Friday, 15 April 2016

Charity Shop Finds - The £1 Miu Miu Cardi



A black cardi, probably the least exciting item of clothing to have ever featured on my blog but darlings, this isn't any old knit, this is a silk & cashmere cardigan by Miu Miu which retailed at the mind-blowing price of £385 (but currently sold out) ..... and mine for a quid!



Mundane it may be but it does feel amazing. As I ran the back of my hand across the rail of charity shop knitwear the quality stood out a mile, a different league entirely to its neighbours, overwhelmingly nasty acrylic & over-washed high street tat. I must admit that I'm a tad disappointed that the buttons are plastic, at almost £400 - I've paid less for return flights to India - I'd have expected Mother of Pearl at the very least*. Isn't it sad that it was manufactured in Romania (infamous for poorly paid labour) rather than by workers earning a decent living wage?

*They are shell after all, I hadn't looked properly!


On the subject of bargains here's the unworn Stuart Weizmann suede ankle boots I bought from the same chazza for £2 last month. They're super comfy even after a 16 hour vintage-selling day. Again, the quality is fantastic but with a price tag of £399 I'd expect nothing less. The only explanation I can think of for such posh stuff ending up in our local chazzas, one of the most deprived areas in the UK, is the high number of Premiership football teams in the vicinity. Maybe the partners of men who get paid tens of thousands of pounds a game can afford to give away clothing that costs more than most women earn in a week.


I haven't shared any vintage finds with you for ages and the stockroom is full to bursting. The festival season is just six weeks away and we're hunting hard, we need a fully stocked pitch to see us through the Summer.

 These beautiful accessories came from the family of a lady who, like many of my Grandma's generation, rarely left the house without a hat, gloves, a matching handbag (always with a hand mirror & a lace handkerchief tucked away inside) and a pair of flesh coloured stockings. Back in those days clothing was expensive and therefore treasured. The bags and gloves were wrapped with their original packaging, manufacturer care labels and store receipts.


The hats were stuffed with tissue paper, some with a matching neck scarf, many in their original carrier bags (the bags themselves are a history lesson in British retail - Van Allen, Prova at British Home Stores, The Co-operative, Rackhams & Beatties).
I can't wait to find new homes for these treasured accessories but it won't be until next week.

Wearing: Miu Miu cardi (£1), Stuart Weitzmann boots (£2), Aztec print bustier (£1.99) All charity shopped. Maxi skirt (made by me from a 1960s Heals screen printed curtain bought from a jumble sale in 2010) Lamani coin necklace and belt - India
We don't have any vintage fairs booked this weekend so tomorrow we're off on a road trip, vintage hunting in pastures new. Google reckons that there's at least 20 charity shops in the town we're visiting as well as two branches of Wetherspoons so hopefully the trip will live up to our expectations!


See you soon!


97 comments:

  1. Wow! You are the Thrift Queen .... Goddess! I find that black cardigans are the perfect foil for colourful things. I always feel more comfortable with something dark to ground me. It is amazing, and all part of the journey of discovery, how many folk will tip out really expensive items. Love the boots too, and all of your latest finds. Enjoy your upcoming quest. We found a great Wetherspoons in Chester recently and it supplied a lot of our meals so we had more to spend on goodies. x

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    1. I tend to use aged suede and denim as a foil, black seems harder to incorporate into an outfit but I love the expression "to ground me".
      Wetherspoons rocks. I haven't been to Chester in ages, my Grandma came from there. xxx

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    2. Ha ha! Holistic folk always say that we need to keep ourselves 'grounded', and in the 60s and 70s I often felt I was going into orbit with all the wild prints and strobe lights. I had not known about your Gran, Chester is far from us, but a nice trip if you have a free weekend. Vintage adventures! x

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  2. don't you love finding that quality second hand? I found a $735 linen jacket for $1 last Saturday. That's more than I spend on clothes for a year, unless I have to buy new bras and shoes, the 2 items I never find. Good luck with this weekend's thrifting adventure!

