Being Lucky and Lady Like

Being Lucky and Lady Like

Remember that grey Emporio Armani blazer I bought at Goodwill for $3.99? Remember how excited I was?

Well, that excitement quickly faded when I took it to my trusted dry cleaner. He carefully inspected it and found two more significant snags and a small bald spot the size of a pea that I’d missed. It wasn’t in “very good condition” after all.

I had him clean it anyway. Silly me. I thought the damage would somehow magically disappear during the dry cleaning process, but it didn’t. I brought it home, tried it on to see if the flaws bothered me and they did. And, if that wasn’t enough to return my jacket from whence it came, it stunk, too. Something awful.

I admit to feeling deflated. But was I going to let a stinky, damaged little Italian designer blazer I spent $3.99 on stop me from thrifting? Heck no! I chalked it up to being a rookie thrifter, considered it a lesson (inspect more thoroughly), and went back to the thrift store.

And boy, did I get lucky!

I found this black Paul Stanley* blazer with 3/4 length sleeves and single button closure; great for my long arms and curvy shape. It’s in excellent condition: no snags, no bald spots and no funky odor! It was just $4.99.

I dig the slightly wider shoulders and the jacket hits me in the ideal place: at the hip, a length that is flattering for wide hips like mine.

Yesterday, I wore it to work with my pin-striped slacks (Banana Republic), new black practical short boots, white H & M tee and lots of long gold and pearl necklaces and pearl stud earrings.

I think this blazer might just be my “lucky blazer”. I made not one, but two matches yesterday. That’s right! I set two volunteers up with two new clients. Let’s hope everyone likes their new friend.

After work, I celebrated with a manicure. I bought this new Essie shade, ‘Lady Like’ a few weeks ago and have been carrying it around in my handbag waiting for the right time to get it applied.

The name alone pretty much guaranteed that I was going to buy it…but the color, of course, is what really sold me: a dusty pink shade with a hint of mauve.

Pardon my old, well-worn hands.

I really do feel more ladylike when I wear this color. It’s pink, but it’s a muted pink that goes with just about any outfit and is mature, yet stylish.
Have you come across any lucky finds, thrift or otherwise,
while shopping lately?
Discovered any new nail colors?

Reminder: Tomorrow, Jill of Everything Just So and I are putting up our “How I Wear My: Sequins” posts…a follow up post to “How I Wear My: Missoni Cardigan”.

If you have sequins, and you’d like to play along, put them on and get out the camera! If you’re a blogger, blog about it tomorrow (December 1st), let us know and we’ll link to you. If you don’t have a blog, email Jill or me a photo of you wearing your sequins and we’ll put it on Jill’s blog – she’s the hostess this month.



*I’m pretty sure the Paul Stanley who made my jacket is not the Paul Stanley I’m familiar with:

I bumped into a friend while at Goodwill and she says Paul Stanley was a designer in the ’80’s and sold at Nordstrom. Have any of you heard of this line?



  1. November 30, 2011 / 5:01 am

    Though I am not familiar with the designer, I really like the second blazer…it looks made for you!! I have had this happen several times at Goodwill…and I just chalk it up to making a donation to the organization…and, of course, give the garment back to them!! See you tomorrow with my sequins!!

  2. November 30, 2011 / 5:29 am

    Shame about the Armani, but the latest one looks great on you. Like the nail polish – it’s very you!

  3. November 30, 2011 / 5:55 am

    you look so great adrienne. i always bring my reading glasses when thrifting to read labels and to check for flaws. my 85 yr old friend miss doris buys flawed items all the time b/c she is an excellent seamstress. she can mend just about anything. she recently purchased a vintage heavy wool austrian coat that had a pretty big moth hole on the back and she cleverly made a wool cutout of a heart and covered it up. she is a genius when it comes to that. too bad about the armani, that stinks, literally.

