Bas couture 1

Getting dressed in the morning is important. I have no money. I have 4 pairs of shoes, and I love clothes.  The reuse, recycle theme continues in this daily of what i was wearing when i made that weird thing, where it came from and how very little I paid for it. Ha!
As a side note: this low tech daily is documented by me with the equipment I've got: a computer and a phone. All photos are taken using one or another of those ubiquitous instruments.

Another side note (YAWN yawn...): I've started incorporating this series in my daily to see the most recent adventures of the girl who loved clothes but has no money (that would be me), CLICK HERE and then choose BAS COUTURE from the side bar... then don those ruby slippers, click your heals three times and repeat "there's no place like a good thrift store (insert at will: garage sale, free box, clothes swap).

September 14, 2011
Here I am again in my tiny flat in Amsterdam. Aaaah, I can hear the clickety clack and whizzzzz of the bikes 3 stories below, and smell the cacophonous aroma: coffee, exhaust, canal and something else, something old and a little wet.
It's great how they have alpha thrift here too, because I totally scored with this dress and skirt. Somedays, more often than you might expect, I really enjoy feeling like a layer cake...and for way less than  the price of one too! 
It really always shocks me that one can find such yummy stuff in the thrift stores.  

September 2, 2011

Here's me just having bitten into some bitter reality, but having fun none the less in my cute little amsterdam loft.  That cow shirt says "Collaborate or  Die" - got it from the  Santa Barbara Arts Collaborative. A cool group of rag tag art lovers trying to keep the arts and artists in santa barbara going. Speaking of which, feel free to send this artist a check any time. It's not a tax write off, because I'm not a 501c3, but I'll like you. :) HEY - I even take all the major credit cards because I got off my tush and got a square! So clever. Not really...but I do have the credit card thing going.

OK Shirt Designed by cool gal Vanae Rivera, pants f21 maybe $20. Sunburned back came at the cost of 7 spider bites. I wonder what the average cost of one of my 'outfits' is? What's yours?? I might have to do some math sometime this month.

August 30th, 2011

The bad ass kick ass saten spider biter survivor has spoken. Boing. Boing. Boing. Thats it.

Oh and clothing tip...wear them when gardening.
That's really it.


August 25, 2011
This way, that way...I'm surrounded. I like this shirt and skirt's overly most things in my life. I've decided to start documenting these 'outfits' in two parts because it's really hard to squeeze the whole thing into a single frame with my oh so high tech set up. Top was Ross...I forget how much, but we know it's cheap, skirt Alpha $9 and other skirt is F21 at I think $6. 

August 24, 2011
This is me in my tiny NY loft....I mean my tiny Tokyo apartment...I mean my tiny Parisian flat. 
Aside from my new F21 sox ($2 something) and new Alpha dress and skirt ($8 and $9...I told you it was getting more  expensive!!!) and cut off sock arm warmers....

I'm sporting my new short hair...started in a Disneyland bathroom stall with toe nail scissors.I learned allot about the bathrooms of Disneyland this time. I think I might write a book.

Later that day.
This is the bad news shirt. I was so excited when I got it but neglected to inspect the seams - which met in an uneven twisted mess of a line on the front side and with stripes mismatched in an oh so NOT attractive way. Big deal right? Well - Alpha thrift is getting more's TRUE! and mistakes like this aren't as easy to disregard as they used to be. So - this mistake was relegated to nightshirt status right after i ripped off the stupid frill on the bottom that I hadn't seen either. The pink and pink stripes were intoxicating. I'm a total sucker for a good stripe combo.


August 3, 2011
I had a great thrift store run recently, but the clothes were upstaged by the experience...I was with my daughter. She was thoroughly coerced into joining me by the promise of getting a stuffed animal on each visit...a concept which was quickly replaced by a different need "I NEED..." a giant martini glass, a 5 piece gold rimmed goblet set, a Smirnoff shot glass. And there was the conversation..."Please can I have this?" "thats an ashtray daughter. You're 6." "But I won't use it for smoking." Damn straight you wont I thought but said "put it back please".  Maybe I said that.

