Rocksbox review (and a free month of jewelry)

I’ve seen a lot of people rave about Rocksbox in the last couple years, but never tried it for myself until recently. If you’re not familiar with Rocksbox, they’re a subscription service for jewelry. For $19 a month, you can request as many boxes as you’d like a month in exchange for returning your current box. This pretty much makes it an unlimited resource for fresh jewelry!

Although I’ve only had my Rocksbox subscription for the last month, I wanted to share my experiences with the services and the pieces so far. To preface this review, I received a complimentary 3 month subscription of the service to try out, but all of the experiences you’re about to read are my honest, personal opinion.

rocksbox review with one month of free jewelry with rocksbox coupon kaatriiinaxoxo

For context: I started my subscription towards the end of March. My goal was to figure out how many boxes I would logistically be able to receive if I only kept each box for a day (or two, tops!) to maximize my subscription. To even further maximize the satisfaction rate of each box, I made sure to “star” at least 10 pieces in my wish list to reduce the amount of guessing that a Rocksbox stylist would have to do to discern my jewelry tastes.

My first box showed up a week and a half after signing up for an account and is pictured above. The level of personalization and care that goes into each box is really impressive, considering they have to scale this personalization for every subscription holder! Every box comes with 3 pieces: earrings, necklace, and ring or bracelet. I received a ring and necklace, both from my wish list, and the earrings pictured above. Of all of the pieces, the earrings were my favourite. The pieces ranged from $30-$50, which was a bit pricier than I wanted to go for the minimalist style and quality of the jewelry, so I sent my box back within the week.

I sent the box back using the prepaid shipping label and reusing the envelope that the box was originally shipped in (genius concept, btw). The turnaround time between dropping my first box off and receiving the second box was 5 business days. Really impressive, given the amount of personalization that goes into the selection of the pieces in each box and the shipping time.

Here’s what I received in my second box (minus the sunglasses and the jacket, and a bangle that’s not pictured):

rocksbox coupon kaatriiinaxoxo

The Perry Street statement necklace was on my wish list, paired with highly sought after Kendra Scott earrings, and a brass bangle that I really did not care for. Each of the “rocks” in my second box were retailing for at least $50 a piece, which is a bit more than I would personally pay for a single piece of costume jewelry. Thankfully, at the $19/m, I could give off the illusion of owning a lavish jewelry collection without breaking the bank.

The turnaround time between dropping off my second box and receiving the third box was 7 days. A couple days difference between the previous swap, but again, quite fast.

Because I personally don’t wear much jewelry on a daily basis anymore, I don’t think I would continue a regular Rocksbox subscription on my own for the full duration of the remainder of the year. However, seeing as how this Summer and Fall are filled with weddings to go to, I can definitely see myself picking back up the service for the couple months of overlap between all the weddings so that I have fresh bling to dress up the wedding attire.

Next week will mark my first full month since receiving my first Rocksbox. In that month, I will have received 3 boxes, totaling 9 pieces of jewelry, with a total MSRP of about $450 to wear and style within my personal wardrobe. Although 50% of the pieces I received were not ones I would have picked for myself, it was fun to see the explanations behind the selections made by my Rocksbox stylists.

If you’re still on the fence about committing to a subscription, here’s a Rocksbox coupon to try your first box free! Simply enter the code “kaatriiinaxoxo” at checkout for 1 month of free jewelry from Rocksbox.

Disclaimer: Huge thank you to Rocksbox for partnering on this post by providing a 3 month subscription for me to try. I wasn’t asked to make this review post, but I wanted to share my honest opinions about the service while also sharing my findings for figuring out the maximum number of boxes that could be received in a single month.

Pretty in punk

With the weather warming up and the sun coming out to play, the thick layers of hoodies and sweaters are getting swapped for lighter tops, dresses, and cutout booties. While trying to still be smart and rework the existing wardrobe, I’m making a huge effort to resist the temptation of buying any new outwear this season. You’ll probably see this leather jacket a lot, plus the good ‘ol Michael Kors asymmetrical waterproof coat (worn last on the blog in this Iceland recap post), and the Ann Taylor utility jacket (styled in last week’s post here).

pretty in punk: minimalist date night outfit ideas
outfit details:
backless white dress: c/o COME SHOP WITH LOVE (exact)
moto jacket: Michael Kors (similar)
booties: Seychelles (similar)
BZR sunglasses: Moorea Seal (exact)
vintage Coach bag: thrifted via Goodwill (exact)
teardrop earrings: DIY by yours truly

the demure muse: date night outfit ideas ft backless dress

What I’m currently trying to rework are the dresses in my closet. After parting with a handful of pieces that no longer fit my current style or felt age appropriate (like this one, or this one), I’m starting to invest in more classic silhouettes in solid colours, avoiding prints in hopes of being able to wear them longer.

