An addict in the making

Hi, my name is Val and I think I have an addiction.

No, it’s not meth or heroin. Or even alcohol, though I do LOVE me some tasty drinks!

My addiction appears to be subscription boxes. It started with Yarnbox, shortly after I learned how to crochet. Then, because I wanted to learn how to knit, I tried out KnitCrate, which provided eight lessons with some very detailed videos and instructions. And lo, I was happy, but then I ended up with too much yarn. Also, I was itching to create other things outside of fiber arts, so I subscribed to Darby Smart. And then I wanted a fun variety of stuff, so that led to Peaches and Petals.

The latter was short-lived. Shipping took forever and I wasn’t impressed with the majority of the items. Darby Smart lasted a little longer, but I became disillusioned with the “project” was a tiny fairy garden for Halloween / fall. It took me all of 5 minutes to assemble. I kept it for a little while longer, but eventually dropped it in favor of New Hobby Box.

For the most part, I loved this subscription box. I love the idea behind it. My tagline on Twitter is “Always learning something new…” and I think that describes me well. I used to be overwhelmed with the idea of trying to learn new things. I can remember a blog post of days past where I lamented not having enough time to learn how to knit or crochet, but I’ve done both, and I think I do them reasonably well. I’ve played around with painting with acrylics and I’ve had enough success that I don’t think I totally suck.

So, something called New Hobby Box seemed right up my alley. I very much enjoyed the book binding box. I would definitely do that again. But the following month was wire wrapping and there were all kinds of issues. First, the video link was wrong. Then there was a video in double speed with no sound. Finally, they got the audio added, but it was apparent that the double speed was intentional, and honestly, it made the video useless. I still haven’t done anything with the wire wrapping box, because I’ve yet to find a good tutorial for it.

I ended up canceling this one, at least for now, because I feel like I have enough things to explore and don’t need to spend money on acquiring new to-do list items. Especially since now I’ve discovered Stitch Fix and Dia & Co!

I’m a plus sized woman. I’m also long-legged and even though I’m probably starting to shrink (hello 50, you SOB), I still top out at around 5′ 10 or so. In the fashion world, I can either be plus-sized or tall, but apparently not both. You can imagine that this creates problems. Also, because I have these two things working against me (oh, and did I mention I wear a size 11 shoe?), I’ve never found clothes shopping to be a pleasurable experience. Online shopping has made it easier, but hasn’t helped me figure out what looks good.

When my son got married, that was the first time that I spent a day with a girlfriend to just get an idea of what flattered me and what didn’t. The problem there is that I don’t have any close friends who enjoy shopping that live close by enough to do this thing on a regular basis.

Enter Stitch Fix. I can fill out my profile, tell them my likes and dislikes, link a Pinterest board of what catches my eye and basically see what they can do to help me help myself. Stitch Fix has been around for a while, but didn’t carry plus sizes until recently. Dia & Co is specifically geared toward plus sized women, so I decided I had to try them as well.

And the best part is that I can text photos of me in what they send to the two ladies whose opinions I trust the most. It’s *almost* like shopping with them in person. The only thing missing is the break for tasty drinks!

I purchased the whole Dia & Co box, because it was more cost effective (I really liked 4 out of 5 items–the last one…meh, but it basically cost me $2 more to keep it). I kept two items from my first Stitch Fix. I would have kept a third if it had fit better. But I was able to let my stylist know why a couple of the items didn’t work for me, so I look forward to the next box. I’m looking forward to both boxes.

In the process of all of this, I started searching for box reveals/reviews and found myself fascinated with YouTube videos of various box reviews. I had no idea this was a thing! My only complaint is that the expressions, “Super cute” and “super excited” are vastly overused. But otherwise, I get a kick out of seeing what people get.

I even got The Boyfriend to try Stitch Fix! He’s a little more cost conscious than I am, so he only kept a pair of pants that looked fantastic on him. Like many of the reviewers I’ve seen, he has the ability to go into a place like TJMaxx or Target and pretty much be able to find something that looks great. My response to that is literally, “Pfffft. Target doesn’t even carry shoes in my size!”

All of these boxes sort of play into my Year of 50, when I think about it. And honestly, I haven’t been feeling all that great in 2017. So, I’m kind of all about taking care of me and making myself feel good. The clothing boxes are a means to do that.

And thanks to all of those YouTube unboxings, I’ve discovered yet another interesting sounding box: FabFitFun. My first box will be here on Monday. 🙂