It’s a 1950’s silk velvet dress that felt like it was made for me! It came with a little jacket, too, but I only wore the dress to the event. ($40 for the set – not too bad for a piece of history and art) Image

At the event I decided to do my hair in a ponytail with a puff on the top to make it seem a little more fresh and paired that with some dangly earrings my Momma made me. I was thrilled to see one of my favorite local fashion bloggers, Ms Bridgett, there doing press.  She’s such a talented writer and artist. The girl puts together some of the best ensembles around. There’s always a story and I absolutely love that! Image

In the end, it was a FUN night filled with fashion, education, and true talent. I really felt inspired to be around such talented and creative fashion minds. I attended the Launch x Music festival today and can’t wait to share with you all the best fashion I saw and my very own thrifted look for the day!

PS: If you are up tomorrow morning please make sure to watch Good Day Sacramento live at http://gooddaysacramento.cbslocal.com/good-day-sacramento-live/ for a fun Maternity Wear segment. Bet you didn’t know that thrift stores have amazing maternity clothes huh? :) They do!


The Dress Fiend

When I started loving myself…

There are moments in life when we hit a road block and feel we have no where to turn. Depression and confusion set in not allowing for our true authentic self to grow and radiate. I suffer from this sometimes. What always brings me back is a knowing that I’ve worked incredibly hard these past couple of years to regain the light that had been lost. Sometimes I forget or am not grateful for all that I have and accomplished. Recently I was reminded of how beautiful life really is. A yoga teacher at the studio I practice read a poem by Charlie Chaplin that struck such a cord with me that I felt like I had written it myself. 

The poem brought me back to a sense of humility and appreciation for life. It is my greatest hope that I can inspire people (just like my yoga teacher and Mr. Chaplin have here) to think outside the box and never give up, no matter what…

When I started loving myself” – A poem by Charlie Chaplin written on his 70th birthday on April 16, 1959:

When I started loving myself

I understood that I’m always and at any given opportunity
in the right place at the right time.
And I understood that all that happens is right –
from then on I could be calm.
Today I know: It’s called TRUST.

When I started to love myself I understood how much it can offend somebody
When I tried to force my desires on this person,
even though I knew the time is not right and the person was not ready for it,
and even though this person was me.
Today I know: It’s called LETTING GO

When I started loving myself
I could recognize that emotional pain and grief
are just warnings for me to not live against my own truth.
Today I know: It’s called AUTHENTICALLY BEING.

When I started loving myself
I stopped longing for another life
and could see that everything around me was a request to grow.
Today I know: It’s called MATURITY.

When I started loving myself
I stopped depriving myself of my free time
and stopped sketching further magnificent projects for the future.
Today I only do what’s fun and joy for me,
what I love and what makes my heart laugh,
in my own way and in my tempo.
Today I know: it’s called HONESTY.

When I started loving myself
I escaped from all what wasn’t healthy for me,
from dishes, people, things, situations
and from everyhting pulling me down and away from myself.
In the beginning I called it the “healthy egoism”,
but today I know: it’s called SELF-LOVE.

When I started loving myself
I stopped wanting to be always right
thus I’ve been less wrong.
Today I’ve recognized: it’s called HUMBLENESS.

When I started loving myself
I refused to live further in the past
and worry about my future.
Now I live only at this moment where EVERYTHING takes place,
like this I live every day and I call it CONSCIOUSNESS.

When I started loving myself
I recognized, that my thinking
can make me miserable and sick.
When I requested for my heart forces,
my mind got an important partner.
Today I call this connection HEART WISDOM.

