Shopping Review: Villane’s Jewelry & Unique Accessories

Thursday, July 28th, 2011 by Rachel

As part of our staycation, Derrick and I wanted to go in all of the downtown shops we’ve ignored during our two years in Milledgeville. We explored Red Door Antiques, Auntie Bellum’s Antiques, The 42nd Floor, and Villane’s. I’ve decided to review Villane’s, since it is the only store I purchased items from, and because the shopping experience has bothered me more the more I thought about it.

 

Outside, there was a sign that said purses were 40% off. When we entered the store, one of the employees was having a conversation with another customer about how they were considering getting rid of their purse section and expanding their jewelry section. Derrick and I started in the front and worked our way to the back, but I was very excited by some of the first earrings I saw at the front of the store. They were small flower studs, and I’d been eyeing a similar pair on Etsy, though these were metal and the ones I’d been looking at were plastic. The flowers were in all colors of the rainbow, so I chose an aqua blue pair and then decided that I should also grab a purple pair. The earrings were $3 each, so I was getting two different pairs of earrings that I could wear with different colored outfits for only $6—a steal.

 

The store’s jewelry selection is really nice for Milledgeville. There were lots of owl necklaces, elephant pieces, and trendy scarves. There was a cool snake bangle that I tried on. There were some nice sea horse earrings that I considered buying. Everything was reasonably priced.

 

But my check-out and after-store experience keeps me from thinking that I’ll ever return to Villane’s. I tried to make small talk with the check-out woman, explaining that I’d wanted earrings like this for a long time. She was only concerned with how much the similar earrings on Etsy cost (no biggie; at least from a business standpoint, her interest made sense). When I handed her the earrings that I’d picked out, she reached over to the side of the counter and grabbed a “master earring sheet”, and she pulled off an aqua pair and a purple pair from this sheet, wrapped them in tissue, and put them in a little bag. I thought it was strange because I’ve never bought earrings and seen this happen, but Mom told me this does happen occasionally.

 

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Coupons

Monday, June 6th, 2011 by Rachel

I come from a long line of couponers. I look forward to greeting cards stuffed with coupons from mom, as well as that monthly card from grandma including a Ruby Tuesday coupon. Still, I consider myself only to be in the beginning stages of perfecting my couponing craft. I’m nowhere near those extreme couponers on TLC, and I definitely haven’t mastered the nuances of double-couponing or internet couponing yet.

 

But even though I’m not an expert, yesterday, every single item we purchased was either 1) on sale, 2) coupon-ed, 3) on sale and also coupon-ed. I saved $31 dollars on purchases between Kroger & Walgreens, spending 60 dollars instead of 90, so I think I’m doing pretty well.

 

Here are some tips for beginning couponers as you are getting started or perfecting your craft.

 

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Walmart Complaint

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011 by Rachel

The greeters at our store have recently begun holding charity donation bins. Though I have often turned to the greeter for assistance when returning an item or waited for the greeter to highlight my receipt as I exit the store, I feel like this donation bin is an intrusion. When I’ve made my purchases, have my wallet zipped away in my purse, and am trying to get home as quickly as possible to unload my groceries, I am FORCED to stop at the greeter who will highlight my receipt and then I am FORCED to feel guilty when I refuse to put money in the donation bin. I cannot walk around the greeter without being accused of shoplifting or some other suspicious activity.

 

It is one thing for charity organizations to put out tables in front of the store, when I can choose to avoid it or donate. But by using the greeter as a donation-scavenging tool, it is putting customers in an uncomfortable position because they cannot CHOOSE.

Wedding Update

Monday, June 14th, 2010 by Rachel

I’m way ahead of wedding schedule, at least according to the normal checklists. I wanted to post briefly what I’ve completed since school let out.

 

The big project we finished was the Save the Dates. I’ve known from the beginning that I wanted to give guests (near and far) a lot of notice, so we mailed these out on June 1st. Just have a few stragglers that need to be taken care of! By the time I get to the formal invitations (October or November), hopefully most guests will have already decided if they are able to attend and I’ll get faster replies. I plan right now on requiring RSVPs by Feb. 1st, so I’ll have a much easier time putting the seating chart together.

 

This past week, we put deposits on two very big things: the cake and the flowers. We decided on a fairly traditional cake (white, round, three tiered) with a beachy twist (draping held up by starfish). I think it’s going to be elegant. We chose a bakery recommended by our venue. I would say that it’s the “Cake Boss” of Myrtle Beach. I’m sure it will be delicious, though I will admit to some sticker shock at first. Seriously, did you realize the average wedding cake costs $543, according to The Bridal Association of America? That’s a LOT! When looking at cakes online that range from $100 to $2000, it can seriously freak you out. I’m very glad that I’ve ignored most of the bridal magazine’s design suggestions and ideas about fondant. The key is to keep the cake streamlined and classic. I think our cake will be one we look back at in pictures and are proud of.

 

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Buying a wedding dress

Thursday, April 15th, 2010 by Rachel

You wouldn’t believe how strange it is to open up the closet to grab a pair of shoes and there be a GIANT white dress right in front of you. It looks like a ghost, seriously. I still can’t believe that MY wedding dress is in MY closet…right now.

 

I knew from the beginning that I didn’t want a strapless gown. Though they account for something like 95% of all dresses, I didn’t want one for a few reasons. 1) Brides are constantly having to pull them up. 2 )You look naked in headshots. 3) I want my wedding day to be about ME looking fabulous, not relatives freaking out over body art. 4) I just think they’re lamo (i.e. pretty on other people, but not on someone with my particular body type. 5) Once we solidified a wedding date for March, I wanted to make sure that I wasn’t freezing at our outdoor wedding.

 

I began my research the week we got engaged. On my checklist, it was one of the first things that you’re supposed to do, because of ordering the dress, alterations, how difficult it is to pick one out, etc. I especially wanted to start early because clothes shopping is the bane of my existence. I seriously hate shopping, trying on clothes, being around clothes. I have the worst luck finding anything, from shirts to shoes. This is why VANS sneakers are the staple of my wardrobe. I love them and know they will fit me no matter what. They are the rock of my wardrobe.

 

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