Just because you’re without a job or pinching pennies doesn’t mean you have to make like a Cratchit for the holidays!
I realize I am late to the party, but I also know lots of people have holiday events this weekend and next–including MPS. I still don’t know what (to quote my mother), “I’m gonna put on this body”, but it’s got to be something cheap or something I already have in my closet. So after thumbing through my wares, I’ve come up with five easy (read: not groundbreaking) style ideas that are sure to erase the bah-humbugs and have you eager to make out under the mistletoe and go buck-wild at your office holiday party!
- Glam up a simple outfit with a silver or gold skinny belt. J.Crew has some sassy metallics for little $$$.
- Buy some inexpensive costume jewelry to bring back to life that little black dress or silky top you’ve been wearing to death. Was floored by the fun selection I saw the other day at Old Navy. Granted, these baubles may not last forever, but at least they’ll add a lil’ bling for the night.
- Don’t forget that jeans are okay. Last year, I wore dark jeans with a cropped green velvet Mandarin collar jacket bought years ago at Loehmann’s. I added some cute earrings, black heels, and it looked adorable. http://youlookfab.com/2008/12/04/casual-holiday-parties-on-a-budget-glam-up-your-jeans/
- Target. Target. Target. Their Limited Edition line is bursting at the seams with cuteness.
- Borrow from a friend. Act like you’re living back in the dorm or the sorority house. There’s nowhere better to shop than your BFF’s closet. Just be kind and dry clean before returning.
Posted in Cheap Thrills, Uncategorized
Tagged cheap, costume jewelry, Cratchit, holiday attire, inexpensive, J. Crew, Limited Edition collection, Loehmann's, office parties, Old Navy, pinching pennies, Scrooge, skinny belt, style, Target, without a job
I was really hoping for a pool day today, but it’s overcast and gloomy…AGAIN! So, I’ve been running around town with my UPiC (“Unemployed Partner-in-Crime” for uninitiated Pink Slippers). We went to Target (great sales on sandals and cute tops this weekend!) and had lunch al fresco at McDonald’s. Sad how that Mickey D’s treat is as uplifting to me now as it was when I was a kid scarfing down Happy Meals and hot fudge sundaes. Lunch for $3.23. What more could you ask for?
And miracles never cease–I have a date tonight! We’re going to the 5:30 movie at the Plaza, which I know will be cheap. I’m sure cheap beer will follow.
Mother’s Day is in six days. You may be broke (aren’t we all?) and jobless, but Mom still needs to know you care. And, believe me, Mom knows the situation you’re in and doesn’t expect you to buy a big gift.
You can honor her with something cheap, and that doesn’t have to mean crappy. It can be creative and very charming. These are often the gifts that take the most thought, and Mom will be so happy you didn’t let this day pass without some special token of affection.
- A bouquet even Martha could love – Buy a couple of bunches of brightly colored tulips from your corner deli, farmer’s market, grocery. Tightly arrange without any filler in a simple vase. Tie raffia around the vase. Voila! You’ve got a simple, classy floral arrangement that probably cost you no more than $25 and looks like Martha.
- Beach bag bingo – If your mom is a beach bunny, put together her beach bag for Summer 2009. Old Navy has the CUTEST canvas floral bags for $12.5o. Fill with a paperback, beach towel (you can get these for $9.99 and less at TJ Maxx, etc.), SPF 30+ sunscreen and, perhaps, for laughs, a $2.00 pair of huge, obnoxious sunglasses that remind you of her days carpooling in 1979.
- Give to her favorite charity – Donate what you can ($10, $15, $20) to a cause that makes Mom smile. Put an acknowledgement in her Mother’s Day card. This is ideal for those Moms – like mine! – who give tirelessly of themselves to every one, every day. This is also ideal for you, because Mom won’t have to know just how much you gave.
- Take Mom to a matinee – Take mom to a matinee movie (they’re cheaper!) and for ice cream after. The whole bill might be $25 (unless you’re in NYC), and she’ll be thrilled you chose to spend a precious weekend afternoon with her.
- Sometimes a card says it best – You may not be able to get her a gift, but you can buy the best card you can afford. Many greeting cards these days are beautiful and look like gifts themselves. Check out Kate’s Paperie, Papyrus, Sam Flax and Target all have gorgeous high-end cards. I also love the eco-friendly greeting cards with flower seeds built into the paper. My mom thought that was too cool.