  4. November 30, 2011 / 5:56 am

    Your hair is such a great “feature”! Especially on the photo from the back.
    Can you imagine ever parting from the lenghts? Did you ever wear a bob?

    I am this close to getting a shorter haircut. My last hairstylist refused to shorten my hair. Lets see, what the new one has to say or do.

  5. November 30, 2011 / 5:59 am

    Great looking jacket!! I love your layered necklaces too. It sounds as though your volunteer work is going very well and proving to be as rewarding as you’d hoped!

  6. November 30, 2011 / 7:28 am

    Haven’t heard of Paul Stanley but the blazer looks fabulous on you! Who would have thought you thrifted it for just $4,99? Very elegant and classy outfit, love the pearl necklace. You carry your clothes so well, you are a stylish mommy!


  7. November 30, 2011 / 7:49 am

    I like the Paul Stanley jacket on you as it is a very simple yet flattering cut.
    Congratulation on the work front. It must be rewarding when you can match up some clients and volunteers.

    I’ll post a sequin post tomorrow!

  8. November 30, 2011 / 9:23 am

    The blazer looks fantastic on you! When I read “Paul Stanley” I thought of KISS right away! I don’t know the designer…

  9. November 30, 2011 / 9:43 am

    Great find! I love all your necklaces, the perfect finishing touch!

  10. November 30, 2011 / 9:47 am


    Bummer about the first jacket but the new one was quite a find! (thanks for the reminder that buying clothing secondhand requires careful inspection and a sniff test!) I purchased a similar black jacket earlier in the year which I love because I can dress it up or down.

    Your outfit is very classy!


  11. November 30, 2011 / 9:51 am

    PS: I highly recommend the Delicate Detergant for dry cleaning-garments.
    I washed my blazer with it (handwash-programme). It looks like new. As does the pink vintage dress I wore at a wedding.
    The main reason I avoid dry cleaners is the smell and the chemicals they use. But mainly the smell. If I have a clean jacket, I want it to smell good!

  12. November 30, 2011 / 11:53 am

    Your post made me smile today.

    So are you saying the Kiss guy designed your jacket?


  13. November 30, 2011 / 12:06 pm

    @Pam @ over50feeling40 First, let me say that I am VERY excited you are joining Jill and me in all the sequin fun.

    I chalked it up to a lesson, as I mentioned, and don’t feel any remorse about the grey blazer at all except for letting myself get so elated about finding it. It is like giving a donation back to Goodwill.

    See you tomorrow!

  14. November 30, 2011 / 12:08 pm

    @Sulky kitten I love this new polish…and I think it’s “me” too.

    The “new-to-me” black blazer is in such great condition I have a hard time believing it’s so old. It must not have gotten very much use by its previous owner. I, however, plan to wear the pieces out of it!

  15. November 30, 2011 / 12:14 pm

    @the gardener’s cottage I don’t own any reading glasses – yet. But there will come a time, probably next year, when I do. I have a hard time seeing detail with the poor lighting some of the thrift stores have. I also need to calm down when I see something I think is a fabulous find and give it a thorough going over.

    If there was one skill I wish I had developed when I was young it is sewing. Forget piano, knitting, snow skiing, baking and ballet. I should have focused all my energies on sewing!

    Doris sounds wonderful. I would love to go thrifting with one of my senior friends. Too bad most of them aren’t up to that sort of thing.

    The Armani debacle does stink – really, that blazer was putrid smelling – even worse after it went to the cleaners. But I am even happier with my Paul Stanley not of KISS blazer 🙂

  16. November 30, 2011 / 12:20 pm

    @Paula Thank you, Paula. I have had my hair shorter before. Back in high school, I had a bob. It’s not really the best look on me – maybe because of my height? Bill likes my hair long – the longer the better. I cut it a couple of years ago to shoulder length and he really disliked it. I told him I wouldn’t do that again. He asks so little from me appearance-wise. I figure I can give him that.

