Friday, January 30, 2009

Clearance alert: Thakoon for Target

As stated on Target's web site (and shown at left): the Thakoon Go International line is only available for a limited time, until January 31st. Which, um, happens to be tomorrow. Where in heavens name did January go??

Anyway, Target's web site only has a smattering of Thakoon's items on clearance (like his cute floral trench now on sale for under $31.49). And several of the online items - like the iconic Shibori dress - are listed even though they've long been sold out. So your best bet is to hit the stores for whatever Thakoon is left. My local Target has a decent selection (heavy on the tank tops, t-shirts and full skirts) and the entire line was marked down by 30%.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Clever or Creepy? You decide.

Target's Alexander McQueen Go International line turns out to have an interesting model choice for their advertisements. The clothes -- which hit Target stores next month -- are modeled by a familiar blonde: the Blythe doll. You know, the one with blonde hair, blue doe-eyes and bangs? As reported by

No, it’s not a Barbie of Gwyneth’s mom, but a certain type of doll that was sold in the US only for the year of 1972, famous for her eyes that changed color whenever you pulled the string that came out of her back.

No word on whether this was a cost-cutting measure or a way to tickle the cost-cutting masses, but we bet it’ll be a hit on blogs everywhere right away.

I'm assuming that Mr. McQueen and Target thought this would be a cute & clever way to advertise their fashions. I, however, think it's a bit creepy.

Trendy Twist

Target continues to knock off expensive trend items such as the twisted stool currently found in the Viva Terra catalog and at Grandin Road. Target's version, the Acacia Twisted Stool (10 inches square and 18 inches tall) is part of its temporary Home Design Event, available now in stores and online. Target's stool is just $63 on sale this week (regularly $90), while Viva Terra and Grandin Road sell slightly wider and taller versions for $195 and $299, respectively. All have the double helix appearance. I would recommend trying to find one at your local Target store, because try as I might, I couldn’t find it online. And I’d find it fast, since the Home Design Event is a limited-time, six-week affair (which is already about halfway over…).

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wednesday’s Rave: this Dean Harris bracelet

I’ve sung the praises of the Dean Harris jewelry collection for Target before… but now I have to rave about this gorgeous bracelet I just bought over the weekend on clearance for 75% off! Which brought it to just under $20, down from the original price of $79.99. Honestly, I came across this bargain by accident: I happened to be in a Target a couple towns away when I spied this in the jewelry case. And I may just have to go back to get a pair of the wooded bangles (both large and small) which are now $9.99 and $6.24 respectively. Now as Target clearly advertises on their web site, “Prices, promotions, styles and availability may vary by store and online”… which must be why the Dean Harris clearance is still only 30%-off online, and why both the Target near my house plus the one across from my work haven’t even put the collection on sale yet. But if you can hunt down a store that’s clearing it out (like I did) there’s some amazing deals to be had!

Bad news confirmed

An update from yesterday's post: it's been confirmed that Target will suffer layoffs. The retailer has announced that it will slash 1,000 jobs at its downtown Minneapolis headquarters, laying off 600 workers and eliminating 400 open positions. The cuts represent about 9 percent of its downtown work force. Target also will close its Little Rock, Ark., distribution center later this year, which currently employs about 500 workers. They will be offered positions at other Target distribution centers or will receive severance packages similar to those received by the headquarters employees.

Target already had suspended salary increases for senior management, suspended share repurchase activity, tightened credit card underwriting and credit granting, reduced its store expansion plans and cut expenses such as outside contractor support, travel and entertainment. You can read the full article from the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal here.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Some bad news for Target...

From today's CNN, this discouraging economic news about Target Corporation:

A spokeswoman for Target (TGT, Fortune 500), the second largest U.S. discounter after WalMart, said it is taking actions to reduce costs including job cuts. She could not yet provide details on how many employees will be affected.

