Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Beverly Center Offers Shoppers Fashion Shows & Deals for Fashion's Night Out Los Angeles

Tonight I had the opportunity to attend a briefing on what's in store for Fashion's Night Out in Los Angeles.  There will be activities going on all over the city,  but the Beverly Center Mall with its central location and wide array of shops offers a great place for fashionista's to get deals from both high-end designers and discount shops (like Forever XXI and H&M.) With the wide range of price points and fashions, there will  literally will be something for everyone at the La Cienega shopping behemoth. There will even be two full-on fashion shows for Beverly Center visitors to attend.   But it's not only the retailers who will be offering deals, the restaurants are getting in the act too. Recently,  I had the opportunity to savor cocktails and appetizers from the Mozzarella Bar and I can personally recommend both.  It's a tough job to be sure, but someone has to taste the food and drink  :) Other places offering shopping breaks include the Grand Lux Cafe and PF Chang's.   Read on to get the scoop on all the highlights and deals that are in store for savvy shoppers.  Even the Mayor and a few celebrities will be on hand to support the local economy.

I had the opportunity to cruise around the Beverly Center tonight, and there are already plenty of sales to be had, but my personal tip is to wait until next week on Sept. 6th to make your purchase so that you can enjoy the entertainment and reap extra savings.

Highlights for Fashion's Night Out at the Beverly Center, Los Angeles, CA
5:00 PM RED CARPET ARRIVALS
6:30 PM OPENING CEREMONY
MAYOR ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA VIDEO ADDRESS
LISA LOVE, WEST COAST EDITOR OF VOGUE
HOST LUCY HALE, ACTRESS AND SINGER
KENDALL JENNER, BEVERLY CENTER'S FNO CAMPAIGN MODEL
7:00 PM FASHION SHOW
BLOOMINGDALE’S | MACY’S | TRUE RELIGION BRAND JEANS
TRAFFIC | DIESEL | MAX&CO. | J.LINDEBERG | LACOSTE
9:00 PM FASHION SHOW
XXI FOREVER EXCLUSIVE

NATIONAL SUPPORTING SPONSOR
MAYBELLINE NEW YORK

LOCAL SUPPORTING SPONSOR
TRUE RELIGION BRAND JEANS

EVENTS             
GUESTS ELLE & BLAIR FOWLER - FASHION AND BEAUTY VLOGGERS
CELEBRITY DJ AND FASHION BLOGGER LINDSAY LUV
ANGELENO MAGAZINE EXCLUSIVE VIP LUXURY LOUNGE
GENLUX MAGAZINE EXCLUSIVE RED CARPET AFTER PARTY
Click here for a full listing  (on our sister site The Recessionista ) of the retailers and restaurants offering deals at the Beverly Center on Sept. 6th.   Who says you have to go to New York Fashion Week to see a runway show?

Monday, August 20, 2012

New Fall Fashion at Kohl's: Jennifer Lopez Collection Lace Dress

Pictured: Jennifer Lopez Lace Shift Dress at Kohl's for $40.00
 Once of the hottest trends of this year, has been the lace overlay dress and Kohl's has a terrific version of it in the edition of the best selling JLo line.  The new Jennifer Lopez collection lace shift dress in now on sale  for $40.00.  Kohl's sent me a sample of the dress in the Corsica Red. The cut is very tailored and similar to Kate's designer dress. For the price tag, it's a nice dress. It's fully lined, and can easily take you from Summer through Fall.  I went to my local Kohl's store to order another one for my sister, but couldn't find it in store, so I used the Kohl's kiosk to place my order.  While doing that, I made a savvy discovery.  The coupon and the kiosks default coupon seems to be 15% off, guaranteeing you even better savings. Online or at the kiosk, use code LOCKER15 until Aug. 23 to save 15%. Are you surprised this dress is in JLo's Kohl's line? I was.  It's not what I expected from the entertainer's collection, which usually looks like stuff la Lopez would wear, not Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge.  This dress looks a lot like an Erdum dress that Kate wore on her tour of Canada last year.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Announcing Teeology a new T-shirt site, curated by JLo

She may be leaving American Idol, but Jennifer Lopez clearly has other things she is working on. One of them is a newly announced T-shirt site called Teeology. So what's this all about?  It sounds like crowd sourcing plus affordable fashion. The value proposition is that the site will gives its members the ultimate power to decide which designs are produced and sold. “We saw a huge opportunity to jump into the luxury tee market by offering the same high-quality product you can buy at a Nordstrom or Bloomingdales, but for a fraction of the price,” says Eng, Teeology’s Co-Founder and CEO.  “Because of our voting/pre-order mechanism, focus on social buzz, and limited-edition runs, Teeology isn’t saddled with a huge inventory and excess merchandise. By rethinking the traditional retail model that can often require a 3-6 month lead time on production we are able to remain nimble and on trend.”

