Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wednesday’s Rave: the Conair Infiniti Nano Hairdryer

The other day my old Conair hairdryer slipped out of my hands, landed on the bathroom tile, and shattered into pieces. While on the one hand I was bummed, on the other hand I was excited to be able to buy a new one. Because although my old one had served me well (it was at least 6 years old, and I cannot remember the make except that it was some form of “ionic” technology) it was also sounding as if it was on its last legs. So off to Target I went to buy a new one!

First off, I was impressed by how many hairdryers Target had in stock. They had at least a dozen (if not more) dryers available by a variety of manufacturers, like Remington, Vidal Sassoon, and Revlon. I gravitated back to my tried-n-true brand, however, and picked up this Conair Infiniti Nano Tourmaline Ceramic Styler in White/Silver.

Now what I really should have done is researched this dryer a bit beforehand prior to purchasing it. That’s what a truly SAVVY shopper would have done. Nonetheless, I’m happy to report that according to my post-purchase research, the Conair Infiniti is a top-rated dryer according to customer satisfaction ratings. I personally can attest to the lightness and sleekness of it; I can already tell that my arm gets less tired while drying my hair. And I really like how this dryer has multiple heat and strength settings, so I can give my hair a rest and not just "blow hot" all the time.

Best of all, this dryer seems to be at the lowest price in-store at Target! advertises it for $49.99, but I got it in the store for just $39.99 (regular price and not on sale). I've checked other Target stores, and all of them seem to have it at the $39.99 price. Which is less than it sells for at Best Buy (at $49.99) and far less than at (at $79.95 regular price).

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Target featured on NBC's Nightly News

Target was featured on a segment of NBC's Nightly News about how businesses are bracing for a possible flu outbreak. It sounds like Target is taking measures to protect both its employees and customers through education and awareness. Target is also providing free flu shots to all its employees as a proactive measure to keep the bug at bay. You can check out the video below.

Sunday, September 27, 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 is for my hubby, because his favorite Hanes hoodie sweatshirts are on sale for just $10 this week ($12 for size XXL). Which is perfect timing, since his current Hanes sweatshirt has been made into a cat bed by our eldest kitty (all my husband's fault, BTW, for leaving it in the corner on the floor for-e-ver....).

Hanes crewneck sweatshirts and fleece pants are also on sale this week for just $5 ($7 for size XXL).

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Colored Jeans: Yay or Nay?

There's a new Nina Garcia (of Project Runway fame) video on Target's StyleBoutique, and this time she's focusing on colored jeans, which she thinks is "a great way to add a pop of color to your wardrobe".

You can check out the video here, and shown at left is the outfit that Karen - Nina's newest test subject - ends up with. While I think the look is great on Karen (a young college student) I don't think I'll be trying it myself. I actually think this look is a bit limiting, as it definitely makes the jeans the focus of the outfit. Meaning: everything else (except for the jewelry) needs to be needs to be neutral (like her gray t-shirt) or black. What about you folks out there? Is this a trend you'll try this season?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wednesday's Rave: Archer Farm's Imported Pasta

I've been meaning to rave about this product for a while now. Several months ago I tried Target's in-house brand of pasta, Archer Farms - the authentic "bronze cut" variety. It's actually imported from Italy and I think it has more egg in it. Whatever the secret ingredient is, this is probably the best dry pasta I've ever had! It's SO good that my teenage son SPECIFICALLY requests it. Teen tested, teen approved!

For those of you not used to authentic Italian pasta, this may need a bit more cooking/boiling as it's a bit thicker than other brands of pasta. I'm showing the Penne Rigate here, but they also have a wonderful Fusilli Corti (or corkscrew pasta) which is great because it holds sauce so well. And next on my list to try are Archer Farm's Orzo and Gnocchi.

Target now offering flu shots

On Monday, Target announced that seasonal flu vaccinations have become available at Target Pharmacy stores around the country. Vaccinations began this past Sunday and will be available at the pharmacies every day during pharmacy hours throughout the flu season. Shots will be administered by pharmacists for $24.

