Sponsored: The Scoop on the Nordstrom Rewards Card

The Scoop on the Nordstrom Rewards Card | CorporetteN.B. This post is sponsored by Nordstrom, but written by your usual friendly blogger, Kat Griffin.

So here’s my dirty little secret: I’ve never had a Nordstrom card, despite the fact that for YEARS now I’ve been hearing about how you get early access to the Anniversary Sale and other perks. My main reason for holding out? I usually wait to get a store card until I’m about to make a huge purchase (a fancy bag, a particularly large order, etc) because most store cards give you a special discount ONLY on the day you sign up.  After looking at the Nordstrom Rewards card a bit more closely, though:

  • Card members earn 2 points per net dollar spent at Nordstrom on your Nordstrom credit or debit card.
  • Every 2,000 points earns you a $20 Nordstrom Note to spend on anything at Nordstrom. Card holders get early access to Anniversary Sale so they can shop online and in stores before every else.
  • Get a $20 bonus Note when you spend $100 at Nordstrom with your Nordstrom card the day you apply. (Nudge nudge!)
  • You can get reimbursed for some or all alterations on Nordstrom purchases with a Nordstrom Note in the exact dollar value of the charge.  (There are different levels of Rewards, and members at higher levels can get more alterations reimbursed.)

And then, once a year, you can also pick a day to earn TRIPLE points — so if you want to use it for the day you shop the Anniversary Sale, you get even more points than usual.  (You can just click a box during checkout to choose to use your Triple points that day, or you can call the store to set up a day to use them in person. The customer service rep I spoke with noted that it’s really easy to set up your triple points day — it isn’t a problem to schedule it; just let them know the day of.  Triple points can apply to both in-store and online purchases if they’re made the same day.) (As you move “up” the levels of membership, you can earn more triple point days.)

I went through the signup process in less than 10 minutes (it would have been faster if I’d had my driver’s license at the computer with me), and because I applied through my Nordstrom.com account, the info is already saved in my account and I can already begin earning points (and have access to the sale).  (The card will come in the mail in 7-10 days.)  Sweet!

Readers, are you excited for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale? Cardholders, what purchases are you hoping to make?

Frugal Monday’s TPS Report: Silk 3/4 Sleeve T Blouse

Uniqlo Silk 3/4 Sleeve T Blouse | CorporetteOur daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices. This is the final TPS report from Stephanie Rahlfs of Adventures in the Stiletto Jungle. Thanks so much, Stephanie!

I am a huge Uniqlo fan. When this Japanese brand’s only U.S. store was in NYC, I would return from twice-yearly visits with bags full of Uniqlo finds. Now that we have several Uniqlo stores in the San Francisco area, and their online shopping is up and running, you’d think the obsession would have worn off. Nope. I still can’t get enough. Their basics, like cashmere sweaters and silk blouses, are an outstanding value. I just counted — I have seven Uniqlo cashmere sweaters. That’s love.

Right now I’m smitten with the Uniqlo Silk 3/4 Sleeve T Blouse. It’s cut similar to a classic Vince silk blouse, with an open placket and relaxed shoulder. This blouse can be worn either tucked in or outside of your waistband, and lighter shades can be paired with a camisole for extra modesty. Best of all, this work-appropriate 100% silk blouse can double for weekend wear — just picture it with your favorite boyfriend jeans! It’s available in black, off white, beige, and blue (pictured) for $49.90. Uniqlo Silk 3/4 Sleeve T Blouse

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]

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Holiday Weekend Open Thread

Birkenstock Arizona | CorporetteSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

Happy Fourth of July to all!

White Birkenstocks are having a moment, thanks to a lookalike shoe that was a smash hit on the Celine Spring 2013 runway and some serious fashion editor love. Personally, I’m excited that super-comfy orthopedic footwear is suddenly cool again. I’m definitely taking advantage by snagging this pair of white Birkenstocks to wear with all of my weekend basics this summer. The classic Birkenstock Arizona is available in a huge range of colors (including white!) for $89-$130 at Zappos. Birkenstock Arizona Sandal

Thanks to Stephanie from Adventures in the Stiletto Jungle for sharing her picks this week!

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Frugal Thursday’s TPS Report: Plus Size Cap-Sleeve Sheath

Calvin Klein Plus Size Cap-Sleeve Cutout-Neckline Sheath | CorporetteOur daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices. This week of TPS reports comes to you from Stephanie Rahlfs of Adventures in the Stiletto Jungle, who also shared a week of her picks back in 2011. 

