Deidaatip how to survive Boxing Day sales

Boxing Day sales work around two myths.

Boxing Day sales are an annual event:

They perhaps used to be. Since the economic downturn, markets have not recovered fully. Retailers are capitalizing on every opportunity to declare a sale. Ranging from Boxing Day sale, Easter weekend and Anzac Day celebrations, Mothers’ Day sales, Valentine’s Day sales and EoFY sales, they have it all. Boxing Day sales have lost much of their sheen.

There are genuine markdowns on full priced goods at Boxing Day sales:

This may be partially true, at best. Many stores create a ‘seconds’ lines for sales and factory outlets..

How do you shop savvy at Boxing Day sales:

Buyer beware:

Shop prudently.Make a list of things you really need and stick to the list. Inspect the goods at point of sale. A sale is seen as an opportunity to bump off defective pieces, shop soiled items, one off samples. It is illegal for retailers to sell defective or substandard goods unless explicitly declared at point of sale.

Know your rights:

Most shops put a ‘no refunds, no exchange disclaimer’ on sale items. In reality, sale items should be governed by the same refund policy as full priced items. Do not shop at stores that put up notices like ‘no refund, no exchange on sale items’. Many online designer stores like Deidaa offer no questions asked refund, even on sale items.

Avoid herd mentality:

There is no reason for you to jump into the fray, because half a dozen women are hunched over a pile of stretchy t- shirts, which are disappearing at an alarming speed. Do you really need half  a dozen cheap t- shirts or would you rather spend your dollars on an investment piece like a designer silk scarf?

Get a shopping buddy:

Do not shop alone. Ideally hire a personal shopper. If not, take a friend, sister or daughter who can give you an informed opinion. Daughters can be brutally frank at times, but come up with some very valuable suggestions.

Do not shop on an empty stomach:

An empty stomach has a nefarious connection with some shopping disasters.

Do not shop when you are upset:

Retail therapy is like chocolates. It has the ‘feel good factor’. If you are having an emotional downturn, chances are, you will do binge shopping.

Do not shop in a hurry:

Take time to try on garments and footwear. Brave the serpentine queues in front of the trial rooms during sales. Right fit is critical to garments and footwear. How many near new garments do you have in your wardrobe, practically unused because they are tight around the bust or hips or the fabric is not soft and breathable. Shoes that look good in the store turn out to be too narrow or too high, giving you blisters, bruises and broken ankles.

Make Boxing Day sale shopping a relaxed affair. Do not get into a frenzy. Pick up right clothes and accessories in the right sizes. Take a break at mid – day. Have a leisurely lunch with your shopping buddy. Who knows, at the end of the day you may have unearthed a few hidden gems!

 

 

Holiday tips 2016 – how to recharge your batteries

Holiday tips 2016 – How to recharge your batteries

End of year holidays mean different things to different people – for some it is ‘we time ‘ with family and friends, while for others, it is recharging the batteries to face the year to come. While my other half likes to fill his holidays with activities, I like to soak up the atmosphere, explore local cuisine, culture and crafts, stimulate my mind and get the creative juices flowing. At this time of the year we are loath to talk schedules and planning, however if we avoid some ‘silly’ mistakes this silly season, the recharge and unwind exercise need not degenerate into a nightmare.

Holiday tips 2016 – Do your homework:

If you are traveling to hitherto unexplored territory, it pays to do some homework. Familiarise yourself with local culture. Learn about protocols you need to follow and precautions you need to take.  Carry a smart traveler booklet with you. Make photocopies of your travel documents and credit cards carry one set with you; leave the other set with a trusted friend or family member at home. Get sufficient travel insurance. Notify your bank about your travel plans. Buy a local SIM card (available at most airports) or use mobile apps to stay connected. Roaming facilities on your mobile phone can cost you an arm and a leg.