“Target Pharmacy is a convenient, affordable option for patients looking to keep themselves and their families healthy this flu season,” Target SVP Keri Jones said in a statement. “By offering vaccinations with no appointment necessary, Target aims to make parents’ lives a little easier.”

For more information on who should be getting a flu shot – and when – check out The video segment I originally posted below seems not to be working any longer - sorry.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The rumor mill: Jean Paul Gaultier for Target?

The StyleList blog is reporting that avant garde Parisian designer Jean Paul Gaultier plans to partner with Target in the next installment of its Designer Collaboration series. C'est mangifique!!

While Gualtier's people have declined to comment and Target is staying relatively mum ( "We don't have anything to share other than we admire his work and incredible design aesthetic," a Target spokesman told WWD) other sources say the Gaultier collaboration is indeed happening.

Monday, September 21, 2009

This week only! Recycle your iPod at Target

Target is running a promotion this week where you can recycle your old iPod (which is "green" for the environment) in exchange for a Target GiftCard (or some "green" for your wallet).

Bring in your iPod or iPhone to the Electronics Department at Target, and get a Target GiftCard equal to the trade-in value. Values vary by style.

Store hours for trade-in are 11am to 7pm Monday - Saturday. This promotion is only valid through Sept. 26th. Go to the Electronics Department at your local store for details.

Sunday, September 20, 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 is this pair of sexy/slouchy cuffed suede boots by Mossimo. They're on sale this week for just $29.99 (regularly $34.99) and besides Gray (shown) they also come in Black and Taupe. I have way too many heeled boots in my closet, so these flat ones will be a welcome update to my wardrobe. And the wallet-friendly price is a lot easier to swallow then, oh, say these similar Burberry ones at Neiman Marcus (at, gasp, $750!!).

Friday, September 18, 2009

Target's new price-matching policy

Have any of you out there tried Target’s new price-matching policy yet? Their official press release states "As of July 12, Target stores nationwide will match advertised prices from competitors on identical items in local markets, assuring guests that our products are priced right."

The Press Release goes on to say that if you “find a lower price on an identical single item – defined as the same brand and model number that is listed on a local competitor’s printed advertisement, during the effective date of the ad – we will match that price.” You can also get a price adjustment if a competitor has an item on sale that you purchased at Target. The catch is you must have made the purchase within 7 days of the competitor’s sale/ad date. Just take a copy of the competitor’s ad and request your adjustment.

Now I haven’t tested it out yet, but a reporter for the Star Tribune has, and he found the system hit and miss. You can read his full account here, but his main tips are as follows:

• Ads must be complete and current to match.
• If you only have a couple of items for price-matching, go directly to Guest Services for the adjustment.
• Customers with multiple items for price-matching should go through the regular checkout with and then have Guest Services make adjustments on price-matched items.
• This system is NOT for customers in a hurry. Target employees don’t seem to have been given adequate training on it yet, so expect delays as ads are verified (sometimes by multiple employees).

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Skelanimals at Target

Last year at this time, Target created a fun Halloween campaign around the lovable Japanese character Domo. This year, they’ve created their own set of cartoons called “Skelanimals”. Pictured is “Diego”, the cuddly Dracula-inspired character. There’s also “Kit” (the black cat), “Oliver” (the owl), “Timmy” (the spider) and “Dax” the doggie (or “doggone happy mummy”). Target has built an entire collection of costumes, decorations, clothing and candy around the cute critters, which you can check out here on

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


A few of you have written in that although the Anna Sui for Target line is cute, it’s still too expensive. I can totally understand this; $60 or $70 for a dress is a bit hard to swallow, I know. So that’s why I did a double-take when I saw these new Mossimo items (shown) in store the other day right next to the Anna Sui racks. At first, their styling and colors were so much like Anna’s, I thought that they were designed by her. But instead, Mossimo has crafted this cute paisley-trimmed dress (on sale for just $19.99 this week) and smocked red top (for just $14.99).... which seem AWFULLY SIMILAR to Anna’s Empire Floral Dress at ($49.99) and her Red Starburst Blouse (at $24.99).

