Cassiefairy – My Thrifty Life

Cassiefairy's thrifty lifestyle blog – Saving money every day with DIY crafts, sewing projets, low-cost recipes & shppping tips

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Thrifty winter wedding outfit ideas

Being invited to a wedding always lifts my spirits. It means that one, often two, of my friends have found happiness, and are ready to settle down to a life together. It also means a party, a chance to meet up with old friends and family, dress up, and generally have a good time. Weddings really are wonderful, regardless of what time of the year they are held, but there is something extra special about a winter wedding.Wedding outfit in winterThe fact that few people get married in the colder months makes them occasions that are even more memorable. Winter weddings are a bright spot in what is often a grey and bland time of the year. As a result, I really look forward to them, but there is one issue, and that is finding something suitable to wear. For some reason, buying dresses for weddings in the winter months is nowhere near as easy as it is during the summer. I am not exactly sure why that is. Perhaps retailers are responding to the fact that demand for wedding outfits is not as strong as it is during the hotter months. However, if you know where to look, and think outside the box it is possible to find something suitable, and do so even if you are on a tight budget.

A long dress allows you to wear thick tights or even thermal leggings underneath for warmth!

A long dress allows you to wear thick tights or even thermal leggings underneath for warmth!

Rework what you have

If you have recently attended a Christmas or New Year’s Eve party, there is a good chance that you will already own something that is suitable. Often you can adapt a party dress and make it work for a wedding. This is especially the case if you will be attending an evening reception. The chances are during the ceremony you will be wearing a wrap, or coat to stay warm so a party style dress will not necessarily look out of place. Making the wrap yourself from a length of coordinating fabric is an easy way of keeping the cost of your outfit down, and ensuring that you end up with something that fits in properly with your dress.

A slip and tights make it possible to wear even the prettiest summer dress to a winter wedding

A slip and tights make it possible to wear even the prettiest summer dress to a winter wedding

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Tuesday Shoesday – Blue suede boots for autumn

I’ve never seen an autumn like it. There are so many leaves on the ground at the moment that you can’t really see the grass anymore. The colours are so vibrant and I’m sure there are more shades of orange, red, green, yellow and brown in this year’s fallen leaves than ever before. And with a garden covered in beautiful autumn leaves like this, who wouldn’t go outside for a spot of leave-kicking at the weekend? Well, that’s what I did anyway!autumn-shoes-blue-suede-boots-kicking-leaves-fashion-trend-winterMy husband did the most adorable thing and raked the leaves into the shape of a heart. And then even went to the trouble of spelling out the word autumn across the middle. He’s a creative sort and knows how much I love this time of year. I’m pretty sure that’s why he did it, and not just to get a great Instagram photo for himself. Anyway, after he’d finished taking some snaps, I had the best fun kicking my way through the words and destroying the whole thing, bwahahahha!autumn-kicking-leaves-gifAs it’s Tuesday Shoesday I felt it would be appropriate to share some snaps of my new autumn boots at the same time. After my trusty brown boots finally crumbled after two years of constant wear, I decided it was time for a new pair. I wanted them to last me well, but look a little more cool than I usually choose. Plus, I needed my shoes to come in under my £20 budget too. That’s not too much to ask is it? Well, apparently yes, it is.autumn-shoes-blue-suede-boots-kicking-leaves-fashion-trend-winter-8I had trouble finding a pair of boots that did everything I needed. I mean, I just wanted some boots with a small heel, speedy zip fastening (I’ve no time for laces these days), in lovely faux suede or leather, and in this year’s hottest colour navy blue. After shopping around it started to look like my thrifty budget wasn’t going to stretch to a new pair of boots for me this year. However, when I hopped onto the Deichmann website I found rows and rows of shoes and boots, with most of them priced at £20 and under.autumn-shoes-blue-suede-boots-kicking-leaves-fashion-trend-winter-4I perked up a bit at this point and clicked through out their most recent collection for Autumn/Winter 2017. Wahey! Boots! Wedge boots, Chelsea boots, ankle boots and knee-high boots. And not just boots; my favourite shoe style brogues were available in patent navy blue too. But that’s not what I was there for. I stuck to my shopping list and looked only at the ankle boots section. My will-power is strong.autumn-shoes-blue-suede-boots-kicking-leaves-fashion-trend-winter-3 Continue reading “Tuesday Shoesday – Blue suede boots for autumn” »

