Monday, July 20, 2015

In Which I Try to Spend my Nordstrom Gift Card

After I was pondering if I should write about the Nordstrom Pre-Season sale, I remembered - I just had a birthday, and one of my gifts was a gift card to Nordstrom! So I can maybe indulge some pondering about what I should buy...

First off, I have to say that if I needed lingerie, I would hot-foot it to the Nordstrom site to see if they have my favorites on sale; their sale includes LOTS of lingerie.

Similarly, if I were interested in buying new bedding at this change of season, I'd also look at Nordstrom; it's also a category in which there seem to be lots of markdowns.

But I need neither of those things - I'm not buying undergarments of any ilk until I'm quite through losing weight and getting more lean. And a dear neighbor just gave us a stack of bedding, so that's not on the list either.

Winter coat? They have some beautiful ones in the sale, but I don't need one.

I maybe could use new running shoes, but one does NOT buy running shoes through the mail, and there's no way on planet Chicago that I'm going into the Nordstrom store during the sale. Insane crowds are NOT my idea of entertainment...

There are wonderful gifts with purchase available right now in cosmetics, but the only makeup I wear is lipstick, and I already own one! (If you have one, you always know what color to choose. As soon as you have more than one, you have confusion...)

So, when I think of translating a gift card into a gift, my first thought is jewelry. Even reasonably good semi-precious jewelry will last a very long time with care.

These caught my eye:


Bracelet – Tasha; red earrings – Nordstrom;
gold stud earrings – gorjana; bracelet – Nordstrom

The bracelet is appealing, but NOT a timeless style - those bracelets with lots of cord seem to have been very popular this last few years, and so I fear their time is almost over. The red earrings have a lot of potential - if they're the right shade of red (i.e. not too "rusty"), they could be worn with a ton of my wardrobe. (and they also come in amethyst, white crystal, jade, and blue sodalite!)  I like the gold studs, but they're pretty tiny in "real life"... and the bracelet? I have a real concern about how well it will age...



So I move on to clothes!  They've got STRIPES... (and they carry Eileen Fisher, including some things that nobody else gets. And they get Petites, and they get Women's sizes...)


Striped top – Eileen Fisher; sweaterBP.;
Dress – Eileen Fisher

The linen Eileen Fisher top has a lot of potential, but it's quite a bit like other tops I already own - do I really need another one? The BP. top is really attractive, but it's a Junior's size and brand, so I'm not sure how the fit and quality will be. But the black Eileen Fisher dress???  I don't need another black dress, but this one checks all of my boxes - relaxed, perfect with tights, packable, (its my goal to take ONLY dresses on a trip, sometime soon...) simple to wear with scarves or jewelry... hmmm....

But I wouldn't be a gym rat if I didn't at least consider buying some workout togs with my gift card.


CaprisZella; tank – Hard Tail;
Pink tank – Asics

The capris are tempting because I find that this style is comfortable for running, and modest enough for weight lifting. But I just bought a pair from another brand, and I don't know that I need a lot of them. What I COULD certainly use is a tank or two for running - I get really hot, even indoors on a treadmill. I like the colors of the Hard Tail tank, but I really love the fit of the Asics - as well as the cool little cut out in the back that shows the running bra! But I wear a special running bra, so it might not be this cute on me.... so, we press on in our looking about!

It wouldn't be Nordstrom if there weren't shoes in the equation.


Short boots – Aquatalia by Marvin K;  oxfords – Stuart Weitzman;
Plaid flats – Stuart Weitzman, silver sandals – StuartWeitzman

I'm always drawn to ankle boots.... and these are lovely! But I still have my Munro boots from last year, which are still in perfect condition. (AND they're on sale!).

The distressed metallic oxfords. Oh. My. I love tomboyish things. I love metallic shoes. I am SO smitten with these. Sigh...

But I think the plaid flats have a lot of merit too. I don't have a lot of luck with patterned shoes as a rule, but these are pretty subtle.

And it would NOT be silly to pick up a pair of sandals right now, to wear through the balance of warm weather and have in my hip pocket for next spring. It would not be silly AT ALL...

Still, I might want to think about being practical with my gift card:

Socks – Nordstrom, fragranceDolce & Gabbana Beauty;
Socks – Nordstrom

I have to believe that if I dump out my sock drawer and took stock of the situation, I would find that a handful of pairs of black socks might be in order...

BUT, resupplying a fragrance wouldn't be a bad call either. Although I don't know that I need all three products. Shower gel is fun, though...

After all of this, I still don't really know what I want to buy, which means that I'm going to continue to think, and maybe buy something in a day or two. Any comments you have might sway me one way or the other; your opinions always matter VERY MUCH to me.

love,
Janice

Artisan Made Jewelry Designs

35 comments:

  1. 30% off of Eileen Fisher, Stuart Weitman or Aquatalia is always persuasive! The boots and sandals are high quality and I don't think you'd regret the purchase!

