Shop Local Rochester: Splurge + Save and Have a Thrifty Holiday.

{ Thrifted! Red velvet vintage dress from Treasure Trove Vintage on Park Avenue. }


look good


feel good



{ We have to do something for ourselves. Especially during the holidays. And we still want to save time + money, feel festive + fabulous! That’s why thrifty shopping in your holiday routine spices up the season, adds value to your time and money, + lets you do you. Something fierce. }

Get Thrifty.

And by heart, I mean appearance.

Appearance is the outward expression of our hearts. These 3 looks + 3 thrifty shopping spots show you how to save + feel flippin fancy while doing it.

#PROTIP: “Vintage” is defined as 20 years back. { 1994 is vintage! }


Rest of my dress! Adorable back { butt } bow. (Not pictured.)

THE LOOK: MAD MEN – Pin-Up. Vintage Boutique.


  1. Quality. Vintage is higher quality. Better fit. Better wear. Bottom line.
  2. Affordable. The imitation is too expensive! Especially if you seek quality comparable to the original.
  3. Trend Factor. You want to look great, but you don’t want to go crazy on some trend you might never wear again. These pieces have stood the test of time for a reason! And, you can afford to buy more than one or get fancy with all the fixin’s.


  • Treasure Trove Vintage: 121 Park Avenue, Suite 10 (Facing Meigs Street)
    • Dresses + Jewelry
    • Coats + Fur Coats
    • Jackets + Blazers
    • Hats + Gloves
    • Boots + Heels

{ BONUS: Owner, Morgan DeLapa, walks-the-walk, talks-the-talk, + can dish really sweet make-up recommendations! }

Louboutin at Panache.

Louboutin at Panache.

THE LOOK: BEYONCE / OLD MONEY – Glam. Consignment Shop.


  1. Designer. Champagne tastes on a { fancy } beer budget? Panache accommodates + dazzles.
  2. Variety. Row upon row upon row of flat, wedge, heel, boot; fur coat, blazer, shurg; wristlet, clutch, bag. It’s never-ending .. and all so inviting!
  3. Fashion. Fashionista’s paradise. Whether you like vintage, disco, ’90’s, or now – Panache has your number. { Flower City Fashionista would know! }


{ BONUS: Designer-Designer labels. We’re talking Christian Louboutin, Manolo Blahnik, Coach … you name it. }


Brand name wrap dresses from VOA on Lake Avenue.



  1. Quality. Thrift stores don’t take garbage. Know what you’re looking for, keep an open mind, + you will find gems that you boast about the rest of your known life.
  2. Get the Look. Create 3-5 new looks, easily, for less than the price of 1 at retail. Who doesn’t want a new holiday: skirt + top, dress + shrug, pant + blouse with matching shoe + bag for each?? With styles that cater specifically to the look you want.
  3. Price. Pay attention to tag sales + deals of the day so you know how to optimizes these options + still capture rock bottom prices.


{ BONUS: $.89 of EVERY DOLLAR goes toward VOA initiatives like the VOA Children’s Center + various Community Outreach. … Plus they have crazy low prices + incredible sales. }



With bff Laura (nee Reardon) Wagner, in 1950s handmade replica Bette Davis dress from film “All About Eve.”

#PROTIP: Don’t be scared to purchase gifts at consignment, vintage, + thrift stores.

Home is where the heart is … make it look good + feel good!

There are innumerable reasons I shop thrift for home goods + wares. And even more for why we all should thrift for holiday home goods + wares. Here are my top 3 reasons + spots:

Cheers! Wine glasses from Panache.

Cheers! … with a hint of charm. Wine glasses from Panache.


  1. Serving Spoons. Potato Masher. Tea Kettle. These are just some items I find at almost every thrift store I go to.
  2. Bye-Bye Big Box. Why go to a big-box when you can easily find what you need, for less?
  3. The Character Factor. Come on. Who doesn’t want a story behind their kitchen ware??

