Friday, September 2, 2011

Dressing on a shoestring budget or "Parisian Chic #101"

Living with a little bit of restraint and some planned spending is on the agenda.
Not a self imposed total ban on spending,
just watching the purse strings a little more carefully so that we can embark on a renovation that has long been overdue.

The mantra being "living better, consuming less."

Debt has become such a large scale problem on the global stage and it is affecting all of us worldwide.
If we cannot manage our personal financial houses how can we expect the leaders and politicians to keep fiscally responsible?

Saving money is not easy for me as I am easily tempted by luxe products
and I have a tendency to indulge myself more often than not.
I am going to try very hard to be more mindful of my spending habits,
using cash and the bank debit card for all but online transactions.

Restraint with a "capital" R.
(not a capital H for Hermes)

Starting today...

Back to school shoes...
ballet flats
black leather

Shoes to wear with skirts and dresses
black leather

These are very pedestrian foot friendly
perfect for a Humble Hostess.

I am shod for September's school bell which will be ringing in a few days.

My closet is looking lean
in shades of black white and grey
with several LBD's
a few basic classic garments
that will transition together 
making a multiple of looks
with scarves, bangles and baubles
I am set.

I feel more like a French girl than ever before!

Parisian Chic did inspire me to make a fresh start
culling the unloved and unworn sad sacks that hung in wait to haunt me
whispering ever so subtly
 "ha ha told you so"

The bulk of which were patterned garments of flimsy fabrics
purchased on a whim
as a tonic
to appease a low ebb.

Just to be upfront and clear
I am not giving up 
scarf rings
no apologies to Ines

I did enjoy this book.
It was a very quick read and I think would be very helpful as a guide to shopping in Paris.

 The iconic double breasted/belted French trench is something I have lusted after
yet it does not suit my frame.
A figure skimming shape with a row of single buttons with a built in half back belt detail work much better.
and I sourced a very affordable example at Land's End.
(as I type it is in transit)

There is not much left on my back-to-school list.
I'm feeling pretty content with the pieces that I have acquired and I have not blown the budget.
I'm ready to meet and greet the staff and students.
Apple anyone?


  1. You are very well prepared and I applaud your lean wardrobe, so much better than being crammed with things that you don't love /don't feel good in.
    Oh we need a new roof but it's an utter fortune to replace it, so I am a dab hand with buckets.

  2. Good for you watching your purse strings.

    Those mary janes do look comfy.

    I wonder if your trench is the same one I purchased earlier this year (Pseu recommended it). Please do show a photo of it.

    I love mine so much because it's A line shaped.

  3. your closet sounds heavenly leslie. i do love order in a closet! an apple sounds really good right about now.


  4. Lean is good. That said, for some reason I see a pair of ankle booties with all this clobber, as FF would say...

  5. Bourbon and Pearls- A new roof is on our list but so far, touch wood and whistle water hasn't come through the ceiling. You are looking mighty fine in your Armani coat Tabitha!

    Susan Tiner- I will show you when it arrives what colour did you buy? You can probably guess what colour I chose...I am so predictable!

    Janet- Janet I'd like to see your laundry room, for inspiration as we are ripping ours apart. Do you still use that sharp knife to cut your apples ?
    I remember how savage that image was and it has stayed with me!

    LPC- I have some cowboy booties but boots are on my lust list...
    I'd love some really I would...
    but I will be buying a washer and dryer and all manner of wood and screws...
    do they sell boots at Home Depot?

  6. Love your footwear choices Hostess and now that your closet is school ready this will ease the decision making process every school day.
    Renovating - how exciting, can't wait to see what you do!

  7. oh i have plans to order this book!!!

  8. You are inspiring me to dig through my closet, I don't know why but I fell woefully behind in making the switch from summer to fall. I agree with you about everything except the scrunchies...;)

  9. Great shoe choices. And great mantra! I agree, debt has become such a big problem everywhere. Good for you for being accountable to yourself, sadly there are many people in the world who do not have a clue how to budget and rack up debt like there's no tomorrow! Quite scary, really.

  10. I have been very selective in what I purchase since recently coming off a shopping freeze for two months. It's so easy to get into the habit of buy, buy, buy.

    I hope you are feeling better and enjoy your long weekend. Darling ballet flats, by the way. xo

  11. Annie- Renovations make a house a worksite. I hope I can keep up with the mess!

    a bug and a bird- I hope you will like it. It is better than most.

    Sue/the view form great island- Scrunchies save me from hair in my face in the garden and riding in my husband's convertible!

    LR@ Magnificent or Egregious?- I am scared of debt...I read the Bag Lady Papers and was shocked how easily it can happen.

    Adrienne- I admire your discipline during the spending freeze.
    We could all do this several times during the year and benefit.
    Some people seem to come to this so naturally and others well we struggle!

    I thought the flats looked a bit like Repettos!
    Thank you Adrienne I am on the mend.

  12. On Wednesday I visited the local Salvation Army with two giant bags - the result of a closet clear-through. Such a lot of fluff and rarely-worn. I'm nearly to the point at which I can reach into the closet, confident that I'll pull out something that fits, suits and makes me feel well-dressed.

  13. Good for you with your clearing and sorting of the wardrobe. Enjoyed the Paris Chic book too... do show us your coat when it arrives. XX

  14. I so need to do some culling with my closet. Like you said, I have bought to many things on whim and they need to go! You are a real inspiration in building a good, fashionable, and workable wardrobe.

    I am enjoying the book too, and like you although I love them I just don't look good in a trench coat.(-:

  15. Pondside- It's a great feeling freeing up space and I hope that you will feel fabulous wearing your best everyday.

    Semi Expat- I promise I will...

    La Vie Quotidienne- Your Paris trip must have been a great source of inspiration Adrienne. There is a "trench like" coat out there somewhere waiting for you!

  16. Your ballet flats are so chic Hostess. Good luck with your laundry renovation, how exciting. I have always coveted a good laundry.


  17. I thought you worked in a library and was puzzled by the back to school part...sorry if I am slow on the uptake!!!!!!!!
    The flats and accessories which you have chosen are chic,comfortable and practical.

    My utility room (laundry room) is a repositary for items banned from the kitchen! Ida

  18. Fiona- Thank you! It would appear that they are considered to be "French chic" !

    ida- Oh I am sorry that I confused you. My laundry area will be much more organized when we have finished and I plan to have storage where the unsightly will be hidden.

  19. Like everyone else, I agree that you are v e r y well prepared/organized for the school´s beginning.
    I should restrain myself better on the shopping department. But I a m a woman, so..
    Anxious to see your new coat!!