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Tuesday Shoesday – Payday party style on a budget

It can be hard to find the right pair of party shoes to suit your overall style. You want them to be on-trend yet timeless, match your party outfit but go with everything, and ultimately, be comfortable enough to dance the night away. But where can you find all of that on a thrifty budget? Don’t worry, you’re not alone – I’m here to help! I’ve come up with some fail-safe tips to make your money go further while shopping for footwear this payday so read on to find out how to buy your dream footwear at bargain prices. Just call me your fairy godmother! 😉

First up are the bargains. The absolute steals. The very last of the January sales. Yes, it may seem like there’s not much left on the sale shelves by payday, but the deals are still out there. You just need to know where to look. The ethos of the #WomanKind campaign I’ve signed up for is to care for yourself, and I’m not just talking about healthy eating and getting exercise (although I’m certainly enjoying this aspect too), I’m talking about simply being kind to yourself. So treating yourself to something that will make you feel great is definitely part of it! As they say, Cinderella is proof that a pair of shoes can change your life, so I think that getting the right footwear is a great start to feeling confident, looking fabulous and being kinder to yourself. Luckily, at lot of fashion sales are still going strong online so you don’t need to wander up and down the high street hoping to find a bargain in order to give yourself a payday treat. Try Mr-Shoes, ASOS and Clarks, all of whom are still offering big discounts in their clearance sections.his and hers shoes mustard and rust from clarks summer sale 2015-2One problem with searching online is that the style you love might already be out of stock in your size. So try not to fall head-over-heels in love with anything you find in the sales just yet. Dig deeper and check out what sizes are available before deciding whether they are your ideal pair. Some fashion sites allow you to filter your search by size, so that’ll save you time by pulling up all the footwear in the right size for you so you can concentrate your efforts into choosing the right style. Speaking of which…tuesday shoesday nude peep toe wedge heel summer shoes 2013 from nextMy second thrifty tip is to only buy something if you know you’ll wear it more than once; the ‘go-with-anything’ factor. If you choose a glittery pair of ruby red shoes (okay, who doesn’t want those?!) they might look fabulous for one night out, but what about the rest of the month? Or the rest of the year, for that matter? Something that matches your outfit perfectly today probably won‘t be the right pairing tomorrow, so they’ll end up stuffed under the bed or at the back of the wardrobe, not being worn. Continue reading “Tuesday Shoesday – Payday party style on a budget” »

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Tuesday Shoesday – Winter sale shoes

Today  I wanted to share a quick round-up all of the sales and deals on footwear that I’ve spotted online and on the high street this week. There are plenty of seasonal discounts available at this time of year and you can even snap up some sandals ready for next summer at bargain. As a thrifty blogger I couldn’t not write about these super-savings so here’s the best bargains I’ve found so far…his and hers shoes mustard and rust from clarks summer sale 2015-2Select have heavily discounted their summer shoes. With sandals starting at just £3 a pair for colourful footwear, this is a sale that can’t be ignored. Plus (you won’t believe this..!) they are offering a buy-one-get-one-free deal which applies to sale items too! Any pair with this pink badge is part of the deal so you could actually get two pairs of sandals for £3! The shoes below are £8, £19.99 (from the non-sale winter collection ) and £9 respectively. Use discount code GET1FREE at shoes sale winter 2015I’ve also had a look at the current deals at Clarks, who are offering up to £30 off selected adult boots for winter. With a gorgeous collection that I’ve been dribbling over for a while, I think I might take advantage of this discount myself. There’s no code – just shop the range of boots and keep an eye out for the discount badges for reductions of up to 50% until the offer ends on 15th November. Plus there’s free delivery and returns.clarks sheos and boots sale autumn 2015