{ BONUS: Check-out any local thrift store. One of my favorites is Ruly on Monroe Ave. }

  • Ruly: 270 Monroe Avenue (Between Union + Alexander)


  1. Unique. Find glasses + mugs, place settings + cake plates that you just won’t find anywhere else.
  2. Host + Gift. What better way to decorate a holiday table than to allow guests to take home their glasses at the end of the eve?
  3. Mix + Match. Get creative with your decor when you can pair several different pieces for an occasion with your unique stamp.

{ BONUS: Panache has a Home + Design store, too! … With 3 designers who curate. }


  1. One Time + Timeless. You don’t have to feel guilt about using these pieces just once! Go crazy + buy the trendy piece. Or, at the same time, find a classic vase or candle holder + relish that it can be used any time of year or every holiday season.
  2. Love Each Room. Deck the halls, y’all. All of them. No need to feel proud about just the mantle over the fireplace or just the “Christmas Tree Room.” Get your deck on the whole house through!
  3. Get a Lil’ Funky. It’s okay to experiment. Add a pop of color with a thrift store pieces – and the fear associated with “failing” completely melts away. It’s true.

{ BONUS: Hidden gems exist. Rochester has them … and I also love Canandaigua! }

  • Main Street: My fav antique shop closed! (But Main St. Canandaigua has some true gems.)

Brande new glass ornaments from Panache. Great for party favors!

be merry, be bright

Make a Pledge to You. Treat yourself this holiday. And give back to your community. This can be your Shop Local Rochester pledge!


#roc the holiday



Shop Local. Happy Birthday Shop Peppermint!!! & Wants v. Don’t Needs.

Happy Birthday ShopPeppermint!!!
Shop Peppermint.
Emma/Model. Tanvi/Owner/Designer. Cooper/Cuddly.

I wanted earrings. Bow earrings. Anchor earrings. Stud earrings. Sunglass earrings. Not all of the above, but some combination therein. And I wanted rings. Dainty rings. Edgy rings. Rings with character. Finally, I wanted bangles. Bangles that bang. Bangles that bling. But I did not–most definitely did not–want all of these things, all at once. What am I to do with 13 new pairs of earrings?? 

Lacquer Bow Set
Faceted Pyramid Studs
Bead, Heart, &Anchor Set

Wants v. Don’t Needs
We all know the concept of: Needs v. Wants. I surmise, we all loathe it. Buy only what you needEat only what you needBlablabla. It implies that what you want, what you desire, matters not. It is unimportant. Inane. What you want is unnecessary. Needs v. Wants. Pfft. We all need the same basic things. What we want is what makes you, you. I say, think not in terms of Needs v. Wants. Think in terms of Wants v. Don’t Needs.
Wayfarer Sunglasses Stud
Matte Rose Stud
Shop Local. A Lesson.
Shop Local & Know Why. Why do we #ShopLocal?? If you remember Go Buy Rochester, you’ll remember that:

Studies prove every dollar spent with a locally-owned merchant has three times the impact of a dollar spent at a big box store.

