10 Secret Shopping Perks and Services at Your Favorite Stores (Think: Zara, Uniqlo and H&M)


Own the shopping scene. | Shutterstock.

There are certain perks that many people think are only reserved for the very, very elite shopper: free alterations, personal stylists, access to sample sales. But sweet, under-the-radar services are there for the taking (some at most unexpected stores, like H&M) — you just need to know where to look.

For instance, did you know that if you take a bag of old clothes to H&M to recycle, they’ll give you 15 percent off one item? (It’s part of their green fashion initiative.) And if you buy a pair of jeans over $20 at Uniqlo, you get free alterations.  Read more »

OMG, People Are Reselling Lululemon Items Online for Crazy Amounts of Money

Image via Shutterstock

Image via Shutterstock

Fans of capsule collections and limited-edition goods are no strangers to resellers. Often, these items are snatched up during opening-day chaos, or purchased en masse online (see: Missoni for Target’s near-instant sell-out, followed by rapid-fire online listings — including a pair of $34.99 rain boots listed on eBay for $31,000). Once sold out, everyday shoppers intent on buying an item must visit one of these reseller sites to buy the item — usually at an astronomical markup.

The practice is usually reserved for luxe designers like Chanel or at-one-point-affordable collections like Alexander Wang for H&M or Phillip Lim for Target. But now, resellers are making a killing on Lululemon — like an $800-for-a-pair-of-running-shorts kind of killing.  Read more »

The Edit: 5 Pairs of Wide Leg Jeans to Make Your Legs Look Mile-Long

For the last five years or so, it’s been skinny jeans every day, everywhere. And while no one can dispute their slimming, leg-lengthening qualities, we’re starved for new proportions. Enter: Wide leg jeans. The throwback denim is experiencing a major comeback and we’re already stocking up for spring. However, as stylish as they may be, there are a few styling tricks to keep in mind:

1. Keep the wash light. Save the ultra-inky washes for your raw denim. Wide legs are meant to skew retro.

2. Wear heels. Wide leg jeans are already equipped to make your legs look crazy-long. Maximize the illusion by wearing your jeans with booties or a platform sandal.

3. Call your tailor. Most wide legs jeans have super-long inseams—usually 32 inches and up. If you’re not leggy and don’t plan on wearing 6-inch heels (see #2), then be sure to call a tailor to take up the seam. Raggedy hems will look more grungy surfer than hippie goddess. Psst: While shopping, account for any fading or whiskering that might look wonky post-hem.  Read more »

Monday Obsession: Mara Hoffman Dashiki


Image via Third Street Habit.

Shop long enough in this city and store owners will get a sense of what floats your style boat. To wit: an email I received from January, owner of Third Street Habit in Old City, which said, “This outfit reminded me of you.” I clicked and saw what has become my standby spring/summer look: a dress or tunic over a pair of flared jeans. (In my book, pretty much every dress looks cooler over pants.) I’ll wear it like this, or with a pair of wild platforms for true ’70s style. Who knows? Maybe shopping for spring can will the season to hurry on up and get here.  Click here for more details.

We Want Everything in Eaves’ New Spring Collection

 We're in love | Photos by Carolina Palmgren

We’re in love | Photos by Carolina Palmgren

Local boutiques are rolling out new spring arrivals and we’re opening them with open arms. However, nothing has us quite as excited as Eaves‘ spring lookbook. Filled with crisp whites, quilted lightweight jackets and all types of linen, it’s basically spring perfection. All the looks are styled in a way that’s so accessible, you’ll be picking out whole outfits to recreate (that metallic tank and linen pant combo is just divine). Only 21 days until spring! Read more »

Launch Party for LXR&Co at Century 21


Wednesday, the warmly dressed, well-heeled crowd turned up at at Century 21 department store on East Market to help celebrate the launch of LXR&Co (the go-to experts in luxury vintage that Shoppist told us about last month.) The boutique will be located permanently inside the Century 21 store at 8th and Market Streets.

Frederick Mannella, CEO and Founder, LXR&Co told me he was a collector of everything high-end vintage, and thought maybe there were other people of like minds who wanted to own vintage Louis Vuitton, Hermés, Gucci and Bvlgari bags and Rolex watches. He first started an online marketplace in 2011, then in 2012 opened a brick-and-mortar store near his hometown in Montreal, which was followed by a pop-up store in Beverly Hills, California, and then a shop in SoHo. Last year he opened a 3,000-square-foot shop at Century 21 in New York called C21 Edition, and now here he is in the hot retail city of Philadelphia at the newly opened Century 21 store.

Photos from the LXR & Co launch after the jump »

5 Best Tea Shops in Philly That’ll Help You Get Warm Today

Photography by Jauhien Sasnou

The Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop in Northern Liberties. | Photography by Jauhien Sasnou

A toasty caffeine fix needn’t be limited to coffee. Here’s how to best enjoy tea’s indisputable resurgence.

For cozy atmosphere:
The Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop, Northern Liberties // This whimsical tearoom and herbal apothecary sells a bevy of authentic loose-leafs — like its tried-and-true chai — that have garnered quite the fan base. The quaint interior is irresistible — knickknack-strewn counters, pillows piled high in the booths, a clientele usually enthralled by a game of chess — making it the perfect place to curl up with a book and transport yourself. // 713 North 4th Street.  Read more »

Our First Reactions to Philly’s New Forever 21 Store

The shiny new Chestnut Street storefront. | Photo courtesy Forever 21.

The shiny new Chestnut Street storefront. | Photo courtesy Forever 21.

Although Forever 21 is typically deemed “throw-away” or “fast fashion” — ultra-trendy pieces made of low-quality fabrics — I’m an avid shopper of the chain. I’m a college student with a bank account that often dips into the single digits, and the rock-bottom prices work with my paltry clothing budget.

Forever 21 is well-known for its disastrous, messy stores —surely the result of simply having so much merchandise. So when I heard that Philly was getting its own outpost — nestled at 1708 Chestnut Street, just steps away from American Eagle and H&M — I was suspect. Forever 21 stores in the middle of suburbia are usually disorganized; how would  a Forever 21 smack-dab in the middle of bustling Center City fare?

I gave the brand-new store just over a week to sort itself out (I visited the store on opening day, but left within minutes because it was so crowded). I finally ventured back today — right in the middle of the afternoon — to see if it met my high expectations for a city shop, or if it fell short. Here’s what I found. Read more »

10 Best Things to Buy in Philly Stores Right Now


Toys, trunks, towels and more.

As a shopping editor here in Philly, I spend the bulk of my time scouring local stores, their social media pages and their web shops to find the best of what’s out there, right now. This means I see a lot of stuff — and that my shopping wish list is usually a mile long.

This week, I found some great standouts — for her, him, home and the kids. Here are the 10 things topping my shopping list right now, all from some of the coolest shops in Philly.  Read more »

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