Saturday, December 24, 2011

Sponsored Post: Holiday and New Year's Eve Dresses at the OutNet

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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Recessionista's $200.00 Groupon Gift Card Giveaway for Christmas

Enter the $200.00 Groupon Gift Card Giveaway on our sister site, The Recessionista Blog. Groupon is one of our favorite savings and deals sites.   We bet you use it too, so enter and tell us what deals you love on Groupon for the holidays! Contest is open only to US residents.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Thred-Up, Community Site for Moms Enables Swapping for Kids' Clothes and Toys

A good way to stay on your holiday budget is by swapping, not shopping.  Especially for kids today and clothes. ThredUP (www.thredup.com) is an online site where moms can swap baby and kids clothes, toys, books and more.  Check this site out. It’s a convenient way to get rid of the stuff you no longer need (once outgrown) and also a fun, inexpensive and green way to get some new-to-you things.  The way it works is simple, thredUP sends you boxes to pack up your stuff in (free of charge).  Simply list your boxes on the site, and when another mom picks them, send them free of charge (thredUP will even schedule an at-home pick-up).  You can browse other moms’ boxes and purchase for just $5 plus shipping.  Visit the site to check out the Holiday Toy Swap happening now.

Versace Cruise Collection Coming to H&M eCommerce site in Europe Jan 19



Pictured: A few pieces from the new Versace for H&M Cruise Collection via H&M
The newly announced Versace for H&M Cruise Collection, is all about color and good vibrations. There are bright sundresses, strappy sandals and a gorgeous Elizabeth Taylor lavender top (see above). To see more of the collection, click on over to British Vogue.  According to Vogue UK  the collection will be sold on the eCommerce enabled portions of HM.com starting January 19th, 2012.  Since we don't have an HM.com site with online ordering in the US, American fashionistas won't be able to buy it direct from HM.  We'll have to look for our Versace for H&M Cruise pieces on eBay or call our friends in Europe and ask them to buy for us and ship. Of course, if the eCommerce part of the H&M website crashes like it did during the first Versace for H&M launch, no one will get them.  I'll be calling my chums in the UK to see if they can find the lavender top for me!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Join a Fashionable #CharlieBrownChristmas Twitter Party with Real Housewife Kyle Richards on Dec. 13


To celebrate Christmas and the new iPhone and iPad app Charlie Brown Christmas, the publisher, Loud Crow Interactive, is having a Twitter party.  You are all invited by me to join the Party. Prizes will be given away every 10 minutes during the party. Here are the deets!

Join the Twitterverse for a holiday Twitter party & on Tues, Dec. 13th 2:00PM to 4:00PM EST/11:00AM to 1:00PM PST; use the hashtag

Prizes will be awarded during the party on Dec. 13th,  2011.  Before the party, you can join a giveaway for some Junk Food tees with the Peanuts characters on them, by clicking here if you are on Twitter, and here if you are on Facebook. 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

A Bel-Air Treat from the Luxe Hotel on Sunset: The Candy Cane Martini

If you're like me, you might find the holidays a little,er, stressful at times.  Don't even start me on Black Friday stress. When people are shopping defensively with pepper spray, it's time to chillax and step back.  There's nothing like a chilled martini, beautifully presented in a rimmed glass, to exercise and comfort a hand weary from carrying shopping bags. Believe me, I know :)  That's why I want to share this little pick me up  known as the Candy Cane Martini from the Luxe Hotel with all of my readers.  Be forewarned though, it packs a punch with Vodka, Creme de Cocoa, and Grenadine superbly mixed together.  You can make this fabulous concoction at home or you can have it at the exclusive Luxe Hotel on Sunset Boulevard, or, I like to do both.  I can make it at home when I need a holiday special or I can have one at the Luxe when I'm doing my Hollywood/Bel-Air touring and shopping on Sunset.  It all works out.

You know if Gloria Swanson was still hanging around on Sunset Boulevard she'd be sipping these during the holidaze.

Here's the secret holiday martini mix.


Candy Cane Martini Recipe

Shake 1.5 oz Tito's Handmade Vodka and .5oz White Crème De Cocoa Layer the Crème de Menthe and Grenadine on the bottom of a tall martini glass. Add the Vodka mix to the martini glass and serve
with cinnamon-dipped rim and candy cane garnish. 


* Served exclusively at the Luxe Sunset Boulevard Hotel

Pictured: The Luxe Sunset Pool where many a Candy Cane Martini has visited.

If you haven't been to the Luxe, and you're traveling to Los Angeles (or a local looking for a getaway) check this gem out. The Luxe Sunset Boulevard Hotel sits on seven acres of lush, manicured property perched a top Brentwood and Bel Air. Local attractions include the famed Getty Center, Bel Air, shopping on Sunset (huge H&M store) nightlife (House of Blues, The Roxy), Hollywood sights (Mann's Chinese Theater, the Wax Museum and Musso & Frank Grill) and the Santa Monica or Malibu beaches. The hotel makes for a great camp out -- chic bargainista style of course. Our staff really can't do tents or sleeping bags :) Look for discounts by checking the hotel specials page.  Image how good that candy cane martini might taste sitting poolside during an LA style Christmas? :)

Los Angeles: Divine Design Charity Shopping Event this Week



Project Angel Food's Divine Design starts this week in Los Angeles with General Shopping Days from December 9th through the 12th. This unique shopping extravaganza offers fabuless fashion, home, beauty and gift items at 50-90% off. Check their website for details and tickets at Divine by Design.  Be sure to get the $10.00 off discount coupon  offered on the website page. Click here for details about the Gala Opening Event and VIP shopping party. The sale benefits a cause that is near & dear to my heart: Project Angel Food. Project Angel Food is a free meal-delivery program that serves men, women and children debilitated by HIV/AIDS, cancer, and other life-threatening illnesses throughout Los Angeles County. The program literally brings nourishment to the needy. And this week, it will bring retail nourishment to holiday shoppers looking for a bargain. Over 200 designers contributed to last year's sale. Featured designers @ Divine Design include: BCBG, LAMB, Ports 1961, Trina Turk and many more. The sale features men's clothing (Ted Baker), children's clothes & toys, plus designer brands favored by savvy shoppers everywhere.

