Hello everyone

Apologies for not posting earlier but I’ve got the cold that’s currently going around the UK and am firing on one cylinder rather than, is it four?  My brain is so befuddled, I can’t think of the right number!

Anyway, I was going to do a post on all the lovely dresses I’ve managed to find that will be worn either during the party season or for a cruise (one is coming up at the end of March), and to tell people to be kind to themselves during the run-up to Christmas and not do too much (although my good friend Tricia of LookFabulousForever fame has written about exactly that). But I’m not fit enough for photos, what with my streaming nose, so instead I’m going to tell you a story.

However, before I start on this tale, I just want to say how good all of you are to read the blog and follow me.  I am so grateful and also totally delighted as a week ago this year’s total hit 100,000 views!  Oh, wow!  Thank you!  I’m now into my 5th year of writing this blog and have every hope that I’ll continue for many years more.  I may develop the blog who knows where, or how, because it is important to not do the same old thing over and over, but I will never take you for granted and remain humbled that people are actually reading me.  Above all, you need to know, I do love writing for you all.

OK, this is the tale of a ‘find’ that went bad, that turned into me finding my bargain of the year!

Do you remember that a few weeks back I bought a long mac that I felt really did the business and kept the rain off?  Actually, when I bought it, the rain was a mere mizzle. You know, the soft sort of rain that gets you quite wet, but isn’t in any way a downpour. Here it is.

Last Thursday rain was forecast so I wore it into town.  At first the rain was the same soft pitter patter of drops – so far, so good.  But then the heavens opened and the rain poured down in sheets.  Everybody got soaked, but unlike everyone else whose macs and/or coat seemed to be coping, my mac failed utterly.  It could keep out mizzle but not that bucketing down rain.  In a shop window, I caught a glimpse of myself.  Oh lord, the mac (or was it me) looked like a bedraggled piebald pony.  It looked appalling.  Right, I said, I’m not going to walk around any more in this pitiful rag.  I’ll get something else. To cut a long story short I found myself in TK Maxx.  And, btw, by then I’d taken off that mac and was kicking it round the floor as I tried stuff on.  As far as I was concerned the mac was destined for the bin!

Gosh I did try on some right old tat.  And I was beginning to despair when, round a corner and almost hidden, I found a rack of reduced designer coats.  There was a Vivienne Westwood reduced to £300, and other designer coats around £100, all of which I tried on.  And then I tried this.

Can you see the logo?

Yes, that’s right!  It’s a Michael Kors coat. It’s filled with down and also totally waterproof as I tested that out hanging around waiting for the bus. It’s also so light it fits into this dinky bag.

It’s altogether a very practical coat: warm, light and good for all the rainy wintery days we get here in the UK, plus it’s colourful and cheery.  It did cost me, though.  It was £45.  But just add a nought for how much a Michael Kors coat would normally cost bought online or in any store other than a sale rack in TK Maxx.  That was a bargain!

As I paid the cashier I handed over the old mac (now looking a little like a crumpled dish-cloth) and said, could you put this in the bin, please.  Never was I so glad to see the back of a piece of clothing!

Anyway here, for you, is a taster of my next blog post, which will be on frocks for this seasons’ parties.

This wonderful dress was bought in Bexhill (for £15) where there are numerous charity shops.  Just look at the detail.

That’s all for now, you lovely people.

Penny, the Frugalfashionshopper

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30 thoughts on “Have I got news for you! All about the blog and my shopping bargain of the year!

  • 13th December 2017 at 8:29 am

    Get well soon, Penny! Your new coat is fabulous, well worth every penny.

    • 14th December 2017 at 8:45 am

      Thanks so much, Judy!

  • 13th December 2017 at 8:36 am

    What a gorgeous dress!

    • 14th December 2017 at 8:47 am

      It is! As soon as I spotted it I thought – wow! Also I thought it’ll never fit but the dress material is very slightly stretchy so it did!