Honestly, the idea reminds me of T-Shirt site Threadless.  With Teeology, designers will submit designs to be reviewed by Teeology’s curators (like Lopez), who come up with bi-weekly themes to guide the process and then select the best designs to go up for vote.  Teeology members then vote for their favorites and share them on their social networking channels to ultimately choose the tees that get produced in limited runs and sold in Teeology’s online store. The brains behind this start up obviously hope that social media influencers, Tweeps and Facebook fans will fuel this site.  I'll be interested to see how this does.  If J.Lo wasn't shilling it, I think it would fly under the radar, especially since Threadless has already built a strong community and established itself.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Bring your morning Starbucks receipt back to the store after 2 pm for a discounted drink



If you're a coffee lover, here's a deal from Starbucks that you will love, especially if you like both a morning jolt and an afternoon pick me up.  Bring your morning receipt in after 2 p.m. at participating stores and Starbucks will serve you up a Grande cold beverage for just $2.

That's any cold drink: iced coffee, tea or Frappuccino®(R) blended beverage, a new Starbucks Refreshers beverage or even a sinful  Caramel Frappuccino®(R) blended beverage. This offer is good from now until 9/3.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Chef Hora Fires Up Engine Co. No. 28 in Downtown Los Angeles

Pictured: A 1912 Firehouse turned Restaurant (photo: M. Hall)

What do you get when you combine a renovated 1912 Fire Station with Chef Christopher Hora’s unique sweet and savory fare? A winning combination that fits in beautifully with the renewal and renovation of Downtown Los Angeles. This little gem of a restaurant was once a 1912 Firehouse replete with fire engines, alarms  and a brass pole (see above) for fire fighters to slide down. Today the  historic setting at 644 Figueroa St. is home to the cuisine of  Chef Christopher Hora.  A graduate of the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and native Californian, Chef Hora inherited his appreciation of fresh food and savory ingredients from his Italian mother and Czech Father when he was growing up.  That influence carries over to the hearty menu at Engine Co. No. 28.  The restaurant serves breakfast during the week, brunch on the weekends plus lunch and dinner.  There’s also a well-priced happy hour for those working in Downtown looking for relief from office stress.  Other offerings to alleviate stress  include a wine dinners and beer tastings.

Cali Bennie dish
Pictured: Cali Benni, a delicious twist of Eggs Benedict

I visited the restaurant on Sunday for brunch to get a feel for Chef Hora’s cooking skills prior to his two  appearances at this week’s LA Food and Wine Fest.   Brunch is a new addition to the Engine Co. 28 menu, and the fare is literally both sweet and savory.  Dishes like the French Toast with Bourbon soaked Orange Marmalade offer a new twist on traditional breakfast fare.  The dish is sweet but not too sweet,  with just the right subtle flavor from the Orange complimenting the French Toast. “ I don’t like anything to be too sweet, “ says Chef Hora. “If it’s too sweet it just stays in the front of your month and you don’t taste all the favors.”   The Cali Bennie of smoked salmon, avocado, spinach, poached egg and sauce cherone is simply a revelation.  It’s just the right twist on the more traditional eggs benedict with a cherone sauce that is more robust than a hollandaise offering hints of tomato, spices and shallots swimming in a rich sauce of egg yolk.  A less subtle dish is the Chicken and Waffles served with a heavy sauce that updates southern “red-eye’ gravy.  While the Cali Bennie tickles the taste buds with delicate flavor, the Chicken and Waffles is pure comfort food that assaults the mouth with a heavy cream sauce laden with bacon and hints of coffee.  It’s delicious, but it’s difficult to each too much of it, at least in one sitting.   It goes without saying that you won’t find this dish on any menu of recommended healthy diet foods.