Monday, November 28, 2011

California: Rebecca Minkoff Bi-annual Sample Sale




The Rebecca Minkoff bi-annual sample sale is coming up on in two California locations this week.  There will be sales in both San Francisco and Los Angeles.  Following are the details.

San Francisco
When:
Sat 12/3 11 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Where:
Madrone Studios
1417 15th Street, San Francisco, CA

Los Angeles
When:
“V.I.P. Night” Thurs 12/1   4 p.m.- 9 p.m.
Open to the public:
Fri  12/2  10 a.m.- 7 p.m.
Sat  12/3  10 a.m.- 7 p.m.
Sun  12/4  11 a.m.-  6 p.m.

Where:
Rebecca Minkoff
4661 Hollywood Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90046

Below are examples of what will be at the sale:
  • Boyfriend Leather Cross-bodyRetail price: $295Sale price: $178
  • Quilted Leather Flame SatchelRetail price: $495Sale price: $272
  • Endless Love Striped Straw/Leather Tote Retail price: $250 Sale price: $137
  • Delhia Silk Draped DressRetail price: $298 Sale price: $160
  • Brigitte Silk Bustier DressRetail price: $350Sale price: $190
  • Foxy Strappy Cut-out Cork/Leather Wedge Retail price: $295 Sale price: $160
  • Trott Cut-out Wedge w/ Embossed Stingray Leather Retail price: $375 Sale price: $200
  • M.A.B. Flats- Leather w/ Haircalf Trim Retail price: $185 Sale price: $100
  • Cheetah Print Leather Make-up Pouch Retail price: $75 Sale price: $40

Friday, November 25, 2011

Sole Society: The Way to Share Shoe Savings with Friends

If you like shoes, and want to get some good deals on the latest fashions, you might want to check out online shoes shopping club Sole Society.  The selection includes boots, flats and heels depending on your self selected fashion profile. If you're not already a member, join here by using my invite.  Use code HOLIDAY10 at check out to get $10.00 off your first purchase.  Since the shoes are already discounted, this is a really good deal.  If you invite friends, and 3 friends purchase, then you have the opportunity to earn a free pair of shoes.

In honor of Cyber Monday (Monday, November 28), the biggest online shopping day of the year, Sole Society (www.solesociety.com) is offering 30% off of all items within six online “closets” expertly curated by fashion mavens, including Marlien Rentmeester (West Coast Editor, Lucky Magazine), Jess Zaino (Stylist and Blogger, Glamour.com) and Sydne Summer (Stylist/Host/Editor-in-Chief, ThinkThruFashion.com). Each “closet” represents each lady’s unique take on fashion, allowing shoppers to easily hone in on the perfect shoes and bags to complete their holiday looks.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

London, England GUESS INVITES YOU TO AN EXCLUSIVE EVENT


GUESS is pleased to announce an exclusive party event at the GUESS Regent Street store to celebrate the launch of their holiday party and Christmas collections. The in-store extravaganza will go on for three days and will take place on Friday 25th through Sunday 27th November 2011 from 10am-5pm each day.


Come in store for fabulous hairstyling tips from Cloud Nine, nail treats, indulgent delights from Hotel Chocolat, fabulous Cosmopolitan cocktails supplied by Chase Marmalade Vodka and much more. 

DJs will be spinning tracks and top fashion will also be on hand to advise how to wear the up-to-the-minute styles and trends and how to jazz up your party outfit with must have accessories.

So put on your finest and join the GUESS party! Exclusively at the Regent Street GUESS store located at 162-168 Regent Street, London.

GUESS Regent Street store will also offer 30% off purchases when you join their mailing list – 25/26/27 November only.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Escada, yes Escada, and Betsey Johnson on Sale today at eBay's Fashion Vault



eBay is opening the Fashion Vault today with some good deals: savings on luxury brand Escada plus Betsey Johnson.  I like both brands and they are distinctively different looks.  Betsey Johnson is Boho bright and romantic. Escada is a sophisticated, upscale look.  My head turns every time I pass the Escada shop on Rodeo Drive. Frankly, I am surprised to see a  discount sale on Escada on eBay or anywhere.  Escada is discounted 65% on the sale and Betsey Johnson is 70% off.  The Fashion Vault Sale is open until Nov. 5th.  Look for deals on  Escada knit sweater dresses and silk cocktail dresses for a special evening out.  Click here to get in first, and get the best before it's gone !:)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Los Angeles: Spaphile Study Break event on Oct. 25th Designed to Help Students Find an Internship


If you're a a Student struggling to live on a budget in Los Angeles, you know that it is not easy. That's why you will want to check out the Study Break event.  Spaphile's upcoming event (on Tuesday, Oct. 25 at Aveda Institute in Westwood) for students benefits the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  Spaphile has partnered with Broke Girls Guide and InternQueen to give students the resources to find information about how to live in LA on a budget and resources to find the right internship.  This is a great way for students to get some free tips on how to find and internship, and live frugally while networking and having some fun.

There will be a Q&A with some of the industry's top intern coordinators (from Teen Vogue to BWR Public Relations, to name a few).  There will also be a raffle which will benefit The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Hey, I am no longer a starving student, but this sounds good to me!

There is no entry fee. The hosts will offer complimentary healthy drinks (provided by Activate Drinks), desserts (provided by Sweet Dreamery) and appetizers (provided by BJ's Restaurant).

