Spring has sprung in the Midwest, and warm weather clothing shoppers are out in full force. I tried to go to our local mall this past weekend and drove around for almost a half hour trying to find a parking spot. Once I did, I battled crowds to hit up my favorite stores only to find they were out of my size in what I came to buy. Why didn’t I just stay home?
I think clothing services or clothing subscription boxes where a stylist picks out lovely looks for you are definitely on the rise. Golden Tote is unique because you get to pick one item you love from a curated selection, and they will pick another item or two for you. The creators of Golden Tote are a duo of designers who launched the clothing line Puella in 2003. They currently work in downtown LA as clothing designers, personal stylists and buyers in addition to running Golden Tote. The idea for this service came about when they had a grab bag Puella sale and it was a massive hit amongst their clients.
How It Works:
Availability: Each month, a new “tote” goes on sale the first Monday at 9am. The clothing is seasonal, so you won’t be getting a wool sweater in August.
Options: There are two totes: a $49 tote which includes 2-3 pieces of clothing and a $149 tote which includes 5-6 pieces of clothing.
Preferences: You pick an item (or two with the more expensive tote) you like from a selection and they surprise you with the rest. You receive the clothing at over 50% off retail price, which works out to around $26/piece.
Extras: You can add on additional pieces of clothing from their online boutique for a discount when you order a tote.
Style Profile: You put together a style profile and tell them what you like to wear, and what doesn’t float your boat (for example, no rompers for this long-torso’d gal!).
Returns: You can return the whole tote but not separate pieces. They do have a Facebook group with almost 4,000 members where you can sell, buy or swap Golden Tote items.
This clothing is decidedly Californian in nature, which to me means laid-back but sometimes quirky and vintage. There are a number of oversize pieces, which aren’t currently popular in my wardrobe. I do like to try new styles, though, so I chose a loose short-sleeved tie-neck top in black. I went through the boutique and “favorited” some of the styles I liked just in case the stylist looked at that as well. The whole point of these stylist-curated services are to step outside your comfort zone at least a little in my opinion!
What I Received:
The aforementioned shirt was actually a huge hit with me! Since it was very loose at the bottom as opposed to fitted like the rest of my wardrobe, I was wary at first. It turns out that it balances some of my more voluminous skirts well and allowed me to wear items in my closet I thought would never work. The sleeves are too cute with the eyelet pattern, and the tie neck adds just the right amount of interest to the shirt.
As for the dress, I loved the delicate design and pattern. Unfortunately it was a bit too short for my taste, but I am such a fan of pulling a skirt over a dress anyways that I can make it work. It was also fairly see-through in the back, but I guess that is what nude underwear is for, right?
Both styles were outside of my traditional comfort zone, which is a bonus in my book. They arrived in a cute linen-like reusable tote bag hence the name “Golden Tote,” as well as a style card. Pricing for these items was very reasonable- I think the value of this (as long as you like the items) is excellent.
If you want to give it a try, their spring items are currently in stock. Take a look at the site, and let me know what you think!