The Rich Life On a Budget

Deeply Discounted Finds

It’s great to be back from my unplanned blogging break. In my last post I mentioned that I was helping out at work while the gift shop manager was gone. I worked nearly every day she was away and found it surprisingly fun and exhilarating.

Working in the capacity that I do at the wineries (there are two of them) includes tending to a variety of retail needs. I am up and down stairs many times throughout the day, lifting and carrying items, bending and reaching, stocking and replacing – it’s non-stop movement. And I love it! I think of it as my big workout for the day. But by the time I arrive home around 6:00 p.m., I am too tuckered to even think about blogging.

I am back to my normal routine and instead of getting right back into blogging, I caught up on chores and errands. I won’t bore you with the mundane things I got done. But I do have to tell you about one errand I ran Tuesday.

I went to Gap to return a few things. While I was there, I browsed the sale rack. To my shock and delight, everything on all three racks was priced at $2.97. And on top of that, every Tuesday at Gap all items are an additional 10% off for card holders.

For Tori, I found a pink neon T-shirt dress, a color blocked tank dress, a tank top and these shorts in white.

And for me, I bought these peach khakis that normally sell for $49.95. I already own them in other colors so I already knew I liked the fit. With my 10% discount, they were just $2.67 which is 95% off the full price!

I wore it with a white button down (thrifted at Goodwill, $4.00), Banana Republic cognac flats and a cognac belt from J.Crew. And I wore a bracelet I bought in a funky shop in Venice, Italy back in 2010.

I should wear this cuff more often. It’s so beautiful. But I don’t because I worry it will get lost or damaged it and I wouldn’t be able to replace it. Do you hesitate to wear things you love for that reason?

I also bought this dress for $2.67, originally $64.95. A 96% discount! Ninety-six! Have you ever heard of such a thing? Prior to this, I think 70% is the lowest I’ve ever gotten.


Same J. Crew belt as above, Clarks sandals (that I don’t think look that great here),
and dangly earrings, a gift from a friend. 

And – bonus for me – it’s a “tall”! I told the sales associate what a funny coincidence it was to find this dress because I ordered the very same one (same size and color) back in early July and returned it. I didn’t think it was worth the price. 
He told me that the dress I was buying was most likely the very same one I returned because they don’t sell “talls” in the stores, only online. It must’ve ended up in their inventory by way of me! I guess it was meant to be mine after all. 

The evenings are getting cooler around here so I added Tori’s Forever 21 cropped denim jacket that I borrow all the time…

and I wore this newish purchase, a mineral ring I bought at Bling for about $20.

Three dresses, a pair of khakis, a pair of great shorts and a tank top all for $17.40 with tax. Such a deal!

If you like Gap, check your local store to see if they have a deep discount rack like mine does. I find it puzzling that the striped dress is still selling online for $50.00 but sold in the shop for less than $3.00. But I am not puzzled enough to ask any probing questions!

What is the deepest discount you have ever found on a new item? 
XO, 
Adrienne 

****A quick reminder that “How I Wear My: Second Hand Treasure” is coming up! Email me your photo by September 4th to be included in the post. It will publish first thing Wednesday morning, September 5th.****

54 thoughts on “Deeply Discounted Finds

  1. Anonymous

    Wear the bracelet all the time! If you love it, make it a part of your life! No point in having something you love that you don’t use. Great to get so many lovely things at such deep discounts. Is anyone else disturbed by the prices? How can those prices cover the cost of materials, the wages for the workers, the shipping costs, and the overhead and wages at the Gap? Something doesn’t add up.

  2. A Well Styled Life

    The bracelet is great. I think you should wear it without worry. I have stopped saving my “special things” because today is the day that counts most. Great looking and I bet it’s a wonderful reminder of your trip!!

  3. kim at northerncalstyle.

    Love it Adrienne. The dress is darling on you. I think the pants are cute too. I love Gap and always hit the one in our town frequently! When they have sales, plus additional and with your card it sometimes is super cheap! My very favorite soft red sweater I got on sale during Spring for $4.99!! It can be cheaper than thrifting. You just need to shop often.

    Your job sounds neat!
    Have a fun weekend!
    xo
    Kim

  4. Jodie aka Mummaducka'sKaos

    Oh you lucky duck, I never get bargains like that! I just love those qtrousers, they are divine! I like the dress for you, but I am not a fan of sleeveless dresses on me as I have “tuck shop ” arms. You know, big arms that could flap, but mine don’t thankfully. A Tuck shop is like a canteen or food shop in a school, where the phrase came from, from the big mumma types that run the tuckshop!

  5. LRS4AMANDA

    Welcome back Adrienne!

    This is too funny that you did a post on the Gap. I don’t think I have been there in a year…tomorrow I have to go the mall to return a shirt I ordered from Banana Republic and was just thinking I should go check out the Gap. I hope they have those racks at our store!