Finally, I took a look at the New Look autumn sale. Here I found lots of pretty heels, perfect for parties and night out over the festive period. These nude shoes are just £7 and are also available in black. These bright turquoise heels will add a splash of colour for only £8 and these very festive red shoes are just £9. What a bargain! New look offer a click and collect service, so if you can’t find these styles in store, take a look online. new look sale shoes for winter christmas 2015I hope these footwear deals will help you save a bit of cash in the run-up to Christmas and please do let me know if you find any other bargains yourself, I’d love to hear about them! Leave me a comment below or tweet me @Cassiefairy.


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Tuesday Shoesday – My summer sale wishlist

Can you believe the summer sales this year? Every shop I’ve been in this month has been pushing a 50% off discount with big red sale signs everywhere and it’s proving hard to resist! Even though I haven’t yet made any new purchases from the high street sales, (apart from, ahem, last month’s his ‘n’ hers Clarks bargains!) I have come up a list of my top 3 favourite styles to keep me focussed when I go shopping on payday.his and hers shoes mustard and rust from clarks summer sale 2015-2I prefer to shop this way because I’ve discovered that just the sight of a discount sign can whip me into a frenzy and I’ll buy just about anything if it’s on sale. Seriously, my wardrobe is full of things I’ve bought just because they were pretty and on sale, yet I’ve never worn them because I didn’t actually need them. Stepping away from the bargain bucket and taking the time to really think about what I need rather than what’s right in front of me is always a wise option. So instead of shopping the high street, I’ve come online to compile my ultimate summer same wish list. I may not even invest in these options but at least I’ve done my research and found out the best deals before spending my hard-earned cash.truffle collection jelly shoes summer sale at asos Continue reading “Tuesday Shoesday – My summer sale wishlist” »

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Menswear sale bargain – A new Army & Navy coat

Even though I only picked up a handful of goodies in the sales this year, I think you’ll agree that my husband has got a great deal with his bargain purchase: a new coat from House of Fraser. It’s been literally years since he got a new coat and even though he already has a few in his wardrobe, they are all sale, second-hand, or charity shop finds, so after a few years of wear they are looking a little tired. So I was delighted when he liked the look of this clearance coat and I couldn’t wait for it to arrive by mail and navy coat menswear sale bargain

Continue reading “Menswear sale bargain – A new Army & Navy coat” »

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Tuesday Shoesday ~ Menswear sale bargains

Last week I treated the man in my life to a few goodies from the ASOS sale. I was planning to buy a dress and jumper from Sugarhill Boutique, which were both reduced in the ASOS 70% off sale, so I decided to browse the menswear section to see if there were any sale bargains that my husband would like for Autumn/Winter. I spotted a few goodies and after a little bit of persuading, he sat down at the computer with me and we added some bits to my basket together.

menswear sale shopping at asos-7

Jumper and jeans from the ASOS sale

A new pair of jeans was essential, and he also spotted a couple of garish patterned jumpers that he couldn’t leave behind, and soon the basket was filling up nicely with a selection of sale bargains. I hate to say it, but I think he was actually enjoying shopping online, and I’m pretty sure this is one of the only times that he has ever bought clothes online – with the possible exception of tacky Christmas jumpers on EBay!

menswear sale shopping at asos-4 menswear sale shopping at asos-5

Sturdy canvas pumps ~ only £6 in the ASOS sale

What I was most impressed with was the selection of super-cheap shoes in the menswear sale and I ordered a couple of pairs of trainers for him too. We narrowly missed out on some £15 leather brogues which were sold out in his size, but many of the pumps and trainers were still available in the right size so I snapped up these navy blue canvas shoes (above) for only £6 because I knew they would be good for everyday wear, even in the spring and with shorts in summer.

menswear sale shopping at asos menswear sale shopping at asos-2

My husband’s favourite retro trainers ~ £10 in the ASOS sale

These retro “green flash” style trainers caught my husband’s eye and he’d added them to the basket before I could protest. At only £10 I agreed they were a bargain (especially after we’d recently been shopping for trainers on the high street and had come home with nothing due to the crazy prices) and when they arrived they looked even better than I’d imagined. Maybe it’s because my husband is such a clothes-horse, but he made them look school-boy cool – and even the crazy jumpers looked great on him.

