recent purchases

October 29, 2013 |  Category:   happy purchases


Sometimes it really is the little things that make a difference in your day. I bought this ceramic Iittala mug in Seattle while we were killing time waiting for a restaurant to open. One of those impulse buys (do I *really* need another coffee mug?), but I have loved reaching for this mug every morning to pour my coffee in. The cup feels substantial with a nice weight in my hands and I love the color and subtle pattern.


In my search for a winter mid-weight coat for Miss C this year, I ventured onto the MiniBoden site, a shop that I always dismissed as out of our price range. But with the Gap coat prices creeping upward every year and J Crew prices getting ridiculous, I was surprised to see that the prices were somewhat similar to the Gap if you happen to catch a sale or a coupon code. By the way, long tangent…does everyone know about this? Searching for coupon codes online? Yes. I would say I get lucky 70% of the time, even if it’s free shipping. Anyway, I used one of those found coupon codes to get 20% off my purchase so I bought a bunch of things for the girls. I have to say, when this red duffle coat arrived in the mail, C and I were totally pleased (she’s wearing it in the Halloween post below). The coat just seems so well made. It’s a bit big on her so I think I can get 2, maybe even 3 years out of it. Believe it or not, even though Claudine is almost 3 years younger than Mia, she is catching up to her in height. They can share a lot of the same clothes, so handing down items—which is what we’ve always done—doesn’t always work out. Between the 2 of them, however, we’ve been able to stretch out most clothing over 4 or 5 years. Well worth spending a bit more on quality if you can get all those years out of it. C doesn’t mind hand-me-downs at all either. She gets excited when she finally gets to wear something of her sister’s that she likes.
Also at MiniBoden, I bought these fantastic ribbed leggings and these bright red and blue tights. I think there was an evening when I was shopping online where I realized that most of the clothes that I had bought for the girls this year were either gray or black and I was projecting my own clothing preferences onto the girls, so I went a little crazy and starting putting all these colorful items in my cart. Not that the girls mind wearing black or gray (in fact, they often want to wear those colors), but c’mon. Now is the age where they can pull off bright red tights. Plenty of time for gloom and doom in their teenage years. I made one splurge purchase though. THIS DRESS. I mean, look at how cute. Oh, I tried to resist even with the discount. I put it in the cart. I removed it. I put it back and it eventually stayed. I’m going to give it to Miss C for her birthday next week.
Speaking of black (because I don’t have to make excuses anymore for wearing black like I sort of did in high school when my friends’ moms would ask me why I wore black all the time), I bought these jeans and have been wearing them almost everyday. So here’s the dilemma if you’re wearing ankle boots all the time like I am: where do the pants go? Do you tuck them in? Roll them up? Just have them puddle around at the ankles? It’s awkward sometimes (yeah, I know. silly problems). I’ve decided that cropped jeans are the answer. They just end right at the top of the boots so you don’t have to deal with any of that nonsense. Problem solved.

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  • Colleen K October 29, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    I found out about Boden when I was pregnant with my daughter about two years ago and have never looked back. The Boden maternity items lasted so much better over the course of my pregnancy than Gap and Pea in the Pod that I really came to appreciate the brand and now shop there for my daughter too. Likewise, I also try to always use a 20% off coupon and make sure to move quickly when the sales start. Now that I’ve been shopping there for a couple of years, I noticed that they recycle their most popular designs year after year so I try to buy items for next year at the end of the season sales such as their vests and sweater dresses. (And, inevitably, one or two items like cropped leggings or a dress will end up in the cart for mama too.)

    PS: Mostly a frequent lurker, but also wanted share how much I enjoy your “recent purchase” posts. I might need the mug too.

    • Jenna October 29, 2013 at 5:05 pm

      Get the mug! I love the mug. I want the white one too. Yeah, Boden always seemed so pricey to me, but either all the other brands that I usually shop at have raised their prices incrementally or they have just maintained theirs so it’s leveling out, I don’t know. The quality seems so much better than say, the Gap. Those tights are more than I’d like to spend, but they are so nice and thick that I think they will last longer than others I have bought. I too always buy items on sale for the following year – it’s the way to do it.

  • Sonya October 29, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    I really like the way you write about your purchases, I think most of us have to do a little bit of calculation when we’re planning to buy things, and it’s nice to see it reflected in a blog. seems more real life, than the blogs that round up cute and expensive things from around the net. your girls are always so well dressed! my sister is 3 years older than me (she’s in her 30s now) but would sometimes be really cheeky with hand me downs, especially if she knew I really wanted something of hers and was waiting for it.