    The dress looks good on you and I personally think the shoes do as well. The bracelet is gorgeous!

    My SIL has a 2 carat diamond as her wedding ring but never wears it, keeps it locked up because she is afraid something will happen to it. (It is a family heirloom from her husband’s grandmother).

    Linda
    xo

  6. Terri

    Hm, I think you may have stumbled on something. Order the tall in everything you like, return it, and wait for the $2.97 sale!

    I envy you having such an ACTIVE job and often wish that my work involved more physical activity.

  7. Sara Louise

    I cannot even tell you what this post is doing to me! I LOVE a bargain! You would never really be able to find discounts like that in France so this post has made me homesick for shopping in America so much. Oh yhe bargains! :)

  8. lovesjetlag

    Hi Adrienne!
    Sadly I am back from Paris….I really love those peach kakis, they are stunning and they fit you so beautifully! I tried on a pair of red kakis myself in Paris but being a resolute “chineuse”, thrifter, refused to pay 40 euros for them and picked up the challenge to find them used or sold at the market for under 10 euros…
    I visited many Gap shops in Paris but none of them had a heavily discounted rack….they were offering only a 30% discount to American Express holders..
    My best find for just a pittance was this year a Missoni aqua cardi for just one euro..the colour is not so flattening for me and my husband says it makes me look like an old lady but who cares, it is weaved so wonderfully with that typical Missoni yarn (in gold and aqua) that it makes me happy just to look at it…I sent you a postcard!
    Ciao!

  9. Michelle Roebuck

    Oh, I’m glad you’re back – and that you enjoyed the extra winery work! I love the bracelet and agree with others who say, “Wear it more!” :D

    I have been an avid scout of the deep discount racks at Gap, American Eagle, Old Navy and Express for YEARS! I’ve scored countless $2-5 deals on items previously in the $30-70 range. My favorite is probably a little blonde leather clutch I got at Wilson’s Leather for $2.97.

    I remember distinctly talking with a sales girl years ago in Express… I mentioned that I was going to pass on something that was only on sale, not on clearance, and she said, “You’d better get it now – there might not be one left in your size when they go on clearance!” I just smiled and told her that if I was meant to have it, there’d be one in my size! Which is why I love that you probably bought back the dress that you had ordered earlier… Wonder if you could manage that again on purpose?!?

  10. kathy peck

    Amazing prices. I particularly love the peach chinos on you, with the white blouse – such a clean, fresh look with the cognac accessories.
    And the bracelet from Venice is totally gorgeous. I hope you wear it more often. xo

  11. Adrienne

    @Anonymous I am going to wear the bracelet more often. Once, when I was wearing it after first arriving home from our trip, it fell off. I think the clasp needs to be tightened. Or maybe I didn’t secure it properly.

    I feel the same way re: the low, low prices. But I suppose it’s the only way they can off load end of season items to make room for new things. I am surprised that they didn’t choose to send it back to wherever they house the online stuff since the same items are selling for more online.

    I’m still thrilled with my finds no matter what. My favorite part was surprising Tori with the things I bought her. I laid them out on her bed for her to see when she got home. And now she’s bragging to her friends about the great prices.

  12. Adrienne

    @vintagefrenchchic Oh my gosh! You’re kidding! That is a fantastic find. Are you going to keep it for yourself or sell it? I bet you could make a pretty penny for it just on the gold alone. I took a tiny pile of gold in to our local jewelers not long ago and made $200 cash. It was nothing but a few lone earrings and outdated necklaces.
    Good for you for your great find!
    xo

  13. Anonymous

    Adrienne — I didn’t mean to dimminish your finds! I recently got a pair of my favorite Lafayette 148 wool trousers for $17 (new — on clearance at Saks) and a wool Jenna sweater from JCrew for under $20. I just stood there wondering the same thing. You got really Fabulous finds.

    If you have a really good jewler you trust, bring in the bracelet and ask them to sodder on a little chain and clasp (if it won’t destroy the line of the bracelet). It will probably make you feew a little more secure about wearing it.

    I tend to buy jewelery on my overseas journeys — and, whether it is costume or the real thing — it always evokes the place.

    @Anonymous (Susan)

    P.S. Have enjoyed you blog for some time.

  14. Adrienne

    @A Well Styled Life You’re right. I need to stop being that way with my nice things. I do the same with a gorgeous Louis Vuitton bag my husband bought me in Paris and some bed linens that I bought here in Sonoma county on deep discount. My nice things just sit in closets and drawers, rarely seeing the light of day. Maybe I will make that a resolution for the month of September. In fact, I am going to bring my LV along today to meet a friend for coffee. Thank you for the extra motivation I needed to use my treasured things!

