Dr. Martens 1460 Mono Boot Review

Dr. Martens 1460 Mono Boot Review

I got the Dr. Martens 1460 Mono boots back in October. After going through all my boots to assure myself I did not need another pair of boots, I started to think maybe I did. There was one style I really loved and kept thinking about: the black, chunky, lug-sole boot.

I asked for a some for my birthday and received a very nice pair of black lace-up combat boots with side zips. They were really good but too small in my usual 8.5 size. Lisa Vicky Promise boots: Nordstrom Rack

Then, I was in Nordstrom Rack and saw the Docs. They were on sale for $120 (originally $150) so I snatched them up. I did have doubts. First of all, the leather was very stiff. I wondered if they weren’t real leather. They are. But they seemed oddly plastic-y. I read a review that said they take a while to break in. You’re not kidding. I suffered a bad blister because I wore them with socks that were too short and the top edge carved a hole in my shin! Also, I wished they had a side zip so I don’t have to lace them up every time I put them on. I kept the first pair for a while comparing and contrasting them with the Docs and ultimately decided to just keep the Dr. Martens.

The sizing was a little tricky. I am almost always an 8.5, but Dr. Martens don’t come in half sizes. I went down to an 8 and that even felt quite roomy. But 7s would have been too small. I accepted that they’re a little big. I have room to wear thick socks. (I tried adding an insole but that made them too tight.) Now that they’re broken in a bit, I am happy with them. They are perfect for winter, keep my feet warm, are very rain repellent, and are comfy for walking. Dr. Martens 1460 Mono boots: Nordstrom Rack

I do want to share that I think the Dr. Martens 1460 Mono boots might possibly come in a different kind of leather. The ones at Nordstrom (not Nordstrom Rack) seem to be in a softer leather based on the reviews. Dr. Martens 1460 Mono boots: Nordstrom 

They are also available direct through the manufacturer. You could get them there for the same price as Nordstrom. Dr. Martens 1460 Mono boots: Dr. Martens

So, I am very happy with my decision. I always wanted a pair of classic Dr. Martens. I remember when I first saw them back in the 90s in a store in San Francisco. I could not afford them then, besides, I wasn’t sure I could pull them off, if I was punk rock enough. I still worry I’m not cool enough for them. I do think they look good. And  they’re surprisingly easy to style. I kind of love them with everything. I will also mention that until I heard about the “mono” I was hesitant with the Docs because I wasn’t crazy about the signature yellow stitching. The mono boots have black stitching. I suppose I should have explained that at the beginning. LOL. I learned this from Brittany Bathgate and originally considered getting the oxfords she has. Brittany Bathgate YouTube shoe review (timestamp 13:45) |  Dr. Martens 1461 Mono oxfords: Dr. Martens

Outfit Inspiration: Shopping My Closet in 2022

Outfit Inspiration: Shopping My Closet in 2022

What to wear? I’m still trying to figure it out. I have clothes. I have clothes I love. But how do I make outfits? Here’s a collection of looks I feel like I can recreate. I got to them when I need inspiration and ideas. It also encourages me to shop my own closet.

You can click on the images to go to their source or more inspiration from that person.

How to Style Sneakers (aka Trainers)

How to Style Sneakers (aka Trainers)

I love sneaker outfits… on other people. I see photos, on Instagram and Pinterest, but when I try them on me, well, it never seems to work. Or I don’t even attempt it. Most days, lacing and unlacing shoes seems too ambitious. Then, I got inspired by a vlog by Brittany Bathgate which prompted me to put together these outfits with the four pairs of sneakers I own. I tried to do two outfits per pair but it was late afternoon and then I lost the light so the last pair only has one outfit.

Why do I try on outfits and take mirror selfies? Because I can’t tell what clothes look like on me by looking at them on their hangers. And because it curbs my appetite for new clothes. My goal is to only buy a small number of items each year. “Shopping my closet” is one way to figure out what I want to add or even IF I need to add anything. It also helps me define what my style is. I can go back through my photos whenever I need an outfit idea.

I recently added these Veja sneakers which are made with natural rubber. I saw them everywhere (online) and waited a really long time before purchasing them. They are more than I normally spend on sneakers but now that I have them and worn them, they are definitely worth it. I am willing to spend a little more on a sustainable brand. I also like that they can be styled a lot of ways.

The black Vans are also relatively new. Again, a style I saw everyone wearing. I probably didn’t need them since I have the Pumas which have a very similar look. Once they’re as broken in and comfy, I’ll probably donate the Pumas. Lastly, I have the New Balance pair which are cream and gold. They are so comfortable. I bought them used on Poshmark and love their retro look.