Holiday tips 2016 – Pack savvy:

Pack colorful, light weight and crease resistant kaftans. Rolled up, these little numbers can fit the nooks and crannies of your suitcase. Kaftans are perfect as daywear or beachwear. They can be dressed up and down. They are compatible with most cultures. Carry sturdy and comfortable shoes like ballet flats. It is a good idea to wear sneakers while flying. If you are changing flights, the trek from one gate to another can be a good 5 km walk. No kidding, I did that just yesterday at Changi International Airport and ended up feeling very sorry for the woman who was walking ahead of me, wearing a pair of high boots. Another travel friendly accessory is a sling bag. A sling bag holds your essential documents while leaving your hands free for the trolleys.

Holiday tips 2016 – Travel light:

It is wise to travel light. The fewer luggages you have, the less vulnerable you are to loss and theft. Think before you pack the evening dress or the fancy pair of shoes. Beautiful indeed, but do you really need it on a hiking trip? Carry minimal or no precious jewelry. Costume jewelry is fun and if you lose an earring or two it does not weigh on your conscience or your purse.

Holiday tips 2016 – Carry a scarf:

Carry a scarf, in fact two. I cannot highlight enough the versatility of the humble scarf. At the beach, a scarf is a pareo, a bandanna and a throw over bathers. On a sunny day, it is an effective headscarf. If it is nippy, a scarf tied in a dead man’s knot around your neck protects you against the chill. Some religious monuments require you to cover your head, shoulders or legs. Scarves are handy on such occasions.

Holiday tips 2016 – Expect the unexpected:

Go with an open mind. If you have seen ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ you will realize those that enjoy the most are the ones who embrace and accept. Explore local cuisine, crafts and culture. It helps though, if you make sure that the local signature dish does not contain seafood you are allergic to.

Last but not the least, unwind. After all, this is about recharging the batteries.

 

 

Giftophobia how to combat the fear of exchanging gifts

Are you affected by giftophobia around this time of the year – the fear of giving and receiving the wrong gifts? We know it is the thought behind the gift that matters. However, won’t it be nice if your near and dear ones actually find your gifts useful?

Here are the top 5 tips to master the art of buying gifts.

COMBAT GIFTOPHOBIA – Observe:

Get to know the people you are buying the gift for. Observe their lifestyle, hobbies and interests. Your favourite aunt is Scottish, crafty and crotchety (pun intended). She is an active member of the lacemakers’ guild and loves all things handmade. Will she not love a paisley pashmina scarf or a kaftan with a hand crochet yoke?

The colleague who sits next to you loves the neutral palette. However, she does wear a statement scarf when attending boardroom meetings. Pick up a digital printed scarf that will add an accent to her understated elegance.

COMBAT GIFTOPHOBIA – Listen:

Be a good listener. What has your bestie been talking about lately? The big wedding she has to attend shortly and how she is desperately looking for some beaded clutch bags to go with her spectacular outfits. Or how she can’t wait for the holiday in Bali, where she will do nothing but soak up the sun. This one could definitely do with some kaftans and beach bags.

COMBAT GIFTOPHOBIA – Encourage:

Your little niece is not that little any more. She is taking baby steps towards adulthood. She is experimenting with beauty and fashion. She will perhaps love the cotton pompom and fringed scarves or the sequinned beanies.

COMBAT GIFTOPHOBIA – Cheer:

For your other half, who also wins the title of the ‘Barbeque King’ hands down, you could pick up some cooking aprons with funky slogans.

COMBAT GIFTOPHOBIA – Go by the stars:

Follow astrology. I am a typical Virgo and love organizers and memo boards, while my charismatic Libra friend loves flamboyance and colour.

You could do all of the above or take the easy way out by giving cash, gift cards or vouchers. These are practical and quick, but lack the personal touch. And most of these gift cards simply sit in our wallets, till they are past their use by dates!

If you are still in trouble over buying gifts, write to us and we at Deidaa, the good samaritans, will come to your rescue.