One of the things I enjoy most in this world is finding great deals. The secondhand fashion industry is growing like crazy, and there are so many awesome designer deals out there if you spend the time and know where to look! I have alerts set on a number of selling sites, like Mercari, which is where I purchased these adorable Prada espadrille sandals. These alerts will send me a notification when someone lists an item I have been looking for in a specific price range. I was so excited to get an alert about these because they were a classic piece that would go with so many things, my size, and priced SO LOW!
These espadrille sandals were originally over $700 new. (!!) The seller on Mercari described these as "worn once" and looked practically brand new. I sent an offer that the buyer accepted, and ended up getting these sandals for...
Most the of the used sandals in this style are going for $200-$250 on Poshmark and eBay, so I am still a little bit in shock that I got these so low. Those alerts can be your best friend!
NWT Zara midi dress new with tags, thrifted $6 / Prada espadrille sandals secondhand, Mercari $53 / Longchamp tote bag new, gift / Burberry nova check scarf secondhand, eBay $30
I found a number of similar secondhand Prada sandals from Vestiaire all under $100 that you can click and shop below!
I bought this Burberry nova check scarf a couple years ago from eBay for only $30. The print is so classic and the scarf is so versatile. I wear it around my neck, on my bag, and in my hair!
Back in the beginning of 2020 (simpler, happier times...) I got a killer deal on a pair of canvas Chanel espadrilles. They were super popular a couple years ago, but the look is really timeless and classic so I've been keeping an eye out for a pair. I was super excited to find a pair on Poshmark that needed a little TLC but were still in really great condition. With shipping and taxes, I only paid $63 for them. Similar pairs in that condition usually range from $200-$250! Especially in my size which is super common and in demand.
For the most part they were in really good condition. The only major issue was that the sole was starting to separate from the top part of the shoe, which you can see in the before pictures below:
I was SO EXCITED to get these shoes in the mail! As soon as I saw they had been delivered to my PO Box, I immediately drove to the post office. I got them from my box and rushed back to the car to try them on. I was SO DISAPPOINTED TO FIND THEY WERE JUST A TAD TOO SMALL. :( I could barely slip the back on my foot and I was worried the shoe would split even more due to my big fat feet (lol if you are ever buying Chanel shoes online know they run small and to size a whole size up at least!)
I have seen espadrilles as slip on slides so I decided to do a little DIY project and try to convert them into another kind of shoe I could wear. Did I commit a designer sin by putting scissors to a pair of Chanel shoes? Maybe, keep scrolling to see the result!
It was actually super easy and all in all took about 20 minutes to do! I used some sharp scissors to cut along the fray hem where the top of the espadrilles met the sides. Around the sole I made sure to cut just above the stitching so as not to unravel it. As far as the breaking sole I used super glue to hold it back together. Without the pressure of the sides holding on to the back of the foot it hasn't broken apart again.
Overall I am super happy with the way my DIY project turned out! I now have some really cute casual *fancy * slip ons. Plus it barely cost me anything besides the cost of the super glue.
I did a little research and found a handful of secondhand Chanel espadrilles similar to the ones I found at some really discounted prices below:
I also found a whole bunch of Chanel espadrille dupes on sale that look so similar to the designer ones! The Sam Edelman ones are half off! Just click on the picture to check them out.
Say hello to our new to us '81 Mercedes 380 SL , Fraulein!
Honestly, we weren't really in the market for another car (we have too many for two people to start with) "My car" was an Audi A4 which was super cute and a great car, but with our schedule, I was barely driving it. I hadn't even put 1000 miles on it in a year! We had considered selling it in the past, but always thought we should keep in the event there was an emergency and I needed to drive it. I should also point out that due to some poor financial decisions we made a couple years ago, we had refinanced the Audi's loan and still had two years of payments to make on it. It sucks paying interest on something that is depreciating!
So then in July, my husband's old boss (that he still talks to occasionally) texted him about his friend that was selling a cool old Mercedes. The friend was moving and didn't want to go through the hassle of listing it on multiple sites and dealing with annoying strangers. Because of this he was only asking a fraction of it's value, an amount we could pretty easily put together in cash. We thought that it was almost too good to be true, but the next day we made the 4 hour drive to check it out, and it was even cooler than we thought! It was the perfect car for me to drive occasionally to thrift stores or the post office. We sold the Audi, paid off the loan, and are now completely car debt free.