RSVP at studybreak.evenbrite.com 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

A Show Stopper: Debbie Reynolds Hollywood Costume Exhibit

Two Irenes from MGM
Pictured: Two Costumes by MGM Designer Irene Lentz
A few weeks ago, I discovered the Debbie Reynolds Costume Exhibit currently on display at the Paley Center in Beverly Hills.  I knew Debbie Reynolds had been buying up costumes and props from studios like MGM for years. I knew she was preparing to sell them at auction because I have seen her talking about it on TV shows like Oprah.  What I didn’t know was that for a small fee of $6.00 visitors to the Paley Center can view all these treasures.  The exhibit hasn’t received the attention that the current exhibit of Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry and fashions at MOCA has, but it is every bit as fascinating.  Charlie Chaplin’s bowler hat and the white dress Marilyn Monroe wore in The Seven Year Itch have already been sold, but there are still great pieces on display. (Marilyn's dress sold for a mere 4.6 million US.)

Reynolds costumes
Pictured: Julie Andrew's pantsuit from STAR!  flanked by Doris Day's Dumbo costumes.
Each costume is displayed on mannequin alongside a small monitor displaying the scene from the film where the costume was worn.  You’ll see Julie Andrews beautiful costumes from the movie STAR! along with her acting as Gertrude Lawrence in the film scene.  You’ll view Dean Martin’s tuxedo while you see scenes from his films and hear him singing.  The display technique of the film matched with the costume allows you to experience the full artistry of the costumes and the technique of costume on film. In many cases, the costumes look different in person, than they do on film . Colors look brighter and embellishments are amplified by the film’s lighting and cinematography.

Molly Brown dress
Pictured: Debbie Reynolds gown from The Unsinkable Molly Brown.
The crystals and beading on Debbie Reynolds gown from The Unsinkable Molly Brown were made to  sparkle under film lights.  It was no ordinary task for the designers to make these costumes.  They had to fit  the scene and the lightening as well as the actor or actress who wore the garment.  When you look at the costumes by MGM designers Irene Lentz and Helen Rose, you realize how accomplished they really were as film costume designers.

Going back much further than the MGM lot, there are costumes worn by stage actress Sarah Bernhardt along with some of her art/sculpture.  It’s amazing that Debbie Reynolds was able to find such rarities and preserve them.  If you live in Los Angeles or are visiting Southern California, take the opportunity to see these film artifacts before the rest are auctioned off and no longer available to view by the general public.  The exhibit is open at the Paley Center until Dec. 3, 2011. Thanks to Debbie Reynolds for preserving items from MGM Lot 3, and beyond, for all of us to enjoy.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Bing Opens a Halloween Website to Help Consumers Get Ready


Halloween is in just a few weeks, so it's that time again.  Some of us are preparing our own Halloween looks, or helping kids put their look together.  Halloween is one of the most beloved holidays by children, so it's important for them to have a great costume, whether a scary one or a fashionable one.
According to a recent survey hosted by Bing (the search engine), 43% of respondents are all about "Do It Yourself" DIY costumers this year.  According to the survey, nearly 40 percent of respondents indicated they are abandoning store-bought outfits for a DIY costume, with 43 percent of survey respondents believing that purchasing a Halloween costume you’ll wear for one night is too expensive (nearly a fourfold increase over last year’s 12 percent). In fact, many people are ditching intricate costumes and embracing more “everyman” costumes this year, with Kate Middleton topping the list of celebrity costume picks for women at 47 percent and Edward Cullen ( a vampire from Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series) topping the list for men at 35 percent.

To help adults and teens get the celeb the look, Bing has teamed up with celebrity stylists Rob Zangardi and Mariel Haenn, best known for their work with fashion gurus Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna and Will and Jada Smith, to share their insight on www.BingHalloween.com into looks that fit every type of budget, fashion sense and DIY (Do it Yourself) skill level.
Here are some of their tips that may leave a lasting impression with your friends:
  • Dress like a rock star. Some of our favorite costumes are inspired from what stars wear on stage. One way to really impress everyone at your Halloween party is to find the most classic identifiable look from your favorite artist’s performance or music video and break down the look. Everyone wants to party like a rock star, and now you can actually look the part.
  • Makeup cures all. Makeup and hair styling are a great way to create a fun and easy costume.  If you’re able to master the makeup, the rest of the costume is sure to fall in line. Signature looks of classic rock stars are always fan favorites. Think full- face make up ala KISS Gene Simmons, plus a simple black Tee.
  • Reality TV time When in doubt, go as a reality TV stars. Love them or hate them, some reality stars have become just as recognizable as movie and rock stars.  In many cases, you can impersonate a reality star with minimal expense.

For additional tips and tricks from Zangardi and Haenn and Halloween inspiration, visit http://www.BingHalloween.com.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Judith Ripka and Assouline Giveaway: Enter for a Chance to Win Ripka's Eclipse Earrings



Assouline, in partnership with Judith Ripka, is pleased to launch an exciting Social Media contest where they will be giving away a pair of Eclipse earrings ($625 value) and a signed edition of the new book.  The contest is to promote the launch of Ripka's new Assouline book: Judith Ripka by Judith.


In case you missed it, Ripka’s dazzling Eclipse earrings were featured on Oprah’s Ultimate Favorite Things episode in November 2010 make a great gift.

The contest launched today Friday, September 30th (the day  the book is be available on www.assouline.com) and run through Friday, October 7th. It will live on Assouline’s Facebook Page (http://www.facebook.com/assoulinepub) and Judith Ripka’s Facebook Page (http://www.facebook.com/JudithRipka) and all contestants are encouraged to ‘Like’ both pages to be qualified.

