Friday, January 8, 2010

Ruche - Anthro for the Common Girl

I don't remember the first time I walked into an Anthropologie, but I walked back out a changed woman.

Maybe the Demeter "Tomato" perfume had gone straight to my head, I don't know, but I began to fancy myself a gal who frequented polo tournaments and holidayed in Nantucket. I lunched at The Ivy and aided in humanitarian efforts in the mountainous regions of Argentina. I was quirky. Girly. Rich.

Trouble was, I had a rough go of reconciling my Pretend Me with my Real Me, who is only 30% quirky, 40% girly and 5% rich.

It took me years upon years to fully actualize the heart of the matter - I wanted to buy the illusion of Anthropologie. I began to understand that I could satisfy my 40% girly side with a flowery frock from TJ Maxx and spend the $128 dollars I saved on things I would actually wear in my normal, unglamorous life. Or, I could just not spend those dollars at all. Or, I could bump up my weekly grocery budget by roughly $2.

That's an extra bag of Santitas White Corn Tortilla Chips, baby. I ain't playin'.

Of course, I will continue to drool on every Anthro catalog that darkens my door. I will admire the photography, the sets, the exotic locales, the edgy haircuts, the angsty girls.

My heart rate will still momentarily quicken when I walk through those carved wooden doors. I may even buy something from the back room, or, you know, a cabinet pull or two.

Meanwhile, I've discovered Ruche. I've never actually purchased anything, but I've had five or six gratifying rounds of Pretend Shopping, so it's certainly worth sharing.

Much of the stuff seems a little young to me, but some of it is deliciously earthy and feminine and almost, very nearly affordable.

Go on, poke around a little. Let me know if you agree.

bookworm knitted sweater vest
Bookworm knitted sweater vest
(How badly do I want to button this up over a pinstriped oxford?)

potato sac ruffled linen dress
(This was out of stock in my size when I found it, or I may very well have made my inaugural Ruche purchase.)

quilted flower patch dress
(Swoony Prairie Yum.)

strawberry bouquet necklace
(No clue what I'd wear this with, but it speaks to me all the same.)

37 comments:

  1. I'm with ya sister. I am definitly an Anthro girl in my mind but a Target girl to my core. :)
    That necklace is BEYOND. I could find 500 things to wear that with including PJ's...it's too pretty. :)

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  2. This post couldn't be more right on! I love Anthro too, but holy cow, it's good to know that I'm not the only one in blogland who doesn't want to spend that much on clothes! I LOVE clothes, but just not that darn much! I will however, have to check out the other shop.
    Have a great weekend.

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  3. I love Anthro too, but the idea for coughing up that kind of cash for clothing makes my tunny turn! I find Tj maxx too has very similar things at more than half price!

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  4. Cute!! I feel you on being swept up by other lives. Just the patients I take care of make me feel ashamed of myself that I was born into middle-class. It's a constant annoyance at work. ;-)

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  5. I would look like a dork in any of those numbers. You, on the other hand, would wear them quite well.

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  6. I've never heard of Ruche but after checking it out it's now one of my faves :)

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  7. I just killed an hour searching the store! I had never heard of it! Love it... to bad we are on "supper-dupper lock down spending mode"... again. I love the slouch boots, but they are out of my size!!! Which is probably a good thing!

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  8. As I sit here, blurry eyed, and wearing my REI fleece pants(pair for the year that I wear whenever I can)I'm laughing so hard. I LOVE the book knitter sweater, & can oh so see the pin-stripe shirt, & you ( or me or any of our friends) standing in your cornfield, with a groovy haircut, and the makeup(must have super groovy eye makeup) to go with. we have angst all over our faces, and, well... we have issues, because, who's going to make the .50 box of Kraft mac & cheese while we pose in the cornfield? I'll just continue debating whether to splurge on the walmart verseion of UGG boots, & sorting my thriftstore t's in my drawer using my Anthro-drawer pull(singular). with ya':)

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  9. I LOVE that necklace. Out of your little list there it would be the only thing that would look good on me. lol

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  10. Just have to say I agree with everything you said!:) You are so funny and I need to go check out Ruche.

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  11. i purchased a skirt and shirt; top; blouse...whatever, at Ruche when it was a fairly new site...super cute but be fore warned, I think most of the the clothes are Junior sizes so a medium isn't what I consider a true medium! I hadn't looked at Ruche lately so hopped on over, must say the prices were more of a real bargain back when.

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  12. Cute, cute stuff at Ruche. I agree, the Anthro life is beautiful, but not really for everyday farm living. Admittedly, I have splurged on their knobs and pulls with no regret though.
    Does Ruche sell cheese?

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  13. Thanks so much for sharing! I LOVE just about everything! : )
    I think that the denim flowerpot pocket dress might be a great reward after I lose my first 20 lbs! : )

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  14. I love Ruche too! I have had several pretend shopping trips there. But at 47, I suspect that many of their items would look too young for me. And I could just MOVE INTO Anthro. I occaisionally buy a small item there, but mostly its just dreamy to walk around and sniff the wonderful candles they have burning, and get ideas.

