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Deal Divas

Stephanie Hayes, Katie Sanders, Kameel Stanley, & Keyonna Summers

Can we all agree it's time to bring back parasols?

The folks at this 1981 luncheon and fashion show at the Pinellas County Unit of the American Cancer Society knew what was up.

Times files

The folks at this 1981 luncheon and fashion show at the Pinellas County Unit of the American Cancer Society knew what was up.

I had an overwhelming feeling wash over me on the way into work the other afternoon.

"I might not make it."

It was so oppressively hot that I felt as if I might, just, you know, stop moving. Not die, exactly, but just sit down and cease to go forward. What was anyone supposed to do with this heat, I mean, honestly, other than invest in a portable cooling robot?

Then, the next day, I saw her.

A woman, walking around the streets outside the office, carrying a parasol.

This, of course, is Beyonce from the Formation video, and not the woman I saw. But it hit me. Why don't we carry parasols anymore? They're such an elegant way to ALWAYS CARRY SHADE WITH YOU 100 PERCENT OF THE TIME. Also, they're hella cute. We can all agree a parasol is cuter than what I normally do, which is scrunch up my whole face into a premature wrinkle situation and clomp around wondering how bad my sweat mustache is.

It occured to me that I actually have a parasol at home, that I bought when Little Brooklyn Vintage closed. I never use it. It sits in an umbrella stand in my office next to the cat box. What a waste! The cat doesn't care! I might have to bust it out for My Outfit Monday next week. …

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Shopping Planner: Spirit Animals, Xmas in July and F--- Cancer Earrings

The Crafty Hag, aka Coralette Damme, is one of the artists featured in the Spirit Animals Art Show and Gypsy Market.

Courtesy of Black Amethyst via Facebook

The Crafty Hag, aka Coralette Damme, is one of the artists featured in the Spirit Animals Art Show and Gypsy Market.

Mystic Creatures: “Spirit Animals” Art Show and Gypsy Market
Black Amethyst Tattoo Gallery and the St. Pete Indie Market have teamed up to bring a special art show and market to St. Pete’s Green Bench Brewing from 7-11 p.m. Saturday. The crew at Black Amethyst curated the show, selecting 30 artists including Chad Mize, Spencer Meyer and Coralette Damme (an example of her work is pictured) to interpret the spirit animals theme. A smaller, intimate version of the indie market, a Gypsy Market, will include henna, tarot readings, gypsy jewelry and clothing (think Stevie Nicks), as well as artwork and photography. There will also be live screen printing of three spirit animal designs on T-shirts from go-to local printer Extra Medium. Traditional Aztec dancing by a local tribe and fire dancing performances set the spiritual ambiance. DJ Re:Pete provides the tunes. The show will be only be on display that night at Green Bench (1133 Baum Ave. N, St. Petersburg), but will move to Black Amethyst Tattoo Gallery (689 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. N, St. Petersburg) and remain on display through Sept. 3. …

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Calling all '90s kids: there is now a Lisa Frank clothing line

Rainbow dolphins! Frolicking penguins! A dog on a surfboard!

Rage On!

Rainbow dolphins! Frolicking penguins! A dog on a surfboard!

I reveled in school supply shopping growing up. And even more than that, I loved browsing through the rainbow-colored folders, stickers and zip-up planners from Lisa Frank.

"Yes, mom, I actually do need this metallic cat-print pencil. All the cool girls have them!" I would say, adamantly, in the aisles of Walmart.

(It never worked.)

Well, now available from Rage On!, there is a Lisa Frank line of tops, leggings and dresses for all your athleisure and/or nostalgia needs.

Prices range from about $25 for T-shirts to just under $60 for dresses. Not bad. Here are some of my favorites:

 

I can't say I'll go all out like I did - or, tried to do - with my childhood school supplies. But a rainbow dolphin crop top in the name of nostalgia is something I can get behind.

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The designer behind Michelle Obama's blue dress at the DNC

 First lady Michelle Obama walks on stage to deliver remarks on the first day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. The dress is American designer Christian Siriano.

Getty

First lady Michelle Obama walks on stage to deliver remarks on the first day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. The dress is American designer Christian Siriano.

First lady Michelle Obama stunned at the Democratic National Convention's opening night in Philadelphia with a powerful address in support of presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Obama said the United States has come far to be the greatest country in the world considering she wakes "up every morning in a house that was built by slaves." (That's True, by the way.)

Obama gave her remarks in a striking blue dress with cap sleeves. 

The Twittersphere had already nailed the designer of the frock before she left the stage: Christian Siriano, the most successful winner of Bravo reality show Project Runway. (How appropriate, given the influence of reality TV on GOP nominee Donald Trump.)