To enter, answer the question,  “How do these earrings reflect your personal style?” and submit your answers to judithripka@assouline.com. The winner will be judged on creativity and originality and will be informed the week of October 9th by email.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

South Coast Plaza Style: Best of Beauty Event this Weekend


Our stylish friends at South Coast Plaza are offering great deals on beauty products this weekend at the Orange County Shopping Mecca.  Consider stopping by the mall in Costa Mesa , on Bristol Boulevard to check out the deals on some top rated beauty finds from award winning brands. From Sept. 30th to Oct. 2nd, South Coast Plaza is featuring three days of fantastic beauty promotions, tips and gifts from your favorite beauty boutiques and counters, from Saks to Kiehl’s, Fresh, Origins, Sephora and many more. And meet bloggers from your favorite beauty sites.  More to come on just who those fabulous bloggers are :)


Here's list of all the beauty promotions at South Coast Plaza this weekend for your shopping delight.



Aveda
Freshen up your look with a complimentary hairstyling and receive two personalized product samples. Also receive a special gift with all purchases over $35.00.

Aveda Richard Michael Salon
Receive a travel-size Hand Relief body cream with any purchase. Spend $100.00 or more and also receive a complimentary skincare consultation with a professional esthetician.

Bare Escentuals
Experience Bare Escentuals new Ready solid eyeshadows—an innovative new concept in solid mineral technology. The shadows are available in duos and quads that create an "I'll have what she's
having" look for day and night. Also receive, complimentary “makeunders” and deluxe goodie bags
with any purchase.

Bath & Body Works
It’s the perfect weekend to grab all your favorite Bath & Body Works products. Spend $10.00 and receive a FREE body care item up to a $13.00 value.

Bulgari
Experience the luxury of Bulgari and consult with Bulgari skincare experts. Receive a complimentary hand massage and sample the new fragrance.

Carlton Hair International at both locations
Complimentary consultations and Styling Bar services. Discuss your hair challenges and get professional ideas and options with the expert stylists. Try a 20-minute, no-wash styling service and learn tips and tricks for styles, from simple to glam. Also receive complimentary samples and exclusive product discounts. Based on availability.

Crabtree & Evelyn
Nourish your skin with a personal sink demonstration. All sales will include a gift with purchase. Additionally, receive 30% off the new Pomegranate body care line, featuring nature's antioxidants, Argan and Grapeseed oil. Enjoy a complimentary cookie and tea reception daily.

Fresh
Freshen up your day with mini-express facials, makeup touch-ups and a gift with purchase.

Jo Malone
Create your own signature fragrance at the Jo Malone fragrance combining event, and receive a gift with purchase.

Kiehl's Since 1851
See what’s new at Kiehl’s, stock up on your must-haves and receive three deluxe Kiehl's samples with a purchase of $75 or more.

M·A·C
M·A·C premieres the Posh Paradise exhibit exclusively at South Coast Plaza. The boutique will feature 60 of the best M·A·C artists from around North America to offer intimate make-up experiences showcasing 8 new launches from M·A·C's fall fashion line-up.

Make Up For Ever
Learn how to create a signature fall look and shop the store before it opens! Learn from the pros and discover how to integrate the new Pro line into your everyday routine. On Sunday, come in before the store opens for a special makeup workshop from 9 am to 10:30 am.

Molton Brown
Give tired working hands a rest and receive a relaxing complimentary hand massage.

Origins
Receive a complimentary mini facial and makeup consultation. Also, don't miss the Top Ten event: Purchase any item Top Ten item and receive three deluxe-size samples.

Saks
A Face Odyssey. Travel through the galaxy of advanced formulas and beauty gadgets. Get an out of this world gift complimentary metallic tote filled with irresistible samples. Yours with $100 beauty purchase.
Stock up on the newest metallic eyeshadows and try out the new dolllash look and receive a special beauty bonus.

Sassoon Salon
Celebrate the launch of the exciting Autumn Winter 2011 Minimum Collection. Book a cut and/or color service throughout the weekend and receive complimentary treatments. Also enter for a giveaway for a cut, color treatment and blow-dry.

Sephora
Friday Sept. 30th 10am-9pm

Join Sephora Artists for a complimentary beauty look and receive a deluxe sample bag.

Saturday Oct. 1st 12pm-8pm
Experience the excitement of Dior Backstage with three beauty looks by Dior Artists: Trend Setter, Style Empress and Backstage Addict. Stop by for complimentary Dior skincare sachet and receive a Dior wallet with any $100 purchase of Dior.

Sunday Oct. 2nd All Day
Join Sephora Artists for complimentary beauty looks and receive a deluxe sample bag.

Spa Nordstrom Escape
Get pampered with your favorite spa treatments at special prices. And receive a complimentary gift with purchase. While supplies last.
$15 Brow Wax - Regularly $25
$80 Advanced Hydrating Facial (60 minute) – Regularly $110
$75 Spa Nordstrom Massage – Regularly $95
$55 Essential Manicure and Pedicure – Regularly $77

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Sponsored Post: Special Deal on Body Butter from the Body Shop

Shopping site, Shop at Home is having a special deal on  super luxurious Body Butter from the Body Shop, but you have got to grab it quick. For a limited time, you can purchase the Body Body for only $7.00, a savings of $11.00 off the retail price. Click here to use this  Body Shop Coupon to get the deal.

If you haven't heard of the Body Shop, they have great organically based products. The Body Shop is famous for creating the niche market for naturally inspired skin and hair care products. The Body Shop specializes in offering a wide range of best selling skin and healthcare products from Vitamin E Moisture Cream to Tea Tree Oils to Banana.