Unfortunately, the dress was too short for my preference (which is unusual because dresses are usually knee-length as standard for me because of my short legs!) so that had to be returned and I’ve sent hubby to the post office with the parcel today. The cloud pattern jumper was way too big for me despite being the same size as the dress, which fit perfectly other than the length, so I’ve exchanged it for two sizes smaller and am hoping that it will be just right when it arrives.

All in all it was a very successful shopping experience for my husband and I think he’ll be keen to buy clothes and shoes online again in the future. Do you like to shop in the sales too? Did you get any bargains? Please leave me a comment below or tweet me photos of your mid-season sale bargains!

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Best face forward for the Cosmo Blog Awards

It’s coming… the biggest event in the blogging calendar is less than a week away. Yes, the Cosmopolitan Blog Awards are next Tuesday evening and I cannot wait to get there. Despite my excitement, I’ve been surprisingly relaxed about getting my outfit sorted and in truth the event has rather snuck up on me. My shoes were delivered earlier this week – did you see my Tuesday Shoesday blog post about them? But that’s pretty much all I’ve got so far. It’s very unlike me to leave it to the last minute but so far I still haven’t got a dress, jacket, handbag or accessories sorted for the big event so let’s hope I have an outfit to show you by next week!2014 bargain make up review max factor and elizabeth arden One thing I have organised is my make-up for the event, because I was getting dramatically low on foundation and my mascara was getting a little old and clumpy so it was a good excuse to stock up. After having such a great experience while shopping with Perfume Click in the past, I decided that this would be the best place to start looking for the products I need. I always always choose waterproof mascara so the first item in my basket was this False Lash Effect mascara from Max Factor in waterproof black. The wand has loads (I would even say hundreds) of tiny tiny bristles on it, which grab hold of pretty much all of my eyelashes. I think this is what helps give the impression of false lashes, as every single eyelash seems to get coated with the mascara. The formula wears well, makes eyelashes looks natural rather than clumpy and it doesn’t crumble off at the end of the day.2014 bargain make up review max factor and elizabeth arden-3 For my face, I wanted a fuller-coverage than usual so it was a toss up between Revlon Colorstay foundation (I’ve used their mineral foundation before) or Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish foundation. It was the first time I’d thought about using an Elizabeth Arden product so I read a lot of blogger reviews online to make sure it would give me the coverage that I wanted. After a lot of research, looking at before/after photos and checking colour swatch charts, I decided to go for it. After all, this is a special event so I can justify spending the extra money on the Elizabeth Arden foundation. I treated myself to the sponge-on cream foundation in Porcelain Beige 04 and I was really pleased when it arrived. The palette is quite big, so that means it has a massive mirror in the lid – definitely big enough to use when applying a full-face of make up! I imagine that the foundation will last me a long time because a little goes a long way. I always thought that a sponge would use up more of the product than I usually like to, but it actually blends it out and makes a small amount go a lot further than I’d imagined. The foundation gives good coverage without masking my freckles, and it actually makes my skin look a naturally peachy colour – I’d call it a ‘healthy glow’ compared to my usual translucent blue skin tone. The only thing that I am not sure about is the scent of this product, it’s much stronger-smelling than any other foundation I’ve used, and sort of smells like floral and antibacterial at the same time but after a while you get used to it and can’t smell it as much any more.2014 bargain make up review max factor and elizabeth arden-5 The same can be said for the powder that I’ve chosen; it’s got quite a strong scent but it’s a really low-cost translucent powder so at only £3.85 I really can’t complain! Plus, this is a truly translucent powder and doesn’t colour my face at all, just sets my make up. The application sponge gives a thicker coverage than I’d like, so I just use a large powder brush to swirl the powder onto my face, although I did use the pad for touch-ups while dancing and it kept my make up in place all night. The product is Lentheric Feather Finish compact powder and I’ll definitely be buying it again.2014 bargain make up review max factor and elizabeth arden-2 Finally, and saving the best until last, is the lipstick. I decided that a new lippy was in order for this special occasion and I always struggle with finding a good lipstick that lasts long enough without drying out my lips. It’s such a problem that I usually skip lipstick altogether, or if I really feel like I need a little colour on my lips I’ll use a tinted lip balm or a chubby stick. That said, I decided to try a Max Factor Colour Elixir lipstick in 715 Ruby Tuesday and I’m so glad that I did. Red lipstick is one of the make up items that I’d always wanted to wear but each time my choice of lipstick has failed me. However, this Max Factor formula actually stays put! It lasts for ages, and even after it wears off a little your lips are still stained red so look like you’re still wearing the lipstick – in a good way! I need to touch up much less often and barely have to check myself in the mirror because I know the lipstick will still be there. I can eat and drink and dance the night away and my lips still look great! I have actually never been more happy with a lipstick and I now want to buy all the colours in this range because I don’t think I’m ever going to find a better, more hard-working lipstick in my life!2014 bargain make up review max factor and elizabeth arden-4 So that’s it for my beauty haul, and I’m all set for the Cosmo Blog Awards on Tuesday – really looking forward to showing off my new look!

