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Tale Of The $5 Ruffled Dress

valerie tolosa dress

After a couple of weeks of randomly swinging by thrift stores and leaving empty-handed, I finally hit the jackpot! During a recent lunchtime visit to Housing Works Gramercy, I dug through their $5 rack and discovered a cute ruffled cocktail dress. On the hanger it definitely didn't look like much, and I'm always a little wary of ruffles, but luckily I convinced myself to try it on and it was love at first sight.

thrifted dress
valerie tolosa

The dress is by Valerie Tolosa, who I had previously never heard of, but after Googling her, I found out she's a Filipino-Australian designer with a boutique just outside of Sydney. Surprisingly, a faded tag was still on the dress, showing it had originally retailed for $168.

ruffled dress

I took the dress out for the first time this week, letting the back detailing stand out by pairing it with some simple black wedges ($32, TJ Maxx), also featured here, and some cat-eye sunnies borrowed from Sunita V. Head to toe, this lovely ruffled look came out to $37.


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