Tuesday’s Rant: PVC shower curtain liners

On Tuesdays I usually take the opportunity to rant about something I do NOT like about Target …because although I love them to death, they certainly ain’t perfect. Today’s rant is about PVC shower curtain liners. Now back in April of last year, I wrote a post about Target taking action to reduce the usage of harmful PVC in their products. High on the list was shower curtain liners, which are commonly made entirely of PVC. Although not highlighted in my blog post, I specifically recall Target stating in an article that they would phase out most PVC by the end of 2008. Well guess what? That hasn’t happened. Out of over a dozen shower curtain liners I saw on the racks at the store last week, only one was EVA vinyl (and clearly marked that it did not contain PVC in either the product itself or the packaging) and one other was fabric (polyester). Now I’m not understanding this, especially since both were around the same price point ($10.99). The toxic consequences of the PVC liners has been widely reported, so why even offer the PVC ones at this point? While I do praise Target for making strides by offering the EVA and fabric ones as an option, they need to go the extra mile and remove the harmful ones from the store shelves.

Monday, January 26, 2009

More Orla Kiely news

As previously reported: Target will expand their designer home products assortment with the debut of its exclusive Orla Kiely for Target line. Now comes news that the official launch date for the assortment will be February 1st.

"The Orla Kiely for Target collection combines fun and function with products that are adorable and available for a great price," said Gina Sprenger, senior VP/Merchandising, Target. "The collection is energetic and bright, and sure to add a delightful touch to our guest's homes."

Orla Kiely is best known for combining color, pattern, graphic control and texture in a harmonious way. The assortment includes housewares such as a printed laundry bag, hanging shoe organizer, tapered totes and more. The home décor items range from plates and bowls to placemats and aprons. Kiely's unique designs will be accessible to a wider audience at prices ranging from $2.49 for a small tumbler to $21.99 for a tablecloth.

Pick of the Week

It's Pick of the Week time: each week I pick one great buy from Target's Weekly ad (in the Sunday newspaper) and highlight it here on my blog. Now I don't know about you, but I've had fitness on the brain lately. Specifically: diet and fitness in mind, now that the holidays are over (and I've realized a full 5 lb. weight gain from all those Christmas cookies...). That's why I'll be stocking up on some new workout wear, like these C9 by Champion Performance Pants. Now what I love about these is that they come in a variety of lengths, which is crucial for someone short like me. And, unlike some of the pricer workout-wear that come in varied lengths (like the ones from Lucy, which start at $70) these C9 ones are much more wallet-friendly. And this week, they happen to be on sale for just $17.99 each.

C9 by Champion Performance Pants.
Athletic fit and moisture-wicking Duo Dry® fabric.

3 inseam lengths:
• Tall with 34 1/2"
• Regular with 31 1/2"
• Petite with 28 1/2"
$17.99 this week at Target. In-stores only, not available online.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Hollywould Hiatus

Remember the Hollywould line for Target? The cute shoe and accessories line that debuted in the Fall of 2007 as part of Target’s Go International program? Well WWD is reporting that Holly Dunlap, Hollywould’s creative director and founder, is about to take a long hiatus from fashion. Holly writes on her Web site,, that she has officially gone surfing, dancing and possibly even writing a book. “After nine years of lots of work and loads of fun, Hollywould and I are taking a nice long vacation,” Dunlap said. “In 2009 you may find us surfing off the beaches of Brazil, skiing in the mountains of Switzerland, sailing near the shores of Italy, and sunning on the sands of Palm Beach, and wherever we are, we’ll be thinking of you.”

Dunlap also said the brand could resurface soon if it finds new backers; back in October, Hollywould’s parent company was hoping to sell the brand. “When will we be back? Maybe very soon, but hopefully not until we’ve had time to master our surf & snowboard skills, write at least one book, learn at least one new language, visit at least three exotic places, and learn how to dance the tango,” Dunlap writes.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Sex and the Recession

At least there's one bright spot in this recession: the cash-strapped masses may be spending less on restaurants and entertainment, but not necessarily on the quality of their sex lives. And to that end, mass retailers like Target now peddle a whole variety of sexual aids, including condoms, lubricants and personal massagers. You can read the full Forbes article here.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Another Michelle Obama/Target tie-in

As if Thakoon wasn't enough: today comes word that on her first full day as the new First Lady, Mrs. O (along with her husband and the Bidens) attended a multi-denominational service at Washington National Cathedral wearing a Tracy Feith dress. The dress (shown here) has a rounded neck, fitted bodice and waist, and a full skirt-a very modern twist on a 1950s silhouette. It also features one of Feith’s trademark bold prints.