Going to the thrift store with children of a certain age can be a huge challenge. About 2 years ago I swore I would NEVER take her back after a 45 minute "game" of capture the hysterical marauding little person who darted from the underside of one rack to another giggling and then go silent as a mouse as panic set into the  completely nerve-shot mother. NEVER again I swore...but two years later it's kind of fun.

I've got some cool clothes, and she has a cocktail set minus the ashtray. We're both pretty stoked and I have an excuse to start up this page again after a summer of doing other stuff.


July 5, 2011
Wearing. Covering. Hiding. Protecting. Adorning. Today I am wrapped in a little blue dress that i bought in that fantastic thrift store in the Mission District in San Francisco - Community Thrift. It's a huge space with tuns of clothes but it's like a thrift store co-op in that a bunch of charity organizations are represented so the $ from your pile of clothes may go to like 7 different charities instead of one, and when you donate - you get to pick who it goes to. The dress was under $7, and the black skirt I'm wearing underneath it was free. I made the necklace in High School, and the glasses are new. I stepped on my old ones yesterday.  If I had tattoos I'd have a rocket and an anchor. My brother just got 3 tattoos in a row (first ones ever) at age 40 something. That I'm feeling the urge for the first time in my life is a surprise. We'll see what happens.

June 30th, 2011
When one has no money but a penchant for accessorizing, hair can be an awesomely cheep way of changing a look. 

For whatever reason, I feel more natural having blue or pink hair. Indeed I have fun when kids comment "hey - I like your hair" (and the kids do like it), then I say "thanks, its natural"...and their little faces get all serious and then they crack up.

Hats are good too...

And there's the old get out of bed at 5 am and go to the bathroom with long hair, step out with short hair trick. Thats a great way to add an inexpensive fashionista twist to any pajama party. 

Manic Panic hair dye $10 at that beauty supply place in 5 points. Hair cut FREE! If you do it to your self...try doing it with nose hair cutting scissors without two mirrors at 5 am for extra fun.

June 14, 2011
Well - how ever many years ago I was wearing my daughter, and she was wearing Naartijy (SP?). She still has those pants! (I just found a bunch of old photos....)

and today I'm wearing blue hair for the first time in my life. Over and out and in the words of Sean Kennedy...Lets start a band or a music label or an art label or something....what did you say again Sean???


June 2, 2011
Moving. Before and during. Pink coat Alpha Thrift $8, red scarf Forever 21 $6, necklace a Patrick Mackay creation (my design) and the real novelty here is that I'm wearing eye shadow on my lips. How wrong is that! I have nothing else to say accept that my back hurts from moving stuff around and that sucks.


May 25, 2011
I like Donna Haraway...what I've read of hers. I am embracing my inner cyborg (ha!) - part french maid outfit, part cleaning machine. There - I got Haraway and the french maid outfit in one paragraph. I'm done now accept to mention that I love my apron that I got at Yellowstone clothing years back. It was like $25 or something close and I really haven't worn it enough. I will now to clean this god awful mess though. Woo hoo! 

Saturday May 21 2011
Greetings! What are we having for dinner? The thing I like about this outfit is that it's a total mistake, but I love these weird cut off business like pants with my SF thrift store glamor striped dress. The pants were Ross for Less years ago. Maybe $12? It's all super comfortable and I've rolled around in it all day. I even trampolined in it. SO fun but I have a little head ache from it now. Well worth it. 

May 19th 2011
Yesterday was a killer and by the end of it I was sporting puffy eyes and looking through the bottom of an empty martini glass. Oh life. Oh sucks. The shirt though does not. I got it from Goodwilll for $4 years ago.

Today i'm still here.

with a bit of a headache.