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My bargain beauty haul

This week I’ve been shopping online for my essential beauty products because I’ve found a shop that sells favourite products at super-discounted prices. I picked up a selection of goodies from Perfume Click and I wanted to write a brief review of the products and the shop as a whole. Thankfully, I only have good things to say about this website; I found it easy to use and like the high street stores, I could collect loyalty points on my beauty haul. I also had a nice surprise when I came to check out: each additional item that you add to your basket results in £1 off the total! So technically, after choosing my first item, each subsequent item was £1 off the (already reduced) retail price – what a bargain! Okay, it made me want to buy more than I usually would, but when you’re getting £1 off each item and loyalty points, it seemed like a good idea to snap up that extra nail polish! Here’s what I got:

cheap beauty products from Perfume Click

I chose standard delivery but the order still arrived within 2 days, so I had them before the weekend, which was great! I’ve not had a chance to try out the L’Oreal Revitalift Pro Contouring System, but anything that will give me a relaxing facial massage while I apply my face cream has got to be a good thing! Of course, I couldn’t wait two minutes before ripping open the packaging and testing out the other products that I bought, so here’s my round up of the other items…

Firstly, I was shopping for my make-up staples; mineral foundation and eyeliner. I always use mineral foundation because I have such sensitive skin that anything else makes my skin flare up. I’ve tried many different brands over the years and always choose the lightest shade for my pale skin. This time I picked up the Revlon ColorStay Aqua mineral make up in shade ‘Light/Pale‘ and couldn’t wait to test it out. This mineral foundation feels lighter on the skin than other mineral make up usually does and it had a luminous rather than matt finish so it looked more like I was wearing a liquid foundation than a powder. The applicator brush in the lid is also more like a liquid foundation brush than the usual big round kabuki powder brush that I usually use to apply my mineral foundation. I actually preferred the new brush, as it gave me more control over where I wanted to add extra layers of foundation. This mineral make up provides SPF 13 so it’s protecting your face as soon as you apply it, and with my pale, freckly complexion I need all the sun protection I can get!