So what's the tie-in, you ask? Well, as previously reported, Feith is currently working on a lower-priced collection for Target, due to debut in stores in early May.

Wednesday’s Rave: Greenroom Eco

I am pretty much in love with the Greenroom Eco brand at Target. This stationery line is super cute and made from 100% post-consumer waste recycled paper and soy-based ink. With their bright, cheery colors and simple repeating patterns, they were screaming my name, and I just couldn’t resist.

The collection includes cool notepads, binders, stationery and journals, as well as unique items like CD labels and paper-pad mousepads. The only bummer is that you’ll need to visit your local Target store in order to get your hands on these gems, since doesn’t carry the brand. You can also check out Greenroom Eco products at their own web site.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Tuesday’s Rant: Rudeness at Target Pharmacy

On Tuesdays I usually try to take the opportunity to rant about something I do NOT like about Target …because although I love them to death, they certainly ain’t perfect. Today’s rant is a cautionary tale about customer service at the Target pharmacy counter (or lack thereof). If you're planning to pick up your prescription near closing time, you might want to make sure you don't have any questions after closing time. Consumerist reader Kathy says she realized that she had a question about her son's prescription immediately after picking up the prescription, but when she turned around to ask it — she was too late. You can read the full account of the story here. My take is this: at the very least, the cashier could have been a bit more helpful. While a cashier cannot answer medical questions, they should have simply said "I'm sorry, I'm not qualified to answer that and the pharmacist is gone for the day". And if it was indeed the pharmacist talking to Kathy, they should have answered the question even if it was the end of a long shift.

And while I am appalled at how rudely Kathy was treated, I do applaud Consumerist for A) reporting the story, and B) for also publishing Target CEO’s contact information, in case she (or any of you with a complaint) want to gripe directly to the Big Guy.

Thakoon talks Target

I have to agree with the reader comments today over at I didn't care for Michelle Obama's inauguration dress at all. Perhaps Michelle would have fared better had she picked one of her other favorite designers, Thakoon, instead of going with Isabel Toledo. Speaking of which: here's a cute interview from the man behind the latest Target Go International line, where he reveals that given the chance, he’d most love to design for former supermodel Christy Turlington.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Target Tries Price Point Driven TV Ads

For the first time in the company’s history, Target has introduced TV ads featuring price-point messaging. The spots, which debuted during the Golden Globes last Sunday, were the second iteration of its “A new day” brand message.

This time, though, actual prices were added in an attempt to lure cash-strapped consumers. “The new vacation glow” featured Neutrogena Micro-Mist Self-Tanner for $9.39 while “the new nightclub” showed the Wii Dance game for $69.99. The message: “A new day. New ways to save.”

“This is the first time we've featured price point in our broadcast advertising,” said Jana O'Leary, a Target representative. “As a whole we’ve increased our emphasis on value messaging. Our [tagline] is ‘Expect more. Pay less.’ We’re putting more emphasis on the pay less promise.” She continued “We understand it’s a tough time for our guests, corporations and retailers, and Target is helping everyone save money and time in this economic environment. We are showing how we can offer solutions without our guests having to endure a complete lifestyle makeover.”

I myself noticed this strategy in print this past weekend. In Sunday's New York Times there was a full-page color ad for Target’s NP Set line of cosmetics. And, instead of focusing on celebrity makeup artist Napoleon Perdis (creator of the NP Set collection) Target instead prominently highlighted how affordable the products were.

Sneak Peek: McQueen for Target - via the Is-Mental blog - has posted more sneak-peek pics of the upcoming Alexander McQueen Go International collection for Target. Unlike the previous "rocker chick" looks leaked before, there are actually quite a few dresses in the mix, and I particularly fancy the gathered/draped one I've shown here.

