Clear86° WeatherClear86° Weather

Deal Divas

Stephanie Hayes, Katie Sanders, Shelley Rossetter, Kameel Stanley, Keeley Sheehan & Keyonna Summers

Looking for a budget-friendly wedding dress? Try Target.

Bridesmaid dresses like this strapless, tulip skirt one at Target, come in lots of different colors. And they start at $69.99

Bridesmaid dresses like this strapless, tulip skirt one at Target, come in lots of different colors. And they start at $69.99

Oh Target, how we love thee. You are there when we need apple juice, there when we need headphones for our iPhone, there when we need new bathroom towels, batteries, and when we are ready to spend too much money on summer dresses.

And now, you are also there for those of looking to put together an affordable wedding trousseau. 

Yup. You read that right. Target is now jumping into the wedding dress biz,

Full Story

Shhh! It's a top secret Tampa Bay Fashion Week party!

Oh ModCloth, you do make us rich with turmoil. This Betty Hofstadt Draper Francis number is $137.99 of blue delight.

Photo via modcloth.com

Oh ModCloth, you do make us rich with turmoil. This Betty Hofstadt Draper Francis number is $137.99 of blue delight.

We were feeling pretty cool this week when the Tampa Bay Fashion Week organizers invited the Deal Divas to a mysterious summer fashion party at a secret location. We thought about keeping it all a secret so we could continue to feel cool, but then we realized that runs counter to our mission to, you know, inform you of stuff.

Here's the deal. Tampa Bay Fashion Week is hosting a summertime Bright Nights Underground party from 8 to 11 p.m. Friday, June 7, full of bright colors, live music, wine, candy and, of course, fashion. Tickets are $20. The location is...

Well, even we don't know. That's the fun of it. You have to tune in online to find out, and organizers will inform you on the day of the event where to go. So exciting! Right now, you can get your tickets at MISRED Outfitters and Eugenia Woods in St. Petersburg, or Betty in Tampa.

Theme is bright colors, so dress accordingly. Think neons, bold primaries and secondaries, things you wouldn't pair together on a Monday morning for work. This is your chance to look like a unicorn, so take it! Check the slideshow above for inspirations from Shopbop, Modcloth, Zappos, Betsey Johnson and Macy's. …

Full Story

Perfect summer tee (and it's cheap)

The perfect summer tee: JCP's slub t-shirt.

JCPenney

The perfect summer tee: JCP's slub t-shirt.

For me, the start of Florida's hot summer days always comes with a shopping downer: Have you seen the price of a t-shirt these days?

I'm not looking for fru-fru. I want the basic black, white and assorted colors t-shirt that will be a summer staple. Something with enough shape that I won't look like a snowman. Of sufficient quality to last the next three months. And under no circumstances do I want to spend more than $10.

It's more challenging than it sounds. In years past, I've found success only by stumbling onto one-time sales. But this year, I may have found my long elusive answer, thanks to JCPenney.

Yes, JCP. Once again, we are rediscovering your merits. This time, it's in the form of your slub v-neck t-shirt, which seems to be permanently on sale. It's a tissue-weight shirt in a nice range of colors. The fit runs big, but I have found that going one size smaller than usual produced designer-quality snug.

And at $6.99, I can afford to stock up for summer.

Anyone else have a fav to share? You can't have too many t-shirts, right?

Full Story

Celebrating what's light, right -- and white!

Update a simple white tee or tank that you already have in your closet with a statement necklace like this one, $30 from Piperlime.

Photo via Piperlime

Update a simple white tee or tank that you already have in your closet with a statement necklace like this one, $30 from Piperlime.

My three-step action plan for dealing with the end of Memorial Day weekend is as follows:

1. Catch up with an old friend. Coffee, where are you? I need you. Never leave me like that.

2. Approach workload with renewed diligence (may or may not occur as a result of step No. 1).

3. Pick a fight with Deal Diva Kameel.

Remember when she blasted Boyz II Men for changing up "I'll Make Love to You" for an Old Navy commercial about white jeans?

Now, I'm not here to defend that earworm. But I am dredging up a sore subject to hmm, how do I put this, clarify that white is a great post-Memorial Day wardrobe choice, even if you don't want to squeeze into skinny white denim that may highlight your postérieur.

Full Story

Need new clothes and a NYC vacation? There's a contest for that...

Been itching for a vacay and some new duds, to boot? Enter sweepstakes by Macy's and New York & Company for a chance at gift cards and a trip for yourself and a plus-one or two or three to NYC. One contest features a chance to meet Martha Stewart.

AP

Been itching for a vacay and some new duds, to boot? Enter sweepstakes by Macy's and New York & Company for a chance at gift cards and a trip for yourself and a plus-one or two or three to NYC. One contest features a chance to meet Martha Stewart.

Eager to take a much-needed summer vacation (and look good while doing it)?

Well, you’re in luck because both Macy’s and New York & Company are hosting contests that will send a few lucky winners and their friends to New York City.

