Re-Tales: confessions of a shopaholic

Steal vs. Splurge: Fringe Movement

A few months ago, I lost total control and blew my weekend getaway on an haute Katherine Kwei handbag. In case you’re not familiar with the New York-based designer, Katherine is known for creating signature fringe-like leather shoulder bags, totes and clutches like the one shown here (they look like they’ve gone through a paper shredder). While a tad pricey ($125 – $2150), these wearable works of art are worth the investment.

imageCan’t stomach the thought of spending that much on shoulder candy? Don’t sweat it… I found the perfect low-cost substitute: this multi-colored leather fringe clutch from Latico (a.k.a. the LeCirque). While it’s not as polished and doesn’t have the intricately curled “eternity knots” along the bottom, Latico’s recession-friendly number is a tad roomier and the wooden handle is an added bonus. Priced at only $97, why not purchase one in solid black and brown too?

Steep: Donna evening clutch, $610, visit Katherinekwei.com for a list of retailers

Cheap: LeCirque multi-colored leather fringe clutch, $97, available at amazon.com (also comes in solid brown and black)

Which clutch do you prefer? The steep or cheap style? Don’t be shy… share your thoughts with the Fashion Junkie community!

 

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Lara Kazan & Kayla Designs: Blowout NYC Sample Sale!

imageNow that sex is back in the city, get the look that won’t strain your checkbook!

Join designers Lara Kazan and Keri Starker, of Kayla Designs, for a night of shopping, schmoozing and sipping cocktails.

Load up on Lara’s luxe, handmade knits (sweaters, capes, vests and ‘80’s-inspired leg wear) and Keri’s head-turning, handmade jewelry (exotic semi-precious stones), all of which are typically sold at Henri Bendels and other high end boutiques for up to 80% off retail! I repeat, 80% off retail!

The Retail Details!
What: Lara Kazan & Kayla Designs: Blowout NYC Sample Sale!
When: Tuesday, June 3rd
Time: 4:30 pm–8:30pm
Where: 555 8th Ave, NYC (btw 37th & 38th), suite 1701
Payment Type: Visa/Mastercard and cold-hard cash

And don’t forget to bring your appetite… there will be wine and cheese!

Happy shopping!

xo
-Fashion Junkie

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Shady Disposition: Essentials for the Beach and Beyond

It’s almost summer in the city and I’m proud to say that I’m pasty white for the first time ever. Sure I’d look better with a subtle J. Lo glow (dark under-eye circles and spider veins always disappear with a tan), but after years of basking on the beach with a reflector and baby oil (I kid you not), tanorexia has gradually taken its toll. Premature chest wrinkles, crow’s feet and displastic moles sliced off my back keep me in a constant state of panic. At the ripe old age of 36, my dermatologist’s number is already programmed on speed dial… not exactly normal. While you can’t turn back the clock, it’s never too late to shield yourself from the damaging effects of the sun. Do yourself a favor and consider stocking-up on these derm-approved skin saviors.

imageIt may have been cool to look like the Coppertone girl when we were eighteen, but now we know better than to bask in the sun George Hamilton-style. Be sun smart by slathering yourself with a super-charged sunblock like Anthelios. It’s packed with Mexoryl SX – the first organic filter to offer high-level protection against short UVA rays… the number one cause of aging. Anthelios SX Sunscreen • anthelios.com • $29 • 1-800-560-1803

imageTo really make a splash at the beach this summer, try a sizzling spandex cutout suit. These styles reveal a hint of skin on the front and sides of the waist, which means you’ll have a far less chance of getting fried. I’m a fan of La Blanca’s trendy black and white tribal cutout, which is priced at $103 at everythingbutwater.com.

