Monday, October 24, 2005

Diva on a Dollar - Atlanta

Welcome to my inaugural blog. I’m not quite sure how often I will update this, but I am looking forward to this being the start of something good – so please forward to other Divas!

As many of you know, I am the ultimate bargain shopper and actually have been recognized as one of America’s smartest shoppers. I would like to spread the knowledge of fabulous finds to my fellow Divas who enjoy high quality items for not so high prices! Each newsletter will list only a few finds. By the way, I don’t get paid for doing this (yet !) – below is just my 2 cents on establishments I’ve visited. Enjoy!

SHOPPING

Nordstrom Rack (near the Mall of Georgia)
3205 Woodward Crossing BoulevardBuford, GA 30519(678) 482-0123
The Scoop: For those of you who know me, you know I could not leave this one out. This is by far, one of my favorites. The outlet of the premium Nordstrom department store, this place can easily be a one-stop shopping extravaganza. Now let me be honest, as with any bargain shop, it sometimes can be hit or miss. However, with departments such as Women’s, Petites, Juniors, Activewear, Kids, Men’s, Handbags, Shoes, Lingerie, Home Goods, Cosmetics and Accessories - it’s hard to leave empty-handed.

Loved It!
They have a separate designer shoe section where you can even find Stuart Weitzman shoes for under $100! Personally, I have been most successful with shoes, blazers, Ulta-level cosmetics (including Biosilk products that are a few bucks less than regular price), designer pants, suits, and dresses. If you ever have a semi-formal event, check here first! Bring your man, too – great prices on shoes and clothes for men. Every now and then you can also find some good prices for designer bags.

Hated It!
Though they carry a lot of designer items, this is not a good place to look for designer jeans (at least not at this location – I have found Seven and Citizen’s jeans in the downtown Chicago location). Also, they change their inventory often, so just because you see one section of items one day don’t be surprised if it isn’t there the next time you come. For instance, I took my mom there once and they had an entire section of St. Johns but I have not that section since.

Encore Consignment Shop4015 Holcomb Bridge Rd # 400 (corner of Holcomb Bridge and Spaulding)Norcross, GA770-446-5040

The Scoop:
This is a high-end consignment shop that prides itself in carrying the best lightly-worn designer labels that are in good condition. Bring in your designer label items and they will sell them for 1/3 of the price they’re worth new and they will split the profit with you 50/50. I actually just brought some pieces in today.

Loved It!
They carry a lot of jewelry (both designer and costume), formal gowns and dresses, business wear and items good for going out on the town. They have an excellent selection of formal gowns, quite a bit of St. Johns and Escada items, and quite a bit of jewelry including David Yurman and Tiffany’s. I also saw some Diane von Furstenburg, and Betsy Johnson dresses and tops. The owner, Breda is very sweet and a hoot to chat with!

Hated It!
Well, I must admit, when I saw the price tags of the first few items I had sticker shock. BUT….when I realized that the $299 St. John’s blazer that looked as good as new would have been $850 in the store, I took a breather. As I looked further, I found some really good prices. If you are a Designer Label Diva – this place is for you. If you are looking for the chic for the real cheap, you may be a little disappointed.


EATING
McCormick & Schmick’s
Downtown:
CNN Center190 Marietta Street NW, Atlanta, Georgia(404) 521-1236
Dunwoody:600 Ashwood Parkway, Atlanta, Georgia(770) 399-9900

The Scoop:
Why is this listed, you may ask? Well, M&S has a little known secret - a fabulous deal on their bar menu during happy hour - $1.95 per item! Included in the menu is a burger and fries (and I’m talking restaurant-quality burger), quesadillas, chicken wings, steamed mussels or clams, oyster shooters and bruschetta. Check the hours with the locations, as they may change, but for the most part it is daily during the workweek 4:30-6:30 PM, and 9:30-11:30 PM.

Loved It!
I have ordered the ½ lb. burger each time I’ve visited – it’s great. I’ve also tried the steamed clams (decent), chicken wings (pretty good) and quesadillas (they’re good). They haven’t disappointed me yet.

Hated It!
Though the bar menu is $1.95, it does require you to buy 2 drinks. The drinks do not have to be alcoholic beverages, but if they are refillable soft-drinks they will probably have to charge you for 2 soft drinks since they provide free refills. Also, this menu is only valid in the bar area and you have to place your order before the end of the happy hour times.


I hope this wet your appetite for more! Stay tuned for more Diva on a Dollar finds as well as my web site coming soon. ‘Til Next Time, Divas!

The Diva on a Dollar

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