Golden Tote (referral link) is a great, hassle-free, way to shop. There are two different price points, either $49 or $149. Every month they release a selection of new items. You can either choose one item for $49 and receive 1-2 surprise items, or you can choose two items for $149 and receive 4-5 surprise items. You also create a style profile as well as creating notes so that the person picking your items can tailor your tote to your liking. The two ladies behind Golden Tote have a clothing line at Anthropologie called Puella. Recently they came out with another line that is exclusive to Golden Tote called Priddy by Puella. They also recently introduced another new line, Cut and Sew by Golden Tote.
I went about my August Golden Tote purchase a bit different this month than other months. When I first started seeing the spoilers, I knew I was in trouble. There were a lot of different items that I liked, and I hadn’t even seen any spoilers of the surprise items! I didn’t know how I was going to decide which items to get, and my financial state for that month was not where I needed it to be in order to buy enough totes to get my items. I made the decision to not buy any totes. It was a tough choice, but it was the most sensible decision. By doing this I knew I was going to be left with two choices. Either buy a tote later in the month, hoping that some of the items I liked were left in my size, or start looking for them on the Facebook trade group.
Golden Tote is such a huge gamble. It’s hard for the tote curators to know exactly what will fit you, or if you will like the items they pick for you. You may even end up liking other surprise items better than your own! At the beginning of this year, Golden Tote started a Facebook page for customers to interact with each other and buy/sell/trade their items. This group is amazing. Not only do people typically have tons of success buying and selling what they want, but the women in the group are awesome. Approximately 2000 girls in one group, and little to no drama. Everyone is so supportive of each other. People post pictures of what they got in their totes and there is so much positivity and encouragement on every one of those posts. Recently a second group was started for girls in the group to have a place to discuss anything off topic. People go there for life advice, styling help, or just random questions/comments. I’ve met a lot of people through this group and that has been a great experience! I’ve even come to like the off-topic group better than the trade group!
Now, back to my point. I opted out of buying a tote and decided the best route would be focusing on this trade group. I would find as many of my most loved items as I could. I had great success doing this, and it was way more cost efficient. People were really great about shipping to Canada, and some even charged me way less than I was expecting for what I got. I’m so grateful to each of these girls for selling to me!
For August, Golden Tote did a collaboration with the lady who blogs over at Merrick’s Art. I was first introduced to this fashion blog awhile back through the Golden Tote Facebook Group and have frequented her blog ever since. Merrick is a fashion blogger who posts how to style certain pieces, as well as tons of DIY ideas. As soon as I heard she would be helping to design some of the August items, I knew those pieces would be winners. I was definitely right and had to have both.
This top was a chosen item and is the first collaboration piece with Merrick’s Art, and it’s under the Cut & Sew brand. This was probably the first top that I really fell in love with. It has a solid, pale blue underlay to offset the coral lace material on top. Everything about this shirt is amazing. I love how it has a flowy fit, even in the sleeves, and I especially love how soft this top is. Often when I see a lacey fabric I’m a little bit concerned about there being any roughness to it. This top was just a complete win in every way imaginable.
Top: Cut & Sew–Golden Tote
Pants: Just Black–Golden Tote
These pants, which were also featured in the above pictures, are distressed boyfriend jeans by Just Black. I was pretty iffy about these jeans when I first saw them posted. I have never ordered bottoms from GT before and always put in my style notes to not send any as a surprise. Pants can be such a tough fit and my size ranges way too much depending on the brand. I had eventually posted on the Facebook page with a sizing question because I had seen a lot of people saying them fit big, but I loved how they looked on everyone. From talking to a number of people I figured out which size I would *hopefully* need, and ended up finding someone who wanted a smaller size than they ordered. I was scared to try them on because this was a size that I wouldn’t have ordered if it wasn’t for everyone’s comments. Lo and behold, I love the fit! They are perfect in the waist and have just the right amount of slouch for the fit for the “Boyfriend” style.
Dress: Cut & Sew–Golden Tote
Jacket: Vero Moda–Tonic
Boots: Charlotte Russe
Purse: Peggy Sue–Little Black Bag
Necklace/Ear Cuff: Little Black Bag
This dress was the second collaboration piece with Merrick’s Art. It was available in the stripes, cobalt blue and a paisley print. Golden Tote introduced me to swing dresses quite awhile back, and I love them. They are comfortable, you can keep it loose and flowy, or add a belt for a bit more of a structured look. They are easy to dress up or down, and style in so many different ways. This dress is made out of a really soft, comfortable fabric. I sized down on this dress and was really glad I did. I think that my normal size would have been too overwhelming, especially without a belt. I’m actually really liking how this dress looks styled without a belt and just having a structured jacket over.
Dress: Cut & Sew–Golden Tote
Shoes: Style & Co.–The Bay
Scarf–Her Fashion Box
This is the blue version of the striped dress above. It’s the same style, but a very different fabric. The striped dress was a very thin fabric, but this one is much thicker. I feel this is definitely more of a ‘fall’ dress. I definitely prefer to wear this one with a belt as I feel the thicker fabric also make it look a bit thicker and wear a bit larger. I love this dress though, and the colour is amazing. I love it with all the red accessories, blue and red has been one of my favourite combinations for a long time, hence the reason that was our wedding colours! This dress is also great fun to twirl in!