Monday, September 14, 2009

Ra’mon-Lawrence Debuts at Fashion Week

Adding fuel to the fire of rumors that he may be one of the finalists – if not THE winner – of this season’s Project Runway, contestant Ra'mon-Lawrence Coleman showed his Spring 2010 collection at New York's Fashion Week last Friday.

"This is truly the most sale-able collection I've ever done," Coleman said. Known for his artistic edge, Coleman is no stranger to mainstream designs. As I wrote about week before last, he has worked for Target in Minneapolis and currently designs for Kohl's in Milwaukee. Riding on the national spotlight of Project Runway, Coleman treated Friday's show at Touch nightclub in Manhattan as the national debut of his Ra'mon-Lawrence brand.

"I'm just waiting for stores to place orders," he said. Financial partnerships are in the works to be able to complete those orders, should they come, he added.

And celebrity interest is beginning to materialize. Shaquille O'Neal's wife, Shaunie, sat in the front row, wearing a Ra'mon-Lawrence design. Plus several Project Runway cast mates, including Christopher Straub, Logan Neitzel and Epperson were there to lend support.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Anna Sui's Pleated Tulle Dress

So here's a picture of the LBD by Anna Sui that I bought yesterday. I have to admit that it looks somewhat lackluster in this pic. For starters, I would never wear it buttoned up like this; at least 3 buttons will be undone so there's a hint of cleavage showing. The dress also doesn't hit me as short as it does on the model; on me, it comes about 1" above the knee, which is perfect. And I'm not completely sold on the ribbon belt; I may subsitute one of my own instead. But I thought it was a flirty twist on the iconic Little Black Dress without being TOO girly-girl.

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 is totally weather driven: after several weeks of relentless heat, we finally got a few raindrops here in NorCal yesterday, and more Fall-like weather certainly seems on the way. That's why I'm excited that suede slippers for the entire family are on sale at Target this week, because it's almost time to trade in our flip-flops for something cozier. Shown at left is just a sampling, but all men's and women's genuine suede slippers are on sale for $14.99, and toddler/kids sizes are on sale for $11.99.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Early Review: Anna Sui for Target

Today on a hunch I went to my favorite (albeit not the closest) Target store, thinking they just might put the Anna Sui for Target collection out early (as they've done with past designer collaborations). My hunch was spot-on, and this Target had the entire collection already out on the floor in a wide range of sizes. In talking to one of the clerks, it sounds like they had just put it out this morning. And soon, myself and at least half a dozen other "frugalistas" were circling the racks and piling clothes into our carts on our way to the dressing rooms.

I'll cut to the chase here: I really liked the majority of what I saw and tried on. Not everything fit to my liking, which is why I only ended up with 2 items. My prized posession is the leather jacket shown here; there were only 2 left when I got there, and luckily one was my size. Yes, at $149.99 it is the most expensive piece in the collection. But since I keep hearing that black leather jackets are one of the "must have" items for Fall, and this one is made of super-soft leather and seems well made, I could justify the purchase. Add to that the fact that Anna's jacket fits me like a dream, and the purchase was a no-brainer.

The other item I bought was an adorable LBD, which I thought was going to be too "frou-frou", but once I got it on it was the perfect balance of sexy and sweet. I'll post a picture of that once Anna's line is up on Target's site tomorrow, as I cannot find it among any other website's preview pics.

I could be mistaken, but it seems as if there's a lot of items in Anna's line - much more so that past designer collaborations. Meaning, there are many options and a variety of styles going on here, and something for almost anyone. That being said, while I was shopping I noticed fashionable women of all sizes, shapes and ages pouring over the racks and trying things on.

Now for the low points...the metallic dress used in the Target merchandising (and featured in my post on Thursday and on another post from a couple of weeks ago) is really bright and shiny - much more so than shown. Just be warned that it really looks nothing like the pictures! And the sweaters, unfortunately, are made of a mohair blend. Which is fine for those without allergy issues, but for myself, I had to pass.