Monday, September 26, 2011

NYFW: Nautica Menswear for Spring/Summer 2012 show

Pictured: The Nautica show (image courtesy of PureFame media)
 Last week at New York Fashion Week, on top of the Empire Hotel, Nautica showed off a range of colorful fashions for men. The collection gave me a flashback to my preppy days at Miami University in Oxford, OH.  There were bright beach whites, deep blues, red and some summer yellows. In short, nothing too over the top for most men, especially the ones whose wives buy most of their clothes :) 


Look for Nautica at department stores and their own branded outlet stores.

Sponsored Post: Vince Camuto at Nordstrom


 If you haven't looked at Vince's new looks for fall, you may want to have a look at Nordstroms.com.  They have a great selection on Vince Camuto for both men and women.Vince is always comfortable and chic. Most Vince Camuto garments are perfect for work-to-weekend. Shop NORDSTROM plus get free shipping & returns everyday.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Lord & Taylor's 'Buy More, Save More' shoe sale


Now through September 26th, it's Lord & Taylor's 'Buy More, Save More' shoe sale. If you love shoes, this is the sale for you.  Choose from hundreds of styles and experience incredible deals when you buy from one to three or more pairs of shoes. Buy one pair and receive 20% off each pair, buy any two pairs and receive 25% off each pair OR buy any three or more pairs and receive 30% off each pair. Shop online or in-store, whichever is most convenient.

If you're a mobile shopper, enter the promo code 'SALE' to shop online or text 'SALE' to 9555 to have the savings offer sent directly to your phone.

NYFW: Designer Deals at eBay's Neiman Marcus Last Call Store


With New York Fashion Week in full swing, it's a good time to check out good deals on all the designer goodies sold at  Neiman Marcus Last Call stores  on eBay.   I reviewed the Last Call stores earlier this year and really enjoyed shopping them for brands like Tracy Reese, Robbi & Nikki, Layfette 148, Juicy Couture, Rachel Roy, Theory, Vince, Vivenne Tam, Kenneth Jay Lane jewelry, Michael Kors, DVF, Free People and the jeans designed for curvy fashionistas everywhere, Not My Daughters Jeans.

 To get an extra 20% off on the Last Call eBay store, use the coupon code above to shop.  Here's how.

1. Shop for any product on the  Neiman Marcus Last Call stores  eBay store.
2. Enter the coupon code CEBAYNM20 at checkout to save 20%.
3. Pay for your item with PayPal at checkout before the expiration date of Sept. 16, 2011 on the coupon


Typical savings are 25% off of the retail prices (more in some cases.) The eBay sale offers all of the Neiman Marcus classics, none of the price guilt. Look for deals on clothing, handbags and accessories.  Click here to get in first, and get the best before it's gone !:)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Wine Notes: Flip Flop Wines and Cameron Hughes

Pictured: An example of truth in advertising, Flip Flop wine really are flipp'in good! (photo: M. Hall)
If you're looking for some good, but inexpensive wine, I want to give a a tipe on two cheap and cheerful wine picks that I recently discovered at the BlogHer conference.  First up, Flip Flop Wine.  I've seen the bottles on grocery store shelves everywhere from Harris Teeter in North Carolina to Vons in California.  Everytime I see it on the shelf, with the approximately $5.00 to $7.00 price tag, I wonder, could it possibly be any good? Well, I am here to answer my own rhetorical question with a resounding YES.  It's really good, especially the Pinot Noir (their Cab is also excellent if you like a rich Cabernet Sauvignon.)  The Flip Flop Pinot Noir is my pick for best cheap and cheerful Pinot Noir.  Like Miles in the movie Sideways, I am always on a quest for the perfect Pinot.  Flip Flop's Pinots is a medium bodied wine, not too heavy with just the right hint of cherry.  Flip Flop also makes a good Chardonnay and an award-winning Moscato, which is a sweet wine.  You can actually do a virtual tasting on it via their YouTube channel with their Vintner David Georges.  Because this wine is sweet, it might go well with spicy dishes like Chipolte or Thai green or red curry.  The sweetness of the Moscato provides a cooling to the spicy flavors. 

Pictured: Cameron Hughes wines featured in the Wall Street Journal, good wines under $25.00 per bottle.

My other tip is Cameron Hughes wine.  I've written about Cameron and loved his wines since 2009 when he proposed a Wine economic stimulus package to coincide with the Fed's program.  I thought it was a good idea, and I still do, especially considering the prices on Cameron Hughes.  Cameron Hughes wine is behind many a privately labeled and more expensive wine from Sonoma County.  I am sworn to secrecy on the specifics, but it's true.  Look for Cameron Hughes at some grocery stores, online at  CHwine and at CostCo.  At BlogHer , I attended a special Wine Tasting for Cameron Hughes hosted by blogger Romy Raves. We sampled six wines from CHwines and these are my personal top picks. We tried the Lot 228 2010 Moscato D’Asti, Italy, but that was a sweeter wine for enjoying with deserts.  Below are the wines I would enjoy with a meal or some BBQ.

-Lot 238 2009 Arroyo Seco, Monterey County Chardonnay
-Lot 257 2009 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
-Lot 236 2007 Clear Lake Syrah

Their Chardonnay is a nice light summer wine which compliments the delicious seafood it was served with it at the BlogHer Party courtesy of our friends at  McCormick and Schmicks restaurant in the Omini Hotel  San Diego, CA.  When you look for Cameron Hughes, make sure to look for the specific lot number and year that I am recommending here.  Not all wines are created equal.  My personal favorite was the 236- 2007 Clear Lake Syrah, winner of the San Diego Wine International Gold Medal.  With it's notes of Blueberry it's delicious alongside lamb, beef or even seafood.  At the McCormick and Schmicks tasting it was served with some delicious lamb chops, that were to die for.