    I think you would look chic in a bob. Is that what you are considering? You have such beautiful hair, no wonder your hairdresser didn’t want to cut it!

  17. November 30, 2011 / 12:21 pm

    @déjà pseu Volunteering has proved to be very rewarding, although much more time and energy consuming than I thought it would be. I have met so many wonderful people over the last few months. It has really opened up my world.

  18. November 30, 2011 / 12:23 pm

    @Mongs I tried to google Paul Stanley and all I got was the guy from KISS.
    $4.99 was a great buy for my blazer. It is in excellent – really excellent condition. I can’t believe that it’s likely 20 or 30 years old.

    “A stylish mommy” – I love that! You are too, by the way. I love your looks.

  19. November 30, 2011 / 12:27 pm

    @hostess of the humble bungalow Making matches is very rewarding. But now I need to wait to see if they like each other. It has to be a rewarding experience for both parties – the client and the volunteer.

    I am SO excited you are getting on board for our sequin post. It will be so fun! xoxo

  20. November 30, 2011 / 12:28 pm

    @Marie a la Mode I had to google Paul Stanley to see if I could find the designer/label, but no luck. Just lots of KISS results.

  21. November 30, 2011 / 12:29 pm

    @Amy I don’t know how I accessorized before I discovered layering necklaces. Now it seems that is all I do!

  22. November 30, 2011 / 1:10 pm

    You look so pretty. I never have luck with thrifted clothes and I do loathe that horrible old clothes smell. I wish I could sew! How’s Christmas prep going?

  23. Anonymous
    November 30, 2011 / 3:20 pm

    You’re always so critical about your hands…I think you have beautiful hands and fingers! I’d give anything to have long, beautiful fingers. Learn to love them — they serve you well!! 🙂

  24. November 30, 2011 / 4:08 pm

    Okay, first off you do not have wide hips you silly girl! Second, I love your lucky find jacket. And third, now I am going to have to go out and buy the Essie nail color.

  25. November 30, 2011 / 4:13 pm


    You are just gor—ge—-ous! Yowza! Sorry about the first blazer. Too bad you don’t have my eye sight, you never would have noticed the flaws, and would have been happier than a little lark!

    I have really enjoyed the “style” photos you have been taking lately. I am also thrilled that your volunteer work is going so well, and that you are helping so many people. That is a wonderful thing.

    Really like your nail color. I just got a gel manicure the other day, have you had this?


  26. November 30, 2011 / 5:15 pm

    @LRS4AMANDA I was a bummer about that Armani. The sniff test is hard in a thrift store environment. You can’t really smell much until you get it home.
    I am really in to blazers this season. They are super versatile. xo

  27. November 30, 2011 / 5:18 pm

    @Paula Is the detergent from The Laundress? I need to check out her products one of these days. Thank you for the tip!

  28. November 30, 2011 / 5:19 pm

    @Hines-Sight Maybe it was designed by the KISS guy! I can’t imagine he would have had time in his busy career back in the ’80’s to be a designer, but who knows? I can’t seem to find any Paul Stanley’s who had a fashion label. Wouldn’t that be funny if it was him?

  29. November 30, 2011 / 5:22 pm

    @Faux Fuchsia The scent of used clothing is a turn off, for sure. Some clothes don’t have it, though. I wonder if it has to do with how long the item sits amongst the other things or more with the previous owner. I was reluctant to thrift again, after not doing it for two decades. But it’s fun and you can get some great stuff if you’re diligent and lucky. xo

  30. November 30, 2011 / 5:24 pm

    @Anonymous Am I critical about my hands? I suppose I am. They always appear so much more wrinkled in photos than they do live. It’s like the camera brings out the age in them.
    Thank you for reminding me to love my hands 🙂

  31. November 30, 2011 / 5:26 pm

    @Jen-uinely Inspired So here’s the deal on the polish. It’s a brand new color and it’s been introduced with three other colors for fall. At Walgreens and at Target, it was separated from the masses of Essie colors. So look carefully. I bought mine at Walgreens and it was the very last bottle. If you like mochachino by Essie, and I know you do, you will love Lady Like. Promise!

