I bought this vintage off the shoulder polka dot top (also seen here, here, here, here, here) a couple years ago on our Wanderful New England road trip. I remember seeing it, loving it, and almost leaving it in a Portland vintage shop. It reminded me of Minnie Mouse in the best way (because let’s be real, she’s one of my style icons) and though it instantly spoke to me, I was concerned about the amount of arm and torso that would show. It’s cropped and the ruffle provides minimal arm coverage. I’ve always been a little weird about my arms in particular — although that’s greatly improved in the past year! — but since I just couldn’t leave this one behind, I gave it a whirl and I’m so glad I did. It didn’t hurt that it was under $20. Fast forward to two years later and I still wear it all. the. time. It was probably the gateway top to most of the other off the shoulder, arm baring tops and dresses I have. Being that I spent a pretty penny on my tattoos that I admittedly love showing off, I’m pretty glad it opened the floodgates.
I talk a lot about buying pieces you’ll want to wear over and over, and I want to make it clear that while I believe in investing a little more in special pieces you’ll love for a long time, you do not have to spend a lot of money to find a piece you love. Some 0f my most loved and worn clothing items were bought at a thrift store, vintage shop, or were a lucky sale rack find at your run of the mill mall store. For me, it’s not about filling my closet with investment pieces (although, wouldn’t that be nice?) or even with wear it with everything basics — it’s about filling it with pieces I’ll reach for over and over again. Sometimes that’s a pair of Madewell jeans that I love so much I buy them in every wash. Sometimes it’s a slightly less practical piece of clothing that makes me feel special every time I wear it. Either way, they’re being put to good use.