Okay, so I'm not really turning purple. But I am turning to purple. Or burgundy, to be more precise, and to grey. After finding myself some sweet deals at Nordstrom's July "Anniversary Sale," burgundy and grey, it seems, will be my go to look for fall this year.
Nordstrom is new here in Ottawa, so I had never heard of the "Anniversary Sale." Until now. I love the concept of putting the new fall merchandise on sale before the season even begins. But the fly in the ointment was that it was in mid-July, way too early for me to be ready to shop for fall. I normally do my "back to school" shopping in August, just before I go, well, back to school... hence the name. "Back to school shopping" has been a tradition since I was six years old. Naturally, it morphed somewhat over the years, from the days when Mum took me shopping for back to school clothes, as well as binders, scribblers, 'campfire notebooks', crayons, a new pencil case. And for the last twenty-odd years, when Hubby and I would arrive home from our August trip down east, he'd pack for his last canoe trip of the summer, while, in between preparing lessons, attending meetings, and ordering textbooks, I'd plan my fall shopping. Everyone in my department knew that I would be at school and available the last two weeks of the summer... for meetings, consultations, whatever... except for the Thursday (sometimes the Friday) before the long weekend. That day I shopped. Homework done, list in hand, I descended upon my favourite store, for.... sigh... my absolute favourite shopping day of the year.
|Our fall 2014 camping trip|
But, this year, long before I normally even start thinking about fall, when I was still excited about summer fashion, I had to work hard to psyche myself up for fall shopping... in July. And, as I wrote in this post, I was not entirely successful. My homework had failed to inspire me. And I had no list. Unthinkable for a list-making, organizing obsessive such as myself.
Bu-ut. You could say that fate and the fashion gods (and my friend Liz) were on my side the day I strolled into Nordstrom for the "Anniversary Sale"... list-less, and totally un-psyched for fall shopping. You could say that, although my homework had failed to inspire me, faced with the actual, real-life array of sweaters and jeans, tweed jackets, and blouses, in deep greens, burgundies, and luscious browns, I was soon in the mood for fall shopping. You could say that. Yep.
With the help of my buddy Liz...who, I'm sure you remember, is the personal shopper at Nordstrom... I had a very successful day of fall shopping in July. This is what I bought. In list format.
1. A gorgeous, charcoal, heathered coat sweater from Vince. I love the length, the cut, the shawl collar and the leather trim.
So cosy. I can belt it, or leave it open. I love the drapey folds. See the leather trim detail in the back? I will get a ton of wear out of this sweater.
2. Burgundy slim cut (but not skinny) jeans from NYDJ. They are high waisted, and narrow through the leg... just the way I like them. Great with loafers in the fall or with low boots in the winter. I love, love burgundy; it's one of my favourite fall colours. And it looks great with my new charcoal coat sweater. I've used one of my vintage brooches here to pin the sweater closed.
3. Burgundy leather tote bag from Marc Jacobs. More burgundy. I had intended to get a new handbag for fall this year. And this one fit the bill. Roomy, soft. The handles are long enough to be able to wear it over my shoulder even with a heavy coat on, and the strap is long enough to wear cross-body. Love, love the colour.
I can't wait to start wearing my burgundy and grey for fall. But of course, I will have to wait. Seeing as how it's only the beginning of August and we have several weeks of summer left... hopefully.
But in the meantime. I might be able to spin my burgundy jeans into a transition outfit.
I love these silver and burgundy earrings and necklace from Montreal jewellry designer Anne-Marie Chagnon. I bought them at a little boutique in the village of L'Anse-Sainte-Jean, Quebec, where we visit every other summer. Chagnon uses odd bits of metal, beads and stones so creatively. I love all of her pieces because they're unique, and a bit edgy. I don't usually wear very feminine jewellry. I feel silly in pearls, for instance.
These pieces from Anne-Marie Chagnon will tie my burgundy pants in with just about any top I want to wear. Like my black Helmut Lang blazer, that I bought to take to Paris, with a white, Theory cami underneath. The pants are pure fall. But the jacket, even though it's black, is light. And with the white cami and the black and white Kate Spade bag, this will be a good transition outfit for late August, or even early September.
So. What have I gained from this experience?
Well, three really great pieces for fall, of course. All on sale, a fact that should not be easily dismissed. I mean, I did save 40% on each of these items, people. That's pretty awesome.
And I've learned that, while tradition is good, it isn't good to become too stuck in one's ways, too hidebound. I might have missed out on these great deals, if I'd stuck to my usual plan. Yes sirree. I think I could get used to this fall shopping in July thing.
Now. I've got to go and start sorting my fall clothes. Editing, they call it. Not because I need to make my fall shopping list. Nope. But because a friend of mine has just opened a clothing consignment shop. And it's high time I made a few tough decisions and got rid of some stuff I know I won't ever wear again.
P.S. About my childhood back to school shopping. "Scribblers" are what we Maritimers called Hilroy notebooks when I was a kid. And "campfire notebooks," well, they were legendary. We used to use them to write down our homework. Here's a picture of one I found on Etsy.com. You can find a picture of just about anything on the internet, can't you?
What about you? Do you have any 'back to school' fall shopping traditions?