  32. November 30, 2011 / 5:31 pm

    @Julia Julia, you always know just what to say to make me smile….thank you.

    Yes…a real shame about that blazer. But at least someone got lots of use out of it before it went to Goodwill. You would have to wear something a lot to wear a bald spot through the fabric.

    I am enjoying this “new” me. I used to dread posting photo of myself on my blog and I still do sometimes, but it gets easier. And for some reason, it feels like it’s good for me to do so. It’s hard to explain.

    My manicurist is going to start doing them but she’s worried it will makes my nails peel again. I had an incident with a polish adhesive that was horrible. All my nails peeled off in many layers and it actually hurt. I think there was blood involved if I remember correctly. However, I have heard great things about gels..they last for weeks with no chips. I wish I could try it but I am a little scared! xoxo

  33. Anonymous
    November 30, 2011 / 7:59 pm

    Great thrift find, Adrienne!! I remember that brand from an upscale shop that my Mom used to shop at in the 80’s, it was called Classic Clothes in the Bellevue Square mall. I used to wish I could shop there when I was a grown up but by the time I grew up that shop was gone!

    My favorite thrift finds, as a fellow tall woman are: skirts, slacks with cuffs (that can be let out) and fabulous 3/4 length vintage coats. Happy thrifting!!

  34. November 30, 2011 / 10:20 pm

    Look how that worked out! If the Armani blazer hadn’t been beat up, you wouldn’t have gone and found that Paul Stanley blazer which clearly, you were suppose to have! It looks made for you 🙂

  35. December 1, 2011 / 6:56 am

    Great finds…isn’t it fun?!! And why can’t I have hair like yours??? You have great hair…so jealous.

    Thank you for the redirect to my blog and giveaway. I appreciate it! ~~Bliss

  36. December 1, 2011 / 7:12 am

    Great blazer! A good find, indeed. Glad the Armani blazer didn’t ruffle your spirits. And I like the Essie color a lot! I’ve been wearing Sugar Daddy as my go-to color, but any sick of it.

    My great find of the week are a pair of Sperry rain shoes. The color I wanted (black/brown combo) was selling exclusively at JCrew and is completely sold out. I found them new on ebay for 1/2 the price. Hurray!

  37. December 1, 2011 / 8:07 am

    @Anonymous Hi Kelly,

    I am thrilled to find someone who has heard of this label! It must have been a brand a bit on the high end side if it was sold at a nice dress shop and Nordies.

    What a great idea! Pants with cuffs that can be let out. I am going thrifting with a girlfriend today – will check out the pants section – I usually ignore it because the chances of finding a 36″ inseam is so remote.

    Thanks for the great tip!

  38. December 1, 2011 / 8:08 am

    @Sara Louise I am elated to have this black blazer…and, now that I’ve given it some thought, I am sort of glad the grey blazer was so damaged. It wasn’t a good color on me anyway – kind of a weird grey with warm tones.

  39. December 1, 2011 / 8:10 am

    @steppingmywaytoblissThank you, Bliss! I have my mom to thank for a head of thick hair.

    My pleasure to redirect to your give away. It’s a great one! xo

  40. December 1, 2011 / 8:12 am

    @Mrs. Stranded The Armani was a bad color on me anyway. And I so love my “new” black blazer, I have nearly forgotten about the Armani.

    Great find on the shoes! And 1/2 off? Usually when things are sold out, eBayers jack up the price. You scored!

  41. December 5, 2011 / 1:02 pm

    I also bought Essie’s Lady Like (great minds, and all) and love it! Though I was oringinally looking for another Essie colour that I found on Pinterest – Demure Vixen – that also loks really pretty.

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