This car is nearly 40 years old, and the previous owner took great care of it, but it still needed some work here and there. There are a couple rips in the leather, and some chipping paint around the exterior. Luckily there are a lot of websites where you put in your cars make, model, and year and they can find the exact paint you need.
We were pretty surprised that the car had cruise control and power windows - really uncommon for a car from the early 80s! After doing a little research, we found that this car was top of the line in 1981...and quite expensive. The original receipt was still with the car, and the first owner paid the equivalent of $140,000 in todays money with inflation between now and then.
Despite having been taken great care of, the car still needed some work on our end. The AC wasn't working, but luckily hubs fixed that pretty quick. There has been a learning curve owning a car like this and there are some things you should think about before buying a classic car. A few things I have learned so far is:
There are no Airbags
Funny store - after we purchased the car and I was getting insurance for it, one of the questions was how many air bags the car has. Not knowing if it would have side airbags, I asked the previous owner. He said no side airbags...no front ones either. Apparently putting air bags in cars did not become a law in this country until 1998?! Anyway, something to think about if safety is important to you lol.
Little Fixes are common
Pretty common sense, but the older a car is the more likely it will need things changed and replaced more often. This can get expensive, but luckily my husband can fix pretty much anything on a car. Many parts on the car are still from the 80s, so naturally they are worn down and will break eventually. We have already had to replace the original radiator amongst other things.
engineering Is Different
My husband has built a race car from the ground up, so he was pretty confident going into this purchase that he would be able to fix any issues with it. He popped the hood and found a million vacuums and hoses that no car made in the last twenty years has. Despite knowing so much about cars and how to fix them, he still needs to do a lot of research. Speaking of this...
Maintenance Can Cost More
Because the engineering is old and no longer used, it is more difficult finding mechanics that are knowledgeable enough and willing to work on cars this old. Because of this, if you need to bring the car in to a shop you can expect to pay more money. Even to get it through a smog check I have to make sure the location is equipped to test a car that old.
Original = More Value
What we heard from a lot of people is that we should try our best to keep everything on the car as original or from Mercedes as possible. This absolutely helps with the value of the car, especially if we ever plan to sell it ( I hope not!) The previous owner put in a new radio with USB and bluetooth, which is nice but also kind of kills the vintage look of the dash.
Invest In Roadside Assistance
We've already been stranded on the side of the road once...so I highly recommend paying the few extra dollars a month with your car insurance for this peace of mind. Our car still had the original radiator, it cracked and overheated so we were stuck on the side of the road for a bit. Worth it!
Thanks so much or reading and checking out our new ride! If you have any experience or words of wisdom with a classic car, leave it down below!
I wear these classic designer bracelets almost daily. They are so classic and versatile! The lighter brown wrap bracelet is Hermes, and I got it from Poshmark for $50! Bracelets like this retail brand new for around $300-400. The darker brown clasp bracelet is from Louis Vuitton, and is called the Historic Mini Monogram bracelet. This one retails for $270. The origin of this one is a littler more mysterious... My husband brought it back for me from an international work trip, but he didn't have a box, bag, anything. He refuses to tell me how we got it! I'm thinking he found it laying somewhere...but we will never know haha. Anyway!
When you aren't buying designer items straight from the source, you always want to take extra care you are purchasing an authentic item. Here are a few quick things I look for when authenticating secondhand designer jewelry pieces:
1. Even, ConSistent Stitching
Quality control is high in luxury brands such as Hermes and Louis Vuitton. Stitching will always be evenly spaced and straight.
2. Straight Stamps
Many designer jewelry pieces will be stamped or engraved. Look for these details because if there are no stamps or engravings, it is provably fake. These stamps/engravings should be straight, deep, and consistent, even if they are on the inside and not visible when worn.
3. Country Of Origin
Do research on where the designer brand typically creates their jewelry pieces. It is probably not China. After doing some research I found that Louis Vuitton often makes their jewelry pieces in Spain, as seen below.
Overall, the piece should feel heavy and as if it is made of sturdy materials.
