Hello-Hello and Happy (oh-so-happy) Friday! We hope your weekends are going to be filled with fun and frolic, relaxation and perhaps even a break from the chaos of daily life.
We start today with the Sun-Times and a nifty little story they ran this week, Preppy on a Budget. The column is accompanied by a fun slide show called Preppy Shopper. The story by Jessica Sedgwick showcases several shops unique to Chicago as well as national retailers. From their slide show, the Spiegel signature stretch seersucker jacket.
“Those who enjoy rocking their inner Blair Waldorf (“Gossip Girl” queen bee of prep) might think the only way they can get that look is by spending big bucks. Not anymore.”
“Retailers such as Kohl’s, Old Navy and even indie-minded Urban Outfitters are unleashing affordable preppy pieces — many adorned with sailor-inspired buttons and crisp seersucker stripes…”
Also showcased in the story, the Unisa TammyLee Ballet Flat at DSW.
And these Chaps Madras Shorts for boys are only $18 at Kohl’s, originally selling at $30.
Other ‘preppy style’ retailers are discussed at length in an excellent story in yesterday’s Times; it surveys the competitive terrain at midlevel stores like Ann Taylor and Talbots.
The always-insightful Eric Wilson (a big favorite of TP’s) wrote the story:
“… mainstream retailers like Ann Taylor and Talbots have been hiring new designers and sprucing up their looks to appeal to modern women who are now shopping for style within their means.”
As these stores become “recession destinations,” shoppers are discovering that they aren’t as fuddy as they used to be.”
Here is an Ann Taylor Jacket with contrasting trim.
The jacket is now on sale at $69.99, but with the additional 25% discount the retailer is offering, the price is about $52.
Mr. Wilson’s story focuses primarily on Talbots, Ann Taylor and the new Liz Claiborne line from Isaac Mizrahi. The writer’s perception of the inside of a Talbots store makes for a fun read:
“Walking into the Talbots store on Madison Avenue, with its festive red painted door, homey décor and piles of melon-colored cardigans, bamboo prints and safari suits, the change is only beginning to become apparent. You might think that Michael Kors and Tory Burch had wed in a year-round Christmas superstore.”
And when considering the Talbots Sale is now offering an Additional 25% off reduced prices, you know there are likely to be possible purchases under the red awning. Even ‘wear now’ basics show significant price reductions, and that is before the additional 25% discount.
A good example of the price cuts is Talbots Pima Cotton Crew Tee, on sale at $8.99, in 21 different colors.
The Times story is a fascinating read, well worth a little investment of time, but we want to know your thoughts…? What is making you buy… or not? Has Talbots updated its inventory, do you like what they are offering? How about Ann Taylor? TP is just dying to know your thoughts on this topic.
Hayden-Harnett fans may want to scoot into their Online Sample Sale running through April 5, with bargains like the Margot Eyeglass Case at $10, reduced from$30.
Then we have one more preppish retailer offering price reductions, Brooks Brothers. The company is doing their Preferred Customer Event, taking 25% off prices if one uses their Brooks card or Brooks MonsterCard Mastercard, 15% off for other forms of payment.
We have an update for those fond of Sarah Jessica Parker’s wedding gown in Sex and the City.
There is (was) a shortened version of the Vivienne Westwood dress available.
However, the shortened version selling at Net-a-Porter was gone almost as soon as it went up on the site. But do not despair of owning this version, one merely needs to get in touch with Dame Westwood and be willing to part with about $9,900. BTW, the release date for Sex and the City 2 has been announced; ask your social secretary to mark you as “busy” on May 28, 2010, if planning to see the film its first day in release.
On a lighter note, two young gentlemen have a new take on an old, and much-maligned medium: the Jello mold. Well, no one actually says the “J Word,” in all honesty. A NY Times story looks at the phenomenon and its creators, Sam Bompas and Harry Parr. (Below, the Madrid airport and aircraft in jelly.)
The wizards creating these masterpieces are definitely products of an ‘Old School’education, having attended both Eton and University College, London; they refer to themselves as ‘jelly mongers.’
On that creative note we shall take our leave! Happy weekend dolls!