There are few things I love more than cozying up with pajamas and a blanket – maybe even with a cup of tea or a mocha – and spending the next three to five hours up to my ears in eWindowShopping. Seventeen windows open, six carts on six different websites with totals over $150 (though you intend on purchasing exactly $0 of that), and outfit ideas & design inspiration are flying through your brain and giving you the best daydream fodder…
…that happens to other people, right? I mean, it has to.
Obviously the last few years have given us an metric eff-ton of sites to play around on, and that doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon. Late last year, I decided to keep a watchful eye on newcomers so that we could maybe get a feel for up-and-coming shops and services that will help keep consumers excited in 2012. We’ve narrowed down to a list of four – but there are definitely more than that out there! Send us your favorite shops and tell us why you love them!
4 Shopping Sites We’re Excited About in 2012
This is the site that inspired this post, honestly. Fab.com kind of snuck in under the radar, and has slowly, gradually blossomed into this wonderland of independent art, design and… well, everything else! Except fashion, that is. One of the things I (coincidentally) love about Fab.com is that they have absolutely no intention of adding a fashion/sample sale element to their site! The occasional graphic tee, dress, or other clothing-related object might cross your view every once in a while, but this site is geared towards new exposure.
When it comes to accessories, though… Fab.com has some of the most unique jewelry & accouretments from all over the world! My favorite sale: new & old band posters for under $20!
Opensky is the equivalent of a shopping mall where all of the stores are run by high-level, majorly seasoned professionals at the top of their industry. Fashion maniacs like Jeannie Mai and Veronica Webb, eco-fashion warriors like Alicia Silverstone and Mariel Hemingway, and Food World gods like Jacque Torres and Rick Bayless… Oh, and one more person:
Martha Freaking Stewart.
So essentially, when Martha gets obsessed with something, you have the opportunity to be obsessed with it and pretend you guys are best friends, and swap recipes like all the time, and maybe you put a wig on a chair and talk about gardening. Opensky makes it all possible.
Here are my top recommendations, other than the folks I mentioned above, for who to follow (aka “add to your Shopping Team”) on Opensky:
- Lulu Powers [for home decor, entertaining aids, and serveware]
- Ming Tsai [he’s a legendary chef, so I trust his food and equipment judgement!]
- Kath Younger [I’ve been following her blog, Kath Eats Real Food, for years – great healthy & delicious food stuff!]
- Gabrielle Bernstein [healthy mind, healthy body, healthy spirit – with a few stylish elements thrown in]
- OrgJunkie [this chick knows everything there is to know about efficient organization!]
#3 Etsy Vintage
As if the Taste Test alone wasn’t reason enough to have a healthy addiction to Etsy, but as the site continues to improve their categorization and search functions, the more their Vintage section seems to benefit. Everything from old photographs to the perfect 60s frock are available at your fingertips.
Thanks to the openness of the Etsy Vintage market, the chances of finding something unique, inexpensive, and exactly to your liking is pretty stinking high. (Plus, now that you can search by price, you don’t have to deal with the “OH MY GOD THAT’S PERF- oh. Shit. Nevermind.” feeling that the lack of a price filter brings.)
Ohhh, Zara. We all knew that we would become a problem once Zara launched their US website. Everything from high-end silhouettes to super-cheap, well-made basics are available in a well-designed, minimalist website that just sucks you in. I swear, I’ve spent more hours on Zara than I have actually working this year.
I love Zara’s price points, their clothing is spectacular, their accessories are mind-blowing levels of attractive, and their style is [for the most part] timeless. Plus, their sales are under-publicized, but gratuitous, and there’s nothing bette than snagging something unique, chic and versatile for an unbelievable price.
Bonus Flash Sale Site: MyHabit
We didn’t include any sample sale sites in our Top 4 because, well, their business model is to change at such a rapid pace – you never know what to expect! And one thing we love about our Top 4 is the trust we can have that they’ll always be awesome. Fab.com does flash sales, it’s true, but as they say – they’re less about merchandise liquidation (like sample sales) and more about curation. But when you really want a good sample sale fix, I highly suggest you look towards MyHabit.
This is Amazon’s answer to Gilt.com. That means that, if you have an Amazon account, you’re already signed up! MyHabit is cleanly designed, well-organized, and well stocked with everything from high-end designers like Chloé to sales like More Boots for Under $100 (both of which are occurring today!).
What sites are you excited to shop this year?
The Shopping Notepads (seen at the top of this post) are made by ARMINHO and are available for $3.50 each!
This post is part of our Tips From The Tightfisted series, where we share some of our best shopping tips, secrets, and spots where we find the best deals! To check out the rest of the series, click here!