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  15. I love it all, especially that bookworm vest! Like Susie said in that first comment, I'm Anthro in my head and Target in reality.

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  16. Maybe it's my NyQuil hangover, but that vest is like a bad acid trip. Now, this is coming from the girl that wear 'loungewear' 70% of her life, so what do I know. My vote is you up your grocery budget and buy the chips. :-D

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  17. Ruche. I know, right? But you weren't supposed to tell the whole world about it because now I'll never be able to find my size when I pretend shop.

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  18. Great find! I experience that false "I'm rich and fabulous" feeling every time I get my hair cut. The salon is in a department store that spills you right out into the jewelry floor after riding a couple of floors in a mirrored elevator, admiring your bouncy new-do from all angles and breathing in the just-shampooed smell. I fall for it every time.

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  19. Hey- great to find your blog...I am also a farm-girl! I love to read other farm wives take on the country life. If you'd like to check out my blog, feel free... www.thefarmertakesawife.blogspot.com It is mainly about farm/country life in the south.
    Your dinners look amazing, going to have to try those little meatloaves :) Take care!

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  20. Thank for the LOL. Thanks for the torture. I love that store. But, I am weak and can not resist. So I don't even dare go in there..I admire your strength..LOL

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  21. Loved the picks, esp. the vest and the necklace. I can see why you likey. Never heard of it, very cool. ps. Your blog popped up when I turned on R's computer (as a saved link that was up previously) so I think he may be spying your blog, although I can't figure out how he would have known the link. The mystery!

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  22. oooh just what i needed. i couldn't agree with you more. i wish i had a way to just put a little pink check mark by everything in your post...yes, yes, yes. thank you . it is so easy to drool, imagine, wish, pine away for... yes anthro is inspiring and alluring, and i wouldn't turn down a shopping spree--but i can't devote so much time to drooling as i have been.

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  23. I would be happy in any of those! You have a wonderful blog. I don't know how I found it; I'd bookmarked it in my travels early in the week. But now I'm following along...#320!

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  24. My daughter shops there. I went on a trip to watch her with a personal shopper once and about had a heart attack over the total. I called my husband to tell him how much she had spent and he said "you didn't pay for it, did you?" ha! Those tomato candles are lovely. And that necklace is totally sweet. You could wear it with your summery dresses or your pink cashmere sweaters! Cute blog!

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  25. You are TOO "swoony" for me girl. I don't think I'd ever been "swoony" enough for this. It is GORGEOUS none-the-less... teach me!

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  26. I have ordered from Ruche also. I agree with another comment that the clothes run small. Just order the next size up.

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  27. Do I live under a rock...am I that old and out of touch that I have not EVER heard of this delightfulness??? Thank you for enlightening me, bringing me into 2010, it's good to have finally arrived!

    Oooooo, and thanks for the recipe...lunch be MINE! Let you know how it goes with the sandwich loving man of mine.

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  28. I love your post. We have no Anthro here. I go in when I am in Chicago. No sadness really in the clothing department- I get painton everything. But those dresses would be adorable on my teen girls...I will be checking out Ruche. Thanks for the tip! And keep it real.

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  29. I just found Ruche the other day too...and oh how that definitely fits my pocketbook about a million times better...I haven't actually ordered anything yet but I cannot wait to do so sometime:) Your items you picked I love by the way:)

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  30. Farmgirl,
    Hope your having a wonderful Sunday! I've just nominated you for the Kreativ Blogger award! Please visit my site for info!
    Blessings Michelle

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  31. Yes! I have recently found out about Ruche too and love it.

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  32. Couldn't agree with you more, on everything. Love Anthro...can't imagine spending that much money though. I've window shopped Ruche more times than I can count! I totally agree that it's the "common girl's anthro"...been telling people about it any chance I get!

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  33. This post was right up my alley...I can't spend that much on clothes when I don't do my hair as often as I should..ya know cause cute clothes go with cute hair, if you ain't got one why have the other..and apparently I have lost any sense of real direction in this comment and should be going now...but i do have to say, i love the back room!

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  34. I LOVE this post! I too am in deep like with anthro, but I'm poor...it's sad. I'll have to check out this other store. Your picks are super cute.

    -FringeGirl

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  35. You definitely hit the mark with this post. My daughter and I look at the catalogs until they fall apart, but the first and only purchase I made from Anthropolgie was a set of pot holders. Exciting, huh? I'm consoling myself by browsing the Ruche website. Cute stuff!!!

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  36. OH what have you done! I am now obsessed with getting the potato sack dress! I live on a farm too, the perfect farm dress. Does Ruche send out a catalog? OH my I am going to have to start selling alot of Lollibags!!

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