Recessionista Chronicles: Fashion on Target


There’s no shame in appearing on NBC’s Today Show wearing a dress from Target (Stock Quote: TGT). I bet Matt Lauer had no idea I snagged it for 25 bucks. (Not that I think he gets all “Price is Right” with guests’ outfits.)  But even me, your biggest skeptic of designer-imposters, was shocked to find this Merona gray plaid, scoop-neck, pleated dress at the discount chain last month. According to Target’s web site, the dress is almost out of stock and buyers have left fawning commentary.

In this recession, “Tarjay” clothing and accessories—beyond its affordable workout gear and $7 pajama pants—has a new, special home in my closet.  Sure, Target’s always been known for its discount fashion racks starting with its famed collection by style god Isaac Mizrahi.  I admit, I’m a bit late to the game here.  But the “fabulessness,” which has now spread to to-die-for shoes by Sigerson Morrison, Thakoon loungewear, Hayden Harnett clutches and Liz Lange maternity wear, is becoming all the more relevant and desirable in the current recession. According to a post by “Mom of four” from Massachusetts, “I tried almost the exact dress at Lord & Taylor (Stock Quote: M) for about seven times this price.”

I’d also like to point out that this $25 dress can be styled in various ways to make it a year-round classic.  It’s not some trendy thing that I’ll regret having bought two seasons down the road.  Sarah Benedict from State College, Pa., agrees. She was compelled enough to leave feedback on Target’s web site, saying, “I wore this on New Year’s Eve with tights and a bold black belt and it was a hit. Everyone loved it, and I wasn't freezing in the cold. So cute and comfy, for work or play.”

So, fellow recessionistas, remember while shopping for a discount, shelf-life and versatility matter, too.  Such is the formula for a real steal and Target’s not a bad place to start looking.


—Catch more of Farnoosh’s advice on Real Simple. Real Life. on TLC, Friday nights at 8.

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