And make haste! Contestants have until 11:59 TONIGHT to enter New York & Company’s “Summer in the City” contest, which will fly one winner and a plus one to the Big Apple on July 3-5 to go on a $500 shopping spree with the assistance of a company fashion designer. The perks don't end there: The winning duo will also enjoy up to $1,000 in fun activities, including two tickets to a Broadway show, a private tour of the High Line and blowouts at The Drybar salon. Entry form, official rules and such here.

If you need a bit more time, not to worry. Macy’s has two contests to choose from:

*If the $1,000 gift card wasn't reason enough to enter, the top contender in the “Macy’s Happy 4th Great American” sweepstakes will win a hotel room and airfare for four to the 2014 (read: next year’s) Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks show. Contestants can enter through 11:59 p.m. EST July 4 via web, text message, Instagram or Twitter. …

Full Story

Your Outfit Monday: Savings Ahoy!

We're not normally a fan of overt holiday message tees, but this one from Old Navy has a certain subtlety about it that works. It's $14.94, and Old Navy today is offering an extra 15 percent off with code ONSUMMER.

Photo via Old Navy

We're not normally a fan of overt holiday message tees, but this one from Old Navy has a certain subtlety about it that works. It's $14.94, and Old Navy today is offering an extra 15 percent off with code ONSUMMER.

Happy Memorial Day! Some of us Divas are at work today, and some of us are enjoying a day off, but in the spirit of keeping things casual on the holiday when most of you are probably still in the rippy pajamas with the reindeer print down the legs, we're skipping the outfit post and instead offering up a few patriotic pieces you can snag on Memorial Day sales today.

Check out the slideshow for some stars and stripes suggestions from Amazon, Macy's, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Chico's. Wishing lots of rest, relaxation and reflection to you and yours. We'll be back with our regularly scheduled outfit post next Monday.

Full Story

Memorial Day sales at Macy's, Gap and more

Lady getting her shop on.

istockphoto.com

Lady getting her shop on.

Happy Memorial Day weekend! Let's take time to remember all the service women and men out there and enjoy the long weekend. You might venture into the stores with the extra time, so here are a few sales you might want to check out.

Today through Monday at JCPenney, get an extra 20 percent off regular, sale and clearances prices and 10 percent off furniture if you use a JCP credit card. If you pay another way, save 10 percent off regular, clearance and sale prices. Online use promo code LAUNCH 16. In store, discount is taken at the register.

At Piperlime.com, save up to 40 percent on dresses and sandals.

At Gap, get up to 40 percent off today through Monday on select styles. Kids' denim from $18, women's and men's shorts from $28, dresses from $36 and tees from $10.

Big sales at Macy's on everything from shoes to handbags to jewelry to swimsuits to furniture and mattresses. Online, use pormo code SAVE. And here's a link to an savings pass for an extra 15 percent off.

Get 40 percent off everything at New York & Company, and look for redlines at up to 60 percent off the lowest price. …

Full Story

Can't find the perfect shoes? Maybe it's time to make your own

These 3-inchers, in suede, are called "Grin N' Berry It." They'd be a great way to bring some fun to the work outfit.

Chromatic Gallerie

These 3-inchers, in suede, are called "Grin N' Berry It." They'd be a great way to bring some fun to the work outfit.

Last week I told you about how, with the help from Deal Diva Katie, I got my shopping groove back. But my shoe game?

I need to step it up.

Full Story

Diva horror: Upsold at the cosmetics counter

Pretty pretties.

istockphoto.com

Pretty pretties.

I recently dragged the hubby and the toddler to the Bobbi Brown cosmetics counter at Nordstrom's. Call it a family foundation emergency.

When it comes to makeup, I continually learn the hard way that some things are worth paying for. My most recent lesson came when I replaced by beloved Bobbi Brown foundation, $47, with a Sephora brand that was only slightly less painful at $42. The result was a sticky, tacky mess that I had to live with for months.

With that bottle finally kicked, I decided to go back Bobbi, the only brand that I have found is a good color match for my skin tone. But while the saleswoman was applying my tester hue, out came other "reminders."

What is your moisterizer regimen? Lip plumper? SPF-protecting blushable bronze tint?

How many times can a girl say no? In my case, it was one too few. I left not only with my desired foundation but also a plum lip gloss that looked too pretty to resist. By this time, the family was rebelling, so I just swiped.

Only later did I realize with horror that I had paid $24 for lip gloss. At least it is really pretty.

Has anyone mastered the art of countering the cosmetic upsell? Tutor me, please!

Full Story

Sniffing out summer nail trends

Revlon also has scented nail polish in a broader, fruitier array of choices.

Photo via Revlon.

Revlon also has scented nail polish in a broader, fruitier array of choices.

We are not approaching the summer of shy nails, that's for sure.

Nail polish trends for summer are bright, shiny, scented and best of all, creative. You can do them yourself without shelling out for a manicure, I promise. You just have to practice.

Check out our slide show for photos and follow the links for tutorials and sources.Full Story

My Outfit Monday: Getting leggy with it!

my iPhone

With all the talk about spring trends lately, I decided to finally take the plunge and try one I was a bit reluctant about.

I think my love affair with skinny jeans is well documented. And I’ve always been a fan of Capri pants.

But skinny ankle pants??