We do not need to fear further discussions,
conflicts and problems with ourselves and others
since even stars sometimes bang on each other
and create new worlds.
Today I know: THIS IS LIFE

Charlie Chaplin 70th Birthday poem


This is who I am

My clothing my art

My art the greatest expression of who I am

And for that I am grateful…



And to the one who’s always stood by me – Mom, I love you. Thank you for instilling a love for all things creative. With out you my art would have never flourished. You inspire me everyday…


RIP Ol’ Blue 4/18/13

I’m sad to report that my beloved bicycle, Ol’ Blue, was stolen from me last Thursday. It happened in the wee hours of the evening right on the side of my house. I even had a U-lock on and they still managed to break through it :(

I’ve had Ol’ Blue for 2 and a half years and it has been with me through the hard times and the good. It was even stolen once before and retrieved at a local Antique store down the street. That time I was able to find out who stole it and made a police report, this time around I have not been so lucky.

Ol’ Blue wasn’t the most flashy of bikes, but I loved it dearly and felt it had become a part of me. It was the perfect blend of vintage (old Schwin) and modern, with it’s white basket and bell. I’d say it’s persona was like mine, classic yet new.

The day before the bike was stolen, the May issue of Sac Mag had come out showcasing me on Ol’ Blue. When I left my house Thursday morning, (magazine in hand) I stepped out to an empty poll with only the remnants of my beloved. As I stood starring, I began to cry. I’ve learned through the years that to stay angry only hurts myself, but in that fleeting moment I was mad. I just don’t understand why people do such things. In the end, I can only hope and pray that what ever it is that makes people steal bikes will hopefully leave them so they, too, can live a better and more admirable life.

I gathered myself and walked to work. I realized that this was only a bump in the road and that things were going to be ok. My problems were minor compared to what was going on in the rest of the world at that moment.

This past weekend I got a new bike and she’s a beauty. People really blow my mind sometimes with their generosity. It warms and touches my heart. I was surprised with a bike and instead of tears of sadness I smiled ear to ear with happiness and gratitude – thank you kind friend :)

I’ll miss Ol’ Blue… But, I’ll admit that my new bike is a pretty darn good replacement for my old one. I have yet to come up with a name for her, but I’ll let you know when I do! It’s so fancy, I even have fenders – say what?!!! Side note: A lady bug flew on me while photographing with my new bike, I take that as a good sign… :)

Outfit: Vintage dress (Freestyle, $12) Ninewest heels (Goodwill, $12.50) and earrings my Momma made.


Ol’ Blue, you’ll always be loved:


My 60’s obsession continues…

Recently I went to Freestyle Clothing Exchange (big surprise!) and stumbled upon the most mesmerizing vintage dress. Believe it or not, Freestyle actually has an outstanding vintage section. Next time you’re in there, make sure to ask where the vintage is and check it out! I swear, I’ve been finding the most amazing pieces lately. (primarily of the 60’s era)

Back to the dress, it was love at first sight! It has that beautiful Shift (A-line) quality to it, which is very typical for a dress of the era. What I love most is the print for one, and second, the collar. It reminds me of a Peter Pan collar, but exaggerated. The colors are orange and brown, which are more Fall like. But, I put my styling thinking cap on and realized that splashes of white would Spring it up just perfectly. Great thing about this dress is that it still had the original tags! Always love researching the vintage brands to authenticate the era and to also find out a bit of some fashion history :) The label is a Mar Tee Original and after doing some investigation it is my belief that it’s an authentic dress from the 60’s. Love that! I swear, I get so much satisfaction from my vintage dresses knowing that they are historic pieces of fashion with stories behind them. I just find it so interesting and love knowing that they are virtually one of a kinds. I think it’s nice to stand out from the crowd every now and then…

The day I wore this dress to work (minus the floppy hat) I came across this structure (see photo below) near the Downtown Mall. Once again, I encourage all to pay attention to what’s around you. So much inspiration around us all the time!

I thought the hat here was fun and added a little bit of Spring/Summer flair. Kind of puts a bit of a 70’s kick to it as well.


