Style Arc Andie & Shopping The Real Real

09 Jul Style Arc Andie & Shopping The Real Real

Dear Readers,

Thank you so much for the warm welcome back! I didn’t know if anyone was still here,  and I am honored that you are 😘😘😘

Birdie has been visiting for the last week, so no sewing for me but it was a great time to introduce Birdie to fashion sewing!

Style Arc Andie

I know many of you have taught your six-year old children and grandchildren to sew and I’m happy to finally get started.

Style Arc “Andie” was our pattern – an A-Line dress with flutter sleeves.

Style Arc Andie

Birdie selected the embroidered pique from my surviving stash. There was ¾ yard of the 45” width fabric leaving us no wiggle room! For her first lesson, I taught Birdie how to cut the pattern and pin the pieces to the fabric.

She was in charge of my machine settings and helped press.

Our only change to the pattern was to close the back with a hook and eye rather than a button and loophole.

Next time we’ll take it down a notch so Birdie can do the cutting and sewing, but for now we’re both pleased with our first sewing experience together. Style Arc Andie, Floral Children's Dress

Once the dress was finished we went Unicorn shopping at Target.

Target Unicorn Backpack

Seeing Target through the eyes of a child is a delightful experience, and far more fun than my run of the mill trips 😊


On to The Real Real !

This wonderful website, an upscale online consignment shop, became my go to shopping source during the last 18 months. You could say I’m hooked. I even receive Real Real Gift Certificates for presents these days.

I like this website for so many reasons……….

  • I’ve found incredible bargains,
  • The website offers clothing from almost every designer providing an opportunity to examine the clothes and silhouettes of each designer’s style.
  • Each item is displayed on mannequins in front, side and back views
  • Recycling clothes is a sustainable practice, and when I finally make a purchase, it is from an upscale RTW or luxury designer or whose clothing I would most likely forgo.

The Real Real Marie OliverMy Real Real experience began when a Marie Oliver dress exactly like my daughter’s  appeared in a pop up ad for less than 1/4 of the original price. The website offered a 60% off code and I paid $70 for the dress. It was one season old and arrived with tags. Sorry to talk money but I can’t escape it in this post.

In the pic below I’m wearing an Eliza Christoph dress I bought for $137.00.. Check the dress out on the  Eliza Christoph website.  The Real Real Eliza Christoph

Yes, it is a current season $695 dress for $137.00 and it arrived in pristine condition.

.Several friends tell me the site is too overwhelming and hard to navigate, but after finding a system that worked for me,  I rarely spend over 15 minutes a day browsing the site.

How To Shop The Real Real without going down the Rabbit Hole!

  1. Visit the website and create an account. (It’s free.)
  2. On the left side of the page, check the sizes you often wear, and save the information.
  3. In the search bar, type in the brand or type of garment you’re interested in….( Two of my favorites – Brochu Walker & Samantha Sung) ……….. You’ll be given the option to sort by price or most recent)
  4. Don’t know what brand to search for? Visit a good inspiration site such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, or Tuckernuck. Make note of the brand of whatever strikes your fancy and search for it on TRR. The search should bring up only your size. If not make sure your saved your sizes.
  5. Click on the heart of anything you’re interested in.
  6. Save your search!
  7. The next time you go to The Real Real click  (on the upper right side of the page) on MY REAL REAL and your saved searches will appear OR click on the heart and your liked garments will appear.

I have a roster of saved searches that I browse when I visit the site to check for new additions.

Don’t wait too long to buy a garment you love because clothes in season move very, very quickly. The Real Real offers discount codes and specials regularly, and I’ve rarely paid the initial asking price unless it was too good to pass up.

Most clothes are returnable but not all so be sure and check before buying.

Brochu Walker


I am not an “Early Access” member for an additional fee, and I’ve yet to consign any clothing although I noticed sellers receive up to 85% of the item’s sale price.

It’s rare for me to be this gung-ho over  a n y t h I n g, but The Real Real offers what I need for an enjoyable shopping experience, and I hope you too will have success!

The Real Real Haute Hippie(ABOVE – $800 Haute Hippie Tunic for $20)

Enjoy your day!

Next Up: VOGUE 8833


  • Marjorie Brigham
    Posted at 09:07h, 09 July Reply

    Thanks for writing about consignment shops and supporting the practice of recycling clothing.
    On the topic of sewing children’s clothes, I’ve recently discovered the Little Lizard King company. Their pdf patterns have wonderful directions and links to videos to take you step-by-step through the process. I chose the dress pattern, Lorne. I’ve made two of these dresses so far and have two more cut out. One will go to my 5 year old granddaughter and the other two will be donated to a great organization called Dress-a-Girl Around the World. Check it out!


