It's Google's fault, really. You know how in Gmail, if you're reading a message, you can read little ads on related topics in the header or the margins? I was reading an email from Newport News one day when I noticed a little ad for Dots. I don't remember the wording, but the words "affordable prices" were particularly eye-catching. About the only time I can afford to shop at Newport News is when things are on clearance, and by then, they often don't have my size.
I used to shop a lot at Torrid. When I lived in Charlotte, I used to hit one location or the other every other week. Of course, I was making $12/hour then, and I could pay all my bills and splurge on clothes too. Now I'm plugging along with a lot less, so I've been on the lookout for something more affordable. I've occasionally shopped at Cato, and their prices are pretty reasonable, but I don't always like their styles.
I clicked through the link to dots.com. I loved the clothes I saw. Their size range was appealing too. "Sizes 0-24," it says on the door. I signed up for their email list. They always seem to have good sales, but moeny was tight almost all summer, so I never managed to get out to one of their stores. I decided to change that today. I made sure to print out this week's email coupon before I left: $10 off any purchase of $30 or more.
The weather left a little to be desired, cool and rainy, but it wasn't horrible. I wore a couple of layered tops (a pink and black striped top over a black Tactel tank) with jeans and a pair of Tommy Hilfiger ankle boots with a black sweater jacket. Other than the boots, my whole outfit was built out of things I purchased at Torrid.
Upon arriving at the store, I was immediately greeted by a salesperson (always a good sign). I told her that this was my first time in the store, and she gave me a little tour, pointed me at a few items that she thought would look good with my colors, then turned me loose. I was determined to not spend more than $40, but I must tell you, I could have spent the rent! In another time, I would've spent $300 in there without blinking.
Not to demean Dots, but it was like walking into a Torrid where everything was 50% or more off. They had all the same styles, at the same quality, but at dramatically lower prices. Dresses for $18. Jeans for $12. Ever since I saw The Devil Wears Prada a couple of years ago, I have wanted a pair of over-the-knee boots. Dots has 'em, for 26 dollars!!!
Like I said, I could have gone crazy in there, but I restrained myself. I bought a red, black and grey sweater dress, a purple sweater/tunic and purple argyle tights, plus a handful of little spring-loaded bangle bracelets. With my coupon, I got out of there for $39 and change. Mission accomplished!
I think I've mentioned before that people have usually been pretty tolerant on my shopping excursions. This was no exception. A few people gave me "the eye", and one fellow I passed on the sidewalk laughed, but there were no unpleasant encounters. There was a customer in Dots who looked like she wanted to say something, so I said, "If you want to say 'Boo', go ahead." She said, "No. I like your hair." I thanked her, and everything was okay after that.
After Dots, I trekked across the shopping center to a wig shop to look for new hair. My favorite red piece is looking a little ratty, but I didn't see anything that was in my price range.
On the way home, I zipped through the Wendy's drive-thru and went home. I tried on my purchases and hung them up, cleaned off my makeup, ate, then crashed. Now I'm back at work, on the last night of nine. This was a good day, and I think I've found my new favorite store.
Before I forget, the title has a link to their website.