  • 13th December 2017 at 8:39 am

    I’m suffering like you, have missed 2 events this week. Annoying as I don’t go to many, but better than being ill over Christmas. I love your finds, I’ve been been doing forays into charity shops recently. I was in Kensington high st the other day, and went into a charity shop, fab stuff and very well presented. Found a great jacket, but not my size, supppse that is the crux of it, and you really appreciate it when you get lucky. I found a lovely jacket in TK Maxx – £35, £240 in John Lewis. Hope you feel better soon

    • 14th December 2017 at 8:54 am

      I don’t go into TK Maxx all that often, mainly because of the way the racks are so stuffed. But I’ve been reminded that there are designer items so perhaps every now and then I will go in and have a look. Thanks for the good wishes and you take care too. Like you I hope that we will both be fit and well by Christmas.

  • 13th December 2017 at 9:45 am

    I hope you get well soon. The new coat is wonderful and a bargain. The dress is simply fabulous! What an amazing find!

    • 14th December 2017 at 8:58 am

      Yes both were great finds! As they say, you win some and lose some. Both those items are real ‘wins’! Thanks for the good wishes.

  • 13th December 2017 at 10:16 am

    That coat was a fabulous bargain but for real rain you need a real raincoat with taped seams etc. I’ve got a Regatta jacket which I bough on e-bay for about £15, like new. I don’t think I’ll ever need another. I also have a longer waterproof coat in a very bright orangy pink which I bought in a sale while on holiday. It has blue poppers (as well as a zip) and a lovely silky lining which makes it easy to get on. Sadly when I got home I found that the concealed hood was missing so I wear it with a black pvc rain hat!
    I love the dress, another fabulous buy and just my kind of thing. I’d probably look for a black bolero or shrug if wearing it in winter as I feel the cold and am getting a bit conscious of my upper arms! In summer I don’t mind so much.
    I’m going on a cruise soon so will be wearing all my -mostly second-hand- fancy dresses. Just bought a super pair of gold and silver leather evening sandals (unworn) & a pair of Jane Shilton fabric shoes with a scalloped front, embroidery and a little bow. 99p each on e-bay(plus postage of course). Simply can’t resist! E-bay has largely taken over from charity shops for me now but I do give them my cast offs, rather than reselling.
    Hope you feel better soon and Season’s Greeting to all.

    • 15th December 2017 at 8:43 am

      Hi Lynda – you sound very similar to me! Actually, you’re right about the coat as it wouldn’t do for a long downpour, and anyway it’s not full length, but it is waterproof and it is above all a warm coat. So it was a good buy. As for the dress, yes, I always wear either a bolero style cardi or a wrap. Although my arms are in a fairly good state still, my skin isn’t all that good and I wouldn’t like that on display what with all those old lady blemishes I have, so yes, I do cover up. Interesting to hear of your finds on eBay as I don’t do that at all. Because I do like to touch the fabric and try stuff on. But never say never! I’ll have a look! Cold improving slightly, but should be better for Christmas which is the main thing. Greetings to you too!

  • 13th December 2017 at 10:42 am

    Hope you soon feel better, you are so lucky to have good charity shops afraid here is not a good area, have to travel to Cheshire which takes about an hours driving.

    Love the mac and the dress

    • 15th December 2017 at 8:45 am

      Thanks Sue. What a pity about the charity shops, in your area, because yes, seriously, some towns just do not have good charity shops and often, that’s what gives charity shops a bad name. The good ones are there and such a shame that they’re so far away from you. Yes, the dress is amazing – thanks for your comment!

  • 13th December 2017 at 10:54 am

    Oh dear, get better soon. At least you will be over it by the festive season!! I have just found an Autograph skirt in our local charity shop in Bognor Regis for £4.50, it’s a slinky little number, with a buttoned split in the back seam, its black so will suit a few events this Christmas. A few weeks ago in the same shop I found a full length black velvet coat for £7.00, again just right for this time of year. Best wishes to you.

    • 15th December 2017 at 8:48 am

      What great finds, the skirt especially! And very best wishes to you too!

  • 13th December 2017 at 10:56 am

    What a bargain, well done you ! Ticks all the boxes, smart, rainproof and warm, and what a lovely colour for this time of the year. The dress is fab, we’ve had a couple of these donated to our charity and, as you say, the detail is fabulous, lovely for your upcoming cruise. Hope you can soon shake off the cold and post a picture of you wearing it !