And now for my saving piece d' resistance, since these wines may be at your local grocery store, you can double dip on the savings by picking up a grocery coupon at savings portal site, ShopatHome.com. If you're entertaining at home check out the over 100,000 Grocery and Restaurant Coupons, Printable Coupons, Coupon Codes, Cash Back and Hot Deals via ShopatHome.com

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Fashion's Night Out, Sept. 8th at the Westfield Century City Mall, Los Angeles


Look for these deals on Fashion's Night Out, Sept. 8th at the Westfield Century City Mall. I'm getting all the FNO deals for LA, and frankly the Westfield Mall has a collection of some of the discounts and giveaways that I have seen. The mall, across from the Equinox Spa, will be alive will lots of shopping specials and special appearances by LL Cool J and the Mayor. Remember to check in on Foursquare at the Sony Store to get some free music!  I'll be stopping by to check out the Blogger's Lounge and send a few tweets with the FNO 411. Highlights of the extravaganza include:

· Get a mystery gift with any $50 purchase at BCBGeneration. It could be anything from a nail polish to a $1000 gift card. (this is the big get in my opinion!)
· Betsey Johnson is celebrating FNO with sips, snacks and shopping and stylist consultations. · Receive a complimentary Sugar Lip Treatment with any $75 purchase at Fresh.
· Get 25% off your GAP purchases
· Purchase any regularly priced dress and receive an exclusive FNO scarf at Herve Leger
· J.Crew is giving away a free custom FNO tote with any $150 purchase
· Juicy Couture is offering 25% off and Viva La Juicy fragrance samplings.
· Dance with the DJ and sip champagne while you receive stylist consultations at Karen Millen.
· Skincare consultations and mini facials at L’Occitane, plus get a Relax on the Go gift set for only $15
· Make your mark at Lucky Brand Jeans. Enjoy gourmet treats from Lollibakes as you browse the latest looks. Plus, receive complimentary customization with your denim purchase.
· Stop by Macy’s for mini Origin facials, Estee Lauder makeovers, giveaways, and more!
· Snack, sip and score at Madewell – grab a limited edition dotted denim tote with purchase of $150 or more.
· Stop by Michael Kors for a chance to win a Hamilton bag
· Pandora will gift you a bracelet when you make any $75 purchase
· Check-in the Sony Store on Foursquare and get a download for 50 free songs.
· At Sperry Top-Sider, guests can enter-to-win the Sperry's Passion for Fashion gift bag valued at $650.
· SYLK is offering 20% off regular price purchases.
· Spend $500 or more at Theory and receive a free canvas Theory tote bag.
· Enjoy Chandon Rose while shopping and receive an exclusive FNO collar bone pouch when you spend $200 or more at Thomas Pink.
· Special gift from Tous with any purchase of $200 or more
· Enjoy the gift of giving at True Religion Brand Jeans: Receive an exclusive gift with any purchase and 10% of sales will be donated to The New York City AIDS Fund.
· Put your skills to the test with the Fashion Claw machine to score goods from Betsey Johnson, Bloomingdales, Bric’s, Fresh, Giggles N Hugs, Intimacy, and Sperry Top-Sider.




Saturday, September 3, 2011

On the Labor Day Weekend Menu: The Taste of LA

Pictured: Mouthwatering desserts from McCormick & Schmick's (photo: M.Hall)
Today I'm heading over to the Taste of LA in Beverly Hills to try to literally get my just desserts! The above picture is of some amazing desserts I recently enjoyed at BlogHer from our friends at McCormick & Schmick's.  They will be at Taste of LA today serving their delicious seafood, and they will also be open on Fashion's Night Out , Sept. 8th with delicious treats for weary fashionistas.  If you are in Los Angeles and want to check out the Taste today, go to their website to receive 40% off on tickets using the code: WEB.   Today's Taste includes:

• Unlimited tastings from over 30 of L.A.’s top brunch destinations/chefs
• Unlimited samples from over 30 of your favorite wineries, breweries and spirits
• An opportunity to shop and dine in L.A.’s most famous ZIP  (90210, remember the TV show darlings? )
 
Tomorrow, Sept 4th a special feature of the Taste will be a Fashion Bites brunch sponsored by CIROC vodka.   Here are the details:

Fashion Bites Brunch (Sunday, September 4th 10 am-2pm)
L.A.’s hottest brunch spots such as Cecconi’s, The Farm of Beverly Hills, Zengo, The Blvd, etc. will serve up signature dishes alongside free-flowing Bloody Marys. Between bites, shop for some of the most fashionable accessories & clothes on Rodeo Drive.

Desserts After Dark (Sunday, September 4th 8pm-11pm)
Duff Goldman (Ace of Cakes, Best Thing I Ever Ate, & Sugar High) hosts and unforgettable
evening showcasing the most sinful sweets the City of Angeles has to offer.

Let me know if you are going! I will be live Tweeting as I taste @Recessionista.

Monday, August 22, 2011

New York Fashion Week: Fashion Show Giveway from Tibi


Fashion Show Giveway | Tibi: The Tibi Runway Show is on September 13th at 7pm Lincoln Center, NYC.  Enter for the chance to win seats to the show and travel on the Tibi Facebook page.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Mi Amour: Mad Men Lace Dress at Banana Republic

Actress Jamie King in a Mad Men collection from Banana Republic Dress. (photo courtesy of Getty images)
Actress Jamie King was spotted over at the Chateau Marmont (LA's top cool spot, and beautiful people hangout) wearing a cream lace dress from the Banana Republic Mad Men collection. The is the Mad Men collection lace dress and it retails for $130.00 US.  The dress is also available in basic black, and it's truly the new/old Little Black Dress (LBD).