  15. Adrienne

    @kim at northerncalstyle. So your Gap has great deals, too! I think that if you’re willing to shop off season, you can score some great stuff. I may have to check back at our Gap more frequently. It’s refreshing to find new clothes at such a low price. I don’t have to worry about damages, stains, and wear and tear like I do when I buy thrifted things.
    I do love my job. I am on-call, as needed now which is kind of sad. I would love to work there a two or three days a week. I am missing it this week! I had to break down and work out on my own which is much less fun.
    xo, A

  16. Adrienne

    @the gardener’s cottage Let me know if you find the same deals at your Gap. The only bummer about most of the clothes in the rack are that most were either very small sizes or very large which is unfortunate for me because, like the masses, I am in between. But there were loads of size 0, 2 and 4 which I think you are. Hope you find something wonderful!

  17. Adrienne

    @Jodie aka Mummaducka’sKaos I always learn new and interesting things from you. Tuck Shop arms. Who knew such a phrase existed?
    I am not crazy about my arms and have been working on tightening them up. But I don’t dislike them enough to not wear sleeveless. It’s been hot here lately and I prefer the comfort of bare arms.

  18. Adrienne

    @LRS4AMANDA Thanks! It’s good to be back but I enjoyed taking a break, too. I got lots of stuff done.

    Too bad your SIL keeps that ring locked up. Is she saving it to give to her daughter?

    Please let me know if you find anything at the Gap while you’re there. And have fun shopping!
    xoxo, A

  19. Adrienne

    @Terri Ha! Don’t think that didn’t cross my mind, Terri! That would be quite the scam.
    I have never really had a physical job since waitressing in college. It’s great to be able to move all day AND get paid while doing it!

  20. Tamera Beardsley

    First off my dear you look model gorgeous in all of your fabulous finds!

    I do try to wear all of my ‘good’ pieces whenever I can. I made this decision as a child after seeing all of my grandfather’s collected pocket watches untouched and unused until the day he died….it seemed as though he was saving them all for a ‘special time… that was never to be…. So as an ode to him i do my best to always use my very best…while I still have the chance.

  21. Linda @ DesignInMyView

    A. – I didn’t read all the comments, so this may be a repeat…

    Your white shirt and “blush” pants (with accessories) is the best look you’ve modeled (in my memory)!

    The color with your hair and tan, the proportion – that bracelet! Please start wearing it once a week. Maybe get a jeweler to attach a safety chain so if the clasp does open you’ll be more aware.

    Your work sounds like a great time with tourists – hope the crew and boss are as much fun. :-)

    Cheers!

  22. jill815

    $2.67 for khakis? What? Where am I going wrong? Why can’t I find these deals? I would have so much money in my Hermes fund if I had your luck my dear! Have a great weekend. I’m looking forward to Sept. 5 post! Taking pictures this weekend, I swear! XO, Jill

  23. Debbi@SheAccessorizesWell

    That bracelet is amazing! I know what you mean about being scared to wear it, but we miss out on a lot of pleasure by giving in to our fears!
    I received the handbag and I love it! It will be perfect for times when I don’t want to fool with a bigger handbag. It is so nicely made too.
    Wow you found some real bargains. I think it was meant to be for you to get them, especially the dress which looks fab on you. The peach khaki’s are so pretty on you.
    I find some bargains at the 1/2 of 1/2 store, but I think you have me beat on the percentage of savings.
    Thank you so much for sending the bag and the sweet, sweet note you wrote. I will treasure it.

  24. Adrienne

    @lovesjetlag Oh my gosh…a Missoni anything for a euro? I would wear it too even if it wasn’t the best color on me. Send me a photo of it if you get a chance. I would love to see it.

    I look for the post card everyday at the mailbox. Can’t wait to get it!
    xo, A

  25. Adrienne

    @Michelle Roebuck I really did think about how I could possibly work the system there but, of course, it would never work out in my favor, you know? It was a one time thing. And the ideal dress for me to take on a tropical trip Bill and I have planned for late this year.

    I don’t like being away from the blog so long but I had nothing interesting or intelligible to say after working so much – I was useless by the end of the day. So much physical work!

    What a great Wilson’s leather score. I used to like Wilson’s – whatever happened to them?

  26. Adrienne

    @Anonymous Hi Susan,

    I didn’t think you were diminishing my finds at all. I agree that it’s a little odd there would be so many items for such a low, low price. There must be some logic to it, I just don’t know what it is.

    Sounds like you found some wonderful things on deep discount! Good for you. I wish we had some higher end shops nearby so I could comb through their sales racks.

    So far, the bracelet isn’t acting up. I had Bill adjust it a little and it’s feeling secure. But if it falls off again, to the jewelers it goes.

  27. Adrienne

    @Tamera Beardsley Thank you for sharing that story about your grandfather’s watches. A cautionary tale to use the treasures that you have.
    I have been carrying my nicest handbag lately – since I read everyone’s comments. And I am so glad I did.
    xo, A

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