Monday, March 28, 2022

March 2022 Shopping Reflections

Oh boy, long time no blog! Like I mentioned in February's shopping reflections, things continued to be extremely hectic at the office after my last post. In fact, I've only just returned from a week-long international business trip. 

I guess I didn't chill out quite as much as I originally envisioned when it comes to this month's shopping. But, as you'll soon see, I was right about one thing: My work-related stress was enough to cause me to make some arguably unwise shopping decisions. I may eventually resell or give away two out of three items this month, which is a rather poor "success rate." I think the likelihood is high that both items could easily find a happy new owner if that's what I choose, so it isn't the worst thing in the world, but I do feel silly about these likely shopping mistakes. 

As for how things are looking in the next month or two, it's hard to say for sure when I'll be back to blogging more regularly. My work schedule is going to be consistently busy for the next three months or so, just with what's currently on my calendar. More depositions and deadlines could always be added on top of what's already there. But I'll do my best to post here as often as I can in the coming months. 

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It's looking like I might defend my first deposition as the first-chair attorney in the next week or two, which I'm cautiously excited about. With this particular client, I'm never sure if they'll change their mind about various things - including very important and inconvenient things - last-minute, so I don't consider this a 100% sure thing yet. Definitely no big milestone gift to myself for this particular work accomplishment, if it happens, though I might be inspired to get myself something much smaller. It could be either the Jennie Kwon Jadeite Equilibrium Ring or the Catbird Ballerina Bracelet, both of which I've been thinking about for a while. 

Fashion - (TOTAL: $263.56)

  • Italic "Rafa" Backpack, gunmetal and black - $81.66* - I've been hemming and hawing about a new backpack for years now. Sometimes I think I want a new work backpack with built-in laptop sleeve. Other times I want something smaller, for travel to destinations requiring tons of walking. At present, I think a small work backpack is the right kind for me. As far as I can see, there aren't many more modestly-priced, smaller-sized commuter backpacks on the market right now. I'm envisioning something mostly in nylon and as light as possible, with the capacity for a slim, up to 14'' laptop in a built-in sleeve; an umbrella; a water bottle; a pencil case and wallet; a letter-sized notebook or two; a smaller three-ring binder; and not much else. It feels like Tumi would be the top-of-the-line choice in this product category, perhaps either the Carson (also here and here) or Uma backpacks. There aren't any US-based online retailers still carrying the Knomo Beauchamp, but that still seems like a good choice. All those options still feel a bit expensive, since this backpack wouldn't be an everyday use item as I don't often need to carry a laptop to and from the office. That's what inspired me to consider this much more affordable Italic backpack. Alas, I'm not sure this was a good choice, the straps are difficult to adjust and feel like they'll be uncomfortable to carry. The zippers also aren't the best, they don't open and close that smoothly. I'm able to return this, but didn't see myself making the time to repack it and bring the fairly large box back to UPS while work's been so hectic. I was surprised to be so dissatisfied, as I quite liked my previous Italic purchase, the Albee card case. Ah well, there's maybe is a bit of "you get what you pay for" with this purchase. 
  • Tibi Miles Scallop Sleeve Boyfriend Shirt, white - $83.30 - (few sizes left in white and blue) - Tibi's remaining sale items are now on super-clearance, so I impulsively picked up two tops left in my size. I really love this shirt, the cotton is soft and feels very nice. I recently tried on a Theodore Scanlan button-down from a similar MSRP, and I like the Tibi material much better. With how soft the fabric is, it feels a lot more "chill" than most cotton button-downs out there, enough that it's hard to notice the scalloped shape of the sleeves, and the sleeves won't really hold their shape easily. (I don't mind that at all, since I was interested in a more classic-looking shirt, so I'm glad the unique design detail on the sleeves is more subtle than expected.) Now that I have this Tibi shirt at such a great discount, maybe I won't feel a need for their classic oversized shirt after all! I followed Tibi's size chart and got my recommended size M, which fits exactly as expected based on their store photography.  
  • Tibi Chalky Drape Slit Neck Top, butter - $98.60 - (one size left at Shopbop in white) - This "butter" shade is a subtle off-white or cream that's not quite yellow. (If you watch Amy Smilovic's Instagram stories or Tibi's Style Class videos, they often talk about using "no color" colors that are surprisingly versatile.) As with the Miles button-down, I followed Tibi's size chart and got my recommended size 10 - almost the only size left when I ordered - based on my bust measurement, but this one isn't as good a fit. I also had fit issues with one Tibi long-sleeved dress I tried on that also came in numbered sizing; it seems like I'm just too short to make those items work in a size that accommodates my bust measurement: The sleeves tend to be too long and the shoulders a bit too wide, even factoring in the intentionally dropped shoulders on this top. This polyester "chalky drape" from Tibi feels great, smooth and substantial, with great drape and without being heavy, though I don't know how it'll perform for me in warmer weather. I don't like getting overheated or sweaty, and polyester tops and dresses can be bad for that. I'm going to experiment more with styling this top before making a final decision, but I may eventually send it to TheRealReal because it might just be too big for me. 

*Indicates that price includes sales tax and/or shipping charges. 

And that's it for this month! I'm really hoping to  blog more often in the next month or two, but it's hard to say for sure whether that will happen. I should at least be able to put together a post focused on my recent business trip sometime in the next two weeks. It was definitely interesting to do my first international travel since the COVID pandemic began...

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