You can view more pics here, but we'll have to wait until the line hits stores in March to see the collection up close and personal. I'm not so sure about the color range (too much black and gray for a Spring line) and I'm also dubious about some of the prices... this dress and a couple others run $69.99, and a leather vest tops out the line at $139.99. Obviously the McQueen line is more spendy than past Go International lines, and with these tough economic times, I wonder whether consumers will go for this?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pick of the Week

It's Pick of the Week time: each week I pick one great buy from Target's Weekly ad (in the Sunday newspaper) and highlight it here on my blog. This week's pick has me excited because I blogged about it late last month, and now it's on sale! This sleek accent table from Umbra Loft is now just $59 (regularly $79.99) and will soon be added to my living room. The entire collection of Umbra Loft home decor is on sale this week, so if this table isn't exactly your cup of tea, you have plenty of other items to choose from.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Target coming to Sunset Blvd.

RackedLA is reporting that a ginormous Target store is planned for the Hollywood area. The Sunset Boulevard Target will not only include a massive 162,415 square foot Target store, but there are also plans for 6,600 square feet "of retail and food uses." Parkingwise, the ground floor would have 141 parking spaces, and the second level would provide approximately 317 parking spaces, for a total of 458 parking spaces. Layout-wise, here's what the “Target cake” will look like: stores and parking on the first floor, parking on the second floor, and the Target on the third store. There's no immediate word on when the project would be completed, but city planners have supplied this artist’s rendering (pictured) as a sneak peek.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Ted Gibson Haircare coming soon to Target

WWD is reporting that the New York-based celebrity hairstylist Ted Gibson will bring eight items from his haircare portfolio to Target. Gibson, who recently styled Debra Messing’s hair for the Golden Globe Awards and charges $950 a haircut, said the opportunity to sell his wares in 700 Target doors is a business coup.

“My customer is black, white and Asian. She is 25 to 55 years old. She travels. She shops. She lives in cities [all over the country]. This will give her the opportunity to buy [Ted Gibson] where she goes and shops all the time,” he said.

Gibson acknowledged that the Target deal may hamper his current distribution partnership with prestige and specialty retailers, including Henri Bendel, Saks Fifth Avenue and Sephora, which industry sources estimated to be a $5 million to $8 million business. But Gibson said “As a brand, we are growing leaps and bounds and to have this opportunity to partner with Target” is something he could not pass up. “[The specialty stores] have been great. They have put me on the map. They believed in my two [initial] products three years ago. I am grateful for the relationships. But to grow, I went to Target. I want to be a household name, and only to be in one channel of distribution, that couldn’t be realized.”

Prices for Gibson’s items range from $22.99 to $24.99, and will be available in Target stores starting in May.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Review: Target’s Home Design Event

I was able to check out the merchandise in person at Target this past week, and in my humble opinion, I think this Home Design Event collection is exceptionally well done! It is still somewhat organized by color, which is great for those who are “design challenged” (as I apt to be!) but also edited by area/living space…because the bathroom stuff is all together, and they have a great selection of accessories to help organize (and decorate) your bath (including a variety of soap & lotion products from brand names like Philosophy and Dr. Bronner’s, which was pretty impressive).

I was also blown away by some of the coffee and end tables as well as accent chairs that looked like they walked straight out of the Pottery Barn catalog (but of course, at much more wallet-friendly prices). Seriously, I’m gonna have to hold myself back, because I could easily see myself redecorating every room in the house with this stuff! Especially since the store near my work has just discounted the entire Home Design Event collection by 30% (just like the clothing clearance I blogged about the other day). It looks like Target's web site is also running this special discount. This is great news for shoppers, but somewhat scary news for Target if they feel the need to put the collection on sale so soon after it’s introduced.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wednesday’s Rave: Every Man Jack

The men’s skincare line Every Man Jack has intrigued me for a while, with their bold graphic packaging and pithy product slogans (such as “Will this stuff make me look like a model? Definitely—if you already are one.”). So when I spied one of their “Gift Kits” on clearance (for 75% off, probably leftover from the Holidays) on an endcap at Target the other day, I just couldn’t resist. Plus, the hubby was about to go on a business trip, so the bonus travel bag with mini-sized products would be perfect to stash inside his suitcase.