What do you think, dear readers? Have you shopped the Anna collection yet, and if so, have you bought anything?

Friday, September 11, 2009

Gossip Girls at the Anna Sui for Target event

Fabsugar has posted pics (shown) of the real "Gossip Girls" at the Anna Sui For Target pop-up store in NYC two night's ago, and some of them celebrated the occasion by wearing pieces from the collection. Most notably, Jessica Szohr (far left) revealed her midriff by wearing Anna's triple-tie top backwards, and Emma Stone (second from right) sported the "Blair"-inspired lace mini-dress. Blake Lively, Michelle Trachtenberg, and Taylor Momsen were also in attendance.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

All about Anna…

As we count down with anxious anticipation for Anna Sui’s line to debut at Target on Sunday, has added some preview pics and additional information. Check the site for availability of Anna’s line at your local store, as not all Target outlets will carry the collection.

Also: if you’re lucky enough to live in (or be visiting) NYC today through Saturday, you can shop the collection early at Target’s Pop-up Shop (54 Crosby at Spring St., 11am – 8pm each day).

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Walmart's plan to "crush the competition"...

Normally I don't like to give air time to the competition, but I saw this Time article on Yahoo today and thought I'd share it. It's a fascinating look at Walmart's "Project Impact": their massive store and strategy remodeling effort. And while they won't fess up to targeting specific competitors ("We're just listening to what our customers want," states a Walmart spokesperson) you can't help but envision a Target store when you hear how they describe their new floorplan. For instance: their new "party-supply section" will contain party favors, wedding decorations, cards and scrapbooks are all in one area, whereas in the past, these products would be in three different places. Wow, what a concept, Walmart!

StyleBoutique on

Target has launched a new section on its website called StyleBoutique, with tips & tricks on how to be a "Frugalista". The site also has weekly videos featuring Nina Garcia, Fashion Director for Marie Claire magazine and judge on Project Runway.

In this week's video, Nina helps Target shopper Quiona put together a fashionable yet frugal outfit. Of course, it helps that Quiona is tall, leggy and beautiful! Check out the video here, and watch the site for a new one each Friday.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Tuesday's Rant: Target's new packaging design

Most Tuesdays I take the opportunity to rant about something I do not like about Target… because although I love ‘em to death, they ain’t perfect. Today's rant is actually courtesy of my mother, who complained to me the other day about Target's new up & up branded packaging. In her words, Target's new in-house brand is "hard to read and confusing", and she just plain doesn't like it!

At first I laughed, but then I started to take another look at the design, and I have to say I agree with Mom. While I'm sure the design intent was to be clean and streamlined, the type IS small and hard to read (especially for a 77 year old like my mother). And although Target has tried to reinforce whatever the product is with a corresponding picture (for example, this hand wash shown at left uses a picture of a soapy hand) the primary graphic is the new up & up "arrow". Shouldn't the main focus be on the product name and what it is, vs. Target's new in-house logo? I'm with Mom on this one.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Target merchandise at Goodwill

I have been hearing for years that when Target pulls their clearance merchandise from the sales floor, it is donated to Goodwill Industries, who then re-sells it at their local stores. But to be honest, I had never actually seen proof of this at any of my local Goodwills until yesterday, when I visited a store "off the beaten path" from my usual haunts.

Now this store must definitely be one of "the ones" that Target donates its castoffs to, because not only did I see an entire rack (at least 8-10) of these hideous Tracy Feith maxi dresses (shown) but I also saw a whole shelf of brand new Circo baby socks (which - opposite of the Feith dress - were really cute!). I also saw various Merona, Xhilaration and Mossimo pieces here and there (NWT) but nothing in bulk.

One caveat to shopping Target at Goodwill: in some cases the lowest Target price is less than what Goodwill sells it for. Not always, but sometimes. Case in point: I know I saw these Feith maxi dresses marked as low as $9.99 on clearance at Target, yet Goodwill was selling them for $12 each. Which is fine by me, seeing that the $$ goes to Goodwill. You just shouldn't be expecting THE lowest possible price once the item hits Goodwill's racks.

