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Building a Wardrobe | What I Bought in May

There’s good news and bad news for this month’s shopping roundup.

The bad news is that I kinda slipped up with my resolution to only buy sensible clothes.

The good news, on the other hand, is that I’m now the proud owner of this gorgeous dress:

Zara lace midi dress

Zara lace midi dress

No, I have no idea when or where I’ll wear it. I don’t really care, though, because it was only £40, and it’s actually been quite a while since I bought something really frivolous, so I’m not going to beat myself up over it. Also, I LOVE it. Much more than I thought I would, actually, because when I first pulled it out of the shipping box, I was a bit taken aback: the lining looks a lot more “nude” in real life than it does on the Zara website, so I was a little worried that I’d look like I was basically naked, really. It doesn’t look like that when I wear it, though – or so Terry assures me, anyway. It’s just this second occurred to me that he might just have said that because it DOES make me look naked, and he thinks that’ll be hilarious to witness, but… I guess I’ll deal with that if/when I actually get to wear the thing. I’m going my best to think of a good excuse: and if I can’t, well, I’ll just have to invent one, won’t I?

Also from Zara is this green sweater, which – full disclosure – I also bought in cream. And I might have bought an extra green one, too, just as a backup, for that inevitable moment when I ruin this one and want to cry,


Excessive though that might sound, these actually WERE a fairly sensible purchase for me, because new sweaters have been on my shopping list for ages now, and I’ve been struggling to find ones I liked. This one ticked all the boxes, though: it’s the perfect shape, the perfect fit, and it comes in a perfect range of colours, too – especially this green one, which goes with basically everything I own. Seriously, there are at least three skirts I can think of, just off the top of my head, which will be given a new lease of life thanks to this sweater – and it’s a similar story with the cream/white one, too. This really was a “hole” in my closet, and now that it’s been filled, I’ve been able to create quite a few new outfits based around these, and items I already owned, so I’m already hoping they release it in a bunch of other colours. I’ll probably want to buy ALL of them…


pale pink camisoleCamisoles were one of the other items on my ‘closet holes’ list, so I was happy to be able to strike that one off the list too this month. This camisole isn’t silk (I mean, it was £12, what do you expect?), but it’s actually a really nice quality for the price: fully lined and with a lovely drape to it. I was so pleased to find what I was looking for at such a low price that I also got it in white (as you can probably tell, I’m a big believer in stocking up on these kind of basics when I find them!), but as I mentioned in this post, they’ve been a little problematic to wear, because the v-beck is borderline obscene on me, even when I shorten the straps as much as possible. I just don’t have the right figure for this kind of neckline, so I’m glad they weren’t too expensive, as they’re probably going to be used mostly as layering pieces – which is a shame, because they’re gorgeous on: just as long as I don’t try to lean forward, even slightly…

Those were all of my purchases for the month, although there were tons of things I really WANTED to buy, but didn’t. With the exception of the lace dress, which was, admittedly, a totally unnecessary purchase, I’ve been doing pretty well with my spending this year – in fact, I think this is the first thing I’ve bought which I’m not going to be able to wear right away, or put into constant rotation, so I’m quite happy with that. This is actually the first month I’ve been seriously tempted by “non-sensible” purchases (HELLO, ASOS DRESS!), but the weather has been helping keep me in check, really. I think if we were having a warm spring, I’d be finding it hard to resist all of the usual prom dresses etc, but given that I’m barely getting the opportunity to wear the dresses I already have, even I can see there wouldn’t be much point in acquiring even MORE of them.

Can I continue to resist ASOS and its dresses in June, though? I guess there’s only one way to find out…

What do you think?

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  • LR
    May 30, 2016

    Sweatshop labour or Chinese? Cheap clothes cost someone.

    • Lily
      May 30, 2016

      I do wonder how many of the more expensive brands are paying decent wages and have fair employment conditions. Unless they’re made in the UK or another country with a minimum wage, I would bet not many brands fill this criteria.

      • Amber
        May 30, 2016

        It was made in Morocco – and no, price doesn’t necessarily tell you whether something was made ethically or not, unfortunately! It’s easy to make assumptions, but probably safer (and fairer) to withhold judgement until you have the actual facts.

  • Laura
    May 30, 2016

    Cheap clothes create jobs, no matter the cost of the clothes there will always be exploitative, unscrupulous people who will take advantage. Rant over?
    Love that dress Amber, so delicate and pretty. Also there’s 20% off everything at asos today so if you are going to give into temptation and buy the other dress, today may be the day to do it?

    • Sun
      May 30, 2016

      I love that dress and wanted it for a summer party next month unfortunately it’s out of stock in my size so you were lucky to get it. Also I couldn’t agree more with Laura regarding the random comment. The good weather must be making people take the high moral ground on pretty dresses today:)

  • Samantha
    May 30, 2016

    I just bought one of these cami’s too….so pretty BUT, I have obscene boobage too! AND I don’t really have much up top. Maybe they are designed to do this?!?!. I am layering a close-fitting cami under the cami. It defeats the delicateness of the look but at least I won’t scare anyone! :oP

  • Myra
    May 30, 2016

    Love the lace dress, it would be perfect for dinner

  • Hanka
    May 30, 2016

    I know this “no-idea-when-or-where- I’ll-wear-it” shopping very well. On Saturday night I bought online fringed ankle strapped sandals on heels. As a mother of three children with no social life I have absolutely no idea when or where I’ll wear it, but…I liked them so much, having them on watch list for almost a month and suddenly…they were on 40% sale! I couldn´t believe my luck and of course I could not resist them 😉 At least I think I deserve them for my devoted 24/7 service to my family 😀

  • Charlotte Lane
    May 31, 2016

    That dress from Zara is beautiful!! Such a steal at £40 as well! The ASOS dress is also just as pretty and I know I shouldn’t be tempting you, but you definitely should get it 🙂 By the way, I love these posts that you’ve been doing about what you have bought each month – they’re one of my faves xo

    Char | http://www.charslittleblog.blogspot.co.uk

  • Tess
    June 3, 2016

    I need the Zara sweaters in navy and white as my old ones are retired. I’m thrilled they’re not made of polyester or wool but viscose. I checkout their website, it says grey marl. Does it look white when you received it?

    • Amber
      June 3, 2016

      There’s a grey one and a creamy/white one – I’m not sure which one you mean, but one is a light grey and one is a kind of off-white colour?

      • Tess
        June 3, 2016

        Thanks for clarifying it. Off-white/white/cream would be right, why they should call it grey marl! I’m gonna grab both cream and navy. That ends my hunt for sweaters.

  • Tess
    June 3, 2016

    Totally love your shopping roundup posts. I never missed one.

  • Shannon
    June 16, 2016

    I went to Zara and bought the sweater in grey! I absolutely love it, bc it actually is fitted in today’s world of baggy blouses.