Four pairs of casual sneakers is not all that exciting but I’m very happy with them. And I promise I’ll wear them more often.

(You can see what I’ve purchased this year on this Pinterest board. Some of the items are sustainable. I don’t get any commission from any sales.)

#sneakers #trainers #tennisshoes #gymshoes

I See You Patagonia

I See You Patagonia

I was born second.

So I got the hand-me-downs. Even though my older sibling was a boy. Let’s be honest, my parents were frugal. God, how I hate that word. My dad was a penny-pincher and my mom learned to be really good at shopping at yard sales. I didn’t know my clothes were weird until maybe middle school. From an early age I looked for ways to make money so I could buy the clothes the cool girls had. I stretched my budget by shopping at thrift stores and tailoring clothes I found.

Now, I can buy pretty much anything I want – the newest, the trendiest, clothes, only ever worn by me. Only now I know there’s more involved. A worldwide crisis of over consumption, pollution and human exploitation. No fair. Now I have the money. But now I have a conscience.

I still fall for the “newer, better” trap. But every piece of clothing, or anything really, that I bring into my home, I fret over. How am I contributing to the problem? When I decide I no longer need or want an item, then what? Who will use it and care for it now? I have constant nightmares about the landfill.

Recently I was online shopping on the Patagonia‘s web site. And let me mention quickly, I have always felt like Patagonia is priced out of my reach. Also, I don’t feel like I’m that outdoorsy. I wish. But I dream. So, I was browsing. I’ve become a little obsessed about a particular jacket, the Retro Pile Jacket in the ‘Pelican’ color. It’s $139. So, I’m on the fence, also I don’t need it since I got something similar for my birthday last year. But that doesn’t keep me from looking at it and checking stock. Then I stumbled upon Patagonia’s WORN WEAR. This “Used Gear” link on their web site takes you away from their new product, directly to used stock. I got excited. It pretty groundbreaking for a brand to encourage you to not buy their new stuff, but their used stuff. But not surprising since Patagonia basically invented sustainability and have probably been rolling their eyes every time someone mentions the idea, like they just thought of it.

I LOVE that they are positioning used clothing almost at the same (perceived) value as new. With a stylish web interface within the main site. I mean, it’s a two part benefit: save money, because I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels like they can’t afford $139 for a jacket, AND save the planet. Also, how smart are they to brand their clothing as pretty much indestructible? They don’t have to brand it as such, I think it is very durable. So, it’s not too expensive. It’s priced right. If you’ve seen the documentary The True Cost, you know, if it’s cheap, someone is “paying” for it. I also saw that Patagonia (in the before times) hosted pop-up repair… um parties? Events? Festivals? I mean, they are doing it all.

Another brand I’ve been loving lately, COS, also has a buy used feature on their site. COS Resell. How interesting is it that brands are now co-opting used sales instead of leaving it to eBay, ThredUp, Poshmark, Vestiaire Collective… Patagonia and COS both offer to buy your old product and sell it. Similar to ThredUp.

And this leads me to think, you can tell people all you want that used is better for the planet as well as your wallet, but until people feel equally fashionable, it’s going to be a tough sell. The fashion industry has dumped billions of dollars into making you fell sexy when you wear new, and like the second (or third or fourth born) when you wear used. What if we could make used clothes as chic as new? I mean, we pay hundreds of dollars for ripped jeans?? And Golden Goose sneakers… I think the youngest generation is ahead of us. They fully embrace “vintage” and shop thrift stores like it’s the coolest thing ever. Used clothes have the benefit of being rarer. You won’t be wearing the same thing as everyone else. I “knew” this back when I was in high school but still acted like new was better. As soon as I had more money, I turned my nose up at GoodWill.

That’s something to think about when you’re out shopping, or in shopping. Am I being brain washed into buying new? Can “pre-loved” be cooler? Let’s promote that idea. Let’s hunt for unique, stylish, durable, interesting garments. And support those brands that think the same way.

Where I Get My Jeans

Where I Get My Jeans

I recently went through all my jeans (and other pants) and ended up donating a few pairs that just weren’t working for me. Among the pairs that were lovingly passed on to a new home were: the GAP black cropped jeans, the AG skinny jeans, the H&M boyfriend jeans, the JCrew jeans, the GAP army green chinos, and the Topshop black trousers. All were too big except the JCrew ones. They were just completely worn out.

