An “expensive” jewelry lesson and a bargain-priced professional dress

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I bought a new dress recently to wear to a work-related speaking engagement, and while I like the dress very much, I thought that it needed a piece of jewelry to accessorize it a bit. With the length and cut of the dress, I thought a longer pendant-style necklace would work well.

I had a $10-off-$10 coupon for JC Penney (truly, I seem to get one of these coupons every month!) so I headed over to the store to browse, as I know my local store has a pretty large selection of costume jewelry. 

I saw this Liz Claiborne hammered metal pendant, which I thought would play nicely with the random dot pattern of the dress: 




When I bought this necklace last week, it was on sale 30% off for $18.20. With my $10-off-$10 coupon, I paid $8.20 and thought I got a pretty good deal. Indeed, the necklace looks nice with the dress:


So, you can imagine my surprise when I headed over to Walmart yesterday to pick up a prescription and happened to spot this necklace as I walked past the jewelry department on the way to the pharmacy:




All the deal gymnastics I went through to get my $26 necklace down to a “good” $8 price, and I could have just bought a nearly identical necklace for under five bucks?

I was slightly irked. I do like the JC Penney version as the chain is longer, but you have to admit that these two necklaces are really similar. I’d already cut the tag off my necklace prior to discovering its twin at Walmart, so I won’t be returning it. Still, I think the next time I’m looking for a piece of costume jewelry to wear with a specific outfit, I may have to check out Walmart’s rack first. Everything there was under ten dollars, and there were several other necklaces at Walmart that also looked suspiciously like higher-priced ones I previously saw at JC Penney. 

While we’re on the topic of deals, I have to share with you the great deal I got on the dress too! I had been looking for a business-casual dress for a specific event — something simple but professional — but I couldn’t find anything I really liked. I decided to email a friend of mine, as she’d worn a great-looking dress to a blog conference we attended together, and I asked if she might be willing to share with me what brand her dress was.

She wrote back with a wealth of information and said it was a Lands’ End ponte sheath dress. She let me know that she has five of these dresses in all different colors and prints. She said it is one of the best dresses she’s ever owned and just keeps buying them in different colors or designs because they fit so well, and “once you know your size, you can always order more because they have made these identically-styled dresses for years!”

So, I went to Lands’ End’s site to see what they had. Their ponte sheath dresses are regularly-priced at $89, but they had several styles on clearance, including this one: 


This navy blue dress is on clearance for $21.97 — score! I was thrilled when the dress arrived, as it was exactly what I was looking for. Land’s End’s sizing charts are pretty accurate as the dress fit perfectly. It even has well-concealed pockets. (Male readers, this is a very big deal. Few dresses do.) 

Lands End also had a free shipping promo when you use Visa at checkout, so I did. I also had a 40% off code, which dropped the dress to $13.18, and I had some Shop Your Way points in my account, which knocked another $1.11 off at checkout. It is quite a nice dress for $12.07.

Crazily, this dress cost just $4.50 more than the necklace I bought to wear with it! I like it so much though that, like my blogger friend, I’ll keep an eye out for future sales on this style of dress at Land’s End. 

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  1. Mary says

    I also just got a dress from Lands End and will be getting more when I see a great deal. Lands End sends me great coupons. I have a rug, bags and beach towel for very cheap thru them.

  2. Erica says

    Their dresses are such good quality too. You really got an amazing deal on that dress.

    I have to say I have bought several bracelets and necklaces at Walmart and have never confessed where they came from to anyone! As you found, alot of what they have is being sold elsewhere for higher prices.

  3. Kathy says

    If you love jewelry the way I love jewelry, then you should check out Transworld’s Jewelry Fashion & Accessories show ( You do have to preregister to get the discounted price of $5 otherwise you have to pay $10 at the door. You will never pay retail prices again for jewelry, scarves, purses, hair products etc. The show is offered 6 times a year and the next show is this weekend – it is too late to register for this show. I have pick ed up cuff watches for $7 and necklace & earring sets for $4, pashminas for $8, fashion scarves for $2, sparkly barrettes for $1. If you are into making your own, they have tables upon tables of strings of beads in every imaginable stone, precious stone available. They also have high end jewelry (diamonds, gold, silver, etc) too. I have gotten 2 of my rings sized for the same price I would have paid for one at a box jeweler. It can be overwhelming but if you go with a plan you will seriously never buy retail again.
    Spring – Jewelry, Fashion & Accessories Show – must be 16 and older, no strollers, must have ID
    April 20-23, 2017 Thursday – Sunday
    Donald E. Stephens Convention Center – Rosemont Hall F

  4. Louise says

    Wal-Mart has excellent deals on costume jewelry if you are willing to look..

    They also discount the pieces often, which makes it easy to get great things for a dollar or two.

    Many times, I’ve bought same items I’ve seen at Kohl’s – and paid a lot less.

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