Holiday Wishlist: Wedding bands and insurance

Earlier this year, my best friend asked me to be his partner in life. I could not have been any more excited to say yes! Deets on the whole engagement story in this post. Now that the easy part (saying yes) has been done, now comes the hard part. Wedding planning aside (because, let’s be honest, we haven’t really done any yet), there are a handful of tangential things to take care of.

One big piece is insuring the bling. Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company has been exclusively insuring jewelry for more than 100 years and offers repair or replacement coverage that includes worldwide travel protection for all types of jewelry and watches. Coverage includes loss, theft, damage and mysterious disappearance (unexplained loss). With this ring being one of the largest purchases to date, and considering the amount of travel that I’ve been through this year (and plan to go next year), it doesn’t hurt to have peace of mind while on the road.

(gorgeous ring via MinimalVS on Etsy)

Although no real planning for the big day has happened yet, I would be lying if I said I haven’t started looking at wedding bands. They may or may not even be on my wishlist this year (never a bad idea to think ahead, right?). I keep looking at all the beautiful handmade pieces on Pinterest, or unique pieces through larger jewelers, to get a better idea of what I think I’ll want to pair my current engagement ring with.

Even though one may not make the cut this year, it’s always important to protect those special holiday gifts. Accidents can happen no matter how careful we are with our jewelry, that’s why there’s jewelry insurance.

If you’re looking to try your luck this season, Jewelers Mutual is hosting a Season to Sparkle Sweepstakes, where you can win up to $1000 in jewelry!

season to sparkle CTA graphic

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


Stocking up on must-have essentials

With most Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales targeting holiday gift-giving shoppers, I like to optimize for an extra purpose. Getting access to such great sales makes stocking up for next year’s (and the year after, if I’m being honest for my current shopping habits), wardrobe a lot more wallet-friendly.

Here are some must-haves for essentials to look out for this shopping season.

Comfy travel gear

Being on the road about 25% of the year means having to think about comfort of not only clothes, but the comfort and ease of mind for how items are packed. My current travel outfits from plane-to-office consist of dress pant yoga pants, layered tops, and casual – but office appropriate – shoes.

Comfy travel items

One big thing I learned while being on the road this year is the importance of organization of how items are packed. From travel bags to keeping items like charging cables, eye masks, and headphones handy, here are some picks of travel-friendly gear:

Cropped moto jacket

This cropped moto jacket, by far, has garnered the most attention of any piece added to my closet all year. Faux and not, leather jackets have been part of my wardrobe for almost 6 years. Of all of them, the MISSGUIDED one purchased earlier this year always gets stopped for compliments. The reason I love cropped moto jackets is for their ability to transition between seasons. I took this jacket from Spring to Summer to Fall with ease, and will try to make the most of it for Winter by layering it over chunky knit, tunic-length sweaters.

cropped moto jacket

Since this exact has been sold out since the Spring, sharing some other options in a range of colours:


GIFT GUIDE: Thanksgiving hosts

With Thanksgiving just a few days away, I’m rounding up a few options for gifts to bring for this year’s hosts. This year is my first year of spending Thanksgiving with (soon-to-be) family, and I’m trying my best to get creative within the constraints. Since Thanksgiving dinner will require hopping on a plane, all of my gift recommendations are TSA-friendly and small enough to fit within a carry on-sized roller suitcase.
thanksgiving host gift guide ideas

1 // L’Occitane Holiday Crackers Trio ($28): These are so cute! L’Occitane is one of my faovurite brands to pamper myself with, and the contents of the holiday crackers are some of the all-time best sellers! With all products being 1.1 fl oz or less, these are perfect for taking on a plane. The beautiful bold colours and packaging are also heart-eyes-emoji worthy.

2 // Bissinger’s chocolate bars & gummy bears ($5-6 each): If you’ve been following along on IG Stories or Snapchat, you’ll know I’ve been snacking on these Bissinger’s chocolates all month. The Dulce de Leche chocolate bars are my personal favourite, but there are so many other luxe flavours, like fig balsamic truffle or banana pecan caramel, to choose from. Not to mention, the gummy bears are so tasty! My plan is to put together a small Bissinger’s mix of chocolate bars and gummies to gift!

3 // Sephora Mask it! All Over set ($25): As someone who currently obsessed with face masks, I couldn’t leave this set off the gift guide list. If one of my girlfriends were to host Friendsgiving this year, this would’ve been the #1 gift I’d bring for the host.

4 // Apolis custom city market bag ($58): As the priciest item on this gift guide, it’s also the most personalize-able. I’ve seen these city market bags being toted at every weekend farmer’s market and I get tote bag envy so badly. While I can’t justify the cost of buying one for myself, I would love to gift a little bit of Seattle to someone else. The Seattle, WA or Seattle neighbourhood-specific bags are lovely. If you’re also traveling to a different city or state for Thanksgiving, this market bag would make a great gift!


Nordstrom Anniversary Sale: Replenishing wardrobe staples

Ever since trying to minimize the amount of material belongings in my life last year, especially in the wardrobe category, I’ve been very mindful of each and every single piece that gets added to my closet. No more impulsive purchases, no careless spending; every purchase needs to be intentional. The change in mindset hasn’t been particularly difficult, but it does force me to “plan” my shopping adventures.

