Thrifty & Nifty: Clothes We Got on Instagram

Tipsy, thrifty, and thriving. We’re breathing new life to these amazing IG finds 🥂

This quarantine has brought a rise to many things, online shops being the most prevalent. But aside from the sudden influx of “hm?” and “dm-ed you” that now exists, this pandemic has brought about another big and notable change by paving the way clear for the rise of sustainable fashion. With clothing stores dropping left and right, the fashion industry has been shaken to its very core; now promoting quality and longevity in the place of fast fashion–something the both of us are incredibly excited about! Because of this, thrift pages and lovely Internet-dwellers that are looking to de-clutter while making a quick buck have been thriving. Needless to say, we’re LIVING for it.

As lovers of beauty and style, it’s always great to see the industry make turns for the better. To do what we can on that end, we’ve turned our shopping-goggles towards pre-loved fashion. There is no shame in giving new futures to clothes born in the past, and so we’ve recently been cultivating clean fashion habits.

There are so many out there in the world just waiting for us to find, but here are some pieces that we’ve collected over time and wouldn’t trade in for the world:

sporting spice


I’ve always loved typically “plain” things with a tiny bit of off-center detail–a.k.a this exact jacket. Its striking pink detailing, golden arrows down the sleeves, and high collar against what could’ve been just a typical sports jacket makes it easily one of my favorite things to throw on when I couldn’t be bothered with thinking of something to wear, simply because of how effortlessly charming it looks. To say I was the sporty type would be to lie straight to your faces (unless walking down a flight of stairs to the water dispenser is counted as a sport?), but I can appreciate the athleisure appeal this jacket brings to the table. While donning it may make you feel ready and qualified enough to start your own Rocky-esque training sequence to “Eye of the Tiger”, don’t think you can’t wear this kind of jacket with anything else. It looks great with denim, with skirts, with shorts–wear it with anything and you’re golden.

To say I’m a veteran at spotting thrifted deals is a grave overstatement, as my world into secondhand shopping was actually opened up by this very piece! Not a bad item to pop my pre-loved-clothes-hoarding cherry, don’t you think? Being such, I hold it near and dear to my heart–in part because of its overall style and sentimental value, but more so because of the fact that I am, on most occasions, too incredibly lazy to think of elaborate outfits on a regular day and inevitably reach for this one without question. It’s just that easy to wear, breathable in the Philippine heat, and comfortable, too. Why wouldn’t I love it?

rework it


I have one word for your loves: Jacquemus. If you don’t know who or what that is, you are missing out exponentially and you should get on Google to find out. If you know what I’m talking about, then, doesn’t this give you the vibes that patter along the lines of iconic Pre-Fall 2020 Jacquemus collection set in beautiful wheat field production design of the SS 2021 collection?

As 1/2 of the self-proclaimed sartorially frustrated beans behind this blog, I’ve long been an advocate of reworking existing clothes. I love the possibility of making something yours way past its trend life and original design. I’ve countless of them from my family baùl already stored in my wardrobe. This beautiful find was breathed a whole new life into this reworked two-piece set. Upon spotting it on my feed, I had to add it to my ‘drobe.

The hubadera in me was immediately enamored with the tie-back bralette. The cropped long sleeved button down is perfectly multifunctional as a cover up or on its own as a top. I profess my love for many a high waisted bottoms, so pairing this with my sky-high-waisted linen pants is a dream ensemble. It’s perfect for the beach or a stroll through the weekend market even.

playing in my lingerie


Ooh-la-la! Whoever said you couldn’t wear lingerie outside of the bedroom? I rarely every buy something as daring as this, but 2020 has really turned me into the confident, skin-showing Leo that I am now–not even mad at it, TBH. This sexy lacy bodysuit is so gorgeous I’d wear it all day if it were socially acceptable (walking your dog in lingerie, anyone?), but alas this is not that kind of world. Boo.

What’s so appealing to me about it, aside from its obviously well-made and aesthetically pleasing peek-a-boo lace and thigh-high cut, is how well it looks when tucking it into jeans as a sexy top. Just, ya know, maybe not to the office or you WILL be called in by HR. Alternatively, I could always just show off my newfound confidence sans the pants just to take selfies in my bedroom. Don’t lie to me; we all do it!

It’s material is pretty thin (duh; it’s supposed to be) but it doesn’t feel flimsy one bit. It’s not uncomfortable anywhere, even if the thong cut really does leave so very little to the imagination that one wonders why fabric is even there in the first place. Am I in love with it? Damn right, I am. Fair warning though: its high thigh cut makes it extra risque, especially for those a little shy around the lady-bits–but we all crave a little danger once in a while don’t we?