So that was six items, edited out of my closet. I didn’t need to replace them, but ultimately I found these three:

SHOPBOP: Levi’s Wedgie Icon Fit Jeans $98

I have been dreaming of a pair of “real Levi’s”, like the ones I had in high school. Were they really that good, or is that just how I remember them? I’d heard rave reviews of Re/Done jeans. Would I ever spend $300 (and up) for one pair of denim? I finally thought I would so I contacted them to make sure I chose the correct size. I heard they work with customers to find their perfect fit, from exact measurements. That turned out to be untrue. I was worrying about paying for shipping if I had to return them, so I did some digging and as you know, a little digging on the internet turns up dirt. I was so turned off so I pivoted to: new Levi’s. I found a pair of vintage-looking jeans on Shopbop (which has free shipping both ways with an Amazon partnership) for “only” $98. I chose my current size, a 28, and with 99% cotton and 1% spandex, they were only somewhat uncomfortable. I washed them and … still good. I actually could have gone down to a 27 (If I wanted the true Levi’s experience of not being able to sit or eat.)

STYLE ENCORE (Thrift Shop): AG PRIMA ANKLE $12

Finding a good pair of jeans at a thrift store is like finding a needle in a haystack. I had just gotten rid of a pair of Adriano Goldschmied jeans that were perfect except that they were a little too big and then I lost a little weight and so they were a lot too big. I couldn’t believe my luck when I found these. I love their wash, their length, and their overall fit. The rise is a little low but I’m willing to overlook it. I took some items in to sell at Style Encore, my local used clothing store, and so I ended up netting money on that trip. I’ve had good luck with AG jeans for my husband as well. He tried on a pair in-store in NYC, then searched for a used pair on Poshmark. Always check if you can find your favorite brands pre-loved first. (Found these on Zappos, if you’re interested.)

MADEWELL: MILITARY STRAIGHT PANTS $88

Ok, yeah, I know: not “jeans.” I really love a pair of army pants, especially with classic front patch pockets. They’re a closet staple for me. These are so similar to the GAP pair I had to let go, but better since they are exceedingly high-waisted and fit like a dream. I went down one size to a 27 and they feel tailor-made. I have always had good luck with Madewell and they continue to impress. That doesn’t mean I haven’t been talked into a pair of jeans which I later returned. But, you know, my choices usually work out. I put these pants on the second I got home and was so happy. What’s the opposite of buyer’s remorse? Satisfaction? Yes, I was very satisfaction. They are a little funky, I mean, somewhat “Manrepeller” but feel SO ME.

Historically I’ve shopped for jeans at the usual places: GAP, JCrew, H&M, Lucky Brand. I’ve done well at Nordstrom since they have a bunch of good denim brands. It’s hard to take a risk and try something new. Maison Scotch was a rare diversion. I happened to be in NYC and had heard of the brand. I was very happy with the pair of black chinos I got there. I haven’t bought another pair (or any other clothing) from them because they don’t offer free shipping. Making a mistake isn’t something I want to pay for by shipping things back. JCrew is another one. Ordering online from them is a drag since you have to pay for return shipping and their sizing is very unpredictable. I’ve never ordered H&M online and even when I’ve tried things on in-store and made purchases, the items didn’t always end up being a favorite.

My goal going forward is to shop more sustainable brands. I’ve shopped and loved: Everlane, COS, Amour Vert, and Girlfriend Collective.  This year I’m planning on purchasing from: Patagonia, Sézane, Alex Mill, and Jenni Kayne. And definitely hitting up the thrift store again!

I Love Track Pants

Thanks to this post by Lindsay Kubly I have now joined the Adidas track pants fan club (not an official organization).

These pants. I have been wishing for them forever. I hesitated to get them because… uh, I thought I’d look ridiculous in them. Like my son’s soccer coach “Todd.” Like, ‘I’m hip, I’m cool, I’m sporty.’ It turns out, I love the way they look on me. And how comfortable they are. I put them on my Amazon wish list and got them for my birthday. I did have to switch out the medium for a small and they are still a little loose. I’ve looked for these pants locally and could only find weird variations on the theme. I would definitely recommend the traditional track pant fabric over the more cottony legging kind. And I really like that these have zippers at the ankles so I can put them on and take them off over sneakers. (Let’s be honest, I’m probably never going to do that, but I could) Finally, they have zippered pockets and an elastic waistband with a drawstring. Perfection.

Buy here: Adidas Women’s Superstar Original Track Pant

I found some photos on Pinterest to show how versatile these are and now I think I need a few more colors. Don’t worry, I’m not going to wear them with crop tops or stilettos.