Monday, September 26, 2011

Outlet Shoppers: BEWARE


Outlet stores used to be a really spectacular thing. One could drive the 60+ miles away to sift through the piles of "irregular" clothing that didn't pass a brand's highest standards or try their luck at finding a past season item the regular stores overstocked and were unable to sell. Now, not so much.

These days outlet stores tend to carry their own merchandise. Yep, that's right. NOT the carry over items from regular stores. Sometimes you can find similar items in outlets, but they often don't have the same quality as the full price items at the normal stores.

Earlier this month I made the trek out to the Gilroy Premium Outlets with one goal in mind - find that navy blue Coach purse I had set my sights on. Before I went, however, I popped into my nearby Coach store to see if they carried it. I found a navy one, but it wasn't exactly what I was hoping for, so I told the sales associate that the one I was looking for had been purchased at an outlet. That's when she dropped the bomb. Coach outlets carry their own merchandise. Occasionally regular store items will make their way into a Coach outlet, but for the most part, outlets have their own stuff. 

The Coach connoisseur will be able to tell the difference between an outlet purse and a full price, regular store purse just by looking at it. To the general public, those differences are a little harder to decipher. The tell tale sign is on the inside. The serial number on an outlet Coach purse has that prominent "F" in the serial number. "F" standing for "Factory" of course. If you care, you can save up your money and buy a regular store purse, but if you don't, you might get a deal at the outlets. Either way, it's better to be informed. 

Just be warned that this doesn't only apply to Coach, this applies to nearly every outlet store around. Each place has their own tell tale signs. Sometimes the tag sewn into the merchandise will actually say "Factory Store" on it, but other times there may just be extra symbols (Banana Republic has used small diamond shapes in the past) on the tag. Moral to the story? Do your homework and be smart about your purchases. Also note that the "MSRP" is deliberately marked high to make it look like you're getting a deal when "their price" is significantly lower or it's advertised as "75% off." 

If you want to read more, check out this article


Monday, September 12, 2011

Fall Frenzy

I am in a frenzy for Fall. As soon as September rolls around, I'm instantly ready for the cool, crisp Autumn weather to float on through. Unfortunately, it rarely happens that way and I'm stuck with Summer weather for at least few more weeks. While temperatures continue to hover around the mid to high 70s, I'm already anticipating my first Fall ensemble...hopefully by the 23rd (the official first day of Autumn) I'll be pairing my outfits with boots and not sandals.

While I continue to dream of cooler temps, I wanted to share my must-have boots for this season. I cannot wait to add these babies to my closet...and SOON!
Vince Camuto 'Silas' Boot (Nordstrom Exclusive) $169.95

These leather boots are sure to fit perfectly within my wardrobe and something about them just screams my name! I am VERY particular about, well, a lot of things, but especially boots. The toe can't be too pointy or too square, the color has to be just the right shade to suit my fancy, and they have to be walkable. I can walk in just about any pair of shoes I slip my foot into - tall or short, spike heel or wedge - but they have to be at least a little comfortable. Basically, I don't want blisters and I don't want my feet to be killing me by the end of the day. I will certainly suffer for the sake of fashion from time to time, but these everyday boots have to be wearable.

I'm prepared to hand over my hard earned cash, but I'll have to preorder them online if I want them! And boy, do I want them. 


Friday, September 9, 2011

Missoni for Target

It was announced months ago that Target and Missoni would be working together, but now the wait is nearly over! Starting September 13th, you can indulge in some Missoni for Target items. While Target has collaborated with designers in the past, this extensive 400-piece collection will be the largest yet. It will include clothing for women, men, and children as well as home decor items, accessories, office products, and so much more (check out the bicycle below!). The lookbook has been out for a while, but the launch party was held two nights ago with celebs showing up in both high priced Missoni ensembles and the new economical Missoni for Target pieces.

One of my personal favorites was the cardigan worn by Emma Roberts. She styled it perfectly and actually made me want to buy one for myself! Usually I'm not one for bold zigzag patterns on my clothing, but some items were certainly calling my name! 

These scarves are adorable.

More interesting to me though were the home decor pieces like these ones below. I hope I can snatch some up in time before they are all gone!

I love how fun these coffee mugs are...each with a different pattern, yet they compliment each other beautifully!

Understated and classy.

Like I mentioned above, there is a BICYCLE! 

So here's a peek at some of the Missoni for Target pieces I adore. There isn't enough room to talk about ALL of them, but look for these and more in stores on the 13th! 


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Zara Online

I really like Zara. Their clothing is on-trend and tends to resemble designer items, but at more affordable prices than say, Prada or Stella McCartney. My one complaint, however, has been that I couldn't buy the items I wanted online! I have no problem going to the mall, but sometimes it's nice to be able to click the "add to cart" (or in their case, "add to basket") button and checkout. Now, you can!

Yesterday Zara launched its e-commerce site for the U.S. As soon as I entered the site I was clicking and adding pieces to my shopping bag before I realized I couldn't afford to buy all of the items I was practically drooling over. C'est la vie! I managed to narrow it down to two items...for now!

On the plus side, it's nice to know that Zara has crossed the Atlantic in terms of online shopping...and just in time for Fall fashion shopping. I've been waiting for this moment for SO long! Thank you Zara! 

Happy shopping everyone!