Also, to be fair, this isn’t thrifted, but it was too darn cute not to include!

draw the line


Disclaimer: this is the only item on my list that isn’t actually thrifted. But nonetheless, this item deserves a spot on this list of our favorite sartorial buys from Instagram.

Photos of this line art print on the classic button down first went viral sometime between late 2018 to early 2019. As one who is full of quirks and equally quirky choices, I was immediately smitten. Unfortunately, it hadn’t made its way around yet and no one had it on stock—that is until Instagram got wind of my searches and hit me with an ad for a shop that had it.

Line art is one of the fundamental basics of standard illustrations, making it a beautiful addition to the classic white button down. I love wearing this button down anywhere and everywhere—whether I’m heading off to work, paired with work apropos trousers or a cute A-line skirt, or I’m heading out for simple brunch with the girls, completing the ensemble with cute denim cutoffs or linen shorts.

My only problem with this gem is that I have to physically stop myself from using it over and over again like a uniform. LOL!

lola chic


When I saw this dress online, I instantly fell in love. The color, the cut, the print, the hem–just look how adorable it is! Those that frequent Instagram shops would understand the anxiety of crossing your fingers so tight while hoping no one else out-bids you by the end of the night; luckily for me (and unluckily for everyone that missed out–ha, suckers) I was kindly bestowed this extraordinary beaut. Its vibrancy is something my wardrobe is so sorely missing; I just knew I couldn’t let anyone get their grubby hands on it!

Its short length is perfect for lowkey hoes like me that love to show off some legs–you gotta be proud of what you got, am I right? Plus, its adorable rounded hem adds just the right about of peeking playfulness that allows the mind to wander just enough without bordering on raunchy. Alexa, cue “Legs” by Hagibis, please. Thanks.

I love styling this so much with knee high socks and school girl shoes–perfect for nailing that youthful yet not-too-adolescent-that-you’d-get-arrested-for-flirting-with-her chic! The white collar and cuffs are gorgeous accents, a lovely contrast against the playful print that brings the marriage of classic eccentricity into one piece with ease.

I always joke to Jazz and call this my “lola” dress because of how old-timey it looks, but don’t be fooled! It’s so easy to pull off no matter what decade it is.

the second star to the right


Growing up in an all-girls Catholic school, I was victim to ruffles and pleats and the “conservative” dress code of the olden days. So imagine my bewildered surprise when I spotted this on my feed, up for sale, c/o Kenn, the beautiful soul behind the @closetsteal_! I was immediately sold on it’s pretty bishop sleeves with a smocked detailing on the cuff and the floral embroidery. The peter pan collar honest-to-goodness ties the whole piece together, lending it a very soft and classic vintage 1940s vibe.

Honestly, I was half horrified and half besotted with the piece right away; horrified because of all the war flashbacks of sitting through Mass in the sweltering heat in my starchy gala uniform—complete with stockings and the required layers (iykyk). The besotted half of my sartorial soul obviously won—I mean, LOOK HOW DAINTY AND PRETTY I PAINT!

I love how it fits perfectly and ends just on my mid-thigh, perfect for tucking in or leaving out. I am partial to styling this tucked into high-waisted shorts or trousers, depending if I’ll be dressing up for work or simply going for the casual cute look for some errands, polishing it off with cute sandals—whether chunky or strappy.

This piece definitely goes down in my wardrobe as gala uniform chic.

staying in cool


As a self-proclaimed weirdo (I’m weird; I don’t fit in–brownie points for whoever gets who I’m making fun of) I’m a sucker for asymmetry. When I saw this on my feed, I knew I just needed to have it. The cuffs–the glorious, unexpectedly over-sized cuffs–sold me immediately. It was the pièce de résistance to my impulsive shopping habits, so here we are. I always try to regret it, and yet the call of affordable (and très chic while we’re at it) fashion overrules all self-control. Should I laugh? Should I cry? I have no idea, but I can do both and look incredible in this shirt while we’re at it–everyone wins! I think.

The sleeves, over-stitching, minimal text print, and everything else that was sewn into this magnificent article of clothing just ooze such a nonchalant cool that brings me the bite of bizarre that I’ve been desperately trying to fill my band tee-filled wardrobe with. Its black over-stitching is the sartorial cherry on top of this unorthodox blouse; the sheer amount of character in this piece alone makes it a standout no matter what you pair with it, but offers a subtle class that never comes off as overwhelming when paired with louder pieces.