To #ShopLocal is to make a direct investment in your local community and to buy items that have a story. Often times, the goods we buy in our local shops are made & assembled solely in America. Did you know that a large number of the items in Tanvi Asher’s Shop Peppermint is jewelry from local artists and dresses, blouses, and skirts from her own clothing line, designed by Tanvi & made in NYC?? True fact. In order to appreciate the concept of don’t needs, you must appreciate the value of quality over quantity. I much rather have 1 quality, cute, ring than 2 of the same assembly-line carbon copies made out of who-knows-what-material in who-knows-where-working conditions.
Shop Peppermint. #ShopLocal.
Top: Local Artisan Ring. Pretzel-Heart Bangle
Bottom: Glasses Frames Earrings.
Know What You Want. 
(And How Many.)
I’m on a budget. At one point I realized that if I didn’t sign-up for 10 work-out classes (which is in addition to yoga), I had $100 extra for shopping. …
On Saturday, April 13, ShopPeppermint celebrated their 1st Birthday. Who doesn’t love a minty birthday?? Honestly. … Obviously, this “extra” hundo-was going straight to the candy bowl. More specifically, it was getting dropped on some jewels. As noted, Shop Peppermint boasts a lovely selection of local artisans’ work–double #ShopLocal!–as well as kitschy trunk-show products. From geometric necklaces and earrings, in mediums ranging from wood to mixed-metals and textures, and whimsical earrings, like ampersands and glasses frames, to bangle bracelets in silver and gold, with rose buds & pretzel hearts: never before had I partook in these delicacies. Birthday weekend was my shot.
Taken from My Bedroom.
Locally Made Chevron Necklace.
Truly, I wanted only 1 of each: earring, bracelet, ring, necklace. So I did an experiment. I tested myself.
The Test.
Everyone knows that you can buy a cute pair of neon orange matte rose studs at Forever21 for a-buck-80. It’s absurd. And 4 lacquered bow studs in a set for just $3 more. Ridiculous. Because shipping is free once you spend $50+ and because I budgeted $100, I decided to do it make a wish list. (That I titled Summertime Sassiness.) I wanted to test myself. BarbaraEllen, the #ShopLocal purveyor & self-proclaimed RocOPhile herself: would she succumb to the allure of rock bottom prices & quantity inexcess?? Or would she be won by her true love, local buys & quality character?
Nautical Stud Set
13 – pairs of earrings (set of 3 anchors for Nicole Jaclyn)
Mixed Metal Heart Ring
Double Cross Ring
2 – rings
0 – bangles
Bicycle Print
1 – T (Don’t really need. Just needed to get to $50.)
Denim Shorts
1 – denim short (Samesies.)
2 – totes (1 for a work friend who really didn’t want it & another for a photographer friend who is an artist and a genius wherein this bag wouldn’t do justice as a gift to thank her for her art of me!!)
Smile Camera Tote
Sunglasses Clad Tote
In order to spend $50 & get my free shipping, I had to buy all of this. Thirteen pairs of earrings!? Even if I did give away 3 of them, what am I to do with 10 extra pairs?? Where am I even to put them around my bedroom??? How on earth do I decide which pair to wear during the day. I’m late enough as it is getting out of the door each morning. I mean really. We know what would have ended up to most of that haul, don’t we?? …Don’t we.
Don’t Needs.
Waste & Excess.
Bonus Buy!!
Sleeveless Sheer Blouse.
That’s the point. We don’t. We do not use it. It lies around, maybe gets 1 use probably not even for 1 full season. Qualifier: I will say this. If I knew that 3 other of my friends really wanted bow earrings as well, well then yes, I would buy that 4 pack. And we could split them and be best friends forever. Aw. But so far as I know, none of my friends want the left overs of a bonus pack of earrings that I buy for myself from Forever21. So there goes that. Truly, I can not handle having all of that meaningless jewelry around me. And so, when I spend just about 10x as much money on a meaningful ring because it is made from a local artist and sold at locally owned shop, because I can afford not to buy so much crap, well, I feel pretty great.
Dave “Bippy” Boyer the Caricaturist.
Right: From Left – Nicole, Danielle, BarbaraEllen.
I am stoked about my haul from Shop Peppermint during its Birthday Weekend. First, let me say, I went twice in 1 day. Let me also say that Tanvi served vegan cake pops & red velvet cupcakes, on cake platters covered in mint (get it?) colored fondant, with honey-mustard pretzels and champagne, freshly followed-up by any amount of mint you could ever savor. All beneath a swirl of red and white balloons. My first trip began around 1pm, just as the caricaturist, a jovial and personable artist who goes by Bippy–Yes. Tanvi hired a caricaturist. Yes. We were the first to partake.–arrived and slews of patrons made Peppermint abuzz. My second trip, around 6pm and just an hour or so before Shop Peppermint closed, was greeted with just the same amount of red velvet cupcakes and champagne as when I arrived 5 hours earlier. …Not because no one ate nor drank. Because Tanvi’s a shop owner, a designer, a party planner, and a host.
Birthday Cake & Champagne!!
Vegan Cake Pops. Red Velvet Cake Cups.
Minty Fresh Party.
Guess how many Peppermints.
Complementary Beach Grab-Bag!!
Truly, a Happy Birthday to Shop Peppermint, one of the most locally minded #ShopLocal boutiques in town. Love the clothes. Love the jewels. Love the bag. Love the boutique. Love getting what I want & what I need. And Love that I’m going VIP to Peppermint Origins: Sewn Seeds Fashion Show!!!
Happy 1st Birthday to ShopPeppermint!!
(And be on the look out for the new blogazine #Rocstache.)