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    1. I do! Even if I was a millionaire I'd never buy clothes at that price. xxx

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  3. Love that maxi in dreamy blue hues you made out of curtains!
    Miu Miu doesn't put shell buttons on a silk & cashmere cardi? Bah!
    That Twiggy eyed mannequin modeling the hats is too fab, her eyeshadow matches yours.
    Bibi
    xox
    http://calmlycookingcurry.blogspot.com/2016/04/vegan-green-goddess-dressing.html

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    1. I take it back, I've just put my reading glasses on and they are shell after all!! My £1 wasn't completely wasted.
      Twiggy gets loads of love, she nearly bankrupted Jon! xxx

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  4. While I had said I am buying no new clothes, even new to me, in sorting my winter to spring and then summer wardrobe, I realize I could use at least two decent short sleeve sweater or knit tops, and another cardigan for layering in the office-the over air conditioned cold that makes my allergies spark. I love the idea of running a hand over the rail to see if anything of better quality jumps out, rather than having to take each one off the rack to look. I may end up at our two in town, and one a town over, shop this weekend and give the racks a look.

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    1. Oh Sam, those over air-conditioned offices are awful, you have my sympathies. I was constantly cold with incessant sore throats in the old days.
      Yes, running the back of your hand slowly across a rail works well and saves loads of time - good luck! xxx

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  5. Wow! I'd be popping in that shop every day if I'd scored that bigly. Twice! Lucky lady. The cardy looks fab with your hair.
    Fingers crossed for some stonking finds this weekend! xxx

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    1. I could get addicted to that shop, its ridiculously cheap (nothing over £3) and nobody seems remotely interested in vintage or high-end stuff.
      Hoping tomorrow is going to be good. I'll blog about it, whatever the outcome! xxx

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  6. Result. Looks fantastic with your psychedelic skirt.

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  7. That's a mad price for the cardie - nearly £400 - let alone the boots! Seriously, some people have more money than sense. Oh well, their spending is your thrifty bonus! Loving your maxi though, those colours and the zig-zag panels are gorgeous.

    Kinky isn't going to be short of hats on its stand! xxx

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    1. I know, it's utter madness! My brother spends hundreds on clothes but wears them to death.
      My hat stash was getting a bit sparse, these have arrived in the nick of time. xxx

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  8. I know you like pattern and color but that is a beautiful sweater and is a great backdrop for your jewellery and colourful skirts. So....are you keeping it? Are you keeping those fab boots? Seems like if you keep finding these expensive pieces you will have next January's trip paid for in no time :)

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    1. Welcome back! I've checked the resale value for both and they aren't great - maybe people who love high end stuff are only interested in it when it's brand new. xxx

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  9. I adore hats , but with a rather pumpkin like head it just doesnt work..lol sometimes i think im made from the bits and pieces they had left at the end of the day . Comedy breasts, short arms, pumpkin head ...you may have seen me around the chazzas

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    1. My head is mahoosive, too! I rarely get hats to fit - which is probably just as well or I'd keep 'em all. I'm short with huge hands and feet, maybe we were made in the same factory? xxx

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  10. That's a nice cardi, but who in their right mind would pay so much for a cardi (or indeed any item of clothing) is beyond me. Good for you to have snapped it up at £ 1. I very much like your £ 2 boots! Oh, and the hats! I am eyeing your Twiggy head, which has been on my wishlist for ages. xxx

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    1. Can you imagine how much vintage you could get at a car boot sale for £400? I could never spend that much cash on clothes in one go!
      JOn surprised me with Twiggy for my 40th. I love her! xxx

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  11. I can't believe the retail price for your cardi - it's madness! but nonetheless it's quality and comfort and you bagged it for £1!!! my wardrobe classic navy cardi came from boring old Next and probably isn't anything near as soft and luxurious as yours so I am a little bit envious but then again you spend all your working day seeking out these goodies so you certainly worked hard for your rewards. I love the lace gloves and I thought how impressive it was that this lady had cared for her accessories so well and they all look so pristine - nowadays nobody cares for accessories like that. Yes footballers wives maybe in your area - but lucky you as that means even more goodies to come :D

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    1. The cardi feels like nothing I've ever come across, so soft and cosy but the price is utterly insane!
      What a difference, some WAG who buys cardis for hundreds and chucks them out and a lady who kept her hats for 50 years in tissue paper. xxx

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  12. If there was a prize for bargain outfit of the year, you'd win with this one!! You saved nearly £800 on the boots and cardi alone, that's incredible. It is one extreme to the other though with that lady who stored everything perfectly for a lifetime. Really thought provoking stuff actually. Have fun with your stock-building xx

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    1. I was thinking about the cost of it when I went out this morning. It really is crazy. My whole collection didn't cost me £800 (including the vintage wardrobe its stored in!)
      You're right, a huge contrast from lovingly keeping your clothes to chucking them out each season. Glad there are people like that though or there'd be nothing for the likes of us thrifty chicks! xxx

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  13. awesome look and great find!

