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Leave It to Sam

24 Nov

Not me. Sam’s Club, that is (I’ll get to that in a bit). I’m technically on vacation, but I had to put in my two cents on Black Friday.

Courtesy: Sam's Club

You are absolutely crazy if you wait in the cold at midnight, even at Target, for a deal. My advice: Don’t even wait for Cyber Monday; make this Friday “Cyber Friday.”

There are so many options out there (I mentioned Loehmanns.com last week). It seems most people wait for those doorbuster deals to buy deeply discounted electronics. Still not worth it to me. First of all, with eBay, you can find great deals on new products–not necessarily used. And many electronics vendors on eBay accept returns. You may just need to do your own wrapping (which I suggest doing to save money anyway).

Next, if you’re a member of Sam’s Club, snapping up deals on all-things tech is easy. The megastore has an iPad® app and mobile app you can use starting November 27. Grab big screen HDTVs and electronics to diamond jewelry and toys. For example: One deal is a Magnavox 32-inch LCD 720p HDTV for $248.88 (and includes free shipping). Of course you must be a member, but I think any of those warehouse clubs are worth it (if you have the room or can split your spoils among friends).

Between now and the holidays, I’ll have some more ideas to save money, so stay tuned and have a happy and a healthy Thanksgiving!

 

OK, I Thought I Could at Least Make a Buck

27 Sep

I’m a lunatic. But I am also about to prove the point I made in my last post. And I promise this is my last post about Missoni for Target. I’m currently in Boston, a city I LOVE! And my dearest friend, Maria, and I took a trip back down memory lane to our alma mater, Brandeis University, and reaffirmed why we are friends. A leisurely drive from Jamaica Plain, through the Fens to Back Bay, then Cambridge–I had an itinerary in mind to get to Waltham that included a visit to the Target (I believe formerly Ann & Hope) in Watertown, a town where I once worked at a Super 8 during college as a front desk clerk (yes, I certainly paid my dues).

I admit (even though my stepmother is reading this), I planned my trip to Boston with stops at Target locations along the way that had some sort of Missoni stock. I bought and then returned a black-and-white chevron travel tote because that style wasn’t selling on eBay (it had no practical use for me). And what my friend and I discovered in that Target in Watertown was that items not selling on eBay are being returned. (We were just a mile down the road from Harvard Business School–could students there be thinking the same?) And it seems to be mostly black-and-white–colored items, including the space-dyed polo dress and black-and-white strappy knit dress. Amazingly, there was a lot of bedding available, more chipped picture frames and…. tons of heels (above and right). My friend Maria is Italian and is quite picky about quality (as we all should be!). While our eyes became wide when we saw all the sizes available–and the thought that we could buy one pair each for ourselves and buy one pair to sell on
eBay–our excitement was quickly dashed. First, the shoes also aren’t selling on eBay. But probably, and more importantly, (this is where I prove the point I made in my last post) the dyes were running. You can see the ivory-colored chevron in the photos are marred with black dye. And our hands were stained after handling them.

I read on Racked.com that a fellow blogger said Missoni would devalue its brand by doing this collaboration, and I now agree. But if you still desire a piece, start loving the black-and-white prints and look for those items on eBay (many of them are selling for below retail), accept running dyes on your shoes (and who knows what other pieces) and watch for returns of some of these styles. I bet, like most of the other designer collaborations with Target, you will find many items on the 30% off sale rack in the coming months.

Note: Later this week, I will completely veer off this subject as I check out the bike-sharing program in Boston that will soon be coming to the streets of New York–and it is a bargain!

 

 

Missoni at…. Loehmann’s

14 Sep

Well, we all know how crazy and difficult it is now to purchase Missoni for Target! But you can still find some inexpensive Missoni if you’re desperate. Loehmann’s on Seventh Avenue and West 17th Street has some killer heels and flats–with zigzags and all–right when you walk in. The heels are $299.99 and the flats are $249.99. It’s probably less than the prices you’ll find on eBay. Just an FYI! Loehmann’s, 101 Seventh Avenue, Manhattan, (212) 352-0856

Before We Start…. The Virtues of eBay!

14 Jul

Welcome to Bloggains. I would say it’s a way of life. What I’m about to share with you each day is what I do in my own life, to make sure my nails are done, my refrigerator is stocked with good and healthy food and wine, etc., while still having money left over to enjoy the best city in the world and its surroundings. So here it goes.

What woman doesn’t like shoes, bags, clothes and accessories! I love them all. But while my closet is bursting, my wallet isn’t. I decided I needed to get rid of some things to reverse that situation. And while we can all justify keeping an item by telling ourselves it will come back in style, sometimes it’s just worth letting go. I used to try to sell my old clothes, shoes and bags first at consignment stores like INA, and then at places like Beacon’s Closet and Buffalo Exchange. But I realized you will never get the price you deserve, if anything at all; the latter two are getting very picky as they get more popular and only take items seasonally. Many moons ago, I sold stuff on eBay. Well, I decided it was time to do it again. And it’s going well. What I’m about to tell you I should charge money for, but that wouldn’t be fair.

Here’s a sampling of what I’ve sold so far (and then I’ll tell you how I did it): a Foley + Corrina Silk Trapeze Dress for $72.00 and Chloe Ballet Flats for $64.99.

  • First, see how similar items are selling and what price they’re selling for.
  • If it’s clothing, and you don’t have a form to photograph it on, take a picture of you wearing it (I’d crop your head off the picture, though). If you don’t have someone to take the picture, take it yourself. I used a $15 tripod I got at Target (a place I will mention a lot in this blog) and placed it in front of a mirror so I could frame myself in the display–these are talents you learn as a VJ (a one-man-band TV reporter).
  • Then, yes, you have to give your measurements in addition to the size so the buyer has a better idea of how it will fit on them.
  • With shoes, if you have the box and dust bag, include it in your pictures. Make sure you show the condition of the soles, and be honest about the condition of the shoes overall.
  • Find out how much it will cost to ship it before you list the item. I like Priority Mail because it takes the weighing out of the equation; flat-rate is the way to go.
  • I think it’s worth the $.45 to add three extra pictures.

EBay gets a 9% cut of your total sale, including shipping, and if you use PayPal (I highly recommend it), they charge a minimal fee too. But it’s worth it compared to what you would get from consignment or place that buys clothes.  If anyone’s interested, click here to see what I’m currently selling (less than three days left in some of the auctions as of today, so bid fast–yes, I’m shameless, but you could get a good deal buying on eBay too.)

Tomorrow: What I did with the money I made….