I really use this part of my blog as an excuse to get dressed. Really. This is what I would be wearing in my shop today if i had one. See how that works? I was kicking around in yesterdays garb writing a business plan and thought "Holly! This is no way to promote professionalism now or any're sending a bad message to yourself. Get dressed!" So I did, and because it's my business...I get to dress how I want. Aaah. I refuse to put on my shoes.  
The butterfly skirt is the only new news here. It's from alpha thrift and was $7. 
Now I'm going to try and make a house out of cardboard. Wish me luck.


May 2, 2011
Photographs. Today I was at my friends house so that he could take some super great photos of some little things for a secrete something Im doing. Think pincushion. Yep. Super hot. Photographs make SUCH a difference! Take me for example...I look nothing like this ordinary light I have way too much lipstick on and my eyes are tarry holes...but over expose the face and voila! Somebody else entirely. I think I've discussed the genius of this SF thrift store dress a while back, and the leggings are cut offs. So - I guess I was just looking for an excuse to do another PNG file. Super  fun. And any time I can incorporate a propeller into's like drinking two martinis in quick succession. I don't know why.


May 1, 2011

All in black (light cargo pants from Catholic Charities $5, shirt forever 21 at $6) and being taken over by aliens. This so that someone can make flyers with a current description when I go missing (look for tarry flowers and bad bubbles)


April 30, 2011
The girl in the box goes to the fair. Now it is getting more surreal. I ate a corn dog too. I want that to be public knowledge just incase I expire.

My dress is SOOOOO all purpose! Its a very old forever twenty one smock thing which I wear like a habit. $24. Under it I have my free thingamie doo da skirt and the big news is....
I have my first pair of prescription sunglasses. Oh you can't really see them, hold on...

There....ok, gotta go but not before boasting that despite huge and bizarre physical odds, my peripheral and depth vision are eerily perfect. The optometrist was shocked that anyone, let alone i, could score perfectly on these bunch of tests.
Thank good for any good news I say! And...I love my new glasses.
Happy Saturday everyone!


April 28, 2011
So - it is really hard to photograph my whole outfit. I know - all these people do it and it looks really good. I'm sure they have nice cameras and tripods and whatever...they might even have jobs...i don't want to hear about it.   I, on the other hand, use iphotobooth mostly and drag my computer into precarious and dangerous positions all over my room while simultaneously and continuously burning myself on my desk light. JUST so you know! 
This outfit is so Santa Barbara thrift store and spans several decades of purchasing! The shirt was $4 at Alpha, the plaid skirt was Salvation army years ago - probably like $5 and the pants were goodwill at $4 probably 15 years ago. I just cut them today and so far have a headband out of the scraps.


April 26, 2011
Today I'm sporting my plaid forever 21 $24 pants and....drumroll please....some plaque! That's what I'm doing, flossing. Ewe. Too much information Holly! Oh - I've also tied a bit of an old cut up shirt around my jugular to keep the  blood flowing warm. I LOVE using all  the parts of an old thing.
I just had the thought that I might reveal something significant... but - i've decided against it. Things will get more interesting when I do...but i'm not ready.


April 26, 2011
Being a natural blond...and wearing black allot means that I'm wearing my hair allot too (see photo #1). So even in moments of great seriousness, wether contrived or not, there's the opportunity for someone to start picking at your sweater  or to be captured thinking you're looking cool, but being upstaged by that hair on your shoulder. Little things DO mater! 
I totally love this sweater though. I got it in SF at Buffalo Exchange for $12 if I remember correctly. It has this yummy floppy neck bit that I've never had on any item of clothing before, and the rest is fitted. Mmmmm.


April 18th
Well - that was the last time I got to put my blue sweater in the dryer. Snip snip snip...NOW I have new wrist bands and a neck muff! Mmmmm - warm and cozy


April 12, 2011
Man - I really like jumping! I think I should rename this my "Excuses" page...excuses to get dressed, to strike cheese bucket poses, and now to jump! It made me feel really good. This was really comfy because both things are all silky. The skirt is OLD and ripped and the shirt I found for $9 at Alpha Thrift. I should approach them about an advertising gig...