These are details I am usually looking for when buying secondhand jewelry. Hermes can be difficult to authenticate more so than other designer items because they often lack a lot of stamping or engraving. Real Authentication is a great tool to find out if your designer items are indeed authentic. You upload pictures and within a couple days they let you know whether the item is indeed authentic or not, which I highly recommend if you intend to resell these items.
I did a little digging and found a number of similar Hermes and Louis Vuitton secondhand bracelets below at killer deals! A lot of these are under $100! They are sold through Vestiaire Collective and are authenticated. Just click the picture to see more details of them!
$70+ is still so much money to drop on jewelry, so I have found a couple dupes from Amazon that look very similar to the designer leather bracelets above!
When thrift stores (and pretty much everything else fun) closed in California for a couple months, I found myself with a lot more time on my hands. I decided I wanted to be proactive and started researching new ways to make money from home. Some of which are even passive! (i.e. you put in the work at the beginning, but then as time goes on you make money with no extra work) I thought I would share with you guys a couple of the easy ways I've started making some extra money on the side of reselling!
I'm really excited about this one, and I actually got the idea from tiktok! People make killer money selling mugs on etsy, and it is actually completely passive income. Essentially how it works is, there are a number of printing companies that are integrated with etsy. You create a design for mugs (or really any item!) through the printing company that is linked to your etsy store. When someone buys one of your items the order is sent directly to the printing company who fulfills and ships the item for you. They even update your buyer with the shipping info. After creating the design there is literally nothing else you have to do besides accept those direct deposits! (If you guys are interested I can share more about what this process looks like in a more in-depth post!)
Reward Program Apps
I've kind of become obsessed with scanning my receipts into the Fetch app. How it works is, you get points from your receipts for certain brands of items. Mostly grocery items. Essentially, these brands want you to purchase their items so you can scan in more points. However, you can literally scan any receipt in. Gas, clothes, eating out, whatever! Even if your receipt doesn't have any of the participating brands, you still get 25 points per receipt scanned. Once you've received a certain number of points you can redeem them for gift cards. And they have so many gift card options! Amazon, Sephora, mall stores. For most gift cards, its around 1000 points for $1 of gift card. But if you are looking to buy those items anyway, its easy extra money! You can use my down load link HERE to get 2000 points right away!
Invest In Stocks
This is something I've always wanted to do, but just never felt comfortable with. I wish the stock market had been something we were taught in school (also taxes..) BUT Acorns makes it really easy. You take a questionnaire at the beginning by what kinds of risks you are comfortable with, and what your longterm financial goals are. After that they round up your purchases from a linked card and start investing the change for you. Its been fun to watch the money we invest become more money! Also super passive. I check the app literally every morning. If you use code UC266F when you open an account, you and I both get $5 to invest!
Try Out Products
A number of times through quarantine I ordered and tried out products that were of interest to me, and ended up not only getting free products, but also getting paid anywhere from $20-30 just for sharing my input! I use the site Ambassadher which has a lot of influencer style campaigns, but also many product review campaigns. A couple that I did were for beauty products. I ordered and tried out the product, and then filled out a survey about how I found the product. Easy! If you gave the item a favorable review, they may ask you to leave feedback on the site you purchased it from. You can check out Ambassadher HERE.
Become A Micro Influencer
This is not necessarily something new I started doing in quarantine, but I did start applying to more campaigns! You really don't need a lot of followers to get paid to post, so long as you have decent engagement. One of my favorite sites for influencer campaigns is Heartbeat - they offer a lot of campaigns for stuff I am interested in and often share about already, like clothes, accessories, and yummy snacks. You can check them out and sign up HERE.
Offer Skills On Fiverr
This is a platform I am still researching and building, but does well for a lot of people! Essentially, you offer virtual skills that companies and brands can outsource to you. Personally, I am offering data entry and blog post writing skills. There are so many different types of skills being offered on Fiverr!
Thanks so much for reading, and I hope I was able to offer you some new, fun avenues for you to make some $$$. The one I'm most excited about personally is the etsy mug shop, because its SO easy and passive. Would you be interested in seeing a better break down of how to start your own etsy mug shop? Let me know down below!
Live for luxury? No trust fund, no problem!
Join the fancy free journey as we seek the
finer things in life, sans millions.
- Marie Claire, September 2016