The long and short of it is: yes, my hubby loved the products, especially the Hydrating Shave Cream. But surprisingly, I fell in love myself with the Mint Face Wash, which is suitable for all skin types and is free of parabens, dyes, oils and sulfates.

Every Man Jack has their own web site you can check out for more info; they have a variety of products and most come in manly/neutral scents like Signature Mint (which I like because it’s VERY mild and not overpowering at all) Cedarwood and Spiced Pepper, as well as Fragrance-free. It looks like only the “Starter Kits” are available on, so head to your local store for the full selection of Every Man Jack (in the men’s shaving aisle).

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tuesday's Rant: Target's Atlantic Avenue store

On Tuesdays I try to take the opportunity to rant about something I do NOT like about Target …because although I love them to death, they certainly ain’t perfect. Today’s rant is about Target’s Atlantic Avenue (NY) store. The folks behind the website F-d in Park Slope (please pardon the expletives!) put together a little video series to show the horrific condition of their local Target outpost, and it's pretty hilarious (and, quite frankly, sad). Here is part one and part two of the series, and I especially love this quote (shown) by a former employee. You'd think that Target would get the message and try to clean up this store, but it looks like that ain't happening.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Orla Keily for Target

Designer Orla Kiely has developed a housewares collection for Target, set to be in stores the first week of February. This is hugely exciting news for fans of her bold colors and girly patterns. The collection includes dinner and servingware, storage boxes, closet organization, table and kitchen linens and even aprons. Of her Target collaboration, Orla says “My designs are based on quality and practicality,” and “Through my partnership with Target, I am able to share this vision with a much broader audience, providing them with great design at a great price.”

Target is at it again...

Like a lot of other retailers, Target must be trying to get rid of all their old Fall/Winter merchandise. Fast. Because lo and behold, their "extra 30% off all clearance clothing" sale is BACK at selected stores. And while I can't imagine Target ever going belly-up, the Wall St. Journal is reporting today that retailers "drained by the worst consumer-spending slump in decades and burdened by debt" are expected "to begin a wave of post-holiday bankruptcy filings." Among those listed in trouble are Circuit City, Loehmann's, Duane Reade, Claire's, Bon-Ton and Bailey Banks & Biddle.

Colors + fabrics build the perfect bed

People are treating their bedding like their wardrobe by choosing neutral bedspreads and adding colorful accents each season, says Joshua Thomas, spokesman for Target stores in Minneapolis.

“By picking a neutral tone you are able to accentuate with a throw or a pillow or a duvet. It’s how you think about building a wardrobe to last by starting with black and then adding a pop of color with a scarf or (other accessories),” Thomas says.

At Target, crimson red, burnt orange, blue and plaid are all chic this season, says Thomas.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pick of the Week

It's Pick of the Week time: each time I pick one great buy (from Target's Weekly ad in the Sunday newspaper) and highlight it here on my blog. Today's pick was hard because it's Dollar Week at Target, which means that just about every household brand-name is on sale, from Charmin bathroom tissue, Clorox Bleach, Tide detergent and Ziploc bags to Doritos, Campbell's soup, Diet Pepsi, and Lean Cuisine frozen entrees. So I'm selfishly going to pick something that I really need (or actually the hubby really needs!) and that's an iPod Shuffle, on sale this week for $45. My hubby was so bummed earlier this week when he left on a business trip only to realize that his old Shuffle was broken once he got on the plane. So getting him a new one will be a fun little "surpise" for me to get him.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Good news for Mossimo fans!

Iconix Brand Group Inc has renewed the license agreement with Target Corporation for its Mossimo brand through January 31, 2012. Previously, Mossimo had been licensed exclusively to Target in the US through a direct-to-retail license agreement since 2000.