This Calvin Klein cap-sleeve sheath dress is an amazing plus size option for a chic summer in the office. The neckline is fashion-forward, yet still 100% professional, and the ruched waistline is crazy flattering. It can easily go from day to night with a change of accessories, plus it’s fully lined, which is a rare detail at this price point. No need to just take my word for it — this dress has seven perfect 5-star reviews at Macys.com! Of course I love the sleek black option, but it’s also available in a very pretty lagoon blue. The dress is available at Macy’s in sizes 14W to 22W for $99.98. Calvin Klein Plus Size Cap-Sleeve Cutout-Neckline Sheath

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]

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Wednesday’s TPS Report: Dress with Contrast Skirt

COS Dress with Contrast Skirt | Corporette

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices. This week of TPS reports comes to you from Stephanie Rahlfs of Adventures in the Stiletto Jungle, who also shared a week of her picks back in 2011. Welcome back, Stephanie!

If you’ve spent any quality shopping time in Europe, Asia, or the Middle East in the past few years you’ve likely run into COS. This super popular chain store known for affordable high-design basics has developed a cult-like following that is reminiscent of H&M in the early 2000s. The COS fever is about to hit the States hard. They opened an online store for U.S. shoppers in May; an NYC bricks-and-mortar location is in the works.

Although their offerings are mostly casual, there are many office-appropriate blouses, trousers, and dresses available at COS. I’m particularly fond of this Dress with Contrast Skirt, in the not-so-contrasting navy color option. Although it’s hard to see without a close-up, the skirt has a slightly different texture than the top portion, which adds a stylish element that won’t be too distracting for work. If you’re into more colorful workwear, it’s also available in a pink and beige colorblock option. It’s $135.00 at COS. COS Dress with Contrast Skirt

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]

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Guest Post: Women Breadwinners Can Level the Financial Playing Field

Women as Breadwinners | CorporetteWomen breadwinners is a topic we’ve touched on before: we answered a reader question about dating a guy who makes significantly less money, and a few breadwinning readers had some interesting comments on our recent Tales from the Wallet about managing your money after you get married. I was curious (and excited) to hear about an entire new book examining how relationship dynamics change when the woman is the breadwinner, and reached out to the author.  Please welcome Farnoosh Torabi, sharing an adapted excerpt from her book When She Makes More: 10 Rules for Breadwinning Women.  Kat

Evidently, if you make more than your man, you’re more likely to be the one in control of the money. My nationwide survey co-conducted with clinical psychologist Brad Klontz revealed that women who bring home the bigger paycheck are significantly more likely to be the primary decision makers on money matters and take charge of things like paying bills, budgeting, saving, and planning for retirement.

But while such an arrangement has its advantages, it could also be asking for trouble. It calls for a new rule.

A sense of equity between two committed people is important, even if there’s an income disparity. But to keep a man’s dignity and sense of engagement, he needs to feel like he plays an important role in the relationship and that he’s not completely isolated from the financial decisions. And for a woman to keep her sanity and sex drive alive, she shouldn’t have to do the equivalent of a CFO’s job after she’s gotten home from her 9 to 5 (or 7 to 11).

Consider this scenario: When Kyle lost his job in IT, his social worker wife Lynne suddenly became the breadwinner for their family of six. The Houston couple’s income shrank by 50 percent, but their bills continued to pour in. The stress was mounting, so Lynne took it upon herself to manage all of the family’s finances (i.e., paying bills, balancing the checkbook, managing the savings account), while Kyle buried himself in his job search. It felt like she was helping out — why saddle Kyle with more work when he could be polishing his resume and practicing his interview skills? But in taking over the finances, Lynne cut Kyle out of the decision-making process. Yes, she took care of the bills, bought the groceries, but she also did not appreciate when her husband used their discretionary money to buy, say, a new pair of golf shoes. And thus a vicious cycle was born: Kyle, grasping for some sense of autonomy and dignity, started making (and hiding) personal purchases outside of the budget. Lynne then clamped down tighter. Both started to lose respect for the other.

The challenge: How can men and women help each other not just feel, but be accountable for their finances when she makes more? From a practical standpoint, who pays for the mortgage, vacations, and everyday living expenses? From an emotional standpoint, how do you make him feel like a player and that his contributions — financial or otherwise — matter? What steps can a couple take to reach financial fairness? Although he may not make as much, how can he feel as involved with and connected to their shared financial life as she is? The answer lies in the following When She Makes More rule: Level the Financial Playing Field. In every relationship the solutions are different and no one way is necessarily right or wrong, as long as both of you are on the same page and agree to these simple protocols:

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