Posted by The Frugal Diva on 24th February 2014
Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising is a great place to visit, shop, and explore an interesting area of downtown LA. Now for the Diva it’s always more fun if there is some discount shopping involved and FIDM has a wonderful Scholarship Store with some of the best deals in town. For those not in LA, there is an online store, prices are not as good however there are original and unique items.
All the merchandise sold in the Scholarship Store is donated by over 400 successful manufacturers, retailers, and wholesalers, many of whom employ FIDM Alumni. They send overstock and end of season items at great prices. All the money you spend goes to scholarships so feel good about splurging.
Now they also have exhibits of movie and television costumes plus a gallery devoted to perfume. The FIDM Los Angeles campus houses a Permanent and Study Collection of over 12,000 costumes, accessories, and textiles from the 18th century through the present day, including film and theatre costume. It is one of the largest such collections in the United States, and top designer holdings include Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, and Lacroix.
A current exhibition is 22nd Annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design February 11 – April 26, 2014. On view are actual costumes from 2013 movies nominated for Oscars. This exhibit is free to the public and will be open Monday – Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.
Check it out and watch Project Runway like a fashion insider.
Tags: bargains, Fashion, FIDM, frugal diva, Project Runway
Posted in Category Test, Fashion | 1 Comment »
Posted by The Frugal Diva on 7th August 2013
As The Frugal Diva leafs through fashions magazines, the question always pops up – who are these people modeling the clothes? At 365Hangers.com, you don’t have to ask because the models look like someone you would see at work, shopping, or in your own mirror. A size 10 dress most likely will be on a size 10 model. So no more wondering if that style would look good on your body.
365 Hangers carries brand names such as DVF, I.N.C., Marc Jacobs, and French Connection and they guarantee 70% off on every designer label on the website. Let’s do the math – cute sleeveless dress by Aqua for $98 is reduced to $37, maxi from Inc was $79 now it’s $27, and my personal favorite DKNY has a $195 long sweater that was brought down to a more reasonable $59.
When buying clothing on the internet. the shipping and return policies are very important. For all our good intentions, sometimes items don’t fit like we expected or the color doesn’t work. 365 Hangers charges $7 for shipping the entire order and you pay the return shipping. Per their site regarding returns. To request a return send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to explain your reason for returning the item (damage, inferior quality, poor fit etc). The shopper will then be issued store credit upon receiving the returned items to use towards their next purchase. A 10% handling fee will be deducted from initial product purchase amount (excluding shipping charges) on all returns.
There are great deals here however make the utmost effort to be sure before you buy.
Tags: 365 Hangers, discount women's clothing, frugal diva
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 14th May 2013
Shoes have many good qualities. They are loyal. Gain a few pounds and your jeans will turn on you. However you have to gain a lot of weight to out grow your favorite pair of pumps. They wait quietly at the back of the closet until that perfect occasion when only red heels with white polka dots will do. And you can try on endless pairs without taking off your clothes.
The best place to spend countless hours looking, trying on and maybe even buying – DSW. So much more than those three letters. It’s a place to hang out and meet other people. If only they served beverages and light snacks, one could easily spend the entire day there. I don’t know whether it’s the sheer choice of all those aisles or the friendly salespeople or the unbelievable prices that make this a such a great destination.
And like everywhere else, it’s more fun if you join the club. It costs nothing and you start getting little notices. Before you know it, points start accumulating, coupons are in the mail, and you are on your way to even greater savings.
This is the type of hunting that I’m talking about. They send me a $10 coupon good for any purchase over $59, I buy a $55 pair of Anne Klein loafers (listed at $79 on the AK website), that are reduced another 50% on clearance to $27 and use the coupon – bringing the grand total to$17 dollars and change plus tax.
Tell them your birth date and they send you a $5 coupon good for that month. Hey, it may not seem like a lot but it’s more then the other stores are doing for me. DSW, a company that helps you look good without spending too much money.
This is a also a great place to buy gifts items-socks, bags, slippers, and gift cards.
Tags: diva, DSW, frugal, shoes
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 21st April 2013
We carry them and they carry us through a day’s work, evening out, marketing, and trips to the gym. Our purses need to have everything from bandages for that occasional blister, lip gloss, all manners of ID, a little cash and some change for the parking meter, hair brush, sun block, keys, phone and phone accessories, coupons (of course), maybe a laptop or iPad, extra pantyhose, and various unmentionables. The Frugal Diva watches with envy as The Frugal Dude grabs his wallet and keys to brave the world for an entire day.
Where do we get these fabulous bags and how do we get them at the best price?