April 10, 2011
How low CAN you go??? Gosh... I love this top even though it dose almost reach my belly button in the center (note the appropriate raunchy pose on the left). It feels great though and its the first time I've got to wear it because I needed to re-sew the straps - which I did this morning YEA!!! . It was $7 at alpha, the rest of the outfit (which I QUITE like in its BIZARRE relation to its parts) I've already spoken about somewhere else in here. Gotta jet and pick up some succulents. HOLD ON I'M LEAVING NOW MATT!!


April 9th, 2011

I grew those! Or at least I planted them in AWESOME wormy dirt full of rabbit poop some time back, in these great wine barrels I have and it's been so wet - they did their own thing.   Mmmm - fava beans. I've been gardening today. Not much makes me happier than digging around in the dirt. 
The hat is from J.Woeste in Santa Ynez - $35 I think, the smock might be an old F21 and something like $12, pants the same.

April 8, 2011
That felt good! I am NOT listening to myself today and  would have completely missed a meeting this morning but for a friends text. SHEESH! It started so well daughter and I listening to Chopin and Florence and the Machine with a brief Village People interlude at her request. Dress - $9 from this totally cool thrift store, Community Thrift  in SF...heres the link - check it out because it rocks. Leg warmers are from the sock shop in Solvang. Who knew we had a Brit style sock joint within a hundred miles of here! 


April 6, 2011

I haven't quite figured out what to do when my outfits or the elements of them start repeating...I don't want to be redundant - BORING - so I introduced food into this one. It's my breakfast - toast...and get this...butter, sunflower seed butter, jam and whipped cream! WWWWOOOOO HHHHHOOOOOO. I did feel sort of sick after it though. I guess eating can sort of effect wearing. Maybe now it should be "what she was eating and wearing". We'll see.  


April 5, 2011
A post card to Anthony

Dear Anthony, I thought I'd better write sooner than later least I forget...forget you - HA that would be hard! It has been a long time though.
I suspect you've been traveling the world collecting pink footed salamander kidneys and blue jay mustaches. I can see you atop a camel, drinking hot lemon water in your spotless white shirt, charming both royalty and rappers with your fearlessly odd questions. 
While you've been away, I've been very solidly here, doodling allot and doing this little blog. I wondered what would happen if a person just did exactly what they wanted, did what they loved to do and then shared it. It seamed like it might not be a bad thing, so i'm giving it a go. 
I am writing to you from my "low-fashion" page where I continually amaze myself at how very little I pay for my clothes. It helps me get dressed in the morning. 
Sweater - $6 Out of the Closet SF, skirt - I forget! But we know it was cheap. Top - was a maternity thing and subsequently more expensive at $23 from some maternity store and THE SCARF is a Lucy Rockwell design. I think it was $18?

Loads of love to you A! Come visit us sometime!


Monday March 4th, 2011

Thank god i did get dressed this morning because I had a meeting Id forgotten about until 5 mins before. I am split today. I am torn - half of me is in the tar pits and half in the clouds. It hurts. I'm also confused as to what are my needs and wants. Ugh. Pink, I'm sure, will help.
Dress - Urban Outfitters and around $40, The skirt was free. 


April 3, 2011
"If you squirted me with soy sauce I didn't even notice!" - Anna quote from the Trader Joe's parking lot. One of my favorites. I was wearing this yesterday - I'm not fit to be seen today yet. The striped shirt is F21, I have a grey one just the same and they were like $12 I think. The hat was the same I think and the pants (which you cant see) are Good will at $9. 


It's all black and all cost nothing today. The skirt and shirt were from friends, there are the famous docks, and the necklaces: one is from my brother, one from Alpha thrift and I made the anchor one in High School. Aaah - the hat is a cheap one from F21.  


March 31, 2011
I love this $6 dress from Alpha thrift. I'm wearing a $6 Forever 21 skirt underneath it and some felt flowers i made. Today was good - good people, good conversations.  It was a day of beginnings and ends I think.