imageNever mind stormy weather. Parasols have suddenly become the accessory du jour during sunny skies. Perfect for protecting your face and décolleté from damaging rays (trust me on this one!), this chic SunBlok number even features built-in UV protection, keeping you up to 10 degrees cooler in the strongest sunlight. GustBuster SunBlok Parasol • amazon.com • $32.49 • 1-888-487-8287

imageKeep suntans at bay with an haute, wide-brimmed straw hat. I’m obsessed with the neutral-colored Panama toppers from Anne Depasquale – a talented New York-based designer who will whip-up a bespoke style in 6 weeks or less. Anne Depasquale • annedepasquale.com • prices upon request • 646-263-5458

imageOver-sized shades will protect your peepers from “blinde-ing” light and unwanted lines. Blinde, a cutting-edge company that created the signature style for the lead cast of The Matrix, makes such cool cat-eye shapes, you’ll even want to wear ‘em at night! Blinde Talk To Me Sunglasses • visit blinde.com for retail locations and prices • 800-647-2345

imageDon’t even think about diving into a pool ‘til you’ve spritzed your strands with Kerastase Voile Protecteur, a magical mist with UV filters to prevent your hair from being singed in the sun. Spray it all over your head before heading-out-the-door to keep your locks shiny and silky all summer long. Kerastaste – Voile Protecteur • kerastase-usa.com • $34 • 877-254-9949

image If you’re dying for that back-from-the-beach-vacation bronzage, play it safe by going faux. Fake ‘n bake on the fly with Benefit Cosmetics’ Jiffy Tan – a lightweight, tinted body lotion that glides on evenly, won’t streak and stays put for instant tanification.
Benefit Cosmetics Jiffy Tan •

benefitcosmetics.com • $24.00 • 800-781-2336

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Filed: News & Views

Look Out for Luxury “Flash Sale” Sites!

imageWithout a doubt, the biggest new craze in online shopping is the plethora of Web-only luxury sample sale sites (a.k.a. flash sales). A trend that originated in France thanks to a site called Vente-Privee.com, flash sale prototypes in North America have proven to be just as popular and successful.

Sites like Gilt.com, RueLaLa.com, RegentsSecret.com, HauteLook.com, EditorsCloset.com are among the latest crop of members-only Web sites that sell deeply discounted luxury goods, typically up to 70% off retail for a limited-period of time. Once you become a member (you need to be invited by a member), you’ll receive a text message or email informing you when the next VIP sale begins.

Why the sudden wave of these so-called flash sites? With today’s shaky economy, unsold luxury goods are piling up in retailers’ stockrooms like never before. And since major department stores and independent boutiques are so desperate to sell stock before the arrival of next season’s shipments, flash sales have proven to be a great way to move inventory.

Due to the time-sensitive nature of flash sales (36 hours or less), die-hard serial shoppers, myself included, feel a sense of urgency and inevitably get pressured into buying the merch. For example, I just logged on to Gilt.com and noticed that they’re holding a Rebecca Minkoff handbag sale this Thursday, May 29th from 12pm–midnight. That means I’ll have to act fast if I want to score the dove grey leather hobo I’ve been dreaming about.

Flash site Ideeli.com, the savviest of these social networking newcomers, posts a digital time clock informing you exactly when a particular sale is over. Which reminds me: I only have 9 minutes and 5 seconds left to score those Valentino aviator shades I’ve been eyeing…

Buyers beware: as with any e-tailer, make sure to check return policies and shipping fees before you buy. Happy shopping!

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Filed: News & Views, Trends

FashionJunkie.com Live on ABC NewsRadio!

When it rains, it pours! Not only was FashionJunkie.com just featured in The Wall Street Journal, but FJ also provided tips for a live Komo 1000 NewsRadio broadcast in Seattle (ABC affiliate) about finding bargains in the depressed economy.

Hey, Matt Lauer… should you happen to be reading this, I’m ready for my Today Show debut! Hint, hint…

Tune into FashionJunkie.com’s live Komo 1000 NewsRadio broadcast right here!

Happy shopping!

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Filed: Interviews

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