6pm.com carries a hugh inventory of everything including backpacks, clutches, and handbags. They are usually my go to place for shoes however the bags are very cute and what’s a great pair of shoes without a bag.
Try Baghaus for hot, haute bags that include all the latest totes.
Target has lured so many great designers that it is worth your time to cruise the site or stop in person to snap up the latest trend. Summer is for fun and they have wonderful selections of fringed and print bags.
Have fun shopping out there and let me know your favorite finds!
Tags: 6pm, bad joan, bananas for bags, frugal diva, handbags, target
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 17th April 2013
The Frugal Diva likes to emphasize the positive. With Olympic uniforms made and on their way to London, let’s concentrate on how we can shop American.
These are brands manufactured here in Los Angeles.
American Apparel clothing at great prices is manufactured right here in downtown Los Angeles employing 5000 workers. Llet’s support this local business and their efforts at not only manufacturing in the USA but keeping it sustainable, donating to local schools, giving their employees ESL classes, access to health care, benefits, and encouraging workers to bike or bus to work. While teens are the target market, there are plentiful items for kids that include organic and natural play dough, organic cotton clothes, and fun hair accessories. Even if they are mocked on Sex and the City, a scrunchie keeps hair out of your eyes and off your neck while working out. Check out a store near you.
The word diva practically screams out for fabulous pjs, robes, and slippers to wear for lounging and even for sleeping. Bed Head Pajamas answers the call with unique prints and lux fabrics. Normally they are a little pricey however they have a big warehouse sale in August and for those not in Los Angeles, take a peek at the sale page on their website.
Single Dress sells to many upscale department stores however you can snag something on their online sale page for for a great price. Scroll down for the deals at the bottom of the page. All made right here in Los Angeles.
Let me know about your favorite made in the USA clothing, accessories, and shoes. I’ll be happy to add them to the list.
Tags: american apparel, bedhead, frugal diva, made in the usa, single dress
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 10th April 2013
Celebrate Earth Day with these great offers from companies committed to the environment.
BeFrugal has noticed a growing trend right now for some stores to offer a discount to shoppers who donate or recycle items. Here are 4 examples:
a. Donate clothing (from any brand) at H&M and get a discount voucher for a future H&M purchase. You’ll get a 15% off coupon for the item of your choice for each bag of clothes you donate (with a limit two bags per day)
b. Instead of throwing it away, bring in your old hair styling tools. At Sally Beauty Supply bring in a used styling tool to save $5 off a new one $24.99+ (code 444568) or $10 on a new one $59.99+(code 444569).
c. The Blues Jean Bar is offering 10% off new jeans when you bring in a pair of jeans to donate to charity, 15% off when you bring in two or 20% off when you bring in three pairs of jeans in April.
d. Cosmetic company MAC offers a free M·A·C lipstick of your choice when you return their 6 of their primary packaging containers to a MAC counter or MAC Cosmetics online.
Tags: befrugal.com, earth day, frugal diva, H & M, MAC, recycle, Sally Beauty Supply
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 27th March 2013
Your wedding day is a great opportunity to acknowledge that you are in love, starting out of a new path, and have the attention of everyone in the room.
First choice, decide how many. There are two options, just the immediate family or 150 guests. How do I get to that equation? Everyone who has invited you to their wedding, your cousins, your neighbors, your family’s neighbors, and there are two of you-so unless one of you was found on the doorstep of an orphanage or raised by wolves-double all numbers. If you are going to stay with just parents, brothers and sisters, children, and grandparents you may stop reading here.
The rest of you suckers for that big day, let us move forward. Invitations – hand engraved on parchment by a professional calligrapher – no way!! Printed on your ink jet using nice colored paper from the Paper Source or the envelopemall.com - yes way!! Get some transparent labels for the addresses – print two copies so you can use the second one for the Thank You notes. Print your own return address labels for the RSVP envelopes and the outside envelopes. Even more eco friendly are on line invite services.
We all love beautiful flowers. Here is the truth about flowers – they are very expensive and die in three to four days. This is not the kind of investment you want to make. Here are some great options. Living baby roses in a beautiful container. this is a great tip from Sasha Taylor owner of Bodhi Babies – buy inexpensive glass bowl shaped vases, fill them with water, float a few small candles and then add a few roses or another flower to glide prettily in the water. Sasha also added color by buying two small ficus trees and strategically placing roses in the leaves. Later use them in your apartment or plant them in your garden. Remember a small spash of color makes a great impression.
You can learn how to make a bouquet from a DIY internet site. Another tradition that I just loved. As the bride walks down the aisle, her friends each handed her a flower that she placed in a embroidered cloth holder. Everyone got to participate and she had a beautiful spontaneous bouquet.