And like oh my god! How red am I and why did not one person remark on the chiaroscuro effect at my bust line? It's starting to hurt.  


I found that green jacket recently at Alpha Thrift for under $10 and the pants I've had FOREVER, Salvation Army - maybe $5? I forget where I got that hat - but it's no Gucci. I don't think I've ever had anything Gucci...or designer for that matter. Im worse at recognizing designer labels than I am at TV shows...and ask anyone, I'm really bad at that.  I might have had a pair of Gloria Vanderbilt stretch pants once in 6th grade, and I've heard of West Wing...but thats probably it. 


Monday, March 28, 2011
Oh yea, oh yea. Pink this and pink that and get a load of those cut off arm band things and the tight things I was talking about yesterday! My boyfriend said I should try doing something with the top part...not funny (although he thought it was). Flowers - I made. I LOVE having  felt flowers around. Love love love. Skirt and shirt are the same as yesterday, scarf is forever 21 and definitely under $10. Earrings LEWEIS AND CLARK in downtown SB. They ROCK! 


Sunday March 26, 2011
I'm sure I'll do something good today in this outfit. I like it. I like layers. I died my hair last night with about a quarter inch of Manic doesn't last, but it's fun for a while and whole jar only costs like $10, and I've died my hair with it 5 times WOO hoo!! For some reason I just feel more "natural" with pink hair. 

I love these boots. They were a gift - I would have never been able to get them otherwise. The skirt underneath was from a friends "to the thrift store" pile, as was the pink top. Sweater is an "out of the closet" polk street SF find, maybe $6? It's CASHMERE!!! Mmmmm. I've written about it before, and the over skirt is something I cut off and up,  originally an Anthropology sale thing.

The real excitement today came with a snip. I hate tights, but love leg things, stockings and straps all that. So - I realized that I could just cut off this thick pair of leggings I had and make thigh high sox like leg warmers. They're SO good!

That's my pink hair. I like to tell people it's natural.


Saturday March 26, 2011
I look sad there. Sadness is expensive, but I didn't buy was a gift. Somehow I took close to 600 photos in the last 2 days. Thats what I was doing in my all black, all forever 21 outfit. Shirt - $18, Pants $24. The pants have zips all over them. I like that.


Friday March 25, 2010

WOAH - that looks weird. I need some sort of photoshop like program on this here computer. My hobo tendencies are affecting my output! Note I'm also sporting a few weird lines around my periphery and the layer cake thing is disintegrating below. Sheesh...strange.
Sweater - Apha Thrift, $6, Dress - Alpha Thrift $11, Skirt Alpha Thrift $6, Sox - Nordstroms with Nords prices. 


Tues. March 27, 2011
Tonight I'm sporting a question and an attitude. Yes yes, I'm wearing the same thing as yesterday but I've changed the important bits. The question is extremely expensive, but the attitude is free. The question is this...wait...I'm going to ask the magic meatball instead. 


March 21, 2011
WOOOOOAH...Can you do that? No way! "I'll take the high road, you take the low hm hmmmmm hmmmm la de da"
Shirt - $12 - Buffalo Exchange san Francisco. 

Pants free. This shirt, my armadillo attire I'm calling it, is feel good protection from people with the moral intelligence a gopher.


Friday March 18, 2011
Action shot for action times. Shielded by pink Victoria secrete bustier $38? - My radiation shield is up, and I'm ready to do battle with the powers of darkness.  In the words of David Bowie: 

I believe in the Power of Good

I Believe in the State of Love

I Will Fight For the Right to be Right
I Will Kill for the Good of the Fight for the Right to be Right

Sweater - $6 Out of the closet SF, skirt - free from a friend (THANK YOU Kristin!), flower pin - I made. 