The newest dress is from COME SHOP WITH LOVE, a Seattle-based company that is all about empowering women and giving back to the community. A portion of every sale is donated to a rotation of causes for organizations or charities that align with the company’s mantra.

I’m excited to partner with this local company on this specific post because I feel like the outfit inspired by this dress helped me to embody the COME SHOP WITH LOVE woman. Not only is this dress easy to wear with the flattering silhouette, but the white palette was perfect to match with my existing monochromatic jacket and accessories. Having this dress on made me feel bold, strong, and independent to hold my own in it. Bonus: it is perfect for twirling!

the demure muse: date night outfit ideas ft backless white dress

After taking this dress out for a spin once, I’m excited to come up with more date night outfit ideas with this piece!

Lularoe comfort and style

Happy hump day! The weekend’s almost here! To celebrate the incoming weekend, I’m partnering with Lularoe on a comfy, but trendy, styling of their Madison skirt. This skirt is perfect for dressing up for the work week, or dressing down for the weekend. It’s made from a super soft and comfortable printed jersey knit with pockets (who can say no to pockets?)!

Aside from merging fashion with comfort, Lularoe stands for empowerment to women and pushing the “I believe in you” and “you can do it” attitudes. One fun fact about this outfit post that’s different from previous collaborations is that it was my first blind styling. I took the “you can do it” approach and took the challenge of being surprised by whatever Luelaroe consultant, Jessica, chose to send.

earth tones for spring; lularoe madison skirt review
outfit details:
pocketed t-shirt: Babaton via Aritzia
Madison skirt: c/o Lularoe
utility jacket: Loft (similar)
booties: Hinge via Nordstrom (similar)
sunglasses & necklace: Moorea Seal

Lularoe only produces a small collection of 1,000 styles of each print, so it was a surprise to receive a print that I have never seen on the Luelaroe site or in another consultant’s boutique before! To see a print on the opposite end of the spectrum, Megan of Diary of This Girl styled a brightly colored graphic print top!

Surprise at the cash register!

This might be a bit of old news to some, but I’ve been so excited to write about this experience I had at Nordstrom Rack a couple weeks ago that I wanted to do a bit more “research” before penning this one. If you’re following me on Instagram, you’ll know that the pants in this post cost me a whopping $0.01. Yep, one whole penny.

I have been in such a pickle with shopping in 2016. Aside from some accessories and back-filling on basic staples (like replacing all the white tees that I accidentally stained with cooking oil), I haven’t done much shopping this year. Majority of the changes to my closet have been to downsize, as I started shifting more to slow fashion starting in 2015.

Nordstrom Rack one-cent deal - Joe's Jeans
outfit details:
moto jacket: Michael Kors (similar)
hoodie: Lululemon (old, from 2006)
t-shirt: Babaton via Aritzia
destroyed jeans: Joe’s Jeans via Nordstrom Rack (similar)
Chariot styled sneakers: c/o Brooks (coming out May 1, 2016!)
sunglasses: BZR via Moorea Seal (exact)

While browsing at Nordstrom Rack during their “extra 25% off sale items” sale, I happened to come across these Joe’s Jeans destroyed boyfriend jeans. Original price tagged as $185, marked down a handful of times to the current red tag of $14.97. A really great deal in itself, but even sweeter with the 25% off.

As I’m checking out at the register, the cashier looked at me and said, “uhhh… these are ringing up as $0.01” and we both looked at each other super confused because… is there anything in Nordstrom Rack that’s ever under $5? She called her manager and the manager said, “I guess it’s your lucky day! Enjoy these jeans for a penny!” So I handed over a penny and basically felt like the woman in the IKEA commercial above… haha. START THE CARRRRR!!!

Turns out, Nordstrom Rack is known for having what they call a “one-cent deal” for items (usually ones that are heavily discounted and/or out of season) that are supposed to have been pulled from the racks to be sent back to the central warehouse, but never got pulled. If you’re lucky enough to find one of these items, the store surprisingly honours the sale, even though the item is technically not supposed to be on the sales floor. Crazy!

Have you ever found a one-cent deal? I’m so curious to hear about your finds! There were some awesome ones people shared on Instagram and now I’m so tempted to go back to The Rack to see if there are any other deals hiding between the hangers!

Brooks Heritage Chariot shoes

Aside from those jeans, which I have now worn a total of 3 times in their short lifetime in my closet, I’ve also added these sneakers from the Brooks Heritage S/S 2016 collection. They’ll be available for sale starting on May 1, 2016. Mark your calendars!

I was too excited from the sneak peek that I’ve been wearing them out on every non-rainy day since! They’re a beautiful gradient of mono-chromatic toned suede, laid out in the traditional Chariot style of Brooks Heritage shoes. It’s hard to pass up on shoes that match with absolutely everything and I love how comfortable they are!

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.