Zuvaa pop-up shop coming to Birmingham

Yasssss! We love everything about Zuvaa, the global retailer featuring African fashion. It was a line we have had to love from afar (or at least, via the internet)–until now.

Zuvaa will strut into Birmingham to host a pop-up shop (bringing international fabulosity to our doorsteps!) at the Riverchase Galleria on June 3 and 4, 2017. Entry is free, but you must register via Eventbrite. Get your tickets here

Happy shopping! 

Image via Zuvaa

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Mood.

Le sigh.

Image via (and mug available at) Waiting on Martha

Bargain Carousel is this week!

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SCDD is sending one reader (and a guest) to Bargain Bash! Comment “Send me to Bargain Bash” on this post to enter (receive additional entries at the posts on Facebook and Instagram). Winner will be drawn on Wednesday, April 26.

Haute off the press (release):

For some there is nothing more fun than bargain hunting! What if you could find a wide variety of unbelievable items at low prices and buying them would mean you were improving lives for women and children? The Junior League of Birmingham’s (JLB) annual Bargain Carousel makes this shopping experience a reality.

Bargain Carousel will kick off on Thursday, Apr. 27 this year with Bargain Bash.

Bargain Bash is a casual cocktail party that offers first-chance shopping of Bargain Carousel items and impressive silent and live auctions including more than 150 items, such as original artwork and VIP travel packages. For shoppers wanting the best selection and smaller crowds, VIP admission is the best choice, with 6 p.m. entry at $40 a ticket. Shoppers receive one hour of early bird shopping before general admission patrons enter. All guests enjoy food, beverages and the auctions. VIP admission is $40 a ticket and general admission (7 p.m. entry) is $30 a ticket. All Bargain Carousel items sell for double the ticket price during Bargain Bash.

Everything IZ Inc., B&A Warehouse, and Ashley Mac’s will each be providing food at the event. Shindig’s Catering Food Truck will also be on-site during Bargain Bash.

Saturday and Sunday are a bargain hunter’s paradise, with more than 100,000 items for sale including art, appliances, furniture, heirloom items, baby and children’s clothing and furnishings, home décor, outdoors and sporting goods, and much more. Additionally, crafters and Pinterest lovers will be thrilled with the project pieces available. Bargain Carousel 2017 will begin on Saturday, April 29 (8 a.m. – 5 p.m.). Tickets from 8 – 10 a.m. are $10/ticket and from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. they are $5/ticket. It continues Sunday, April 30 (1 – 5 p.m.) with free admission and half price merchandise.

“Bargain Carousel’s purpose is two-fold,” said JLB volunteer and Bargain Carousel chair, Emily Norkus. “The sale raises money for the League’s 31 projects serving women and children in the metro area and it allows us to sell items at deeply discounted prices to individuals who can benefit from them.”

Bromberg’s is donating a John Hardry necklace that can be purchased during the Auction at Bargain Bash.

“Many people return to the event year after year,” said Norkus. “We have our Bargain Bash faithful who come in and buy antique pieces at double our retail price and we have hundreds of people who line up overnight for the general sale because they know they can get gently-used necessities at a price they can afford.”

Thanks to Brookwood Baptist Health™, Bargain Carousel will be held in Hoover just off of Exit 10 from I-459 in the old Princeton-Hoover location.

In 2016, more than 500 tickets were pre-sold the day before Bargain Carousel opened its doors. People began lining up the night before to reserve their spot to pre-purchase tickets. This year, the pre-sale will be held at the sale location on Friday, April 28 from 2 – 6 p.m., where shoppers may purchase up to four tickets at $10/ticket to the Saturday sale.

A special note for the Saturday sale, all tickets are numbered, and shoppers will enter Bargain Carousel in the order of their ticket number. For information about Bargain Carousel 2017, call205-879-9861, visit http://www.bargaincarousel.net, “Like” Bargain Carousel on Facebook, or follow @jlbbargaincarousel on Instagram.

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VBxTarget launches April 9. Here’s how to shop.

20150419-035429.jpgCalling all Target shoppers!

Just when I think I’m done with Target’s budget-friendly designer collaborations, they pique my interest (and pick my pocketbook) with something different. So here we are with Victoria Beckham’s new line, hitting the interweb and brick and mortar stores this Sunday, April 9.

If you’ve followed the shenanigans here for a length of time you know I’ve camped out at my local store for both the Neiman Marcus drop and the Great Lilly Pulitzer Disaster of 2015. If you’re planning to scoop some VB on the low (and are not a Redcard-holder who is shopping early!), I’ve got tips for shopping either online or in an actual store, because knowing is half the battle!