Siriano's husband Brad Walsh gushed about Obama's choice, which Siriano retweeted.

Inspiring, powerful words from Michelle Obama. God, she's magic. And �� she chose to wear @CSiriano. �� #DemsInPhilly pic.twitter.com/kbWEeImcx9

No word yet on where/if you can buy the dress. We'll update the post if we hear, and then it's off to the races for you to grab it before it sells out. …

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My Outfit Monday: The Summer of Midriff, or my favorite looks from an epic two-week vacation

Bachelorette party night, and all of the girls wore black while I wore white. I looked for a while for an appropriate dress, something that could say I'M HERE TO PARTY but also I'M A CLASSY LADY. Charlotte Russe had many white options (this color is not as easy to find as you'd think), and I ended up going with this simple body con one. The girls got me a festive flower crown and a sash, and I was basically Miss America.

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Bachelorette party night, and all of the girls wore black while I wore white. I looked for a while for an appropriate dress, something that could say I'M HERE TO PARTY but also I'M A CLASSY LADY. Charlotte Russe had many white options (this color is not as easy to find as you'd think), and I ended up going with this simple body con one. The girls got me a festive flower crown and a sash, and I was basically Miss America.

When I got back from a two-week road trip last night, I had in my trunk a large suitcase full of clothes. And a duffel bag full of clothes. And two other tote bags full of clothes.

I am not someone who thinks "packing light" is commendable. But when I set out to prepare for a 17-day trip up the East Coast, I knew it would be my greatest challenge yet. The trip included a lot of high-stakes, Instagrammable moments: seeing Lin-Manual Miranda's final Hamilton performance in New York City, exploring Washington D.C. for a week, celebrating my bachelorette party with my four best friends. …

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Here's what Ivanka Trump wore at the Republican National Convention Thursday

Ivanka Trump waves to the crowd as she walks on stage to deliver a speech during the evening session on the fourth day of the Republican National Convention on July 21, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Ivanka Trump waves to the crowd as she walks on stage to deliver a speech during the evening session on the fourth day of the Republican National Convention on July 21, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.

Wondering what Ivanka Trump wore on stage at the closing night of the Republican National Convention to introduce her father, Donald Trump? She (or her people) made it very easy to find out.

On Twitter Friday, @IvankaTrump posted a link to her look, a pale pink sheath, a color choice that was likely no coincidence given that every pundit and commentator believes she may help soften her father's image.

Shop Ivanka's look from her #RNC speech: https://t.co/ma42A92DYa #RNCinCLE pic.twitter.com/DwHvSOu8Ue

You can shop the look right here, from Macy's. It's also sold at Nordstrom and wherever Ivanka's line is sold. And it is -- no surprise here -- from her own fashion collection. $138, still in stock if you're a size 2, a 14 or a 16. Worth noting -- the dress Ivanka wore is slightly different than the one on sale at Macy's. This one has studs along the front and appears to have no slit, whereas Ivanka's has a slit and no studs. Vanity Fair says the dress she wore is "coming soon," and this one is a close model. 

UPDATE. 1:49 p.m.: The dress is now sold out. 

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Shopping as the sun rises

Zazoo'd welcomed us with grapefruit, champagne and matching PJs

KSS

Zazoo'd welcomed us with grapefruit, champagne and matching PJs

Three Deal Divas met this morning at 6:15 a.m. on the Vinoy front porch in the name of journalism. Somebody had to cover the 43rd annual Sunrise Sale so it might as well be us. Yes, journalism is an ugly job sometimes. We had to sip free mimosas, nibble on doughnuts and actually BUY stuff at deep discounts. But our bosses want the paper to keep up our streak of winning Pulitzers, so you gotta do what you gotta do.

The sale sponsored by St. Petersburg's Downtown Business Association is a summer tradition that gets folks dressed in their pajamas out while the moon is still up to shop the independents along Beach Drive, Central Avenue and down Fourth Street. 

We started at the Museum of Fine Arts where the deals and mimosas started flowing in the gift shop at 6:43 a.m., the official start of the sale. I found a giant Andy Warhol Portraits book for $12 that will be a Christmas present for my oldest daughter if I can find it five months from now. Deal Diva Kathryn Varn bought what she thought was a succulent-shaped candle for $8.  …

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43rd Annual St. Petersburg Sunrise Sale kicks off Thursday

Decked out in her pajamas and slippers, Cora Kostka reads over the sales in while having breakfast on Beach Drive during the 42nd Annual Sunrise Sale in downtown St. Petersburg in 2015. This was Kostka's second year to participate in the morning event. "I love this," Kostka said. "That's why I'm back." Shops opened at 6:43am with over 55 businesses participating Shoppers were encouraged to wear their PJs for extra savings.