cheap beauty products from Perfume Click-4

Secondly, I bought a new liquid eyeliner: Max Factor Masterpiece Glide and Define in black. I’d previously used a liquid eyeliner that was supposed to be waterproof but I found that it smudged off at every opportunity, so I wanted to try something different. This eyeliner was much easier to apply, went on smoothly at it was easier to make delicate flicks, as well as layering up for a thicker line. It isn’t a waterproof liner, but I found that it out-performed my previous ‘waterproof’ eyeliner, only smudging a little if I wiped my eyes when they watered in the sun over the weekend. It stayed put as long as I didn’t rub my eyes, and because it’s a tiny hand-bag sized bottle, I had it to hand to touch-up the wings when I nipped to the loo. The only problem with this eyeliner was that it crumbled after a full day of wearing, so when I came to take off my make up at bedtime, it was flaking off – it stayed nice for a good 12 hours before this happened though!

cheap beauty products from Perfume Click-3

cheap beauty products from Perfume Click-2

I’ve always wanted to try out the Bourjois little round pots but they have always been just out of my budget for eyeshadow, so when I saw this pack of three pots for £10.65 I snapped it up. I’d used an iridescent pink pot that my sister had bought for me years before, but found it too sparkly at times, so I hoped that these neutral shades wouldn’t be too sparkly. Thankfully, they are exactly the right combination of matt-with-luminosity that they don’t too sparkly, nor do they make my skin look ‘flat’. The three shades in the pack work well together; there is a nude shade, a tawny brown and a slightly mauve colour, all of which make my eyes look even bluer than usual! I was pleased that the lids all have small mirrors in them which is great for touching up on the go with the mini-applicators but I don’t think I’ll use the applications for everyday use, I prefer to apply eyeshadow with my usual brush and the colours look great blended together.

cheap beauty products from Perfume Click-6

Finally, I picked up a Collection 2000 nail polish, because the £1 off at checkout meant that it was only £2.10. I was really rather impressed with this ‘Maxiflex’ polish because it gave almost complete coverage in one coat, which is such a rarity! I was pleased with the nude shade ‘In the Buff’ with a hint of metallic for summer, and it lasted for a good couple of days, even without a top-coat. The bottle boasts 5 day wear, and I think that with two coats of Maxiflex and a clear top-coat, this could easily be achieved, but I’ve not had it long enough to test it out for that long yet!

I was very pleased with the bargains that I picked up from and I was even more delighted when a surprise £4 was knocked off my shopping total – that’s the kind of shopping I like!


My bargain fashion haul

I’ve had a bit of a result this week while shopping online. I discovered a fabulous fashion store that combines the convenience of online shopping with low low high street prices, sounds too good to be true doesn’t it? Well, it IS true and my order from has just arrived to prove it!

I was initially looking for something to wear to my friend’s wedding next weekend and having exhausted my usual shopping haunts, I decided to widen my search and take a look online. I was surprised and delighted with the selection of reasonably priced dresses I found at and I managed to get my whole outfit sorted at once. I bought this royal blue maxi dress with a slinky knotted-front detail and it was under £15! See, I wasn’t kidding when I said it was great prices!! It’s like a sale is on all the time and as such, items sell out quickly so if you see something you like, I recommend you grab it straight away while it’s still in stock! I decided to pair the dress with a fresh white blazer and added this to my cart before having a little browse around the rest of the store to see what other bargains I could find.

I couldn’t resist snapping up this over-size t-shirt with fabulous Mean Girls ‘you can’t sit with us’ quote on it. I already have a cute tartan skirt that I bought in the winter sales, so I thought the two would look great together as a kind of teen-flick mash-up of Clueless and Mean Girls! The t-shirt was only £8.25 and that’s one of the more spendy tops on the website!

I also bagged this horse pattern knitted jumper. I know it’s sunny outside at the moment, but this item was new in and I know that it will have sold out by the time the autumn breezes arrive! So I’ve invested in the black version ready for A/W14, but I love the fit and design so much that I’m actually thinking about getting it in cream with black horses too because I already know I’ll wear it all winter long!

So what do you think of my bargain fashion haul? I’ve barely taken off my new slogan t-shirt since it arrived and am bursting to hop back onto the website and order some more low-priced goodies. I’m pleased that a thrifty gal like me has finally found somewhere to shop online that doesn’t break the bank, woop!Mean Girls t shirt

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