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  2. Seems like you don't really need anything. I would hold off buying just for the sake of buying?
    Karen

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    1. I agree. If there's nothing needed to fill wardrobe gaps then don't buy for the sake of buying. I'd go with stocking up on the wardrobe "perishables" of stockings, socks, perfumes, and even some extravagant toiletries, since it's your birthday gift.

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  3. Of all of the options that you outline here, the one that stands out to me is the way you describe the metallic distressed oxfords:
    DEFINITELY NOT saying you should buy them but something about them appears to speak to you. Perhaps they deserve a bit more thought, and maybe even a try-on as you think through your attraction to them? - as Nordstrom's return policy is simple and easy.

    You know the drill better than anyone: Do they fit with your fall/winter plans? Do they fill a need missing in your existing shoe wardrobe? Or do they replace something you already have, but don't love? Do you have many places to wear them, and multiple outfits to wear them with? Are they moving toward your ideal Janice look?

    cheers and thanks for sharing your thought process -- Sue G

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  4. While I normally do not partake in the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, I was curious about your thoughts on the leather Longchamp Le Pliage Cuir. This is the only purchase I am contemplating buying and am wondering if it is worth the splurge... Many Thanks for your counsel.

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    1. If that's a good sized bag for you, I'd recommend it. Longchamp stuff is usually very well made, and the chance to get that design in something other than nylon is really tempting.
      hugs,
      Janice

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  5. I would hold off if your voucher had a long enough date - you clearly don't need anything just now! Otherwise, I'd go for the jewellery and perfume. I don't like to use birthday gifts for utilitarian items. Alternatively (I don't know Nordstrom) do they sell experiences?

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  6. I would hold off if your voucher had a long enough date - you clearly don't need anything just now! Otherwise, I'd go for the jewellery and perfume. I don't like to use birthday gifts for utilitarian items. Alternatively (I don't know Nordstrom) do they sell experiences?

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  7. I love those oxfords! I think you should use your gift card for something special, something you really love but would not otherwise buy. That way, it really is a gift, and you will be the happier to use it because it makes you think of the giver. I think those oxfords qualify, but don't think the sale should determine your purchase if nothing really makes your heart sing.

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    1. PS. meant to say, too : thx for walking us thru the sale without encouraging frantic buying!

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  8. There are so many items I would like...it is hard to make a decision! Good luck with yours!

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  10. I always look at a gift card as a way to buy something I want, as opposed to something I need. In your case, this would be perfume over socks. I would need to buy socks, but perfume, while something I do wear every single day, is a want, not really a *need*.

    Whatever you choose, I am sure will be the right decision for you =)

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  11. I'm with Beckie on this: gifts are things you wouldn't buy for yourself. They're splurges. They're indulgences. They're what you wished for but couldn't or wouldn't buy for yourself.

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  12. Sounds as if nothing really knocks your socks off. Perhaps wait until later and for real whappage?

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  13. Speaking of sales..... My dear hubby and I hit the stores this weekend to take advantage. But, I did my homework. I took stock of my closet: there were items that worked well, but needed to be replaced. There were a couple of "holes" that needed to be filled. The list came down to roughly a half dozen items. So many sales! So many beautiful things! But I stuck to the list. I stuck to my mantra that if it doesn't fit, if I don't feel great in it, it goes back. Result? I checked off all but one of my items. I love everything I bought, bought nothing I didn't love, and came away happy and fulfilled. So, thanks for teaching us how to shop with purpose. Good luck on your own quest. :)

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  14. I love those stone earrings, so sad they don't come in a silver banded option - I rarely wear yellow gold :-( And I've been looking for new lapis earrings.... (well, the sodalite)

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  15. You could forego the sale and use your gift card to try Shoes of Prey. Designing your own pair of shoes seems like something you would enjoy.

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  16. You seem pretty excited about the dress and a couple of the shoes. Unless your further pondering gives you good reasons why these wouldn't be used and enjoyed regularly, I would go with one of those.

    It so happens I ordered that dress in grey this weekend. I'm a bit anxious to try it on. I've always wanted to like Eileen Fisher, but as a small all over person I usually am happiest with more structure than EF gives. She looks great on women with more substance, of whatever size or height.

    Not sure how the dropped waist will work either, or my strategy of ordering a regular size instead
    of petite so that the sleeves might be regular length on me and the dress not too short. Not sure about the bateau neck either, as my best necklines are V and scoop. Lots of opportunity to be disappointed.

    But I had on my list that I need a winter dress, something relaxed enough to wear for casual and at home but also nice enough to wear for travel or business casual or non-formal social events. Needs to be not--lack, preferably grey, navy or wine. Needs to be warm without being bulky and chunky. Needs to be neutral enough in color and style to be accessorized lots of ways and for me to not get tired of it. It will likely be my only winter dress. And it needed to be great with tights and any shoe from a low heeled pump to a flat or a boot. And it scratches that itch to please finally make something besides a tee in EF work for me. Your frequent and beautiful use of EF always aggravates that itch for me. The dress looks like a winner for all these conditions.