Neil Cole, Iconix chairman and CEO, said: "Target is a great partner and has helped grow Mossimo into one of the largest apparel brands in the United States."

Iconix also owns, licenses and markets brands such as Candie's, Badgley Mischka, London Fog, Roca Wear and Joe Boxer.

Madonna wannabee? is reporting that Target is coming out soon with a new in-house designed Go International line… and to me, it has a very strong 80’s vibe to it. Seriously, can’t you see Madonna wearing a getup like this, circa 1984? I think I’ll pass on this one.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Paint the town Red

Coming in at #3 on DisneyFamily’s "Top 20 Makeover Must-Haves Under $20.09" (for 2009…get it?) is JK Jemma Kidd Classic Couture Lip Color. From their web site:

Say buh-bye to plain old balm and hello to red lipstick. Worn with confidence, it can pump up your whole look and make you feel like a silver screen siren to boot. We really like JK Jemma Kidd, a line the makeup artist released with Target.

Available in stores or on for just $16.

Increased competition for your pet care dollars

Larger companies are beginning to recognize the economic potential of the pet industry. According to an article from Small Business Trends, big box retailers like Target and Walmart are both expanding their pet selection and using pets in their advertising. Petco and PetsMart continue to grow rapidly, increasing their total number of stores by over 160 stores in 2005, which is projected to continue in the coming years according to their annual reports. These companies are moving into the full service arena if they aren’t there already, to encourage customer loyalty.

As a longtime pet owner (we currently have two cats) I can tell you that I’ve been impressed by the increased variety offered by Target in the pet aisles over the past couple of years. It used to be that they only carried Purina and Meow Mix, and that Fancy Feast was the most premium food you could buy there. But now they offer a selection of Iams food, as well as a wider range of kitty litter, toys, beds, and catnip treats. This might sound trivial, but if it saves me a special trip to another store, I’m all for it.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Next Go International Designer: Tracy Feith

Tracy Feith may have closed up shop in NYC this past September, but the whole country is about to get a highly affordable dose of his beachy style (yes, my dears, this Tracy is a “he”). According to WWD, Target has revealed that Feith will follow Thakoon as their next Go International designer. And the collection sounds exactly like what you'd expect from the former surfer dude: bright, sunny colors ("lollypop red, Persian turquoise, seafoam green, neon orange and pink, and Saturn lime"), long maxi dresses, and vintage-inspired Hawaiian prints. Mark your calendars for May 17th, when Feith’s collection launches at Target stores nationwide.

Still MORE Isaac news...

One last bit on Mr. Mizrahi, and then I'll stop (promise!). The Pipeline has posted a first look of his new collection for Liz Claiborne, and it looks like "classic Isaac" to me. From the boldly printed sheath dress to the denim suiting pieces (both which he did variations of during his tenure at Target) it looks like Isaac will continue to turn out cute dresses and stylish working-women's separates. The only difference now is that you'll have to go to Macy's to get it (and of course, also have to pay more for it, too).

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

And in other Isaac news…

It sounds like Isaac Mizrahi will be “bucking the trend” and will show his Fall line during Fashion Week in Bryant Park. Hip hip hooray! Isaac will showcase his Fall 09 collection next month as planned, unlike other well-know designers who’ve decided not to participate this year (like Vera Wang, Betsey Johnson and Carmen Marc Valvo) due to high costs coupled with the dwindling number of retail buyers and press expected at the event. FYI: fashion shows at the Bryant Park tent typically cost more than $100,000 to stage.

Wednesday’s Rave: this Isaac Mizrahi cashmere capelet

Alas, my friends, the time has come: the partnership between Isaac Mizrahi and Target has finally come to an end. His merchandise has pretty much disappeared from the stores in my area. But before you cry in your coffee, take a look at what I found today on over 100 Isaac cashmere items still available, and on sale for 30-50% off! I’m especially loving this cashmere capelet, which although is still a bit pricey even at half-off (now $74.99) is also super-stylish and sounds like it’s made of higher-grade cashmere than Isaac’s regular line (at least that’s what I’m gathering from the two outstanding customer reviews on the site).