When shopping online (for the truly dedicated who like to shop in their pajamas):

  1. Review the list of items and zero in on what you want, whether it’s for women, babies or toddlers–there are over 200 items total in this collection reflecting Beckham’s design aesthetic and influenced by her daughter, Harper. I’ve narrowed my wish list to two pieces to preserve my sanity.
  2. Go ahead and register on Target.com so your information is saved. You would not believe how quickly stuff gets wiped out online, and the quicker you can complete your checkout, the better. Do not plan to browse for other random items and think your online cart is reserved or your feeling will be hurt
  3.  Be ready at your laptop at least 10-20 minutes before launch.
  4. Have your credit/debit card information handy.
  5. While you wait, check Twitter (#VBxTarget) for any news or reactions from other shoppers.
  6. Expect the items to drop at midnight PACIFIC TIME on Target.com and VictoriaBeckham.com. I’d have both sites and up and ready, just in case.
  7.  REFRESH REFRESH REFRESH!
  8.  SHOP ‘TIL YOU DROP!
  9. A note on free in-store pick-up at Target: I wouldn’t necessarily count on it being an option for this line. Be prepared to have your order shipped, and for these worst case scenarios: your cart may be canceled or your items may be backordered.  Hopefully Target has learned from previous experience and there won’t be many hiccups this time. Stay tuned.

When shopping in a brick and mortar (for those who enjoy the thrill of shopping like they’re on the streets Pamplona during the running of the bulls):

  1. Pro tip: Survey your local store (displays for the line are going up) or call ahead to politely inquire whether your favorite store will be selling items from the collaboration, and decide ahead of Sunday morning which store you will visit.
  2. Dress for the weather and the occasion. As you may have to beat a crowd when the doors open, this is not the time for four-inch heels and a heavy handbag. Be comfortably dressed, wear nonskid soles and streamline your accessories to a wallet or crossbody bag.
  3. Get to your local Target, early. And by “early,” I mean before daybreak (otherwise you could be at the end of a long line of shoppers and eBay resellers (*shakes fist*). Go prepared with something to sit on, a warm beverage and/or snack to keep you fortified, a book and your phone charger.
  4. Hit the bricks and claim a spot on the sidewalk.
  5. Wait patiently. Do not harass any employees who are arriving to work, and don’t be tacky and ask to be let in. (Go to the potty before you get to the store.)
  6. This should go without saying: be aware of your surroundings.
  7. When the doors open, don’t push or elbow. Make your way quickly to the section where your items are displayed. If you must run, God help you.
  8. Don’t snatch or grab from the clothing racks–and definitely NOT from other shoppers’ hands or baskets or shopping carts. It’s not attractive. And the store employees will have to clean up your mess, which isn’t nice.
  9. Be considerate in the dressing room. If you grabbed multiple sizes, try them on quickly. Don’t leave the dressing room in disarray. Try on your items quickly, return the item(s) you aren’t purchasing and move on.
  10. If you didn’t find what you were looking for, try your next closest store. And if you still come up empty-handed, keep checking as people often return items for days and weeks after a launch.

Happy shopping!

Warby Parker opens in Birmingham April 8

The retail gods are answering prayers in Birmingham: we have a Trader Joe’s, H&M…and on Saturday April 8, we’ll officially have a WARBY PARKER!

If you aren’t familiar with the affordable and very chic purveyor of eyewear, you should be.  It launched in 2010 as an online destination for eyeglasses under $100, and quickly distinguished itself by offering eyeglasses people actually wanted to wear at (gasp!) prices they could afford.  The only hitch: there were no brick and mortar stores to try on the glasses, although you could make a selection to try on in the comfort of your home (and return the pair(s) that didn’t work.)

But now Warby Parker is opening its first store in Alabama, and at The Pizitz, no less. I toured the new digs and I have to say: I can’t wait to get my prescription filled.

The store is thoughtfully designed with tons of natural light (the better for trying on new frames). It feels more like you’re in a hip bookstore than an eyewear boutique, and this feeling is enhanced by multiple book displays, card catalogs (remember those?), globe lighting and even a Reference Desk, where you can receive help.  A bright blue mural balances the decor, which carries over into the classic, utilitarian unifoms designed by Whitney Pozgay (who we had the pleasure of meeting at a CFDA event in Atlanta years ago!).

The generous team at Warby Parker gifted me with a pair of “Pearl” sunglasses in Marzipan Tortoise, and I have to say: I’m in love with them.  I plan to add the “Tilley” (in Grapefruit Soda) to my collection next. The other thing I love about Warby Parker is they offer free returns and free shipping (always!), so you aren’t penalized for being indecisive! They will also repair your scratched lenses for free the first 12 months you own them.

To celebrate the brand’s new presence in the Magic City, a limited-edition pair of Birmingham-exclusive sunglasses, Madison in English Oak with Flash Mirrored Pacific Blue lenses, is being offered. And a lenscloth with a print of the mural is given away with each purchase.

Warby Parker at The Pizitz is located at 1821 2nd Avenue North / Birmingham, Alabama 35203. It’s open Monday through Friday, 11:00 a.m.–8:00 p.m. and Saturday through Sunday, 12:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.

*I was not compensated for this post although I did receive a pair of sunglasses as a gift. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own.