Tuesday March 15, 2011
I like being upside-down and I like this outfit. Outfit. More like misfit.
Sweater - $5 at Out of the Closet in SF, Check skirt from a free bin, red skirt over check skirt was from a store in Eureka and sort of expensive - maybe $36? Sox...Nordies, Shirt...hmmm....I'm guessing Anthropology and we all know what that means. Unless it's on sale, it's too expensive. Necklace - one my mom got me in Paris when I was a little girl, the washer one my brother made and I designed. 


Sunday, March 13, 2011
Late for church. Well...I would be if I went.
I am particularly pleased with this outfit combo. We went to see Rob Taylor, Sean Kennedy, Jim Connolly and Anna Abbey play at Reds last night and they were awesome. I hope I didn't piss them off too much by sticking my camera in their faces. They're all people I feel entitled to cross that line with because I adore them. I realize my reasoning may be skewed there and will re-assess for future shows. 
So, I wore this outfit and am wearing it again today, a day that's guaranteed to be filled with projects.  Jacket - my fried Kristen just gave me and I think I will wear it every day...for ever. Both skirts are from alpha thrift (I may be one of their biggest supporters I'm realizing) - I think they were like $4 and $6 maybe. The black thing is a Forever 21 thing at $23 and the blue sweater is from Out of the Closet on Polk street in SF at $6.
Any time I don't mention shoes, insert "Holly's 11 year old Dr. Martin boots that are about to meet the great shoe in the sky". 


This is a close up of me wearing no make up and realizing that my brother and I have similar mouths. It surprised me. Luckily, we don't sport similar goatees. That would be unpleasant.


Saturday March 12, 2011
My very important boots front and center. I've had these Docks for 11 years and worn them practically every day. I will be taxidermying them upon their passing.  I just found the jacket at Alpha - $8, shirt is a polyester thriller at $3 from Alpha and the pants  were Salvation Army years ago and I can't remember. 


Thursday, March 10th, 2011
At some point while making the carnivorous paper bag plants, I was wearing those and this...for several days in a row because well, that's who I shame, and if I like an outfit - I wear it...allot. The dress ($6 Alpha Thrift) has great flowers on the bottom and inspired the doodle below. I know, you should be able to see them but I  couldn't get a decent photo and opted for this oh so glamor shot instead. I read the dress like a book when stuck waiting places. The sox are Nordstroms and thus Nordstrom priced. Heres the flower doodle...


Thursday, February 24th, 2011

I like this outfit. Sweater $6 and skirt $5 - Alpha thrift, T-shirt $4 - forever  21,  underskirt free from a friends pile of stuff to give away, necklaces were a trade with my brother, pink ruffle - $38 - Victoria secrete, earrings $16 -Lewis and  Clark. The flowers I'm making as hair slides, pins or whatever you want and selling for $5 each


Sunday, February 20th, 2011
What I'm wearing and what I'm making are pinned together (literally) in this necklace, bib, bandana, choker, crown blindfold. Felt 'thing' prototype #1. I'm excited!


Well I've got a coat on anyways...what's underneath is unimportant. Yellowstone - $60? Who is behind me is very important right now. We take the reuse to yet another level with the production of fertilizer (not appetizers Kyle) in my own room! 


Wednesday, Feb. 16th, 2011
Shirt - Buffalo Exchange, Haight St SF - $9, skirt - (black tube) Forever 21, $6
Today I'm thinking I love the fancy bit on the top of this shirt but the rest of it is a tent. I think I'm going to turn it into a necklace.

Tuesday, Feb. 15th, 2011 (above)
Shirt - Alpha Thrift - $5, pants - Forever 21 - $23, shoes and belt- a gift


Saturday, Feb. 12th, 2011 

Dress - Height St in San Francisco, Buffalo Exchange - $12. 


Sunday, Feb. 13th, 2011. My first motorcycle ride day. I thought my neon underwear sticking out was rather a good safety measure. Top - forever 21 - $6, Pink thing Victoria Secret - $48, pants Alpha Thrift - $4


Valentines Day, 2011. Borrowed sweater, and I can't remember where I got the hat. Pants - Forever 21 - $22, Ug boots were a present

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