Friday, April 30, 2010

Winners announced for The Clothing Show!

Well, as it turns out, Jessica from The Clothing Show agreed to give all seven people who entered Bargainista’s contest by 5 p.m. today, a pair of tickets to the show May 14-16, 2010.

Congrats to:
xoxo michelle‬
Natalie Ann

Thanks for your terrific comments. Please email me with your real first and last name and the name of your guest by next Wednesday, May 5, for details on how get your tickets to the show.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Rita Tesolin Spring Inventory Sale - more dates added

Rita Tesolin Spring Inventory Sale

Celebrated Canadian jewelry designer Rita Tesolin is having an inventory clearance sale. Items include costume, Sterling Silver and semi-precious jewellery collections and a wide array of one-of-a-kind belts. Prices starting as low as $5.00. Different items will be continually added. A great opportunity to buy designer accessories at bargain prices.

Don’t miss a chance to buy original pieces featured in such magazines as Elle Canada, Flare, Fashion, Chatelaine, Zoomer and many more at up to 90% off.

Cash only!

63 Wingold Ave., Suite 103 (map)

Sat., May 1 - Sun., May 2, 2010
10 a.m.-6 p.m.

UPDATE – more dates and times:
Wed., May 5 - 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Thurs, May 6 - 10 a.m.- 7p.m.
Fri., May 7, 10 a.m.-6p.m.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Win tickets to The Clothing Show Spring 2010 Edition!

Want free tix?
The Clothing Show returns with the Spring 2010 Edition – offering a weekend of shopping, art, photography and runway shows. Once again, Bargainista is giving away some pairs of tickets. Comment by 5 p.m. ET, Friday, April 30 to enter a random draw. Make sure to mention why you’d like to go to The Clothing Show in your comment.

The Clothing Show
• Shop for unique finds from talented designers and artisans
• Sample sales section features big names from our retailers (markdowns up to 90% off retail)
• Unique treasures from independent, vintage and retro vendors
• Special sales
• Runway fashion shows Friday night and all day Saturday
• Art gallery featuring works by local artists

Fri., May 14: 3-9 p.m.
Sat., May 15: 11 a.m.-8 p.m.
Sun., May 16: 11 a.m.7 p.m.

Better Living Centre, Exhibition Place (See map.)

How much?
Tickets $8 in advance or $10 at the door. (Children under 12 are free when accompanied by an adult.)

For vendor inquiries, please call 416.516.9859 or email

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Lida Baday Sample Sale - May 8

The one you’ve been waiting for is back...

Lida Baday’s semi-annual sample sale

Her collection is available in only the finest department stores.

It’s one great sale you won’t want to miss! Whether you’re looking for something sophisticated for a day at the office, a night out on the town or that special something for an upcoming party, this Canadian designer is not to be missed.

Friday, May 7, 2010
8:30 a.m.-7 p.m.

70 Claremont St.. (See map.)

Let us know what you get if you go.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Monday, April 26, 2010

baby bargainista interviews Belinda from the MOM Sale

In this week’s baby bargainista column, Rebecca Atkinson interviews Belinda, organizer of the Brampton MOM Sale.

What‘s a mom to do when her child outgrows her toys or clothes and she wants or needs to reclaim the space they are taking up in the house, but knows they are still perfectly good? Hold a garage sale of course. However, your garage sale would only appeal to parents looking for items in the specific age range (or gender) you have available. Imagine if there was a giant garage sale for parents full of gently used items for children of different ages and genders. Well imagine no more. Sales of this type are going on all over the country and there are even (local) Facebook groups set up for parents to connect with one another.

Last October, Mr. Atkinson and I had the pleasure of going to one such sale and were able to pick up so many goodies for our fast-growing daughter. Babies (especially) grow really quickly and often only wear (or don’t wear) some articles of clothing a few times. Why pay $20 for a sleeper when a good bargain hunter can pay $2 for one that’s been used only a few times? I had the opportunity to speak with Belinda, the organizer of the Brampton ‘MOM Sale’ we attended and have some great insight into another upcoming sale and how you could get involved with her sale – or how to start your own.

What is the MOM Sale?
It is an indoor garage sale type of swap meet for children’s gear!

How often does it occur? (and when is the next one?)
I organize one twice a year (spring and fall). Our next sale is Saturday, May 15, 2010 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the North Peel Secondary School in Brampton, Ontario.
Admission is $2 – but if you’re a child or grandparent, you get in for free!

Where do proceeds go? (Note there is a fee for vendor’s to rent tables)
Our charity this time around is the Peel Children’s Safety Village (Peel Regional Police) and in the past we have also supported our local Habitat for Humanity. All the money the vendors make selling their items goes in their pockets though!

How did you get involved?
I loved attending these sort of sales but we hadn’t had one in Brampton so I figured I would organize my own.

Are there other sales like this?
Yes they are popping up everywhere. Some have been running for years and others are being put together by daycare centers and churches as fundraisers.

What happens at a MOM Sale?
You get to come and shop some fantastic gently used items and save a pile of money doing it…and if you are a vendor you get to clear out your totes and bins and garages or all the stuff your kiddies no longer need.