Top: Suzy Shier
Cardigan: Chris & Carol–Golden Tote
Jean: Calvin Klein–Value Village
Purse: Ivanka Trump–Little Black Bag
Chris & Carol seems to be popping up a lot lately in totes. This was a surprise item and I love the pattern on it. I love that it’s neutral colours and can go with so many different colours but still adds something to the outfit with its pattern. It’s soft and so comfortable. I’ve also really been liking this sleeve length for cardigans, it’s perfect for the transition of fall. I also like how long this top is in the back. I was really excited when I was able to get my hands on this one.
Top: Skies Are Blue–Golden Tote
Jeans: Calvin Klein–Value Village
Purse: Value Village
Boots: Qupid–Beyond the Rack
This top was another chosen item and I love how it fits. It is quite oversized and I probably could have sized down, but I kind of like it this way. It has a great boho vibe to it and it’s neutral so I love how easy it is to style. At first, I was afraid that it looks a bit like a pajama top, but once I styled it that thought went completely out of my mind.
Top: Skies Are Blue–Golden Tote
Jeans: Calvin Klein–Value Village
Boots: Breckelle’s–Beyond the Rack
Purse: Big Buddha–Little Black Bag
This top was another chosen item, and it wasn’t actually one that I initially liked. It wasn’t until I started seeing people wearing this top that I knew I had to have it, so glad I made that decision. This is such a cute top, it fits great, and I love the tassels! I like that the top itself is somewhat simple with the neutral colours and simple design. It’s just the bit of colour and design on the top, and the tassels, that change that up, which is just the perfect balance. The little bit of red also makes it easy to style and accessorize. I’ve seen it styled with the tassels also tied, but I prefer it this way.
Top: DC Comics–Plato’s Closet
Bottoms: Priddy by Puella–Golden Tote
Purse: Fydelity-Little Black Bag
These are the second pair of pants that I have taken a chance with. I was a bit iffy on these as well, but this is another pair that I had heard fit big. These were a surprise item from a couple of months ago and were made by the founders of GT. I had been tempted by these pants a few times, but just never made the jump. I’m so glad I finally did though, these pants are amazing. They have pockets and are SO soft. I love the pattern and it will be a lot of fun creating outfits with them. I can either keep them casual like I did with this outfit or dress them up a bit by wearing a nicer top. I love when you can find a comfortable pair of pants that can double for dressy and casual. There was a discussion on the Facebook page with the Sarah’s (the founders) about the pants because some people were finding them too big. The trick they let us in on is to steam the waistband, which will shrink the elastic. I’m really happy about this because that means as I continue to lose weight, and hopefully drop a couple more sizes, I can potentially just shrink the waist and continue wearing these.
I was really happy that I used the Facebook page in August. I was able to find the items I really loved. There were a few that was on my initial list of wanted items, but as I saw more and more people getting them, I realized they weren’t right for me. They were either too close to something I already had or I realized I wouldn’t get enough wear out of them. A few of the items I ended up getting weren’t on my initial list but I’m so happy I went with them. I wasn’t too floored by many of the surprise items this month so for that fact, I’m even more glad I went this way.
You may remember in my last Golden Tote review I mentioned sending back some surprise items because of duplicate issues, or items completely going against my style profile. This was quite the experience. The initial interaction went great, we got it sorted out that I would send back my four items and they would send me four more. Great. I sent mine back and received a tracking number really fast. Then for a couple of weeks, nothing happened with the tracking number. No movement. I tried a few times to email and I finally heard back after reaching out on the Facebook page. Turns out that my package got left behind in the warehouse and was forgotten about. They shipped it right away after finding that and I received it just over a week later. It was just into September when I finally received my replacement July surprises. The wait ruined that box for me. I had been seeing those surprise items for quite some time, and there was a whole slew of new surprises since my box was packaged. Out of the four surprise items I was only excited to see one of them. I sold two of the items within an hour of posting them on the Facebook trade page. The third item is still sitting in my closet. I’m hoping to sell it yet.
Top: Lord & Taylor–The Bay
Jeans: Just Black–Golden Tote
Shoes: Converse–The Shoe Company
This was the surprise item that I was happy to see. It’s a sweatshirt blazer and really comfortable. The colours are great and it’s perfect for a dressy casual look. I like that is has the nice blazer look, and looks structured, but is still easy to move in and not constricting like some blazers can be.
The reasons for my lack of excitement varied for the other items. One was a Priddy dress which was so soft, had pockets and fit great. The issue was that it was a striped pattern with olive green. I cannot pull that colour off and I’m just plainly not a huge fan of it in general. The second item that I was easily able to trade was a kimono. I have nothing against kimonos. They are comfortable and easy to wear. They are a great piece to throw over a casual outfit to dress it up a little. I just knew that if I hung it up in my closet, it would stay there. I was just ‘meh’ about the colour and pattern, and since I had been seeing it for so long on the trade page it almost bored me. The third item, the one still hanging in my closet, is a paisley print Cut and Sew dress. I actually loved this dress when I first started seeing it, and in fact, almost bought it at one point. I’m really glad I didn’t. I tried it on and I just wasn’t too pleased with it. The fabric feels really thin, and it gapes a bit on me just under my arms. It’s not a bad dress at all, I like it a lot, just not on me. At all. If I had received this dress in July, or even the start of August, I might have felt a little bit different. If I liked the fit better I could see it being a great summer dress. Getting it in September definitely takes away from that though, I don’t want a summer dress in September, especially when I live in Saskatchewan! I’m planning on re-posting it at some point and hopefully being able to sell or trade it.