    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:44h, 09 July Reply

      Such cute patterns, Marjorie! Thank you for the introduction 😊
      Shopping for me has changed over the years, and almost all of my shopping is online unless I am out of town. For me The Real Real strikes just the right balance of high end, gently worn clothes.
      I love the Dress-a-Girl Around the World organization. – it’s been around a long time!
      Many thanks for your comment 😘

  • Patricia Davis Johnson
    Posted at 09:08h, 09 July Reply

    Glad you have returned. Really appreciate your suggestions re Real Real, very helpful and will give it a try.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:46h, 09 July Reply

      Many thanks, Patricia! Hope you enjoy it as much as I do 😊

  • Cheryll Kaczkowski
    Posted at 09:10h, 09 July Reply

    Such a darling little girl, your Birdie! It is my passion to teach others to sew. So glad to see you back, you inspire, probably more than you realize. Until we see your newest project…..have a lovely summer.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:47h, 09 July Reply

      Thank you Cheryll! Birdie loved her intro to sewing and it was fun for me too 😊

  • Julie Greene
    Posted at 09:11h, 09 July Reply

    Hi Sarah,
    This was such an inspiring post. I have three granddaughters who love to wear little a line dresses.. I think my vintage Lilly fabrics would be perfect. Birdie is adorable and so is her dress.o

    I happened to be in New York City the day TRR opened its store front. I must say I was underwhelmed. Your post has me excited to give it another look and create an account, following your advice.

    So happy you are back!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:50h, 09 July Reply

      Vintage Lily fabrics would be P E R F E C T ! !
      I’ve never been in a brick and mortar TRR, but those stores can’t possibly have the amount of inventory as the website which is one of the attractions to me.
      Many thanks for the comment, Julie! 😊

  • Julie Greene
    Posted at 09:14h, 09 July Reply

    Hi Sarah,
    None of the pictures showed up in this email. I went to your website and they came up just fine.
    Thanks, Julie

    • Sally Bussey
      Posted at 09:49h, 09 July Reply

      I discovered if I clicked the blank spot the picture opened up.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:51h, 09 July Reply

      Someone told me this at church this morning, but you should be able to get to the website from the email. Thanks for letting me know, Julie 😊

  • Laura Casey
    Posted at 09:16h, 09 July Reply

    Oh to see your Grand learning to sew is fabulous! It’s an important life skill, I’ve helped all of my nieces (my sister is their Nana, I have no grandchildren) buy their first sewing machine….and usually buy gift certificates @t there favorite fabric store for birthdays and holidays….
    And love your tunic from TRR.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:52h, 09 July Reply

      Laura – SO NICE TO HEAR FROM YOU !! I hope Birdie will continue to like it as she gets older. …………. Can you believe the tunic was $800 ?

  • Deborah R Penner
    Posted at 10:37h, 09 July Reply

    Thanks for the recommendation. Have been hesitant to use the consignment websites but this one seems good. Glad you are back! I have taught my 3 granddaughters to sew in the past 4 years. Now age 13 twins and 8 they are fairly skilled. Teaching the next generation is so important.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:55h, 09 July Reply

      Deborah ~ I had never shopped online consignment before, but this is a legitimate site with stores around the US. Everything I’ve ordered is clean and presented just as it’s described. I’m impressed 😉
      I hope I can continue teaching Birdie to sew. She lives 3.5 hours away but I’m going to try!
      Many thanks!

  • Heather in Colorado
    Posted at 11:01h, 09 July Reply

    Good morning! This is a delightful post of your grand daughter’s first project. Great fabric chouce, Birdie! And TRR interesting. I have so much lovely fabric I’m trying to ignore stores for a bit!😁

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:57h, 09 July Reply

      Hello Heather! Thank you so much 😊 Birdie definitely has style…… I completely get where you’re coming from on the shopping scene. Good luck dwindling your stash!!!

  • Marnie Keith
    Posted at 11:03h, 09 July Reply

    It is okay to talk about money. Money is a tool most of us can learn how to use wisely. Love the little one’s dress!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:58h, 09 July Reply

      Hi Marnie ~ Yes, it was completely appropriate to talk about money in this post, and I agree about learning to use it wisely.
      Many thanks – Birdie loves her new dress too and feels invested in it 😊😊

  • Marla
    Posted at 11:39h, 09 July Reply

    Thank you for the tips on shopping the Real Real!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:06h, 09 July Reply

      You’re welcome Marla! I hope you have success on it 😊😊

  • Joan
    Posted at 12:51h, 09 July Reply

    Thank you for the intro to some interesting brands! I think I need higher level inspiration (like these) for my own sewing…
    I have been to TRR several times, but have more experience with Poshmark, which seems younger and more gimmicky. Sewing with your Birdie reminds me fondly of how my godmother sewed many ADORABLE A-line shifts for me when I was 9-11, and helped me sew my very first garment, as well!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:10h, 09 July Reply

      When I started sewing again 12 years ago, I set my sights higher than my own imagination 😂 Thankfully the internet served as an excellent source for inspiration!
      I’ve looked at Poshmark but never shopped there, and I agree…..
      Glad I brought back some fond memories for you! She sounds like a fairy godmother 😊

  • carole
    Posted at 14:13h, 09 July Reply

    Hi there, so glad you are back! I am wondering why the shift from making almost all of your clothes, to buying consignment. Time constraints? Environmental reasons? Looking forward to more posts!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:34h, 09 July Reply