Though, I will admit that I’m partial to donning it with something a tiny bit bawdy (surprise, surprise) just to balance out how refined its sleek white fabric is–fishnets, you think? That was a trick question. It’s always a yes to fishnets.

hao you like that


If you’ve read my style intro, it’s safe for me to claim that 30% of my ‘drobe consists solely of rompers and overalls. This is because they satisfy my perpetual need for effortless comfort. So honestly, what better way to achieve that than rolling through the day in a bomb-ass overall.

Story time regarding this piece: I’ve had my eye on this piece the moment Florice released the teaser for the collection this was a part of. I was unfortunately too slow in bidding for it and it went home to another fellow bidder. BUT, a couple days after grieving its slip from my grasp (because we grieve for missed opportunities in this house), the original buyer DM-ed to offer me the item at the same price she bought it as it was not a perfect fit for her. Kismet? I’d like to think so. The universe heard me grieving and decided to take pity on me.

I’m such a huge sucker for drop crotch details, and the contrast print of the line art was just my The8 dreams coming to life. True to my laid back sartorial soul, I usually style this with a bralette (thanks to the sweltering heat of the PH), if I can get away with it, and rotating through cool sneakers or my white Birks. I love accessorizing this with a handy but classy scrunchie on the wrist and maybe topping it off with my leatherette bucket hat.

If fellow Carats could see this, I hope you’d be proud with my sartorial ode to Xiu Minghao of Seventeen.

striped sweater all the time


Complete the sentence: “The best time to wear a striped sweater is _?” If you said “all the time”, then congratulations! Not that you win anything, but hey, at least I know we can be friends! Spongebob and memes brings people together, after all. But, in all seriousness, this green and pink pastel-y sweater is mad cute–something I’d seriously wear on a constant basis if the sweltering oven that is the Philippines wasn’t the biggest inconvenience to the sweater-loving-layer-longing people of the world–myself included, obviously.

Still, on days where my armpits can graciously bask in some air-conditioning, this would be on the top of my “what should I wear today?” list. I adore this tucked into linen pants, but it looks just as cute in a flowing mini skirt or high waist jeans too. It can get a bit warm if you stay outside–what doesn’t in this country really?–for too long, but it’s wearable Islander-wise for the most part. It’s a yes for me!

bringin’ sexy back

Cue Justin Timberlake’s iconic track as you read this.

I grew up with the notion that special occasions, even as simple as a reunion or Sunday family dinner, always calls for something special to wear. Feeling special and fancy, I realized later on, didn’t have to be as expensive as the bubbly I’d love to be sipping on. So when I was scouring the depths of Instagram shops for a dress that I could wear both on the daily and for special occasions, imagine hearts for eyes when I spotted this!

It is perfectly dainty with its flowy mini dress structure and the sweet bow that rests delightfully on the curve of the lower back. It’s the epitome of business in the front, party in the back with its sweet conservative neckline but stunning low back. I dress this piece up usually with dangling silver earrings, a bold lip, and cute strappy sandals.

kimono she didn’t


As I said, I’m a lazy human being. Anything that can be topped over a bralette and shorts is literally already a win for me. So, when Jazz and I stumbled across this store selling kimonos, you better believe how fast I typed “mine”. What drew me to this, aside from the fact that kimonos are just generally in-style at any point of the year, was the tiny subtle details. It’s mostly black, yes, but the stripes are actually a subtle emerald that gleams just a tad when you really look at it. It has a unique detached-looking arm-stitch that I found incredibly intriguing–kind of like a Frankenstein of kimonos, but make it fashion.

The fit is also to die for. It’s loose, breezy, and literally my favorite thing to wear when I know I have errands to run and don’t want to run the risk of sweating up a storm. The length is also quite flattering, as it ends with around the derriere. Unlike longer, calf-length kimonos (which I still adore and would stab myself in the foot to acquire), this one may be easier to pair around and travel with. While I do love the effect of capes billowing in the wind, I do like that this doesn’t frump up much when sitting or gets snagged on unsuspecting bushes.

If it hasn’t been obvious already, I’m big on simplicity, so I appreciate how easy this is to wear with just a tank top and jeans while still looking like you’ve put thought into your look. I do have to say though that if you plan on buying a kimono (well, this is technically a haori), you need to be pretty careful with it or the sleeves deflate, losing its uniquely kimono-esque flare.

cheers, my dears


There’s no pain in a little champagne, darling. Trust us on that. This little nugget of advice spills over to fashion, obviously.

