The TEll// By Thrift & Tell
Welcome to THE TELL//BY THRIFT & TELL: a celebration of fashionable women who dress as smart as they shop.
This week’s guest on THE TELL// is fellow deal lover Kristyn of Bespoke Bargains. There are few people that share my extreme passion for deal hunting and Kristyn is one of them. She scours New York City department stores and finds incredible deals, including $250 Manolo Blahnik pumps and penny finds at Nordstrom Rack. (Every time I see her amazing finds, I vow that it is time for me to move to New York!) Of course, she is also a T&T lady through and through: looking like a million bucks while spending a fraction of retail. She mixes high street brands with investment pieces effortlessly, so that no one would ever guess she is wearing a sweater that was one penny! I love following Kristyn’s shopping escapades and she has a lot to teach us all, so it is a thrill to have her be part of this series!
//Your style in 3 words: Classic, Situationally Appropriate, Aspirational
//Staple Outfit: Cropped Skinny Jeans,Sweater/Button down, Backless Mules
//Style Icon(s): Kate Middleton circa 2012
//Your First Big Purchase: “Big” to me has evolved over the years, but I’ll never forget using money from a summer job to buy my first pair of Tory Burch reva flats. It was at Bloomingdale’s on 59th Street. They cost about half my pay check, and I made a really big deal about getting the 10% visitor discount applied. Technically the brand was excluded, but when the SA could tell I was about to walk away he made it happen!
//Do You Still Have It? No, but I wore them to death.
//Best Fashion Advice You Ever Received: Just because something is expensive doesn’t mean it will look good on you.
//Types of clothing you invest in: If you follow me, you know I rarely pay full price for anything, clothing in particular. If I’m going to make an exception, though, it’s generally outerwear. I’m ALWAYS cold.
//Types of clothing you save on: Everything! The biggest categories being designer denim and underwear. Never, EVER pay full price for those!
//Your greatest extravagance: CHANEL handbags and weekly massages
//Favorite Places to Consign Your Own Closet: The Real Real. And I also love selling directly to my followers via my instastories
//Currently Collecting Dust in the Back of your Closet: All my large/top handle handbags. I’m a new mom, and a crossbody is a must!
//Best investment you ever made in your style: Learning how to blowout my own hair. It doesn’t matter how great your outfit is if the rest of you looks disheveled!
//Style Choice From Your Past That Haunts You: I wouldn’t say any of it really “haunts” me. It all felt right at the time. But, if I had to pick, I’d say everything I wore to a themed frat party in college… I once made a dress exclusively out of wrapping paper and pages from a coloring book. It was actually really cool, but I’d probably prefer those photos not resurface!
//“It seemed like a good idea at the time” a.k.a Purchase you most regret: My dog! Just Kidding. I love him to pieces but he is more than I can handle at times. Hmmm… probably my wedding shoes, actually. They’re Manolo Blahnik D’orsay heels in white satin. I’ll never wear them again, but they’re too sentimental for me to sell. I wish I’d chosen something more versatile.
//Closet From Which You Would Like to Borrow: Lauren Santo Domingo, Linda Fargo, Amal Clooney
//Last Time You Splurged? A couple of weeks ago I went to check out the new Hudson Yards. I found myself in the Neiman Marcus Louis Vuitton the day after the Summer 2019 capsule (Monogram Giant) dropped. I knew nothing about the collection, but the Beach Pouch in the Khaki/Green colorway immediately spoke to me. I had no idea how popular the collection would ultimately be, but I did know that if I didn’t buy it then and there I probably wouldn’t get another chance. Not only do I love it, but the bag is selling for 2-3x what I paid on the resale market, so it was a good investment to boot!
//Currently Saving Your Pennies For: An Alex Katz print! But, more realistically, the impending hospital/NICU bills…! Giving birth is no joke and, unfortunately, not free! #adulthood
//A Deal for the History Books/Your T&T Personal Best: A $12,000 beaded Michael Kors Collection dress Nicole Kidman wore to the 2016 CMA’s. Google it! I found it at Nordstrom Rack in pristine condition during Clear the Rack and paid just $499! That’s over 95% off.
/Advice to someone looking to define their own style: Try everything and see what sticks. As you mature so will your style.
//Trend you wish would go way? Bulky Sneakers; Fannypacks, Tiny Sunglasses
//Occasions when you splurge: Often! Pretty much whenever a deal is too good to pass up.
//Occasions when you save: Same as above 😊
//Most prized possession: When I turned 17, my mom passed down a pink topaz ring that had belonged to my great grandmother. Whenever I do something special and/or want a piece of my family with me—like when I saw the Pope in 2015—I wear it.
//Home Decor Style: I dislike clutter, but I’m definitely not a minimalist. I like a space that looks lived in, and that means plenty of framed photographs, books, candles, and trinkets from abroad.
//Favorite place to hunt for home decor: I love Pippin Vintage Home on W. 17th Street and the City Opera Thrift Store on E. 23rd Street. I’ve bought some cool art at both.
//Your fashion motto: Dress for the day you want to have.
//Your life motto: Be kind.
Fill in the blank:
//A woman should invest in- her children. //You’re never too old to— change your life. //A woman can never have too much— charm. //Bury me in- the south! Anywhere so long as it’s warm!// True or False: More is More- false. //Fashion is- fleeting.//Style is: substantive.
//Music: Leon Bridges
//Print: I work in publishing, so I’m always reading. Literary Fiction is my favorite genre; I particularly like stories about adolescents that transcend adolescence. The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont and Prep by Curtis Sittenfeld are prime examples. I just recently started Trust Exercise by Susan Choi and hope it lives up to my expectations.
//Food: Baguettes and Bananas. I could live off them.
//Film: I haven’t had time to sit through a film lately, but I have been watching documentaries. The last one I liked was The Inventor.
//Podcast: I don’t listen to them… but I want to start! [Editor’s note: @bespokebargains: check out my podcast recommendations!]
//Instagram Handle: @sussexroyal I’m a sucker for a royal baby!
//Designer: Hunting Season
ABOUT BESPOKE BARGAINS
Kristyn’s love of deal hunting began at a young age when mother would take her to Loehmanns in Aventura, FL. However, it wasn’t until she moved to New York City after college that she really mastered the art of scoring a great deal. Dressing well on an intern’s stipend was nearly impossible, but she took advantage of the city’s numerous sample sales and discount stores and, ultimately, decided to share her shopping hacks with a broader audience. When she transitioned to freelance work in 2016, she renewed her focus on Bespoke Bargains and started her Instagram account. Bespoke Bargains is one of the premier shopping resources for savvy New York women, and is comprised of sale tips, reviews, and her daily style. Kristyn currently lives in Manhattan with her husband and newborn son.
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