Feeding your guests is the major expense. Remember many restaurants and venues will give substantial discounts for off day weddings. If everyone is local a week night is a possibility. Or possibly one of your friends has a large home, common room in their condo, or work area space that can be used. Creativity is the key to savings.
First, second or third time around, this can be a fun day without breaking the bank.
Tags: discount, diva, flowers, frugal, wedding
Posted in Fashion | 2 Comments »
Posted by The Frugal Diva on 14th January 2013
An oldie but a goodie, Top Button has been around for some time giving you the best sales in LA and NYC. The membership comes for free, so sign up to receive updates on sales such as the following.
The Fred Segal used to be once a year sale now has a winter date. Right now up to 50 off.
And keeping up with the groupons, they have added a restaurant and spa discount section. These places are pricey so this might be best for a special occasion.
Tags: fred segal, frugal diva, sales, top button
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 7th January 2013
Now you might wonder why a Frugal Diva would cross the threshold of an upscale department store. Here’s why – fantastic sale, coupons that give you $25 off for every $100 that you spend, and the need for a new dress for a very special occasion. So at the Beverly Center Bloomies, I went to the 3rd floor ready to just walk in and walk out. These clothes looked perfect if you were young, thin, and trendy. Luckily for me, I was helped by Pamela Ruday (if I misspelled your name, please email me and I will correct it).
Just a little background here, I worked for a women’s knitwear company and had accumulated a nice wardrobe . It had been about three years since I had seriously shopped for a frock and I wasn’t even sure what was in style anymore. I wasn’t sure what would look good on me and many times had entered a store only to leave without trying anything on. Here I was ready to bolt when Pamela appeared. I explained my situation and she showed what a great salesperson can do when confronted with a woman who wants to flee and will be condemned to wearing a five year old dress that had passed classic to just being old.
Pamela started showing me possibilities. Explaining that certain of these dresses would look much better on the body then they did on the hanger. I looked but I did not believe until they were on me and I actually looked good-dare I say it not only good but confident and just a little hot. Now I asked her to start with only sale dresses and she came up with ten choices which we narrowed down to two DKNY styles that I loved. One was a black number that looked like a sack on the hanger until she showed me how to pull up the skirt and blouse the top. Amazing, all of sudden this was so flattering that I didn’t want to take it off. The other was a black tank top attached to a light weight tweed skirt that looked like two pieces. At home, I tossed on a draped camel jacket and this became a fantastic ensemble.
The prices? The original price of $195 became $104.50 after the sale and coupon deduction. The $295 dress became $46.95 after the sale and coupon deduction. How did this happen? I had to throw in a pair of DKNY sheer pantyhose for $20 (we added the stockings to bring the total to over $200 so I could use two $25 off a $100 coupons) and the total was $168.46 before tax. That’s two DKNY dresses and stockings and you can return them if you change your mind later.
Oh, I also got a $15 gift certificate that can be used after the sale bringing my total down to $153.46. They think I will spend alot more than the $15 however that’s were they will be wrong. It looks like I have another pair of pantyhose in my future.
Remember Frugal Divas bargains are everywhere however they are only a bargain if they look good and you wear the item. Pamela you saved the day!
Become a Bloomingdale’s Insider and receive coupons by signing up for a credit card. You don’t have to use however it insures that you will be ahead of the curve when they have sales.
Tags: Beverly Center, Bloomingdales, diva, DKNY, frugal
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Posted by The Frugal Diva on 31st October 2012
UNIQLO started in Japan with well priced, well made clothes and accessories for men, women, kids, and toddlers. In San Francisco, the line was blocks long when they debuted. With only five brick and mortar stores in the USA, they have finally opened an online shopping site.
Light weight cold weather vests and jackets in a variety of colors are one of their specialties. They have all the basics covered and then some choices of eye popping yellows, pinks, and oranges for a total of 17 colors. They look slim cut however there is a chart that goes up to XXL. Remember nobody knows your size on the internet. There is no skinny sales person shocked that a size over one digit even exists.
If you are skittish about ordering clothing, try some of their fun accessories. Warm scarves, fashion scarves, and a poncho are just a few of the non sized items. Adorable checked gloves and cozy hats will add a bit of dash to the dreariest winter days.
The kid’s items are so adorable. You will be able to spot your child a mile away in the lime green parka one of the seven colors available.
They have a $5 of $50 coupon for first time purchasers valid until November 3o, 2012. Every week they post new discounted items.
As always, please check shipping and return policies.
Tags: frugal diva, uniqlo, vests
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