      Hi Carole! Many thanks for the comment and the question. If you read my last post, you’ll remember we moved….. downsized. While the move was wonderful for us, the process was brutal. My sewing materials were packed for nearly a year. While I bought a thing or two, I couldn’t quite bring myself to full embrace the retail scene. Discovering The Real Real was a breath of fresh air – and fit my idea of shopping.
      I’m still sewing and have a running list of garments to make and… it’s wonderful to be back! However The Real Real is a lovely alternative for me 😊😊

  • Yolanda Fastle
    Posted at 17:35h, 09 July Reply

    So glad you’re back. You are an inspiration. Thank you!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:00h, 09 July Reply

      Delighted to be back, Yolanda! Many thanks 😊😊

  • Patricia Hibbard
    Posted at 19:18h, 09 July Reply

    Thanks for the first sewing with granddaughter tips! I enjoyed sewing with my “Grandmother Irene” when I was very small and I look forward to sewing with my granddaughter in a few years.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:46h, 09 July Reply

      Thank you, Patricia! Fingers’ crossed Birdie will develop a true interest, but I understand if not. 😉 Have fun with your granddaughter!

  • Kathleen Dana Garrity
    Posted at 03:45h, 10 July Reply

    I’m glad you were specific about prices. I have no idea how much something might cost when someone is vague about it. Much appreciated!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:16h, 10 July Reply

      Thank you, Kathleen. I so agree with you. I’ll often admire a garment etc… only to find out it is way out of my price range. In this post I’m hoping to convey the heavily reduced prices of very expensive clothing, and to give an honest assessment of the website. 😊

  • Rebecca Bagwell
    Posted at 07:27h, 10 July Reply

    Lucky Birdi!❤️

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:44h, 10 July Reply


  • Anne MArie Mattison
    Posted at 08:59h, 10 July Reply

    So glad to see you back!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:23h, 10 July Reply

      Thank you, Anne Marie! It’s wonderful to be back ❤️

  • Connie Murphy
    Posted at 13:51h, 10 July Reply

    Hi Sara, it’s a joy to see your inspirational posts again! My sewing has been non existent since I changed jobs and moved to a new state last year. It’s been a wild ride but I am finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Welcome back!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:03h, 11 July Reply

      HELLO CONNIE ! !
      I noticed you moved and you did NOT downsize 😊 Putting the pause on sewing for 18 months was unexpected for me but exactly what I needed to do. I hope you’re enjoying life these days and am so happy you checked in!

  • Jean Shaw
    Posted at 14:13h, 10 July Reply

    Count me among those glad to see you return!

    I know this might be a lot of work, but . . . I’d be interested to see the clothes that made the cut when you did your big purge. It can be hard to let those self-made items go!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:05h, 11 July Reply

      Hmmmmm……… I’ll think about it, Jean. It might be an insightful exercise for me to do.
      Thanks for the suggestion!

  • Verna Raves
    Posted at 14:22h, 10 July Reply

    I will add my name to those who are so glad to see you back! Love those photos of Birdie, such a cute little girl, and I especially enjoyed the one of the two of you standing in the pool. Have a wonderful summer and very best wishes.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:07h, 11 July Reply

      Thank you so much, Verna! Birdie has matured and is such a delight to be with. The other 3 are equally delightful………😉

  • Carol Neumann
    Posted at 17:29h, 10 July Reply

    Prices like these and the thrill of the hunt keep me from sewing unless it’s an extraordinary fabric and pattern design.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:12h, 11 July Reply

      You must be easy to fit, Carol! What I missed most was the customized fit I get from sewing. I have enjoyed all of TRR clothes, but they are designed for someone tall and thin 😬 With that said – I love examining the construction and fabric for these once expensive garments!

  • Roxanne Reynolds
    Posted at 09:22h, 15 July Reply

    So glad you are back. Birdie is just as precious as Katie was at that age. It’s wonderful that she shares the love of sewing with you.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:44h, 17 July Reply

      Thank you, Roxanne! So nice to hear from you 😊😊

  • Vicki P Burkins
    Posted at 09:28h, 15 July Reply

    Hello, I am not receiving the quality posts from you that I received a couple years ago. I was just wondering if you are publishing on a different platform. Right now, even though I love the content, it is just too scrambled for me to take the time to unscramble it to read it. If you can sugges a change on my part, I will look into that or if there is a tweak you can make I would love to be able to follow you again. Also, it seems that every comment comes to me as a piece of mail. Since so many love your site whenever you post, I get quite a number of comments that I must delete from my email. Thank you so much for looking into this.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:43h, 17 July Reply

      Goodness, I am unaware of this problem, Vicki…… You should receive an email about a new post release. If you click on the title of the post it should take you to the website. I am still publishing on the same platform so there should not be any difference.
      Also, you might have clicked the “Notify me of follow-up comments by email” box which would explain why you receive emails.
      Please let me know if the problem is resolved and thanks for bringing the issue to my attention.

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