Saturday, 15 November 2014

Golden Tote October 2014 Review

A little late to the punch (when am I not?), but I decided to try and actually wear the items from my Golden Tote before reviewing! So here goes!

Box: Golden Tote (Referral link)
Price: $49 (1 chosen item + 1-2 surprise items), $149 (2 chosen items + 3-5 surprise items), ($25 flat rate international shipping)
Ships to: International
What’s inside: Clothing

October's tote partnered up with Keep A Breast to bring a special bag as well as a small gift, with proceeds going to the organization. I thought that was very kind of them and I'm always glad to help support breast cancer research, because it has affected my family quite a bit.

This month, I got a $149 tote and two add-ons, which is what I'll start with!

Merrick for Golden Tote Swing Dress in Teal (XXS) (cut+sew) || Value: $35
This dress refused to photograph. It is not quite a teal; I would call it more a deep (but not dark) cobalt blue. This is super comfortable; heavy enough for fall but light enough for a cool spring day. I did find that it wasn't flattering on me without a belt. It's just a touch too big on me in that way, but it looks great once belted. I was eying this since they released the initial colours in the summer, and I'm so glad I finally have my hands on it.

Vegan Leather Moto Jacket (S) (Thread Supply) || Value: $75
I was a bit worried that this would me too large for me, as I normally wear XS -- but this is pretty much perfect on me! A little roomy but that is what I wanted, in order to layer underneath. The arms are a touch long, but that's because I'm pretty short (5'0). This vegan leather jacket doesn't smell at all, and comes with a fabric hood that can be rolled up and zipped into the jacket. It has a little metal buckle at the collar if you decide to zip and button it up all the way. The lining is polyester, which is the only thing I didn't care for in this jacket. Otherwise, it's perfect and I expect to wear this very often.

Next, my two chosen items for the tote:

A-Line Swing Dress in Blue (XS) (Skies are Blue) || Value: $35 (original $46)
I was initially so-so about this dress, and only really picked it because I wasn't sure what else to get. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this dress is a slightly heavier polyester/spandex mix, making it very comfortable yet warm enough to wear on a fall day. Unlike the Merrick, I found that this looks fine unbelted as well. It's super versatile, as I can wear it with or without leggings and/or a belt, and the sleeves look nice both down and rolled up.  

Jetsetter Jacket in Beige (S) (Skies are Blue) || Value: $50
This faux-suede jacket felt really nice, and draped wonderfully and comfortably. Unfortunately, it was just too long on me, and I didn't feel like it was worth taking to a tailor. I've since sold it to someone on the wonderful Golden Tote Trading Group on Facebook. Absolutely wonderful quality, just not my size.

Now come the surprises! This month, I got four.

Southwestern Cardigan in Jewel (XS) (cut+sew) || Estimated value: $40?
Okay. This is absolutely beautiful in colour, flattering in cut, and super comfortable on. Except... the very first request in my comments was no tribal. I know that many Native American people are uncomfortable with the tribal print trend and in support of them, I refuse to wear tribal print that is not made by them. Regardless of my political affiliations, it's disappointing that my stylist chose this. There were multiple other surprises to choose from! I wish this came in a plain colour or pattern, because I really do want to wear it. The pattern is beautiful, but for things that other people hold special in their culture I prefer the "look, don't touch" approach, myself. This is up for trade/sale.

I hung the bracelet from Keep a Breast in this photo, because it is similarly tribal. I'm glad I somewhat donated to the organization, but this bracelet will not go to use.

Elbow Patch Dress (S) (Fantastic Fawn) || Estimated value: $30?
I actually really liked this, but it isn't my usual style and I know it wouldn't get used as often as I would like. It's also a little too curve-hugging for me to be completely comfortable, and the elbow patches are just a touch too low on my arms to look good. This is also up for trade/sale.

Blouse in Blue (S) (Naked Zebra) || Estimated value: $40?
I couldn't really come up with a name for this shirt, nor could I find it on the Naked Zebra website. Most of the clothing on their website runs $45 and up, but I wouldn't personally value it at that. This shirt is very flow-y, with a button-up back. The back is a bit longer than the front and is somewhat translucent; the front has an extra layer to cover up. Again, this is a bit big on me and not flattering, though others make it look great. I wish I got the teal colour!

Cowl Neck Sweater in Ivory (S) (Le Lis) || Value: $30?
I saw this in the spoiler images before the sale and knew it was totally my sort of style, and requested it. The knit on this sweater is nice, but it's done in a way that is very, um, loose. That is, I wouldn't recommend this for cool weather, because the wind goes right through it -- you can see your skin if you pull on the fabric slightly, and most bras would probably peek through if not a neutral colour. The waist and bottom of the shirt also leave much to be desired -- it's not fitted at all and is actually very unflattering on me if I don't have it tucked in the front. I also find this to be incredibly fragile -- I wore it for a day and found that the slightest point would catch on the fabric and pull little threads off, even my hangnails. Still, I like it. But I don't feel like it's going to last a long time.

Overall, I paid $254 including international shipping, and received maybe $335 worth of clothing. I love my two extra items and both my picked items (though one just didn't fit right), but my surprises were really disappointing to me. Luckily, the GT Trading Group is wonderful and there is almost always someone looking for any item I don't care for!

I still recommend Golden Tote, though not as much for people who are XS and petite because many of their items just do not cater to that population. They are very good at pointing out items in the boutique that are suitable for XS buyers, and they do note length on most items, so keep an eye out for those. The models themselves are typically 5'9-6'0, as well. Good luck tote-ing!

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