Pictured: The Mad Men Collection lace dress in black.
This dress is definitely my favorite in the collection and Banana is selling it in Petite sizes as well as regular.  What do you think readers? I'm hearing from some of you via Twitter, that you love the collection.  Will you wait for it to go on sale, or splurge now? That is the Shakespearean (to buy or not to buy) like quandary. If you splurge now, remember to get your Banana Republic charge card rewards points working for you.  Also, have a look at the Banana Republic Coupons from Shop at Home to save. (note: sponsored link here readers, but the savings are real.)

Monday, August 8, 2011

Big Savings off Designers Karen Millen and Romeo & Juliet Couture on eBay Fashion Vault


eBay is opening the Fashion Vault today with some good deals: savings on Karen Millen and Romeo & Juliet Couture.  I like both brands and they are distinctively different looks.  Romeo and Juliet is young, frilly and romantic. Karen Millen is a sophisticated, upscale look.  Frankly, I am surprised to see a 75% off sale on Karen Millen on eBay or anywhere.  Karen Millen is typically very expensive, I've visited her store in London and in Los Angeles at the Beverly Center.  The Fashion Vault will open on Monday, August 8th at 8:00 am PDT, 11:00 am EDT and will remain open until August 12th.  Look for deals on clothing, handbags and accessories.  Click here to get in first, and get the best before it's gone !:)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Enter Norma Kamaili's $98 Classic Bill Swimsuit Contest


Amazing (and may I say iconic) designer Norma Kamali is having a Facebook contest featuring her classic 1940s style classic bill swimsuit.  To enter to win, go to her Facebook page by July 31st, and select your favorite look from a variety of models/bloggers who are wearing her swimsuit.  For more chances, you can check in at Norma Kamali New York on Foursquare or send her some Twitter love.  Here are the links to enter on Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare!


Rules: Contest open until July 31, 2011 at 11:59 EST.  One entry per person.  Valid for US residents only.  Winner chosen by random drawing and will be contacted by email or private message on Tumblr.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Savings on Calvin Klein and Kenneth Cole Today on eBay

Pictured: Savings on Calvin Klein and Kenneth Cole today at eBay.
For more at eBay today, check out the Fashion Vault today with savings on Kenneth Cole and Calvin Klein. The sale is open until Fri. 7/29, 9pm PT  with savings of 60%.  There are some good looking maxi dresses in this one.  These fashions are new with tags, they are not pre-owned pieces being sold by eBay sellers.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

YP.com launches Deal of the Day in Los Angeles


 Heads-up Los Angeles, there are some new savings in town!  Angelinos can sign up to receive daily emails with deals that offer savings of 50% or more on products and services for real life needs in the areas of food, health & beauty, entertainment and home services. 

Backed by the industry leading YP brand from AT&T Interactive, Deal of the Day complements thousands of coupons already available on YP.com. To make it easy for savvy shoppers to access the wealth of savings, there is also  a new deals tab on YP.com. The new tab allows you to search, find and redeem deals by city and category. There are so many ways to save with the YP brand!

Each deal will be available for five days, and new deals will debut daily Monday through Friday. Click here to use my invite to check out YP.com.  Let me know what you think of the service and if you find a good deal to share.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Shop at Home Save and Splurge Contest: My Best Save and Splurge


So, with high hopes and my regular dedication to finding the best of less, I'm heading back to BlogHer 2011 and entering the Shop at Home Save and Splurge Contest!  Of course, that means I will be checking in at the Shop at Home Save & Splurge Suite in San Diego. The suite will be a mix of my favorite retailers (and their coolest products) plus socializing with Bloggers and the Shop at Home team in the penthouse suite in the Hard Rock Hotel with gorgeous views of the San Diego and bay. Look for me there on Saturday at BlogHer as I'll be stopping by to sample products, enjoy cocktails and get to know the Shop at Home blogger team.  Last year, I went shopping with the Shop at Home team in the garment district in NYC, and really enjoyed it.  So here's to more fun in 2011. If you haven't checked out Shop at Home, give it a look.  They offer fantastic savings via coupons and discounts at many types of stores, including grocery, big box and fashion retailers plus regular contests. 

Now back to the Save and Splurge Contest.  Shop at Home has asked me to tell y'all about a time when I saved so I could splurge.  This is a tough one to pick.  Savings and scrimping is really my thing, my basic raison d'etre if you know what I mean. But that is now.  There was a time I didn't care about saving on items, fashion or otherwise.

My best save and splurge may surprise some of you, because it wasn't to save and splurge on fashion items, it was to save for my nephew who suffers from Autism.  I wanted to save enough monthly to help pay his tuition to a special school to help children with Autism.  Early intervention is very important for children with Autism, so I really wanted my nephew to get help while he was little.  He needed so much help, and I vowed I would get on a strict budget so that I could contribute to his special education. Before my nephew Max was diagnosed with Autism, I spent most of my discretionary income on fashion, and I frequently paid retail for the latest trends.  Now, with the need to help with Max's private school tuition, I needed to change all of that.  I cut out my retail fashion splurges and vowed to only buy when things were on sale, or when I had coupons or discounts.  I also went on eBay and sold between 10 to 15 designer handbags that I hadn't been carrying on a regular basis.  I realized how frivolous all those handbags were, and that I didn't need so many.  Finally, I modified my dining out habits.  I stopped eating big dinners out.  I did more dinning at happy hours when there were specials on appetizers rather than splurging on big dinners with full price wine. I also started to cook more at home. I started shopping using coupons only for grocery stores that did double coupons (religiously.)

Pictured: Max today at his special horseback riding therapy. (Photo: M. Hall)

It wasn't easy, but over time, I was able to save up to $1,000 per month which I contributed to Max's tuition.  That is my best save and splurge ever.  There is nothing like the reward of watching my nephew now be able to communicate with me using sign language.  Or look me straight in the eye and mouth my name, slowly, but still clearly.  Speech is not easy for him, but words are now possible.  To read more about Max's journey, and the school he attended, check out the Autism Take Flight blog that I authored to help his school's fund raising activities.

