‘Sale’ is the magic four letter word that leaves us salivating for more. We love to splurge at the EoFY sales, picking up clothes, shoes and bags with the speed of lightning. We brave long queues in front of trial rooms and shrug off the indifference of shop assistants. But is it worth it? How do we get real value out of the EoFY sales?
Since the economic downturn, sales have become a dime a dozen. Retailers are trying to squeeze the last dollar out of a customer’s pocket. EoFY sales have lost much of their sheen. Nonetheless, it is a good time to buy, as most stores like to minimise inventory before tax time.
How do you shop savvy at the EoFY sales:
EOFY SALES Buyer beware:
Make a list of things you need and stick to the list. Inspect the goods at the point of sale. Unscrupulous sellers use sales to bump off defective pieces. It is illegal for retailers to sell defective goods unless stated at the point of sale.
Know your rights:
Most shops put a ‘no refunds, no exchange disclaimer’ on sale items. In reality, the same refund policy should apply to sale items as full priced ones. Do not shop at stores that put up notices like ‘no refund, no exchange on sale items’. Shop at Deidaa or like-minded stores who offer ‘no questions asked’ refund, even on sale items.
Avoid herd mentality:
Do not be a fashion victim and jump into the fray. Ask yourself three questions. Do you need it? Does it suit you? Will you wear it? Do you need half a dozen cheap t- shirts that will end up in a clothing bin – unused or should you invest in a few key pieces?
Get a shopping buddy:
Do not shop alone. Hire a personal shopper. At the very least, take a friend, sister or daughter who can give you an informed opinion.
Do not shop on an empty stomach:
It is a time – honoured fact that an empty stomach has a nefarious connection with shopping disasters.
Do not shop when angry or 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. The right fit is critical to garments and footwear. If a garment is too tight or too short or the fabric is not comfortable next to skin, it is not a good buy. Shoes that look good in the store may end up giving you blisters, bruises and broken ankles.
Be relaxed while shopping at the EoFY sales. Enjoy the experience. Take a break at mid – day. Have lunch with your BFF. Who knows, at the end of the day, you may have unearthed a few hidden gems.
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Are you that auntie or uncle who turns up at the family bar-be-que with boring gifts wrapped in listless packages? Does the thought of Christmas gift shopping give you the heebie – jeebies? You are suffering from giftophobia and you are not the only one. Giftophobia is common 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
Buying Gifts Observe:
Research the people you are buying gifts 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 kaftan with a hand crochet yoke?
Mummy dearest is an avid gardener and roots for all things Australian. Deidaa’s Australia scarf, featuring Australian flora will be a tribute to her green finger and patriotism.
The colleague who sits next to you loves the neutral palette. However, she does wear a statement scarf when attending boardroom meetings. A digital printed scarf will add an accent to her understated elegance.
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 the tropical kaftans and beach bags.
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 love the pompom and fringed scarves or the sequined beanies.
For your other half, who also wins the title of the ‘Barbeque King’ hands down, you may pick up some cooking aprons with funky slogans. If mini me usually accompanies the dad, you can buy the parent and kids apron.
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, follow Deidaa’s giftopedia series @deidaafashiononline on Instagram, full of helpful gift buying tips. Watch this page. Our next post is about creative gift wrapping.
Deidaa Frocks Fillies… Fashion Tips for Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival 2016
Come spring and Melbourne wears a festive look. Board shorts and scruffy t-shirts are replaced with dapper suits, ties and pocket squares. Women vie with one another to get the right mix of dresses, heels, hats and bags. Melbourne Spring Racing Festival is as much about the frocks as it is about the fillies. The races are attended by celebrities and royalty from all over the world.
Fashions on the field at the Melbourne Spring Racing Festival sets many a heart aflutter. However, one must appreciate the subtleties of race wear before attempting to put together a spring racing carnival ensemble. One should follow some cardinal rules, when dressing up for the spring racing festival.
Deidaa Frocks Fillies Rule No 1.
Do not wear cocktail dresses to the races. Race wear and club wear are not the same. Fashions on the field is a blend of elegance and pizzazz. A race wear dress can be off shoulder or can have a deep back. If you are not comfortable with hosiery you may go bare legged. But do not combine bare legs with deep back and plunging décolletage. Draw the fine line between sexy and crass.
Deidaa Frocks Fillies Rule No. 2:
Do not follow fashion blindly. Fashions on the field is about highlighting your positive assets and minimizing your negative features. Wear shapes that suit your silhouette and colours that complement your skin tone
Deidaa Frocks Fillies Rule no. 3:
Fashions on the field apply to the complete outfit, from head to toe. Start with the dress and match the shoes, bags and scarves.
Deidaa Frocks Fillies Rule No. 4:
Accessorise correctly for fashions on the field. Add a new lease of life to your classic LBD with an on trend boxy clutch bag. The boxy clutch bag or the oversized envelope bag with jewels and rhinestones are what the fashion punters are backing this season. Clutch bags with extra features like side slings leave your hands free for the canapés and champagne. Combat possible rain and chill with a Pashmina or a silk scarf that can be discreetly tucked away and brought out if the weather plays a few tricks on you. A note of caution, do not over accessorise. If you carry a diamante clutch bag, go easy on the jewelry.
Deidaa Frocks Fillies Rule No. 6:
Be comfortable: Sky high stilettos look cool but do not feel cool when stuck in the grass. Spare yourself the embarrassment of walking bare feet at the end of the day. Fluorescent wedge heels in smart patent leather offer colour, comfort and safety for fashions on the field.
Deidaa Frocks Fillies Rule No. 7:
Follow Deidaa Frocks Fillies series for more tips on spring racing fashion.
In this day and age, we are swamped by fast fashion, bulk fashion, cheap fashion and assembly line fashion. However, it is heartening to note that there is a growing community of consumers, still in a minority albeit growing, who are swapping the hype and gloss of high street stores for artisan crafts. What can you do to join their ranks?
Save artisans – ask questions:
Ask questions before you buy. Who has designed the product? Is it an original design or a cheap imitation? Who has made it? Is it being made in ethically managed workshops or in sweatshops that are little better than hell holes? Are the producers receiving a sustainable wage? Do they have access to food, shelter and basic facilities like potable water?
Save artisans – abandon the herd mentality:
Do not succumb to the lure of big stores with big budget marketing campaigns. Seek out the unique scarf or a beaded kaftan that has elements of handcrafting.
Save artisans – be part of the initiative:
Many independent designers are doing yeomen work to reinvent and re – energise artisan crafts. Lend a helping hand to these people. Spread the word, support related events, buy and use artisan made scarves, kaftans, dresses, bags and so much more.
Save artisans – listen to a good story:
Many designers, who work with artisans and their communities, have good stories to tell. Personalise your shopping experience. Have a lively discussion with the designer and the maker. I can assure you interaction with independent designers and makers will be far more rewarding than encounters with robotic sales assistants who can say little beyond ‘next please’.
Save artisans – feel empowered:
You are the consumer. You can bring about a change with the choices you make. Artisan crafts are part of the legacy we are born with? Would you rather see them perish, drowned by the onslaught of mass-produced goods or would you extend your support by opting for an exquisitely beaded handbag or a unique hand tie-dyed kaftan? The choice is yours.