DIRK SHADD | Times

Decked out in her pajamas and slippers, Cora Kostka reads over the sales in while having breakfast on Beach Drive during the 42nd Annual Sunrise Sale in downtown St. Petersburg in 2015. This was Kostka's second year to participate in the morning event. "I love this," Kostka said. "That's why I'm back." Shops opened at 6:43am with over 55 businesses participating Shoppers were encouraged to wear their PJs for extra savings.

Last year, the Deal Divas did this really weird thing in which we got out of bed in the middle of the night, put on FRESH pajamas and then headed to the Sunrise Sale in and around downtown St. Petersburg. It was ridiculous, made no sense and was tons of fun. Michelle stood in line for eternity to get BOGO olive oil, and Lisa feel deeply in love with a lamp (they're still going strong). Please relive all of the exploits from last year RIGHT HERE. And RIGHT HERE ALSO

Some of us will be venturing back out Thursday morning to snag bags of local goods at big discounts. It's the 43rd year of the Sunrise Sale, put on by the Downtown Business Association, and it always draws fun crowds and long lines. More than 40 shops are participating this year. Check out the Facebook page for a list of sales and places to stop. Many retaliers offer an extra discount if you show in in your PJs, so there's your incentive, other than the funny Instagrams.

The madness starts at 6:43 a.m., or, sunrise. YES, REALLY. Follow @dealdivas on Twitter for live updates, and check back here for a recap of our finds! 

 

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Finally for this ex-swimmer, one-piece bathing suits are in style

One for every color of the rainbow! Not pictured: the 10 more in my drawer.

One for every color of the rainbow! Not pictured: the 10 more in my drawer.

I took a trip to my parents’ house in Jacksonville this weekend and, while digging through drawers of high school clothes to find a bathing suit, I stumbled on my extensive one-piece bathing suit collection.

After 10-plus years on competitive swim teams, I had 10-plus suits that left me with tan lines that still faintly show up on my body years after I quit the sport. I’ve accepted at this point that my stomach will be lighter than the rest of my body. Like, so-translucent-you-can-see-my-veins white.

The first time I wore a bikini at an eighth-grade beach day, I was so nervous that I spent most of the day with a towel around me. I’ve since gotten over that thanks to not being 13, but I’ve still gone most summers wishing that one-pieces were in style.

Well here I am, 10 years since my bikini debut, with my wish coming true — almost to a fault. There are so many styles and patterns now that I didn’t know where to begin.

At the suggestion of a style-savvy aunt, I started with everythingbutwater.com. I can afford exactly zero things on the website, but it had a massive selection that helped me narrow down some looks I liked. …

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I love island time, but not island prices

Mexican and Boho chic ruled Nantucket

kss

Mexican and Boho chic ruled Nantucket

I spent a great week recently on Nantucket, two hours by ferry from the real world. Much of this island is simple. Like the fact that you can walk most everywhere, there are no bilboards or neon anywhere, the beaches look the same as they did 200 years ago when whalers ruled the island and most streets are either stone or sand.

But shopping is far from simple. The stores are filled with the latest fashions from New York and California and priced as though they were brought over one piece at a time by a messenger whale. Mannequins and real life women who "weekend" or "summer" on Nantucket who have the bodies of mannequins were decked out mostly in boho chic looks. Off the shoulder peasant blouses with long and short sleeves were everywhere. I even saw an off the shoulder bikini. And I saw a ton of dresses, shoes, tops, skirts and bags with Mexican embroidery. 

I didn't see a single top of either style under $150 and dresses were $200-600. So here's what I learned. Go to a remote, historic island to escape everyday life. Go online to Etsy or Gap to escape the clothing prices of the remote, historic island. …

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Old Navy's summer sandals are pretty cute

Old Navy slip-ons with perforated strap. $18

Old Navy screengrab

Old Navy slip-ons with perforated strap. $18

I have reached the point of summer where my stand-by sandals are barely hanging on.

Jewels are dangling from the toe strap. My dog chewed the heels of my favorite camel-colored flats. The cheaply sewn soles are, not surprisingly, splitting and flapping, as if to say move-on-dot-org.

Maybe the solution is to invest in more expensive sandals with more miles in them. Maybe I should not go for trendier looks in bright colors but instead more evergreen neutrals.

NAHHHHHHH.

Last year (or was it the year before?), I satisfied my sandal fix at Target. This year, I'm checking out Old Navy.

The store's discounted sandals hit on all of the summer shoe trends: gladiator, wedge, canvas sneaker, strappy and slip-on. Join me in the slide show above for details. Almost all of the looks I pulled are around $20 or less.