Wouldn’t the love-child of my two loves just take me back to that awful place when the “floods” (too-short pants) that strained to cover my rapidly growing chicken legs only accented the braces, frizzy hair and squint of a girl whose refusal to wear those large-framed glasses she so sorely needed earned her daily comparisons to middle-school-super-nerd Steve Urkel?

Well, ankle pants – now a darling of celebrities and models strutting spring 2013 runways – have come a long way, my friends. So I couldn’t help but pause when I passed a rack of the colorful pants at Tar-jay a couple months ago.

The verdict: I adore them! …

Full Story

Bubble necklaces try and take over the world

Tasty tangerine from New Dreamz, $14.99.

New Dreamz

Tasty tangerine from New Dreamz, $14.99.

A couple months ago, I wandered into a Charlotte Russe store, saw a piece of outrageous aqua neck candy priced at $12.99 and walked out the proud owner of the new bold and chunky beast. What a unique piece of jewelry! Something I had never seen before! This would really make a statement, in the immortal words of Daria Morgendorffer, stand proudly and proclaim I AM!

The following week, former Deal Diva Emily walked into happy hour wearing the exact same necklace, down to the color and the gold hardware, unaware that I had ever made such a purchase. "I have that exact thing," I said, and then showed her the picture above.

Huh. Well, it was probably a fluke, I figured, a total coincidence. That's when, in the next few weeks, I started seeing bubble necklaces pretty much all over the United States of America. I saw them in stores, on people, on Pinterest pages. I walked into Charming Charlie to pick out a Mother's Day gift for my mom and was practically assaulted by bubble necklaces. The tipping point came when I realized that the mean sorority girl who wrote that now-infamous letter was also wearing one in the pictures that went viral. Major fail. …

Full Story

Line up, brides. It's the final act for the Goodwill Wedding Gala.

Nancy Fernandez places price tags on deeply discounted wedding gowns at the Goodwill Industries-Suncoast, Inc., St. Petersburg warehouse in preparation for the Goodwill Wedding Galas.

CHRIS ZUPPA | Times

Nancy Fernandez places price tags on deeply discounted wedding gowns at the Goodwill Industries-Suncoast, Inc., St. Petersburg warehouse in preparation for the Goodwill Wedding Galas.

It's a bittersweet day for brides in Tampa Bay.

Goodwill's Wedding Gala, the bridal dress blowout bringing bargain gowns to locals for the past seven years, will come to an end after two final sales this weekend. Brides have always flocked to this sale, lining up in the wee hours of the morning to get their hands on new designer gowns worth thousands for prices starting at $50. The gala, Goodwill officials told Times business reporter Susan Thurston, has run its course. It was too labor-intensive to host the events and seek donations every year, organizers said. Read the full story here. About 400 dress donations this year come from CC’s Boutique, Athena's Bridal Boutique, Diana's Bridal, Olga's Bridal & Boutique and Priscilla of Boston.

If you want to get in line for the last dress sale probably ever, here's what you need to know: …

Full Story

Will this Boyz II Men ad for Old Navy get you into white jeans?

Flabbergasted. That's how I feel about Old Navy right now -- and their campaign to get me to wear white jeans.

The latest move? Enlist 90s R&B group Boyz II Men. I love you Shawn, Wanya and Nathan, I really do. But... why? WHY did you have to do THIS?: (You might need to scroll down.)

 

 

Besides being just... wrong, it also didn't make me any more likely to squeeze my legs into white denim fabric this summer.

To be clear, I'm not against the white jean look. In fact, I'm all for incorporating colored denim into your closet. I just don't think I can pull white off.

What say y'all? Will you rock this trend all the way to Labor Day (and beyond!)? Old Navy IS having a sale on jeans right now. (Starting at $19)

Thank goodness it extends to all colors.

"Oooh oooh oooh, oooh ooh..."

 

Full Story

Shop your closet: Cheapest wardrobe update ever

Closet shopping spree! I wish  I were this cute. This is Julianna Zobrist, wife of Tampa Bay Rays player Ben Zobrist, in her closet.

DIRK SHADD | Times

Closet shopping spree! I wish I were this cute. This is Julianna Zobrist, wife of Tampa Bay Rays player Ben Zobrist, in her closet.

My wardrobe is enjoying a renaissance that didn't cost me a cent. I've been shopping my closet.

Like Deal Diva Kameel, I've been in need of inspiration. In my case, a move plus a baby created a disorganized closet stuffed with once adored dresses and tops that I haven't worn in two years.

I don't have a lot of spare time to spend in a closet, so I resolved to try on one "new" item each week. And I bought an iron.

The result? Non-stop compliments on items purchased years ago. On Monday, it was a fushcia shift dress inspired by Michelle Obama's first State of the Union appearance. Today, I'm wearing a classic shirt dress, vintage 2001.

I'm not quite sure to do with clothing that seemed trendy when I bought it. Are hardcore ruffles still in? Tribal print dresses with thick belts?

Minus a few tears shed over items that don't fit like they used to, the only downside to shopping your closet is racking up a drycleaning bill. But it's still cheaper than a mall trip!

Full Story