Thank you, Jenna Lyons!

Thank you for teaching us that leopard is a neutral and sequins are a definite “do” for daywear. Although I did not get to sit next you at a J. Crew presentation at New York Fashion Week or be styled by you for the catalog, my closet owes a debt to you. I’m honestly a bit sad today, but wish you all the best! #jcrewforever #jcrewalways 
Image credit: The College Prepster

I stand with April Ryan & Maxine Waters.

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On being one of many #BlackWomenatWork:
I remember when someone at a previous job gifted me with $5 in play money to “thank me” for a job well done. I remember being told to “smile more” as if I had been hired to provide some sort of reassurance, comfort or entertainment. I remember being constantly made to move, “musical chairs-style” in an office with plenty to spare. I remember being yelled at, cursed at and talked to worse than one would a dog. I remember watching others get away with coming in late and leaving early, when I could take 2 vacation days in a quarter and then be asked to account for “excessive use of time off.”
I remember being point blank asked how I could possibly afford my  designer handbags, shoes or my car. I remember being saddled with other people’s work while they were free to vacation, or simply take up space. I remember other people doing much less and being celebrated, while I could work from here to Kingdom Come and it still wasn’t good enough for a raise, recognition or some other reward. I remember mine being the only black face some people saw except for the cleaning, catering or maintenance people. I remember being asked about crime levels in certain areas of town as if I were the expert on such matters (um, I’m from a RURAL area).
I remember a million micro aggressions including being laughed at repeatedly in a classroom setting as I presented serious research. (That was a straw.) So was having to explain to someone older than I am–yet subordinate to me–why using profanity to talk to me was unacceptable.  Let’s not even go into the rude comments on my hair or the many attempts people have made to put their hands in it.
“Twice as good” is a concept that was drummed into me from the womb.
I needed those jobs, so like most black women I kept my head up, I swallowed a lot of tears and righteous anger,  I ignored a lot of disrespect and I kept pushing. I KEEP PUSHING. Black women typically don’t have much of a choice to do otherwise. I left each of those experiences on my own terms (“always stay gracious; best revenge is your paper”–be it degrees or cash). I wasn’t ever a perfect employee (who is?), but I worked hard. I work hard, still.
Even if it goes without external recognition.  Especially when it does.
I validate and reward myself. #MartyTaughtMe
To be clear: there are countless women who came before me and had it much, much harder. I thank them for enduring and making my way a bit smoother, for the blueprint they left. This isn’t a rant, screed or complaint. It’s merely a series of observations collected over time and added to a narrative. Only by being open about our experiences can we change the pervasive part of our culture that supports Zora Neale Hurston’s words published in 1937:  “The [black] woman is the mule of the world.”
After all, as she also pointed out, “If you are silent about your pain, they’ll kill you and say you enjoyed it.”
The rules, expectations and assumptions levied at people who look like me are vastly different and applied on a constantly shifting plane. They are set up so you always fail someone, somewhere or fall short in some way for which you can never quiiiiiiite never atone. They are designed to make you feel less-than and to justify paying you less or failing to promote you. They are bent on teaching — and/or keeping — you in your “place.”
But I’m grateful for what those experiences reinforced in me:
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Deal with it.
*Follow Same Chic Different Day on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
(Note: I don’t own the graphic posted above. I just received it in a text and thought it was cool! The featured image of me was shot by Derrick L. Curry of Camera Play Photography.)

Live, Love, Learn and Lean On…

“There is no door you don’t deserve to walk through, no room you don’t deserve to be in, and no table you don’t deserve an invitation to…”-MCB #OwnIt

I leaned on my mother’s advice once again and it took me all the way back to my alma mater (again). This past Saturday I had the privilege of presenting a seminar on dressing for success at The University of Alabama to women of all ages at Lean On: Alabama‘s inaugural conference. I invited the guests into my “closet,” so to speak. No slides, no rehearsed speech, just speaking “from the hip” and from the heart. (Enjoy the “behind the scenes” photos!)

You never know when your invitation to a seat at the table will arrive, but if you “stay ready” you don’t have to “get ready.”

Does your organization need a professional presenter who can speak relevantly to the art of style and dressing for true success? I’ve provided dynamic, memorable presentations for nonprofits, community organizations, top tier universities and major corporations, and can connect with groups of five to five hundred (and beyond). Book me!

Leaning on…

I’m excited and honored to speak at Lean On: Alabama’s inaugural conference this Saturday! When I interviewed the founders a few months ago, I was impressed with their vision and their determination. What we need now more than ever are efforts that connect people, and this one works diligently and creatively to empower, challenge and share the collective knowledge Alabama’s women have earned no matter our age, economic status, education or profession. Passing this on makes us stronger individually and as a whole.

I expect to be moved and motivated this weekend, and if your schedule permits, I hope you will join us!

Register by clicking HERE, and learn more about Lean On: Alabama by clicking HERE.

 

 

 

 

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