Do I still have haute couture in my life? Well of course! I recently enjoyed the OutNet anniversary sale and scored a ticket to the special event shopping where I bought an amazing Valentino black cocktail dress for wait for it, only $2.00!!  Yes, it's possible to even buy Valentino and be budget savvy.  And with the help of Shop at Home, it might even be possible to live like a Blogger Rock Star at the Hard Rock Cafe for a few days.  Sometimes things are sweeter, when you save so you can splurge on more worthwhile endeavors, like Max's education.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Los Angeles: Special Sale at Last Chance Boutique Culver City for Autism Eduation


Last Chance is a boutique that carries a mixture of women’s, high end and contemporary designer clothes.  The small outlet store/ boutique has been in business for 10 years now and continuously supports local brands (Cynthia Vincent, Eva Franco) and loves to give back to the community. Researchers estimate that 1 in 38 children now has autism, but diagnosing the condition is fraught with difficulty. With such a high rate of autistic children, the store wants to give back and help support schools, medical offices and other programs to help the kids.  It's a good time to get your shop on for summer frocks and help a worthy cause. I've been to Last Chance in Culver City and they have great stuff.  So mark your calendars for July 8th and July 9th to shop there.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Save the Date: A Summer's Day at Bullocks Wilshire Tour is on July 30th

Pictured: The back of the old Bullocks Wilshire store, now part of the Southwestern School of Law (photo: M. Hall)
Some Los Angeles residents may remember the art deco splendor of the old Bullocks Wilshire store.  It was one of the first shopping stores to open in the suburbs and features a parking lots for its patrons cars.  Wealthy Los Angeles residents shopped there as well as movie stars.  Stars like Marlene Dietrich, Judy Garland, Mae West and Doris Day all shopped at the renowned department store.  Sadly, the store shuttered its doors in 1993 after the Los Angeles riots and the recession of the 1980s. For a while, the fate of the historic building was unsure. Once the most fashionable place in Los Angeles, the building sat gathering dust until it was acquired by the Southwestern School of Law. The Law School has done an amazing job restoring the building to its former glory, while making it fully functional as a law library with a state of the art Moot Court Room facility. However, every summer the school reopens Bullocks Wilshire for a wonderful tour, which also offers attendees the chance to chose to have lunch or high-tea in the legendary Tea Room where stars like John Wayne stopped in, and models in the latest fashions floated between the tables of ladies who lunched. This year, the tour will take place on July 30th. General reservations for the tour will open on July 6th.

Pictured:  Tour Guide Carole Weiner enjoys a tea break in the Bullocks Tea Room (photo: M. Hall)

I took the tour last year, and enjoyed seeing everything from the old perfume cases, to the Irene salon, to the mural and of course, the Chanel room. I'm sure I could have been a better law student if I had the chance to study in the Bullocks Wilshire building. Contracts law might have been just a little more exciting studying in the place where Marion Davies and William Randolph Hearst once bought their saddles and sporting goods. Perhaps the spirit of Ms. Davis could've helped me study interesting reads like the Laredo Hides Co., Inc. v. H & H Meat Products Co., Inc case. My tour guide, Carole Weiner, Associate Director of the Leigh H. Taylor Law Library, was a wonderful host. Ms. Weiner regaled us with entertaining stories of Judy Garland shopping and sipping Martinis in the dressing rooms, and Bullocks special couture designer Irene Lentz selecting her client's accessories after selling them one of her souffle creations.

If you didn't have the opportunity to shop Bullocks Wilshire as a customer or haven't seen the building before, I highly recommend the "Summer Day at Bullocks Wilshire Tour" on July 30th. A chance to dine in the Tea Room in its original splendor and hear the stories of the gilded age of shopping is not to be missed!  And here's a little vintage shopping tip on how you can still keep enjoying fashions from Bullocks Wilshire: eBay.  Check the listings for items from the old store.  They are timeless.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Calypso St. Barth on Sale on Target.com + their own website

 Calypso St. Barth finally went on sale on Target.com at 30% off of retail. Although it's been on sale in stores for some time, Target.com was still selling the collection for the original list prices on their website.  Seriously silly. Why not reduce in-store and online at the same time don't ya think? Although this collection was well designed with natural fabrics like cotton, linen and silk, consumers balked at the Tar-jay prices. I also think consumers are getting smarter. Buyers  are not going to jump any more at these budget designer collections, because there are simply too many of them.

Pictured : Big savings on Calypso St. Barth on their website.

If you are a fan of Calypso St. Barth check out the sample sale on their website. The price point on the sample sale is pretty close to some of the Target sale prices. Use the code SAMPLESALE to save even more. No wonder Target had to finally reduce their website prices.  Stay tuned,  the prices may still continue to drop...I have a feeling.

Friday, June 17, 2011

One Million Membership Rewards Giveaway from American Expressone million Membership Rewards


As some of you know, I love me a good contest.  I've even won a few.  The siren's call of free goods is too strong to resist sometimes. So, I wanted to let you know about at giveaway of a million Membership Rewards points that American Express is having.   Check the Membership Reward catalog to find out all the cool things you can buy with points.  Each day through the end of June, American Express will be giving away one million Membership Rewards points to a lucky Cardmember to spend on all the amazing possibilities available through Membership Rewards!  Yes, there is a giveaway every remaining day in June, which makes the odds of winning much sweeter.

I am a Cardmember and I have honestly bought some wonderful things with my points, just to name a few, my iPod Touch (an essential blogging tool), my Samsung TV and my Samsung Blue-Ray theatre.  Click here to read all about my love affair with my reward points.  Details on the giveaway and entry instructions can be found on the American Express Facebook Fan Page, in the Points tab.