Also: free shipping over $50 (that's roughly 2.5 pairs of sandals, fyi).

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Dress like you came to play on the Fourth of July

She's cute.

Target.

She's cute.

Last weekend, I took part in the storied tradition of discount shopping suburbanites everywhere. I got stuck inside Super Target during a rainstorm. Scholars shall write volumes on it as a study in human behavior. Chapter One will chronicle the soaking wet toddler I saw dive headlong into a display of iced tea.

Anyway, the storm gave me time to traverse every single aisle in the big box, a good reminder that the Fourth of July is upon us. Of course, we have you covered. Plan your outing of choice with our giant list of fireworks and activities.

I stopped in what we’ll call the “Holiday Graphic Tee Party Pool, BYOB” aisle. There, I saw shirt after shirt festooned with some version of the American flag or pithy patriotic remarks. (Want to explore this topic in more depth? See Jay Cridlin’s insightful story about our fascination with the American flag.)

It would have been easy to pick up a cheap Americana shirt (most of them, by the way, made outside America) and call it Independence Day. But I maintain it’s possible to look festive for the Fourth of July without being so on-the-nose. …

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Tampa Bay Rays Raise big money on the Runway

Pitcher Matt Andreis, right, gives a spin on the catwalk to Dream Child Alejandra Mejia.

DAVID W DOONAN | Special To The Times

Pitcher Matt Andreis, right, gives a spin on the catwalk to Dream Child Alejandra Mejia.

Barely two hours after beating the Red Socks, Rays players, coaches, wifes and girlfriends thrilled a sold out crowd and some strong kids at the Rays on the Runway Show to benefit the Children's Dream Fund. Thousands of dollars were raised through ticket sales and auction items to fund the group that creates amazing experiences for seriously ill children. 

The planning and anticipation of a dream day helps makes the time in hospital beds go by a little easier. The time away at Disney World, on a cruise, swimming with dolphins, skiing or at a ranch out West, allows the children and their families to focus on something besides white blood cell counts and medical costs. The average dream costs $3,500. The memories are priceless. There are 65 kids on the waiting list for dreams.

The Rays didn't appear winded in the least from their big game. They were high energy on the runway, cheering on kids who walked with them and making goofy poses with their wives, girlfriends and solo. Everybody was styled in fashion from Dillard's.  …

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Get your wedding band at a discount on Amazon today

Just assuming these two probably got their wedding bands on Amazon, right?

AP

Just assuming these two probably got their wedding bands on Amazon, right?

I'd like to make a proclamation, here on Deal Divas.

Merging your Amazon accounts is a bigger step than marriage. A while back, my sig oth and I combined Prime accounts, and now my suggestions are a nonstop mix of weirdness across a variety of gender spectrums. A literal sample of suggestions from my Amazon homepage: We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Smith's PP1 Pocket Pal Multifunction Sharpener.

Well, Amazon must have heard about this new step in relationships (dinner and a movie, dating, living together, pet, merging Amazon accounts, marriage, family) because they're making an appeal with the Deal of the Day today.

It's wedding bands for men and women, at 20 to 40 percent off. They're pretty handsome, and Deal Diva Michelle, who is getting married in the fall, is disappointed her husband to be already has his band. Here's a 10K gold number at a song

Check them out if you're in the market. And always be sure to have an open and honest conversation about your Amazon purchases. It is the only way to live healthily in a modern society.

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Here's your guide to July 4 sales

An ice cream phone case would sure quell the summer heat.

Kate Spade New York

An ice cream phone case would sure quell the summer heat.

Here's your exclusive look at Fourth of July sales. We'll update this post as we gather more intel.

Kate Spade New York: The sale is on sale. Take an extra 30 percent off items such as this cheery wine tote ($12), this really adorable kite-adorned iPhone 6 case ($22), or a legit smaller handbag in pretty summer pastels (down from $298 to $208).(On second thought, just get this ice cream cone phone case and make me really jealous.) The checkout code is SUNSHINE. 

Banana Republic: Take 50 percent off sale, such as this strappy crossback dress in a snake pattern ($69) or this floral dress. Discount applied automatically.

Rent the Runway: Have fancy plans this weekend? Consider renting a high-end dress for a Forever21 price. Certain dresses are marked down 30 percent off. Pay attention to the dates: The deal is only available for deliveries from June 28 to July 2.

Old Navy: You know, I am really overdue for an Old Navy shopping binge, and this could be the week to right that. Everything is 40 percent off (discount applied at checkout). If you go in store today, there are $2 tanks, $4 tees, $6 graphic tees and $8 shorts.  …

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