BONUS TIP: Get your siblings to chip in on a gift for Mother. You can get something nicer, and your mom will be too happy that her kids worked together in peace and (relative) harmony.
Posted in Shopping: The New Deal
Tagged cheap gifts, eco-friendly, flowers, gifts, greeting cards, jobless, Kate's Paperie, Martha Stewart, Mom, Mother's Day, Mother's Day gift ideas, Old Navy, Sam Flax, Target
- Great inclusion of drugstore cosmetics and skincare
- Cute bargain finds among more expensive wares (Adorable, red patent-trim straw clutch for $48 from Chinese Laundry on p. 70 – look in the back for a Lucky-branded coupon!). Other picks include Old Navy t-shirts; $5 cropped leggings from Forever 21; many fun pieces from H&M, K-Mart, JC Penney, Target, etc.
- Steal These Looks for Under $100 p. 113 – 120, great ideas for styling
- Extensive section on inexpensive hair solutions (trim your own split ends, p. 157)
- Monthly Lucky Breaks section featuring giveaways, discounts, etc.
- Hardly any suitable looks for work or interview
- Deal Hunting on p. 98 – maybe it’s just my taste, but the clothes on that page (“sweet feminine pieces” for a wedding reception) are cheap looking.
- Home Expansion on p. 76 highlighting new home lines from my favorite designers, including Tracy Reese, tibi, Trina Turk, Temperley and Tuleh. I mean, kick a girl while she’s down, huh? Who in this economy can afford a $350 wool leopard pillow…no matter how adorable it is? Or how about wallpaper for $150 to $200 a roll? Just mean. I’m really jonesing to redecorate, but I’ll be steering my car to TJ Maxx or Target…if I get to do it at all!
- “Secrets to Wearing Shiny Trousers”, p. 88. Wow–those will look super hot (mess) on your next informational interview.
The Verdict: Four Pink Slips. For the drugstore finds and hair section as well as the Lucky Breaks and style ideas
Posted in MPS Newsstand, Uncategorized
Tagged Chinese Laundry, deal hunting, Elizabeth Banks, Forever 21, H&M, interview, JC Penney, K-Mart, Lucky Breaks, Lucky Magazine, Target
I know that with Spring’s arrival, I have been climbing the walls wanting to shop for bright, colorful summer dresses, shoes and strappy tops. I am dying to debut a fresh look. I also know that I’ve got no dough.
Soooo…I’m getting creative. Here are five solutions I’m employing this season. I hope they’re helpful.
- Find a cheap, but reliable seamstress– I’ve got several quality summer jackets and dresses that just aren’t fitting right (ok–I’ve lost some weight…in my boobs! I mean, c’mon!). Instead of buying new ones, I’m taking them downstairs to the tailor for a little nip and tuck. You could also replace buttons, remove sleeves, create capris, etc. Get creative! Yes, you’re spending money, but not as much as you would buying brand new togs.
- Invite a friend or two over for a fashion show – Grab some cheap wine, gather some friends and get a fresh perspective on how you can mix-and-match and restyle what you already have. Who knows–the wine could spark some spunky ideas, and your friends may emerge with one of your cast-offs to give it new life. Recycling at its finest.
- Visit discount stores for fun, inexpensive accessories – H&M, Target, Kohl’s, Wal-Mart, Loehmann’s–all have fun earrings, necklaces, belts and scarves that can make any outfit look completely different.
- Invest in one or two clothing items so you feel like you’re injecting a little newness – I’ve got my eye on $29.50 white jeans from Old Navy and am searching for black cigarette pants. If you find any, give me a shout!
- Don’t forget your head– Surely, you have a hair cut or trim scheduled sometime soon. New bangs or some layers can do wonders and freshen your whole image. I’ve always said your hair is your best accessory, so pay attention to it. Even if you’re scraping by, look into student nights at five-star salons or visit your local hair school. My UPiC (unemployed partner in crime) went to the local Aveda school and got a fabulous trim for $20! You don’t have to pick up scissors, either. Drag out that curling or straightening iron collecting dust and experiment with some new looks. Got hair elastics, headbands and barrettes lying around? Try figuring out how they can star in your new styles.
For more great ideas, visit my friend The Broke Socialite.
Also, if you’ve got good suggestions of your own, please share them with us!
Lean Cuisines at Target for $1.80. Heyyyy!