My outfit:

Vintage dress, Ninewest heels, Banana Republic leather purse, (was new w/ tags on and retailed at $150) and ring all from Freestyle ($15, $15, $25, and ring was $5)

Floppy summer hat, SPCA thrift, $8

White necklace, Deseret Industries thrift, $1.99


The day I met Maria, my kindred spirit…

This past Sunday, February 10th, marked my 4th appearance on Good Day Sacramento. I woke up that morning confident, excited, and ready to rock it on the show! What was even more exciting was having my friends from The Find on Good Day too. Kind of a perfect morning right?! After the show I thanked the Universe for another successful show and for allowing me to shine, not trip, and giving my models the confidence to work it!

The girls from The Find and I decided to do a celebratory brunch after the show. We were enjoying life and our fantastic meals when all of a sudden I looked over and my ex boyfriend stood there with his new fiancée. I instantly felt sick to my stomach; like a turtle that wanted to crawl back into its shell. I know I’ve mentioned this before, but there was a time in the past where I lived quite a different picture than I do now. The relationship I had with the boy who I ran into at brunch was toxic for me. It brought out a person in me that is hard to fathom now. I lost my identity, my drive, ambition, and happiness. Seems dramatic, but it’s how I felt then.

I want to state that I’m not trying to bad mouth him, but more so expressing how that encounter brought me back to a yucky place. Why I fell so deeply into depression had a lot to do with the fact that I knew dating him was wrong for me. There were warning signs and I chose to not listen to that inner voice. My ego got the best of me, and in the end I suffered immensely.

After leaving the restaurant, I had to take a deep breath and remind myself how hard I’ve worked the last few years and how PROUD I am of myself. Sometimes in life we have to hit rock bottom in order to rise up and realize our true value and potential. At least that was the case for me. Once I accepted the things I can’t change, things really started to turn around for me.

As I biked home I thought to myself, ‘I am exactly where I am supposed to be’ and if I keep working my butt off the Universe will do the rest for me. I knew the best medicine when I got home was to take a few pictures for the blog and write. So I knocked on my kind Momma’s door and asked her to snap a few pics for me. This is where Maria entered my life…

When I say the Universe works in mysterious ways, I really mean it! Mom and I walked a couple blocks down to a favorite blue wall of mine. I wore a vintage dress that was recently given to me. The gentleman who gave it to me knew I loved vintage fashion and asked if I wanted his moms clothes from the 60′s – ummm yeah! (The gold dress I wore was purchased in 1960 – such an honor to have it) As mom and I were snapping away I looked over in the ally and saw the most beautiful woman walking by. She was wearing the most fabulous leopard coat and I literally stopped what I was doing and ran over to her. I thought to myself, ‘who is this beautiful creature?’ Come to find out her name was Maria and she was just leaving dance lessons at the Senior Center. She was honest to god, the most adorable older lady I’d ever seen. She wore a fabulous leopard coat, ruby earrings, pink blush, and get this! a dress that she got at a thrift store!!! Coincidence? I think not. I knew I had to include her in my little photo shoot :)

After she left and went on her way, I looked around and thanked the Universe for allowing us to have that chance encounter. I swear, I kind of felt like the good spirits had put her there to make me smile and realize that everything is gonna be alright. Maria, thank you for walking into my life Sunday. You reminded me how wonderful life really is. And girl, you reminded me that style and grace has no age! Pretty sure we are kindred spirits…

So to all the woman out there who have traveled to the depths of depression, I’m here to remind you that life gets better. Where I was just two years ago is another story. It was crazy and sad, not gonna sugar coat it. Also, listen to that inner voice we have – it’s almost always right! Remember that we are all placed here on this planet to do something great. I’m happy to say that my self esteem and love for myself has been restored fully :) Through my trials and tribulations I found out that I’m actually pretty good at something! Can you believe it?! My passion for the thrifted fashions has brought new meaning to my life. Life is grand, just look at Maria! Girl is taking dance lessons, wearing leopard, and indulging me in an impromptu photo shoot. I mean, how awesome is that? Hope I run into you again Maria and if not, thanks for gracing me with your beautiful presence Sunday.