    • 15th December 2017 at 8:50 am

      Thank you Viv, will aim to post soon, but whether it’s in the dresses, not sure, as the cold is hanging around. But I should be better for Christmas 🙂

  • 13th December 2017 at 4:34 pm

    Congratulations on your milestone of readers Penny! I have always enjoyed your blog and your great fashion sense. I am so happy you are continuing where so many others have migrated to Instagram-laziness I think, because it’s easier to post a picture than write.
    I hope your health improves and you enjoy a lovely holiday season with “Mr. Frugal Fashionshopper!

    • 15th December 2017 at 8:55 am

      Thank you so much Lorraine, yes, I am so very pleased and thrilled re: the increase in readers, followers and viewers. Interesting the business of Instagram. I like looking at it, but I decided not to post too many pics on Instagram and definitely to not get obsessed with it. So a pic goes up about one a month!!! For me the blog is all about writing and communicating with readers, which I absolutely love doing.
      Re: health – it’s just the current cold – a bit meh, but nothing much really – I’ll be fine soon! Thanks again 🙂

  • 13th December 2017 at 6:39 pm

    Ethical shopping is a minefeld – and PETA are saying that birds are plucked for their ‘down’ while they are alive. Is this true? Cos it is so cruel if it is true.

    I really love down duvets/pillows, but do not know if I can bring myself to buy them anymore if birds suffer for me to have my gorgeous soft duvet and pillows. Please tell me it is not true and that birds are not plucked whilst alive.

    Although a meat eater I do buy from a butcher that knows from where the meat has come.

    Happier note – I was in Henley on Thames and there is whole street of charity shops, and as Henley is an affluent area the clothes in the charity shops are utterly fantastic.

    • 15th December 2017 at 9:03 am

      Oh my word! When I read your comment I thought oh no!!!! Anyway, I have looked it up and apparently (I’m not an expert) live plucking is done a lot in China. However, the kind of feather/down obtained that way is used for bedding and not for clothes (so not that jacket) as it just isn’t the right kind of down – who knew!!!! As I never use down for bedding (nasal allergies) I felt kind of relieved, but even so, what a cruel world we live in!

      And good to hear about Henley.

  • 13th December 2017 at 8:07 pm

    Well done you Penny ! What fab finds! Hope to see you in them when you are feeling up to it.
    My latest find is a lovely red Betty Barclay jumper for Christmas . £3 on e bay. Can`t be bad !

    • 15th December 2017 at 10:46 am

      Interesting, as you’re the second person to say that eBay is a good place to find clothes – haven’t gone there, yet, as I do like to touch and feel the clothes and try them on. But will look at eBay now!

  • 13th December 2017 at 8:52 pm

    The dress is fabulous and the price makes it even better!

    • 15th December 2017 at 10:47 am

      It is a great dress!

  • 14th December 2017 at 5:42 pm

    That coat will last you for ages. I bet it will prove a bargain!
    The dress is gorgeous. I’ve seen the design in Roman at about £70. Again it’s the sort of thing that will last years. Perfect for a cruise. We cruise too, I love it! Coincidentally I’ve just finished writing a post on it.
    Hope your cold gets better soon. Colds might be common but they’re pretty miserable too.

    • 15th December 2017 at 11:20 am

      Thanks for the good wishes re: the cold, which has been a bit meh, but I’m a bit better today. Re: the dress, the label is Pink Berry, Paris, which was a French company that got liquidated in 2014 (looked it up). On Amazon there’s a Pink Berry dress for £208, on EBay (just looked) there are 2 Pink Berry dresses for next to nothing. Not as nice is this one though, which is beautifully made. Was a great find!

  • 14th December 2017 at 10:06 pm

    Goodness me, Penny you know how to leave a girl panting for more! That dress looks fabulous. Your Michael Kors coat is lovely and I think 45.00 was very reasonable.

    I hope your cold improves.

    • 15th December 2017 at 11:23 am

      Thanks so much Veronica, cold is a bit better today 🙂

  • 19th December 2017 at 2:48 pm

    What an amazing bargain Penny. I have been in TK Maxx a few times but never had any luck. I really love the dress you’ve given us a sneak peak of! Have a lovely Christmas and hope you have shaken off that cold. I have one too – souvenir from a long haul flight!

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