Save v. Spend. Lacquer. Varnish. Nail Polish.

Lacquer. Varnish. Nail Polish.
Varnish. Lacquer. Nail Polish.
Fraction of @nicolejaclyn ‘s collection.
My friend Nicole is a nail polish goddess. This babe has all of your higher-end drug store varnishes, like OPI & Essie, plus couture lines, like Butter London, and Indielines (!), like NinjaPolish, in a smattering of mattes & sparkles, in every hue of every single shade possible. Cue: I-am-overwhelmed-smile.
She taught me SO much. And, yes, there is much to learn about nail polish. Especially because you have to spend & spend wisely.
Know what products to buy. Which ones to try. Where to buy. And … which ones to rent??
Yes. You will end up shelling between $6.50 and $9 per pop on the “less” expensive, though equally as lavish, brands. Simply put, brands like OPI, in comparison to those associated with drug store make-up lines, have more lacquer. More lacquer means truer hue & lasting finish. Think about it this way. Spend on the most expensive hair product, and you might be $40 in the hole for a humidity-defying spray. Spend on a worth-it varnish, and $6.50-$9 is a manageable expenditure. An investment? Absolutely. Not only did you skip the salon but, let’s be honest, when was the last time you ever used 1 entire bottle of lacquer? (…Never.) Chances are, you buy a bottle, & you only buy it once.
Only bottle Nicole’s bought more than once.
And it was because the previous bottle dried-up.
So, what are you saving on? The manicure. Truly, $10-30 savings depending upon the salon & you have the polish for touch-ups & do-agains. Also, distributor. As much as I adore salons & secretly wish Icould live inside of one, Nicole highlyrecommends not buying in-salon or drug store. On average, both amount to between $2-3 extra. Beauty supply stores like Beauty Plus Salon, CosmoProf, or Ulta, and sometimes even larger grocery chains, like Wegmans, have the fairest prices. Shop around & shop wisely.
The true key to spending (wisely) on nail polish? Know What Products to Buy Basics:
Base Coat: CND(sticky coat) or Orly (bonder)
Varnish: OPI, Essie, or your favorite mid-priced designer brand (i.e. Zoya, China Glaze)
Top Coat:Seche Vite (fast drying)
You need a sticky/bonding base & a fast drying top. Need.
You don’t need this many. But that would be awes.
Possibly as awesome as this rug beneath Nicole’s varnishes.
Keep in mind, couture lines do exist. Niche brands like Butter London or brand icons like Chanel & Dior run for much more than $7-9. While these shades glide-on like velvet over chocolate, they are super expensive. However, with emerging rent-&-try trends like Lacquerous, nail-onistas might grab the best of both Save v. Spend worlds.
Nicole’s Mini Series. (She knows them by name.)
Minis are great way to delve into designer & color.
Inevitably, the miser in all of us rears its head & wants to know if it is at all possible to save. Yes. Of course. For super trendy colors or hues for trendy nail art, go inexpensive. Wet ‘n’ Wild & Rimmel, while more prone to chipping, have tailored brushes for even coating. And, hey, buy 2 while you’re at it.
Go Team!
Base, 2 – 3 Varnish, Top.
From Left: Barbara, Nicole. Shannon.