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Tuesday's Rant: Lead in Target products

Those of you have read this blog for a while might recall that on Tuesdays I used to feature a weekly “Rant” where I complained about things I did NOT like about Target. In the past few months I deviated from that format, but I’m going to try to get back into it as I identify issues/concerns I have with the Bullseye.

Today’s rant is about known harmful products on Target’s shelves. In the post-holiday clearance, I was thrilled to pick up these Café String Lights (by Smith & Hawken) for a whopping 75% off! I picked up two sets at just $3.74 each (regularly $14.99 each set). I was so excited about my “bargain”… until I got them home and read the following disclaimer (in HUGE text) on the back of the box:

“CAUTION: Prop. 65 WARNING – Handling the coated electrical wires of this product exposes you to lead, a chemical known to cause cancer, birth defects, and other reproductive harm. Wash hands after use”.

Huh????? I don’t recall seeing this type of warning on any other light set I’ve ever bought at Target. The Christmas lights I just bought there a few weeks ago certainly didn’t contain lead in them; why are these made with cancer-causing agents? I just don’t get it, and I don’t need this sort of headache. There are enough toxins we unknowingly come in contact with every day; I certainly don't need to KNOWINGLY come into contact with lead. I’ll be returning these lights as soon as possible.

Monday, January 5, 2009

What happened to Target’s Global Bazaar?

Usually by now, those of us who hold Target RedCard accounts would have been notified in advance of Target’s upcoming Global Bazaar. The annual home furnishings event - a limited-edition affair that featured merchandise with a global look and feel - was introduced back in 2005 and usually lasts from early January through mid-February.

For the first 3 years the event was organized by countries of origin, such as Mexico, India or China. Last year marked a departure by organizing sections by color: Red, Bronze, Green, Yellow/Black and Blue/Purple. And now it seems that Target is eliminating the “Global” part altogether.

Since I hadn’t heard any mention of this year’s Global Bazaar, I decided to do a little digging. And, from what limited information I could gather on the internet, it seems it's now simply called “The Home Design Event” and will be organized this time by room (Living Room, Dining Room, Bedroom, etc) and by category (Furniture, Home Décor, etc.). The event has already debuted on Target’s website, but I have yet to see it displayed in stores.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The good, the bad, and the ugly

Some of you who've tried to shop the popular Thakoon line at Target stores (or on their website) have come up short since the collection debuted a week ago, as some key items are already sold out. Case in point: the widely promoted shibori shirtdress and this sundress (which I blogged about on Christmas Day) are completely SOLD OUT in all sizes. Well, the good news is that you can still find these dresses... but the bad news is that it's gonna cost you, and the ugly truth is that the way you're gonna find them is via eBay. Yep, a whole slew of Thakoon's dresses for Target have already hit the online auction site, at ridiculously inflated prices. My advice? Since these dresses can't be worn until after the Spring thaw anyhow, I'd wait and check back on eBay in a couple of months or so if you really want one of these sold-out items.

Rachael Ray hearts Target

The queen of 30-minute meals, Rachael Ray, is an expert on whipping up family meals, and in her life outside the kitchen she loves to share more than just food with her own family. When Bankrate asked her if she treats herself to many extravagances, Ray said that now she's able to take her entire family on an annual Italian vacation and she enjoys doing things that are "emotionally profitable," like starting the Yum-O! organization.

And while she's all for going splurging on her family and giving generously to charity, the bubbly cook doesn't spend much on her wardrobe. She said that she certainly has "more shoes than she did 15 years ago," but most of her shopping habits haven't really changed.

"But in our everyday life, I wear literally the same pants I've had for 10, 12 years. I still shop at TJ Maxx and Marshalls and Target, and I do my own grocery shopping. I wander around in Adidas sweats and wear bluejeans most of the time."

Pick of the Week

It's Pick of the Week time: each time I pick one great buy (from Target's Weekly ad in the Sunday newspaper) and highlight it here on my blog.