I hate having to turn up to last minute events frustrated at the lack of versatility of my wardrobe colors. A neutral palette is the color wheel of my life as it’s easy to wear and easy to bring to most occasions. This little champagne crepe organza number is a prime example. This elegant piece curated by Danielle from @viel.mnl is equal parts simple, with it’s no-fuss structure, and equal parts fancy with that beautiful off shoulder detailing. It’s a breeze to wear and easily adjustable with the self-tie straps on the shoulders.

While the pandemic’s got me all cooped up at home for now, I can’t wait to wear this out and about for dinners and nights out once all the chaos is over and done with and the dust has settled once more.

tell me where it skirts


Tight high-waisted skirts? Sign me up for sure! I love this skirt so much, partially because it was actually a freebie given to me by the very, very kind owner of this shop (along with my regular purchases, of course), but also because I rarely every find long skirts that I actually like. Because of the high waistline, I find it to be incredibly flattering, giving my body a little help in shaping up the booty area–a blessing to the curvaceously challenged individuals like myself.

Because I’m obviously not the bustiest or bootylicious woman, garments like these really do wonders in giving me more self-confidence in my look. Aside from the cut and fit, I’m also helplessly in love with the army green color that matches most of my wardrobe (it consisting primarily of black, white, or denim). You can dress it up or down as you please because it’s versatile enough to handle whatever you want to throw on top–bralette, t-shirt, blouse, leather jacket; the list goes on and on.

I also love the zippers on either side of the front of the skirt; while they are incredibly useless, as female pockets apparently only exist for the sake of existing, I do think they add a nice edgy feel to an otherwise plain skirt.

love me in rose


I have a handful of things maxi. A very select handful. I’m a tiny human, the butt of most short jokes from my group of friends, and so I try to steer away from maxi skirts and dresses as they tend to drown and dwarf me. Be that as it may, I make certain exceptions when the maxi item is drop dead gorge and a must have addition to my wardrobe.

My hubadera soul will usually opt for a cool bralette to offset the amount of fabric making up the bottom. Alternately, I also love pairing this beautiful skirt with a short sleeve/sleeveless white button down tied at the waist for a very casual look. If it were colder, a long sleeved turtleneck is also something I would reach for. This is such a versatile piece that I could step out in a range of footwear—from chic boots to casual sandals.

Watch me living it up in full fashown on my next grocery run. Peep it under my required PPE at the next doctor’s appointment. It really is a la vie en rose with such a gorgeous sartorial piece.

coat of the day


How we’re constantly whining and wishing this country’s climate and weather was amenable to coats and sweaters and layers. Because honestly? We’d rock them all the damn time. We’d also have a never-ending rotation of coats to die for. Hands down. No contest, bub.

Hunting for a good winter coat is tiresome and annoying in a country that’s only got two seasons going: hot and wet. This snappy winter overcoat was going to be my first line of defense against South Korean winter—had Miss ‘Rona not decided to be a b*tch and dragged on to ruin my plans for later this year. (Yes, I’m pouting behind the screen). So this little gem of a pièce de rèsistence is unfortunately taking a back seat in my closet until the dust settles and we’re free to literally and metaphorically fly once again.

There is so much to love about this navy double breasted coat: from the single vent on the back to the gorgeous contrast embroidery that sports the phrase “goddess of new clothes in winter”. Ugh. I have one word: YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAS!

unica mija


While this isn’t clothes per se, we wanted to include this shop because it was one of the many, many shops that the both us started sending to each other over Instagram and saying, “Bilhin mo na. Bili din ako, tapos share tayo shipping fee.” Though these pieces in specific are not the latest that this store offers, as we bought them well over a year ago, their style still withstands the test of time. With Bohemian vintage themes for both pairs, they’re no-brainers when looking for something to add to an outfit to give it a little spice.

Loved our looks? Wanna share with us a store you think we’d inevitably wait with bated breath at each new collection? Let us know in the comments or drop us a DM over on our Instagram! We’d LOVE to find new (well, old but new) things to add to our collection (and maybe share with you again another time)!

Slay safe; stay cute, loves. 😘

✨ jazz

A 24-year-old writer, producer, and stylist who’s got the starry-eyes of a shopaholic with an irrefutable love-hate relationship with carbs and wine.

💋 julia

A 25-year-old writer with an obsession for beauty and an ineffable love for all things sharp—from cacti to hedgehogs to intense winged liner.