    Lyosha
    Inside and Outside Blog
    P.S. your skirt pattern <3

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  14. I bet that cardi feels luxurious!!!!!

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    1. It does, the cat's fur isn't half as soft (but don't tell them I told you!) x

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  15. You look fabulous in that cardi, what a find! The print on your home made skirt is utterly gorgeous (great job, by the way!) and those boots are to die for xxx

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    1. Thanks, Claire! The skirt was only the second item of clothing I'd made and still going strong! x

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  16. I read your blog and this is my first post.Just to let you know,you look always fabulous and full of life.
    Hope(Australia)

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    1. Thanks, Hope! Lovely to meet you! xxx

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  17. That is brilliant!!! Wow, nice to find a nice basic that feels amazing!!! Oooh, I can't wait to see what you get!??!! Let me know if you ever get a nice deerstalker like that one again!x

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    1. I'll keep 'em peeled for a deerstalker, promise! xxx

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  18. it's always wonderful to find a bargain, but yours are the best ones!! Glad that you find that fabulous little cardi, and those suede boots!! they're amazing!! cool and comfy!! Gorgeous!!
    What a fabulous collection of bags, gloves and hats, and it's lovely to remember how they were stored into their boxes by all those ol'style ladies. Hope they find a lovely new home and have a fabulous new life, being worn and enjoyed almost everyday, and not only in special occasions!
    besos

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    1. I feel like I owe it to that lady's family to find the most deserving homes for her much loved treasures, I shall do my best to! xxx

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  19. You look good in black!

    Have you thought of printing posters of that series of hat photos? It has a Warhol-ish quality to it the way it is laid out...and it is a whole hell of a lot more interesting than soup tins.

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    1. Great idea, could be a cool price tag. xxx

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  20. You look good in black!

    Have you thought of printing posters of that series of hat photos? It has a Warhol-ish quality to it the way it is laid out...and it is a whole hell of a lot more interesting than soup tins.

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  21. Has Miu Mui's cashmere converted you to cardies? No probably not.
    I can just imagine the lady who owned all those hats, very elegant and well groomed for sure. I LOVE the print of your fab curtain couture, I wonder what you will find tomorrow? Hope it's rich pickings and a posh loos 'Spoons.
    xxxxx

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    1. Ha! I think it'll be my first and last cardi. It'll be great for Glastonbury and weigh a lot less than the usual fake fur monster I usually carry for warmth. xxx

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  22. All those hats! Just gorgeous. I would enjoy dressing people in them.
    Your quality finds are treasures and I'm so glad you are giving them a second chance!
    Best wishes and fingers crossed and sending good thoughts etc for good finds pre festival season...not that you need it by the looks! Xo Jazzy Jack

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    1. Hello, JJ! Hope you're well rested after your break.
      Those hats would be a great dress-up item. I usually set them up with a pretty mirror trimmed with peacocks and pom poms so girls can try them on at festivals. x

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  23. All the hats and gloves! Wow! I'm especially enamoured with the lace gloves.

    You've struck some thrifting gold lately.

    I have a cardi that is very similar to this one that I have worn so much I had to darn it. It is a Betsy Johnson and not nearly as posh as yours but it does go with everything I own.

    May the Thrift God be with you on your search!

    bisous
    Suzanne

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    1. Thank you! Those lace gloves were the kind of thing I used to buy at jumble sales and dye black to look like Madonna back in the early 1980s!
      We had a successful mission, the thrift gods smiled on us. xxx

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  24. Hats!!! Yeah, I have a big head too and have to wear men's hats a lot (or of course, knit them myself). Have a blast this weekend!!! xo

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  25. The thought of spending that much money on one piece of clothing makes me feel a bit sick

    Have a fun filled trip this weekend, m all agog to see what treasures you find....

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    1. Me, too. Strangely my brother loves his high end clothing, can't quite believe we're related. x

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  26. How nicely you've centered that print on the curtain-couture skirt! And what a crisp finish that gorgeous cardi adds to your costume for the day, Vix! Black pops against the brilliant colors you wear, so one anticipates your keeping this luscious little sweater handy for chilly mornings.