Best Desserts
Pictured: Delicious desserts on are the menu too.
Other menu highlights include rich desserts like Bananas Napoleon, cream pies and a rich Cheesecake served with fresh fruit.  Brunch at Engine Co. No. 28 offers everything from Porridge with toppings to Omelets, plus Bread and Butter Pudding.  The simple ingredients  don’t prepare the visitor for the deliciousness of the dishes.  “Anything is good if you begin with great product and sound technique,” said Executive Chef Christopher Hora.  His dishes are proof of his culinary talent for skillfully combining what might be considered unlikely ingredients.  Who else would conceive of Hamachi Ceviche complimented with blood orange, grapefruit and cactus? (This will be one of the the Chef’s dishes at the LA Food  and Wine Fest this week.)

Best Chef Hora
Pictured: Chef Christopher Hora

If you work in Downtown Los Angeles, or you are going downtown for the theatre or a sporting event, put Engine Co. No. 28 on your list.  Shuttle service to  the Ahamanson theater is offered and the Staples Center and LA Live are within walking distance. Prices for Brunch start at $11.00 with bottomless Mimosas and Bloody Mary’s (with the Chef’s own spicy mix) offered for $20.00.  There’s nothing pretentious on the menu, just simple ingredients and delicious fare that’s reasonably priced, served up in a historic setting.

One More Day to Enter! Ideeli Offers Best in Shop Contest


Online retail is not immune to Olympic fever, as women-owned small businesses can go for the gold here at home by entering ideeli’s “Best in Shop,” a contest celebrating women entrepreneurs and small businesses. Created in partnership with New York Times bestselling author and small business champion Tory Johnson, the contest, which is accepting entries through August 7th, invites women entrepreneurs to enter for a chance to have their business featured on ideeli, the online retailer that was named to the top of Inc. Magazine’s list of fastest growing private companies in 2011.

Whether running a business that sells gorgeous gowns or fabulous flatware, women entrepreneurs across America are invited tell their story, share their creations and win a moment in the spotlight. Best in Shop is open to women nationwide whose small companies sell apparel, accessories, or home décor, with a chance for their company and products to be featured on ideeli, the popular online retail site with more than 5.5 million members. Best in Shop entries will be featured on ideeli’s Facebook landing page, and best in shop winners will be featured on the site.

Business owners or authorized representatives can learn more and enter the contest at www.ideeli.com/bestinshop. On August 20, ideeli and Tory Johnson will announce 20 finalists and voting will open to the public. The three companies with the most votes will be announced on September 5th, and will work with Johnson and the ideeli team to curate a sale of their products to be featured in a special fall edition of ideeli’s "Tory's Shop" (www.ideeli.com/tory), a series of sales curated in collaboration with Tory Johnson, featuring women-run small businesses from around the country.

For more information on ideeli’s Best in Shop contest, visit www.ideeli.com/bestinshop

eBay Announces Designer Holiday Collection

  
Pictured: Leather Tibi T-shirt for eBay (photo via eBay)

Not to be outdone by Neiman Marcus and Target, eBay has entered the designer collection foray with their own announcement of a holiday collection featuring 7 hot designers. The new partnership will feature  designers Billy Reid, Chris Benz, Fallon, Jonathan Adler, Ruffian, Steven Alan and Tibi, has announced the eBay Holiday Collective - an original, limited-edition gift collection of men's and women's apparel, jewelry, travel and electronics accessories and home décor. Available on eBay on Nov. 12th for the 2012 holiday season, the Collective marks the first time eBay is collaborating with a group of leading designers to create an exclusive product range.

Each member of the Collective has designed a unique capsule collection to deliver, together, a singular suite of 40+ inspired gift items. From the trendy traveler and luxurious lounger to the holiday hostess and the gadget guru, the bespoke collection features gifts for everyone on your holiday shopping list. Starting November 12, the collection will be available globally, exclusively on eBay, at accessible, "Buy it Now" prices from $50 to $100 and will include free U.S. and international shipping. "


Last week ELLE magazine published exclusive preview pictures of the collection.   There are pajamas from Chris Benz, a Steven Alan iPad case, Jonathan Adler salt and pepper shakers, Fallon jewelry and a bright pink RUFF scarf by Ruffian plus the above pictured leather t-shirt from Tibi.  I'll be interested to learn more about this one.  Stay tuned.