  • Sheila October 29, 2013 at 8:18 pm

    Funny you mention the ankle boots and pants dilemma since I had that problem when I was getting dressed this morning. I decided to cuff my pants by folding the extra length in so that it just touches the top of my boot. And I kind of like that my argyle socks peek through a little when I sit down :)

  • Pink Ronnie October 29, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    That duffle coat makes me wish I were a little girl again!
    I think I tend to just let my pants kind of bunch up around my ankle boots, as it just feels more relaxed/casual to me. But that’s just me – for all I know, I look like a total idiot!
    Ronnie xo

  • Lara October 29, 2013 at 11:32 pm

    OMG. I LOVE that dress! Adorable. And I’m happy that you like the mug that you bought while we were together in that store. I remember you debating a little about it…like do I really need another mug? But you loved it. Yay.

  • paule tb October 30, 2013 at 10:23 am

    I have the same ankle boots vs jeans problem!
    I wear a bigger size of jeans then you for sure, and even when they are supposed to be skinny, i find that the ankle is still wider then i’d like to fit IN the boot. So i usually make a couple of very small turn ups. So there is like an ” or so between the boot and leg of pants. But this brings a totally different first-world-problem: having to wear nice (matching or at least two of the same) socks.

    I love that mug, it’s really lovely.

  • sylvï October 30, 2013 at 10:54 am

    funny to see that mug here when it’s something i pass in the supermarket every time (mainly because i keep fidgeting around the ‘metsä’ glasses from that series — they only have it in clear and i want the gray-tinted ones…)
    iittala is super good quality and a total household name in finland. the name of your mug, ‘letti’, means a braid, in case you didn’t know.

    • Jenna October 30, 2013 at 11:01 am

      Thanks for the translation on the name!

  • sylvï October 30, 2013 at 10:56 am

    oh, and all these rstyle links always just come up as an empty page for me. perhaps because i am overseas?

    • Jenna October 30, 2013 at 11:00 am

      Oh, so sorry :( I don’t know why that happens.

  • SY October 30, 2013 at 11:09 am

    Love the mug, it’s perfect! My boys are getting too big for Mini Boden, but we still make purchases from Johnnie B. Also, here’s a tip my neighbor shared with me. If you gently wash the clothes and line dry them (this part is optional), you can resell them on eBay we’ve both done it and it’s well worth it. If you buy 3 new outfits from Mini Boden and the clothes are still in good shape, you can easily get 1-2 new outfits on Boden from the money earned. Girl clothing always sells faster on eBay :)

  • Carolina October 31, 2013 at 9:29 am

    I’m impressed the girls will wear what you buy them! My 5 yo insists on picking out her own clothes out and loves bright colors. She won’t touch anything grey or black. Oh well – it’s not a battle worth fighting.

    • Jenna November 1, 2013 at 4:35 pm

      Yeah, they’re not picky about clothes. Never have been. I still pick out their clothes in the morning if we’re rushed. Waiting for this to change, but it hasn’t happened yet!

  • Jeanette October 31, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    My ankle-boot dilemma is: what happens when you sit down? My jeans always pull out of my boots for some reason. This is where I miss those stirrup leggings of the 80s. Actually, I always miss those stirrup leggings. :)

    Also, I love love your posts about NYC in the fall. Makes me miss it like crazy (I grew up in Queens, so a lot of your posts make me nostalgic. Though, I’m a few years behind you so the Meatpacking District had already become the place to go clubbing by the time I hit high school. Speaking of — Western Beef closed?!).

    • Jenna November 1, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      I don’t tuck them in anymore, unless the boots are a little taller. Yeah, western beef closed – that big ole sign with the cactus!

  • Benedicte November 1, 2013 at 10:35 am

    Love the mug and the clothes you choose for your daughters.
    It really makes me want to come visit my friends in the US more often. My best friend took me to Aritzia last time I was in NY and I loved it. I didn’t buy anything though ! Cheers from Geneva!

  • Joohyon November 20, 2013 at 11:07 pm

    Looking for ankle boot recs and love your style…thanks!

    • Jenna November 26, 2013 at 5:22 pm

      Hi! Have you looked at Madewell boots? I have some that I bought from there. I also have a pair of No 6. clog boots. Pricey, but sometimes there are sales on some of the retail webstores that carry them (I usually always try and buy most things on sale). I also have some Frye boots, but you should go try some on first before ordering.

  • Enjoli November 26, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    I’ve been waffling on making a MB purchase for my kids because trying a new brand — and wondering about sizes, quality, cost etc. — gives me anxiety but your post has been my motivator. One question: What’s your opinion on size? True to size, runs small or big? Thanks in advance.

    • Jenna November 26, 2013 at 5:20 pm

      I find that they are true to size. Maybe runs a little on the big side but that works for us since C is so tall. That coat is a 7-8 and she just turned 7. She’s not swimming in it but it’s definitely roomy. The dresses fit her true to size though. Hope that helps!