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Hello. My name is Andrea and I am addicted to Golden Tote. Seriously, it’s a problem… a really really good (looking) problem.
Knowing I would be in America in May, and celebrating my Golden Birthday at the end of April seemed like great justification for purchasing the May Golden Tote. I previewed the May selections on my blog last month, and have been counting down the days to when my tote would arrive at my parents house in Florida. I also checked out the Golden Tote Facebook Group in the airport as I got off the plane from Australia. That, in addition to the dreams I’ve had about sleeping through the sale, have made me slightly addicted. Not to mention, all the waiting has made me more anxious than I usually am.
Golden Tote is a surprise grab bag service. Each month the girls at Golden Tote pull together a collection of gorgeous clothes and offer two tote sales:
- The $49 Tote: You select one item from the collection and they fill your tote with 1-2 more surprise pieces. You end up with a gorgeous collection of 2-3 items worth up to $200.
- The $149 Tote: You select two items from the collection and they will fill your tote with an additional 3-5 surprise items. When your tote arrives you have a beautiful bag with 5-7 items worth up to a $600 value.
All of the surprise items will be genuine surprises and not something you’ll have seen in their collection, picked specifically for you based on a style profile you fill out. You can also purchase additional items from that month and previous months collections in the online boutique until supplies run out.
When my tote arrived this week (6 hours before it was expected!) you’d think I would have ripped it open and started trying things on, but no, instead I left the box on the kitchen table taped up until after I was done relaxing by the pool and doing my pilates for the day. Am I the only one who works out, showers, and attempts to look decent before trying on clothes? Anyway, I was basically torturing myself – as if I hadn’t been tortured enough by seeing the cute clothes the other ladies in the Golden Tote Facebook Group had been receiving for the previous week.
This month I purchased the $149 tote, and added on an extra item. Later I went back and bought an additional dress from the boutique. I also included in my style profile that I really like wearing dresses, and would be happy to receive any dress, in particular some of the Priddy or Puella dresses I hadn’t received from the previous months.
Here’s how things went when I opened the tote.
The loot looked great and I was super excited to try everything on!… except for the chevron dolman top which is definitely not my style, and was quite bummed to get.
If you have been reading my blog over the past few months you will know I have been on the hunt for a great black maxi dress. This Puella Maxi was put in the May sale and I was so excited as it is a dress sold regularly at Anthropologie, but was being offered for a third of the retail price… basically this dress was a steal! As other Golden Toters started to receive their May items a huge facebook discussion broke out over this dress being sheer. At first I was thinking, “ok, so what it’s sheer, I’ll get a cute bralette to wear under it and call it a day.”
Wrong! This dress is super sheer, and is much better served as a nightgown. I brought both dresses I ordered (see emerald below) to Aerie and after trying on with every bralette in the store determined there was no way to make this not look like I was wearing underwear or feeling naked despite a bra, bralette, and dress on. According to my mom (who took all my photos) this dress/sweater combo made me look “matronly” and that is really not the look I was trying to go for in a black maxi dress. If it hadn’t been so sheer I would have removed the sweater, and that would have cut down on how heavy this dress makes me look.
I wanted to share with you this shot so you could see how sheer the fabric is on the dress. I held the dress in my hands and you can see not only my hands through the material, but also my legs… and the dress wasn’t even touching my legs during the photo. I couldn’t believe it!
The moment I saw this dress in the sale I knew I had to have it! It’s cute and can be dressed up or down for the summer. The belt doesn’t come with it, so I added one from my mom’s closet (all my belts are in Australia). The top on this dress is not forgiving whatsoever so it was a bit tight for a girl like me with a larger chest. I also wish it was maybe an inch longer, as the lining of the skirt comes up a little higher than the actual skirt fabric and for me just makes it feel like the dress is short. A larger size would be perfect for this one!
Halfway through shooting this dress, I decided I didn’t like my shoe and belt combo, they just don’t go together. I decided to dress it down with my regular flip flops regardless of how dingy they look and my dog couldn’t help but join in on the photos.
Just yesterday I found the exact same dress on ShopRuche.com. Currently Ruche is having a Memorial Day Weekend sale and everything is 25% off. I purchased the dress in a size large, and bought this white rope belt from J.Crew Factory (everything 50% off this weekend) to go with it. I will post the whole outfit later this summer.