    The boots are too elegant to be comfortable -- perhaps it really is a matter of getting good value for the price (which I would never pay). And, yes, I had been wondering how the cardi and the boots appeared in Walsall: your idea makes sense!

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    1. I bought the cardi for the festival season, Beth. Those nights under canvas can be freezing and its an attractive alternative to my vintage blue thermals!
      I did think those boots would be horrid to wear but the sole is crepe so they're like walking on air. xxx

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  27. Great finds, as ever! I love that hat with the blue and white bow!!

    Kariss
    www.shystrangemanic.com

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    1. That's one of my favourites, too. Curses to my huge head. x

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  28. A town with 20 chazzas? Quick - tell me more!

    The cardigan is lovely and the original price eye watering! The boots are also fabulous with an original eye watering price. You look lovely in your extremely expensive outfit!

    I can understand the explanation of very highly priced designer gear being down to the presence of premiership footballers but another is that many charity shops swap or rotate their donations. So maybe the items were donated from another branch of the same chazza?

    I remember donating some stuff to a charity shop some years who said it got sent to their Head Office where all the stock was then sent to different towns to the one where it originated from.

    Those hats are fabulous. I've picked out two or three I'd love. Must check your itinerary...

    Have a great week

    Veronica

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    1. I've come across stock rotation on my travels, Vronnie. I tried on a catsuit when I was out with Curtise and Tania last year, didn't buy it and amazingly it appeared in a local branch of the same chazza six weeks later.
      You will need to come along and see us, some of those hats would look amazing on you! x

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  29. Oh you said it, one feel-up of the rack (don't read that the wrong way!) and you can tell the quality instantly. Great find!! Nothing feels better than luxury, unless it's tatty bell bottoms, heh. At least these rich women donate their clothes instead of tossing them into the garbage. Hope you have a fun and productive trip!

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    1. The elusive tatty bell bottoms - if only! xxx

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  30. Ooh, the handbags and gloves, they're so lovely! You just can't find gloves easily round here. I would love to find pale pink to wear with a certain dress I have.

    Bargain cardi! Made out like a bandit as an old friend of mine used to say, you look lovely as ever xxx

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    1. I thought of you when I was unpacking the gloves and handbags, they are just your style! x

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  31. Cute little cardy but omg what a price it originally sold for. I think what is even worse is that people will pay these horrendous amounts of money for a piece of clothing that has no wow factor other than the label and what it is made from, then to cap it off that throw it out while it is still in good nick. The upside to this of course is that we charity shoppers get the quality for the bargain price! That little black cardy is at least a months worth of groceries!

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    1. Exactly, Sue! If I was spending that much on something I'd want the world to know I'd paid hundreds - built in neon lights, pop-up wings or diamond encrusted pom poms at the very least! x

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  32. Wow you are the queen of bargain hunters. I love cardi's, it is always so cold at work that I always have to layer up. Even if I won the lottery though I couldn't justify paying those sorts of prices. What a contrast with the lady who lovingly stored her accessories for all those years.

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    1. Same here. I could never spend that much on an item of clothing. If you wait long enough it always appears in a charity shop. x

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  33. I know! Someone paid $500 for a sweater and now it's got a happy home with you! That's the joy of the hunt. You look marvelous and I love all the ladylike accessories you've found. You are the empress of it all, no question. xox,

    Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

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    1. Nothing quite beats the thrill of the hunt, does it? It's so easy to get addicted to secondhand shopping. x

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  34. Bloody hell Woman, you have that charity shop juju going on! You look wonderful and I am amazed at the fabulous things that you find. Seriously, there is a load of tat up here. Worn out Primani is the best of it. Love that skirt. It is such glorious fabric. You have some wicked style! Xx

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    1. Thank you, Kelly! The charity shops might be amazing but the rest of the Back Country isn't. We've got to have some compensation! xxx

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  35. Now unlike you, I do like a cardi, but not to the extent that I'd pay eye-watering money for one! It does amaze me what some people will spend on what looks like fairly ordinary design - quality, yes, but not exactly exciting. Still, for less than the cost of a cup of coffee, who need excitement, right?! I am torn between astonishment that anyone would donate such expensive pieces and gratitude that they do (but the charity shop needs to review their pricing!)
    As always, you look fantastic, the skirt is a triumph. And your newly acquired stock is wonderful - all those smart hats and bags, how lovely! Hope the road trip was a success too. Love you! Xxxx