I originally wasn’t planning on shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, but then I started thinking about my Fall/Winter wardrobe staples that I need to refill after last year’s closet purge, so I’ve rounded up my favourites, all for $100 or less a piece!

SARTO by Franco Sarto “Garfield” bootie // Steve Madden “Pistol” bootie // Isola “Larkin” split bootie // Hinge “Villa” bootie // Lucky Brand “Bashina” bootie // Vince Camuto “Katleen” peep toe bootie

Booties are always on the mind. I am such a heavy walker that I tend to grind down the soles of my shoes very aggressively, so I keep my eyes peeled for deals as much as possible. Of these 6 pairs, I’m leaning towards the split booties the most, mainly because of their unique style and being a great crossover between the beloved cutout style and chunky-heeled booties that I tend to wear most often.

The last thing I need is another moto jacket, but I couldn’t help but do some window shopping in this department. I ended up finding these two great options of moto and bomber styled jackets for under $100, which is such a steal! The BLANKNYC “Easy Rider” is originally $98, and $65 is such a steal for a timeless piece.

moto and bomber jackets for under $100 at Nordstrom
Steve Madden side zip bomber jacket ($45) // BLANKNYC “Easy Rider” moto jacket ($65)

Aside from these booties, I haven’t explored much more into the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. Hoping that having tunnel vision for wardrobe staples and a firm price point to stay within helps to keep me on track for my larger goals of downsizing of the closet.


3 Tips for buying vintage bags online

Super excited to share my tips and tricks in today’s post after receiving a couple emails about what my research and buying process was like for the vintage Coach City Bag in last week’s post. To be honest, I’m much more of an in-person thrifting kinda gal, but all my lucky thrift finds (like this vintage Coach Stewardess Bag found in Goodwill in 2013) weren’t planned. Whenever I have specific items in mind for trips to the thrift store, I never find them. So, with the Coach Classics line (re)launch to remind me of how beautiful their classic all-leather bags are (but totally out of my current budget), I took my search of a vintage Coach City Bag to the internet.
tips for buying vintage bags online
(photo via Pinterest)

1. Be flexible with style and colour
Although I had my heart set on a Coach City Bag, I also had the Legacy Purse style bookmarked as a second top contender. Price range wise, they were pretty similar when doing some super lightweight, preliminary research in the vintage resale market. Originally, I had set out to find a red bag, hoping that this would be my statement piece for the upcoming Spring and Summer seasons. In the back of my mind, the cognac or mahogany versions would also be good contenders if the red didn’t work out for whatever reason.

Having these backup styles and colours really helped with my search because it gave me options. If I ever got priced out in one style, I could fall back on the other. Similarly with colours, I had such a hard time finding a red one with the right balance of price and condition that I ultimately fell back on my second choice of the cognac. Doing a little bit of research up front for colour options definitely saved my butt from making any impulsive decisions!

2. Have a set budget
It’s so easy to go overboard and want to buy the latest and greatest with all the bells and whistles to boot! If I didn’t have such a strict, self inflicted, shopping budget this year, I might have entertained the thought of buying a new bag from the relaunched Classics line. In reality, $298 was just too steep for me, thus the start of the search for the vintage version of this bag.

Having a strict budget up front will make shopping for the dream vintage bag a bit more challenging, but also rewarding then you finally find the one. By doing the preliminary research to get a feel for the spectrum of what a vintage bag of a certain style sells for, I mentally set my max price and started bookmarking all listings I could find that didn’t exceed the budget. Through this exercise, I was able to quickly learn the condition of bags that fell within my budget and could’ve (but ultimately didn’t) adjusted my max price if I felt that I needed to go up/down a bit to find my dream bag.

3. Research your shopping options
Buying vintage bags online is tough because not all bags will be listed for the same amount(s) on different platforms. Not all shopping platforms will have the same bags for sale. Likewise, not all options will be available at the same time. The beauty of the vintage resale market is that you never know what you’re going to find when you find it! I ended up stalking listings of the Classic City Bag for almost a month before finally deciding to purchase the listing that I did.

To give you a quick idea of the situation I worked with, the Coach Classic City Bag that I purchased had wide spectrums of prices over the following sites I visited (from as low as $20 all the way up to $200+). On average, for the condition of bag I was willing to purchase, here’s what I saw:

  • Ebay: $60 (Buy It Now average)
  • Etsy: $75 (this beauty was my fav!)
  • Poshmark: $50

  • I ended up making my purchase on Poshmark because of the amazing condition of the cognac bag that I found. I ended up missing out on the same bag on Etsy within $2 of my final purchase price on Poshmark because I took too long debating between the two listings. Buying vintage bags online can be tricky because of the sensitive timing, but I think this worked out perfectly given that I have no regrets on buying the bag that I did.

    Hope these tips were helpful! Would love to hear your experiences on buying vintage bags online (or any other wardrobe pieces) and if you have any extra tips to share.

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