How can other moms get involved? (especially if they don't live in this area)
I would suggest researching if your area has one already and if not contact the local churches etc and see about renting their space and then network and advertise through the local playgroups and in the paper and you would be surprised at the response and support you will get within the community. Involving area businesses is a great way to get extra exposure too!

What do you get out of the sale for organizing it?
Lots of sleepless nights ;) but the real reward is getting the sweet emails and calls after the sale from shoppers hearing about all the great things they found and the nice notes from vendors thanking me for helping them reclaim much needed space in their homes while filling their piggy banks with money.

What goes into organizing the sale(s)?
It takes about 3 to 4 months to pull it all off form announcing the date and getting the website launched and then getting in the registrations, working out the floor plan and assigning the tables – all the while you have to post the site here there and everywhere to make sure your turn out is fantastic!

How do you advertise/get the word out about the sale?
I basically tell anyone who will listen ;) I distribute 10,000 flyers or more into the community… and my fantastic vendors always help too by posting the sale at their sports clubs, dance classes, schools, swimming lessons, cubs, brownies etc.

Anything else Bargainista Readers should know about the MOM Sale?
Come line up early… you don’t want to miss it!
For more details visit: and check out MOM sales in other locations.

Happy Shopping.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Kobo - my first experience with a full-sized eReader

One of the cool things about working in an agency with a consumer practice is some of the fun stuff that shows up in the office – often ahead of it being available in stores.

Kobo eReader is one of those items – it’s the new eBook reader being launched into the Canadian marketplace by Chapters • Indigo next month, just in time for Mother’s Day. When I saw a Kobo eReader box in the office, I asked if I could borrow one for a review because I really wanted to try one.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Soothe Your Sole Contest: what would it take for you to sell your soul?

One of the most fashionable footwear shops, Davids Shoes together with one of the finest spas in the county, The Stillwater Spa, have teamed up for a contest.

The prize?
You can win two awesome gift certificates – $500 towards a day at The Stillwater Spa and $500 for Davids – just in time for Mothers’ Day.

The catch?
You have to enter online and agree to receive promotional material from the contest sponsors.

Seems like a small price for the sponsors to pay to build a healthy customer database. With so much of our personal data shared these days anyway, handing over an email address and phone number may be a small price to pay in exchange for a chance to win a day at the spa, especially with such high odds.

Are you entering? What does it take to get you to share your email address and phone number with businesses?

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Vendors at One of a Kind Craft Show may benefit from a social media 101

I went to the One of a Kind Spring Show and Sale on Sunday for the first time in years.

As expected, lots had changed – newish venue – the Direct Energy Centre is a terrific spot with lots of room for people to move around. Exhibitors have enough room to really strut their stuff. I liked the smaller kiosks featuring first-time exhibitors too.

There was the usual – jewelry, home decor, photography, paintings, accessories, clothing and food and the unusual – decorative bowls made out of real fruits and vegetables (can you see the carrot slices above?). I liked the focus on green and sustainable items too. There were lots of things – especially jewelry that were neither one-of-a-kind nor original.

Two things surprised me:
Some vendors weren’t taking advantage of e-commerce and selling online. It’s a no-brainer to set up an Etsy shop.
Many vendors didn’t like having pictures taken of their kiosk or creations

As for the latter, I can understand their concerns about being knocked off (see my earlier comment about the lack of originality). Some artists showed a distrust of prospective customers and/or fans. They wanted control of how their works would be photographed and shared. I tested the waters a bit. I took some photos without asking, some photos with asking, explained why I wanted to take photos and even offered to delete a photo – fortunately, no one demanded I delete any images. FYI, show organizers create displays throughout the venue and no one balks when pictures are taken.

Control isn’t just about the written message but about the visual one as well. One vendor/artist handed me his card and told me to use the images on the website – he wanted to have full control of any imagery of his work.

Unfortunately, these artists have no idea of the power of online word of mouth and how people will celebrate and share their work online. They didn’t seem to understand or care that I was helping them market their businesses. (For the record, I usually don’t use the fact that I blog to push my weight around. Domistyle Inc. was more than happy to accommodate my photo snapping. They were familiar with Bargainista too and found a new fan. Aren’t their aprons the cutest?)

One suggestion I have for the One of a Kind organizers next fall is to help educate the exhibitors teach them the power organic, online marketing and social networking has in driving awareness and sales.

As for retail stores, it used to be you couldn’t take any pictures inside. These days, retailers are softening up although I often ask for permission when inside since they own/lease the property. I don’t pay to be there so I feel the need to be respectful.

When at the One of a Kind or another show where I’m paying to attend, the vendors are being giving access to potential customers who otherwise would never see their skills and craftsmanship, I feel I have more of a right to create a journal (text or photo) of my experience.

What do you think? Are bloggers and/or other online content creators wrong to think they can photograph when the inspiration strikes? Do we need to ask permission first? Am I missing the mark and should I be asking permission before taking any photos?

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]