    If you happen to get the dress, I can imagine it being a real workhorse in your wardrobe, unless what you already have ends up pleasing you more than the new one.

    So fun to window shop with a gift card, isn't it?

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  17. I agree with the majority that say it sounds like you should wait for something that truly knocks your socks off. SewingLibrarian's idea of using it for Shoes of Prey sounds good too.

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  18. I would try to get to the store before lunch on a Tuesday through Thursday to avoid the 3 day weekend shoppers & the half day off shoppers. Just to test drive the few items that sparked interest. Don't forget to ask yourself the final question: Will I Regret Not Buying It?

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  19. Also, I have two other ways I use gift cards. One is to make something out of my price range affordable. Two is to buy Christmas gifts for others if it's for a store I don't care for.

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  20. Being very self centred, I would really like you to use the gift card for a pair of shoes from shoes of prey. I am very intrigued by it's possibilities but am equally reluctant to spend all that money without knowing for sure about their quality and fit. Your review would be very helpful. We trust you.
    Deb from Vancouver

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  21. Love love love the LBD and have just the scarf for you to wear with it now and then another in the Fall ;-) xoxox

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  22. I just bought and returned two pair of sale boots. Replacement boots were #1 on my shopping list. Getting them at a discount is a huge incentive. Once they arrived and I compared them, I liked my old ones better. I will hold off another year. I feel very good walking away from the purchases. If they had been the right boots, I would have paid full price.

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  23. This is not related to your question, and only somewhat related to your post, but I am curious. You have so many wonderful pieces in general and in reference to your comment about jewelry lasting with proper care specifically, I am curious to know if you (or any readers) have any recommendations for books, websites or other resources that offer information on how to take care of clothing, jewelry, shoes, etc.

    It seems like something so many others know, but I don't know where they learned these things and I'm trying to learn them now myself and I'm still pretty far behind :/

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    1. If memory serves, Martha Stewart Living ran several articles on this topic a number of years ago. They might still exist on the magazine's site.

      I have a similar article I pulled out of Vogue a good 35 years ago. It's still pertinent and useful.

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    2. I love love love Cheryl Mendelson's "Home Comforts: The Art & Science of Keeping House" - a great guide for how to take care of everything! Everything people used to learn from their families and/or in home ec & shop class. There are other home ec guides (Martha Stewart has one).

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    3. Thank you, Jean S and Hoya! I looked up Martha Stewart Living and, though it seems most of the articles are about home items at the moment, I think the content may change over time, so I'll keep checking back. "Everything people used to learn from their families and/or in home ec & shop class." The year I was scheduled to take a life skills class, the course was cut at my school. I've learned a lot of home renovation and repair skills from my parents, but somehow care for clothing (other than how to do laundry) was never passed down.

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    4. I second Hoya's recommendation of Mendelson's book. Mendelson will teach you everything you need to know about laundry, ironing, folding clothes, and hundreds of other topics. She's a lawyer in her public life and kept her love of housekeeping secret for many years. Then she wrote the book that is the most comprehensive one on the market. Ha!

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  24. I agree with the others - buy something you love and that isn't something you'd otherwise buy. The NAS is always around my birthday so I usually have a gift card or more to use, which I love. Thanks to you, I planned ahead for the sale this year and used it to buy (replace) basics while on sale and -this is key - available in my size! I use the gift cards for something I wouldn't normally buy (but love) - either because of a want vs need, or because the cards will make the cost more affordable. BTW, I tried both the EF sweater & EF dress you mentioned but wasn't wowed by either one on me, although the sweater was tempting. Both could be great on you - worth a try on.

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  25. Hmm - what a choice/comment decider?

    I think both the metallic lace-ups and the plaid loafers are very "you" and if the gift certificate is large enough, don't choose - buy both!

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  26. Darling Janice, I'm afraid I wouldn't be of much help to you. Once I've got my wardrobe basic "ducks" in a row, I tend to go for accessories (can we have too many scarves or shoes??) or makeup and perfume. I have more than one lipstick and wear them all, depending on the occasion and how dressed up I am. Do you have a red lipstick? Every woman should have the perfect shade of red, if only to wear in the evening. I love getting gift certificates to my favorite shops. Nordstrom is high on my list. Enjoy!! And, of course, please let us all know what you decide to purchase??

    Cheers, M-T

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  27. Lucky you if something you choose from Nordstrom's sale is still available! Since I didn't want the card, I waited until the sale was open to non-cardholders. The skirt and pants I wanted were gone! Oh, well... I did order 2 lovely blouses, which I'm sure I will enjoy.

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  28. I got the Cole Haan ZeroGrand perforated oxford in grey in the pre-sale. It is very light weight and fun. I don't know what is left in sizes and colors, but take a look!

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