I was really excited about the Priddy dress Golden Tote was going to surprise us with this month. Everyone who ordered the $149 tote would receive this dress in blue or a grey and white eyelet dress. Let’s start with my favorite thing about this dress, the solid blue fabric is incredibly soft! I loved the feel of the fabric so much I want all my clothes to be made from it! I had quite a few things I disliked about it.
1. It’s incredibly short, like too short to wear in public without a slip or to anywhere other than the beach as a swim cover up.
2. If the maxi dress wasn’t “matronly” enough this one adds a good bit of bulk to me due to the boxy shape, just not flattering for my body type at all.
3. The final thing, the striped fabric on the top made my mom exclaim, “this looks like a prison dress.” Well gosh mom, I thought it was kind of cute (not on me), but now I am rethinking the fabric all together.
I disliked this top from the moment I saw it as a sneak preview on the Golden Tote instagram page… and then I received it in my tote and disliked it even more. Then I put it on…
Ok, so it is actually really cute! It is totally not my style, and if I were to keep it I cannot imagine pulling out of my closet often because it really isn’t a pattern I would wear. The cut and style, however, are great! I like this much more than I did when I first pulled it out of the bag.
Golden Tote gives you he option to “Add On” additional items from the boutique for a special price when purchasing a tote and this crochet top was calling my name. A definite must have for my closet! Thank goodness this piece was an add on because it was my favorite item from the whole shipment!
The open crochet back makes it perfect for the hot Florida and Australia summers. When I ordered I thought I would need to pair a tank underneath but the detail of the crochet changes at a perfect spot to camouflage my bra and keep this as airy as it was intended. I plan on getting lots of use out of this one!
Although I haven’t been able to find this exact top anywhere (Golden Tote is sold out), I have found a few similar tops (Crochet Trimmed Top, Crochet Back Sweater, Crochet Trimmed Dress, Open Stitch Back Tank) at The LOFT and everything is 40% through Memorial Day! .
A couple days after the May Golden Tote sale began I was kicking myself for not including an Emerald Puella Maxi in my order. Thinking ahead to a hot Australian Christmas this December I thought a green maxi would be great to wear to keep cool and remain classy. Unfortunately, this maxi has the same issue as the black one above: sheer. I threw a sweater over so you can’t see through the top, but again, the intention was to wear this maxi during the summer without a sweater over it.
So what happened to the final two items? They fit so badly that if I showed you what they looked like you would think this is an add for Victoria’s Secret. When the gorgeous maxi didn’t fit I was crushed! It is by far the most gorgeous dress I have ever seen or received from Golden Tote. I did find a similar one at J.Crew Factory I am contemplating ordering as everything up through Memorial Day is 50% in store and online. I may have stopped in the store and tried on/ordered a few things on my way home from Orlando Thursday, but I will show you those in my June Wish List out next week.
Overall, I wasn’t too please with my tote this month, and returned the entire tote. I did have the option to trade/sell the items in my tote in the Facebook group, however, I opted to return the whole tote and keep the crochet top which was an add on item from the boutique.
This month of disappointment isn’t enough to make me stop shopping Golden Tote, but, it was a slight wake up call that I might get too excited about it upfront and not be prepared for the disappointment that comes with items not working out. I have had success with my three previous totes.
Here’s how I have styled some of my pieces from previous Golden Totes over the past month.
1. Helping to build fences on Ben’s family’s farm in Australia.
Jacket, November Golden Tote. Jeans, American Eagle. Shirt, Target. Boots, Spool72 (sold out).
2. Celebrating Cinco de Mayo in Australia. Sweater, November Golden Tote. Jeans, American Eagle.
3. Stopping at an UGG factory for new winter boots on the drive home from Narromine.
Dress, February Golden Tote. Boots, Two Sheep.
4. Memorial Day picnic at my Grandma’s home. Shirt, February Golden Tote. Shorts, J.Crew Factory.
5. Vacation in Port Macquarie, Australia. Dress, February Golden Tote. Jacket, American Eagle.
I haven’t decided if I will purchase in June from Golden Tote . On the one hand I will be in America and able to receive one more tote (shipping to Australia is $25, and is much harder to trade and sell overseas); on the other hand, I just purchased a few things from J.Crew Factory this weekend and that might hold me over for the summer. There is always the $49 tote to consider.
As always, when Golden Tote releases new June spoilers I will preview them on the blog and let you know what I decide to do for the month.
What did you get in your tote this month?
Did I make the right decision to send the tote back?
Let me know in the comments below!