Sunday, September 6, 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 - because it's a holiday weekend and I'm lazy - I'm going to pass on "the pick" and instead just alert you that it's Baby Week starting today at Target. That means that all things for your bouncing little bundle of joy is on sale. You also can get free shipping on online orders over $50 of select baby items. Plus, you can save 15% on 2 and 20% on 3 or more select picks of diapers, baby wipes, formula and Pampers. Go to for details.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Target turns Billboards into Bags

Target is planning to turn its Times Square billboards into Anna Sui-designed tote bags once the displays come down. From Labor Day through the end of October, Target will feature commissioned art on its Times Square NYC billboards. The giant graphics are by emerging artists including Michael Anderson, Laurie Rosenwald, Charles Wilkin and Josh Goldstein.

But here's the cool catch: when the art exhibit is over, the vinyl from the billboards will be used to create 1,600 limited edition, recycled bags, using an Anna Sui tote bag design (shown).

Each bag will be made from 90% recycled flex bulletin vinyl with Sui’s rock 'n' roll details like black enamel studs. And since each bag will be fashioned from the actual billboard materials, each one will be unique and a lasting memento of NYC.

The bags will retail for $29.99 for pre-order at starting Sept. 4 (today) until they're gone. Why pre-order, you ask? Well, buyers actually get to select which artist's work they want to have made into their bag, which will then ship in early January.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

My review of Anna Sheffield for Target

Yesterday I was able to check out the Anna Sheffield for Target collection up close and in person. First off, contrary to what I wrote a couple of days ago, the actual pieces are bright, shiny, and look to be of very good quality… so I’m not so sure what’s up with some of the grainy pictures on Target’s web site.

Secondly, I have to give Target props for the unique packaging: the necklaces displayed on the counter where you can touch them (vs. the ones behind the case) are dangling from little clothes-hangers with Anna’s name on them! How fun is that? I thought this was a very cute and whimsical touch. Some of the pieces are quite delicate and seem made to be layered (as shown in this recent Target ad that appeared in Vanity Fair). This reminds me of how the Dominique Cohen for Target line was advertised and merchandised two years ago.

Now for the goods: overall, I liked everything I saw, although not everything was to my taste. I will probably end up getting these Ornate Drop Earrings in gold that were featured in this month’s InStyle Magazine under “Deals & Steals”. And I still want to get the Charm Necklace I mentioned in Monday’s post. But other than that, there’s nothing I HAVE to have. I do appreciate some of her clever designs with Victorian influences, such as this Cukoo Clock Ring or Scissor Locket, and although they are lovely, they just “aren’t me”.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wednesday’s Rave: this Mossimo maxi dress

I’ve been pretty resistant to the whole maxi dress craze due to 2 reasons:
1) I think I tend to look like a cow in them, and 2) being short, then are usually too long on me. But this Mossimo tiered dress changed all that, and I have to rave about it. It fits like a dream (in fact, I went down a size in it) and hits me mid-ankle. And in addition to being cool and comfortable, it’s slimming as well, despite all the cascading ruffles.

The only problem? Like the Merona halter top I blogged about a couple of weeks ago, I found it on the clearance rack. Which is great and all; I got this dress in black for the bargain basement price of just $7.48 (marked down 75% from $29.99). But I would love to also get the brown one (shown) and unfortunately all they have left on is size L. Oh well…c’est la vie!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

People Magazine previews Anna Sui for Target

People Magazine recently did a feature on selected pieces from the upcoming Anna Sui for Target line. I have to say that when featured on their own – and not on the Gossip Girl-inspired models – the pieces look pretty good. I especially like the cotton & tulle cardigan ($29.99) and metallic jacquard dress (at $59.99).

Sale Alert: Shaun White 4 Target

The new Shaun White 4 Target collection – which I blogged about last week - is on sale for 20% off, just in time for back to school. That means boys’ hoodies are just $13.59, graphic tees are $6.39, and polo shirts are $9.59 (all shown at left).

Note: for some reason, only the boys' collection - and not the mens' - is on sale this week.