No matter how hard you try to ignore it, the Holiday Season is lurking right around the corner. Even those who don’t mark the day with religious observation find themselves caught in the web of the “true” meaning of Christmas, consumerism.
For decades, we have all heard the term “Black Friday” in relation to the first shopping day after Thanksgiving. Despite the holiday ads flooding the telly immediately after the conclusion of Halloween, this day marks the official beginning of the traditional holiday season. It also marks the day that retailers start showing profit for the year thus going from red to black ink on their records.
Because of the long rippling effects of the recession, holiday shoppers are now poised to get more for their holiday shopping budgets. If you are planning to take part of the frenzy (for better or for worse) there are some strategies you can take to not only complete your shopping list, but save some cash in the process.
Holiday Shopping Tips from Pear Shapely:
- Make Like Santa: That simply means make a list and check it twice. Unless you have already started stowing away holiday purchases, take this time to calculate a holiday spending budget as well as confirm who has been naughty or nice on your list.
- Get the 4-1-1-: Money is tight for everyone and just because you have exchanged gifts with friends or family in the past, does not mean that you have to this year. Have honest conversations with your posse and see if you can partake in a homemade gift exchange, cap the limit of gift value or even skip the process all together.
- Let your fingers do the walking: Everyone knows the value of the internet when it comes to comparison shopping. Checking out discount and money advice sites like Buxr.com, Retailmenot.com and Wisebread.com can help you score savings (such as discounts and shipping codes) from your favorite shopping sites
- Become a Groupie: If you have a Facebook page you need to know that your favorite retailers are on there. By becoming a “fan” you will be given V.I.P. treatment and promo discounts will be forthcoming. I’ve gotten great discount offers from my personal faves such Loehmann’s, Lucky Brand and LeSportsac and you can tweak your selections based on your tastes.
- Support Hand Made: Aside from my collection of Hurricane by Jane Jewelry on Etsy, there are literally millions of gift options to choose from. Your purchase will go to supporting a living, breathing individual, not just a corporation and is an excellent way of sharing the wealth this season.
- Tempus Fugit: There is no time like the present to shop for presents. Regardless of their size, retailers are operating on leaner budgets this year meaning that they have less of a surplus in merchandise. Your best value and selection is right now, plus you will avoid much of the mayhem and chaos of the season.
- Become a Pack Rat: Well, at least with your receipts. Did you know that if you purchase an item and then it goes on sale within fourteen days of purchase, chances are you can go and get the difference back from the store? Bringing your documentation and a sunny disposition are the best ways to ensure a price adjustment in your favor.
Regardless if your holiday budget is $50 or $5000 you can make every penny count!
Nothing ushers in the holiday season like the light reflection of sequins. If you are like a magpie and drawn to all things shiny, then the trend of currently wearing sequins during the day must fill your heart with glee. Instyle.com already declared this move as a “New Style Rule” back in 2008, and since then every editor and retailer has embraced the trend.
If you are ready to make the move yourself, what better way to do it then by shopping with a discount code from New York and Company. Coupon code “3886” will save you 30% off of your online order (limited time) and when you spend $65 you will get free shipping.
By pairing this sequined top ($36.95) with a great pair of dark denim or trousers and topped with a fitted blazer, you can easily and respectably shimmer during business hours:
“But wait, there’s more!” If that shirt is not your style, another great option for getting your bling on is this embellished tunic ($29.95):
Although I love this top, I do not think that the stylist needs to channel their inner Coco Chanel and should have heeded her advice“Take one thing off before you leave the house”. The necklace and most of the bracelets must go! There are too many accessories and that distracts from the embellished neckline. Keeping only the black cuff (featured ) and adding a great pair of earrings will complete the look. My suggestion, the Crystal Ship in sterling silver ($41):
Out of all the jewelry I have made for myself, these are the earrings that get the most use as they are big enough to make a statement, neutral because of the teardrop crystals and light enough to wear every day. Combined with any sequined top these earrings will complete the look quite elegantly.
When I was a tween in Long Island, there was nothing like a back to school shopping trip to Roosevelt Field Mall. Fashions and bargains abounded and although a run through of JC Penney was always part of the ritual of finding treasures for the school year, I always left the store empty handed.
What a difference several decades has made as this mid level department store chain has learned a lot from it’s nearly 100 years of operation. Now the store features great options courtesy of the lower priced point lines of Nicole Miller, Bisou-Bisou, Charlotte Ronson and Allen Schwartz and by shopping online and entering the code SWEETS4U will save you $10 off of a $10 purchase until 10/28/09. Some recommendations for your luscious pear shaped body including this great and affordable look from C. Ronson:
My favorite piece of the ensemble is the Ombre sweater. Because the dye goes from light on top to black on bottom the color fade provides the necessary palate for a best Pear Shapely optical illusion. Additionally the belt tie is sure to show off your little middle.
I think this sweater would provide you a perfect opportunity to show off some Hurricane by Jane jewelry, especially the pieces that integrate gold filled and sterling silver metals. My styling recommendations include the Boxer Earrings ($51), Circle Choker in the Gold/Silver combo ($47) and the Lock-Her Bracelet ($58(.
Let me know if any of the jewelry interest you and I’ll make you an offer you can’t refuse.
Those in the know, know that Bluefly.com is one of they best websites for getting deals on designer and luxury duds. They are now having a clearance sale to get rid of tons of overstocked merchandise and are offering consumers up to 75% off some of their goodies.
I’ve taken a gander at the offerings that would work for my the sisterhood of the traveling hips and selected this gem (75% off) for pear shapely lasses, the T-Bags ruched sleeved dress for a low $54.99:
The slightly enlarged sleeves would help balance out our bottom curves and the V-neck would also help to bring the attention of the viewers eye upward. To further draw the eye upwards and away from the larger him region, the dress should be lovingly complimented by the Gold Triple Strand Necklace $48:
There is a slew of handbags, shoes, pants, skirts and everything else on sale and the discounts range from 30%-75%. However, ultimately it is up to you to roll up your sleeves and start digging for treasures on your own.