Today, it's time to wake up and smell the coffee, both literally and figuratively. Because this week (in stores only) Target has 12oz. bags of Starbucks Breakfast Blend coffee on sale for just $7 each. That's almost $3 off the regular price of $9.95, and definitely worth stocking up on if you're a coffee fiend like I am.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Past Go International Designers

Two updates from yesterday’s post: first, in the list for 2008, I realized that the Subversive Jewelry Collection (by Justin Giunta) was missing – sorry ‘bout that.

Secondly: reader Alyssa asked for a list of past Target design collaborations prior to 2008. Here’s what I could piece together (from memory) since 2005; let me know if I’ve missed anyone.

Luella Bartley
Tara Jarmon
Paul & Joe
Behnaz Sarapour
Proenza Schouler
Patrick Robinson
Alice Temperley
Erin Fetherston

Rafe (handbags/footwear)
Devi Kroell (handbags)
Hollywould (handbags/footwear)

Friday, January 2, 2009

A round-up of Target’s 2008 Designer Collaborations

Fabsugar has posted a retrospective of Target’s designer collaborations, and the list in just the fashion category alone is pretty impressive. Check it out:

Converse One Star
Loeffler Randall
Sigerson Morrison
Anya Hindmarch
Jonathan Saunders
Rogan Gregory
Dean Harris
Richard Chai

And we still have Alexander McQueen, Felix Rey (handbags), Trish Carroll (shoes), Loomstate (Rogan’s organic men’s and women’s wear), Ashley Page (swimwear) and Erickson Beamon (jewelry) scheduled to debut in the first half of this year. Kudos to Target for continuing to tap designer names to bring style to the masses.

Clearance Alert: Dean Harris for Target

The Dean Harris jewelry collection for Target is finally on clearance. Frankly, I was wondering if they’d ever put the line on sale, since it debuted before some of the other current designer lines (like the Sigrid shoes and the Anya bags) but hadn’t ever been discounted. But now on their web site, Target has reduced the prices by 30%. So if you’ve been holding off buying any of the Dean Harris line (as it's on the high-end of Target’s design offerings) now’s the time to snap it off. Because as beautiful as this amethyst cuff is (pictured) it’s a whole lot more attractive at $55.99 than $79.99.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Good news for Lume Luxe lovers!

Several months ago I lamented the end of the Lume Luxe candle line at Target. These super-premium candles (very similar to Jo Malone's, shown here) came in unique scents named after exotic locales like "San Tropez" and "Santorini" and were made with fancy ingredients like Frangipani, Olive leaves, French Lavender. It looked as if Target had sold off the rest of the stock by early Summer, and several of you wrote me to complain (as I had!) that Target would eliminate such a beloved product line.

Well, my friends, Target may actually have heard our shouts of outrage... because guess what I found on the store shelf today? One Lume Luxe candle with the simple title of "Love". Love - encased in the signature glass jar nestled in a burgundy and silver gift box - is described as such:

"Get swept off your feet with a scent that evokes the timeless essence of your true love. A dazzling blend of mouthwatering blackcurrants, luscious plum, and sweet melon meld with notes of sensual jasmine".

I was immediately smitten with "Love" (the fragrance is AMAZING) and quickly scanned the aisles for any more Lume Luxe, but alas, this was the one and only. I intend to scour my other local Targets this coming week for additional stock, and I am encouraged by the price-tag/barcode which stated "Made in Canada for Target, 2009" (meaning it is NEW stock and not just something leftover from last year).

Seeing Double

No, readers.... the title of my post does not refer to the amount of champagne I had last night. I'm talking about the pictures I've posted here. Now ever since the Thakoon for Target line came out, something about his raincoat has bugged me. Sure, the print is a bit wild (too much so for my tastes) but I'm sure on the right person it's fetching. No, what bothered me was that I thought I had seen something like it before... and sure enough, I had.

On the left, we have the coat from Thakoon's current Target line. And on the right, circa Spring 2006, is the coat from Tara Jarmon's Go International line for Target. Oddly similar, don't you think?