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    1. I know. If I was spending £400 on something I'd want everyone who saw me wearing it to know it cost that much. The only way anyone would know that cardi was expensive is if they stroked me and I'm not having that, ta very much!
      That chazza does need a price review, we got there the other day to see someone handing over £1 for some English-made Dr Marten boots. Arghhh! xxx

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  36. Gorgeous skirt! And the cardi looks fabulous with it! :)

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  37. What an amazing find! I know it is good quality but I do wonder why anyone would pay that amount for a cardigan, even if I had the money I don't think I would. Although I doubt I'll ever be in a position to put that to the test ;)
    It's a great staple to have in your wardrobe though. I've discovered recently that I'm lacking in staples, I keep buying pretty items in charity shops instead!
    Hope your vintage hunting went well

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    1. I'm like you, I buy things that steal my heart which inevitably means strappy dresses, impractical heels and feather boas - nothing sensible, until now! x

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  38. Lucky you to find such quality things for such appealing price! Black cardi may not be the most exciting thing but no doubt you will find what to pair it with to make it look exciting :)

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    1. Living around here has it's advantages - not much to look at but cheap charity shops galore! x

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  39. Good-quality cashmere really is a thing of beauty, you've made a good find there. I always wash mine with shampoo and conditioner to keep it nice.

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    1. Good tip, Mim! I don't use liquid shampoo but I'll get myself a bottle of baby shampoo from Poundland next time I'm in town. x

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  40. beautiful sweater! i go thru rails and rails just by lightly touching the garments. good fabric stands out! i often wonder how designers get away with using polyester and plastic on their garments. you look lovely! x

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  41. beautiful sweater! i go thru rails and rails just by lightly touching the garments. good fabric stands out! i often wonder how designers get away with using polyester and plastic on their garments. you look lovely! x

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  42. beautiful sweater! i go thru rails and rails just by lightly touching the garments. good fabric stands out! i often wonder how designers get away with using polyester and plastic on their garments. you look lovely! x

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  43. beautiful sweater! i go thru rails and rails just by lightly touching the garments. good fabric stands out! i often wonder how designers get away with using polyester and plastic on their garments. you look lovely! x

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    1. Thanks, Juanita! I'm all about the texture. On-line shopping takes away that thrill. Long live charity shopping! x

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  44. Wow, your silk cashmere cardigan must feel amazing! Great find. As are your boots. I once had a pair in a similar style and wore them 'til they were no longer wearable.

    When I see your thrift store finds, I always wonder how such excellent items end up in your shops. Here such treasures are very far and few between.

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    1. But you've got cool bars, edgy shops, super restaurants and amazing places with live music, there's got to be some trade off for living somewhere as uncool as we do! xxx

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  45. It is so true that you can tell a quality piece by the feel of it, especially a knit. Brilliant score on the cardigan, but I have to ask who in their right mind would pay a few hundred pounds for a little black cardigan??? What is the world coming to?

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    1. I know, utter madness! My whole wardrobe isn't worth that much! x

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  46. That Indian belt is right up my ally! Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

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    1. We share a love of the jingle-jangle! xxx

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  47. Wow, if you ever spot another one send it my way. I do love Miu Miu! x

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  48. Superb finds all around - vintage and modern pieces alike. I found a Stella McCartney cardigan once for a total song at a thrift shop and bought it even though it was wool (I'm allergic). It's downright wild what one can find second hand sometimes!

    ♥ Jessica

    ♥ Jessica

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    1. What people are prepared to throw out never fails to blow my mind, Jessica. What a shame they didn't donate £400 to the charity rather than spend it on something they went off months after buying it. xxx

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  49. The thought of spending that much on a cardi or a pair of boots makes me feel a little sick! If I did ever spend that much on an item of clothing I'd probably want to be buried in it. Isn't it amazing that these fancy brands that sell for SO MUCH can't even pay a labourer a fair wage for sewing the garments? It kind of blows my mind. You look fab as always Vix, your maxi is incredible and with the festival season coming up I'm going to be admiring you excellent stalls from afar!

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    1. It really is an insane price, isn't it? Travel over clothes - no competition really!
      Sweat shop labour appalls me, its bad enough when its cheap high street fashion but when something commands a price tag as high as the cardi there really is no excuse! xxx

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