The Budget Babe | Affordable Fashion & Style Blog

Joe Fresh for JCP Spring 2013 Lookbook

Back in July we learned Joe Fresh was coming to JCPenney, and now we've got a preview with the spring 2013 lookbook! Joe Fresh is a Canadian fashion brand that I fell in love with a couple years ago during a trip to our fair neighbor to the north, so I was super psyched about their partnership with JCP. While this lookbook isn't particularly inspiring (what's up with the clunky sandals?), I can't wait to see what lands in stores. From the lookbook, we can expect colored denim, breezy dresses with a global flair, and everyday basics like button-downs and cardigans in bright spring colors. I could see fashion bloggers rocking the green floral trench ($49, available April) above, or the floral top ($19, avail. April) and crochet skirt ($49, avail. April). Look for Joe Fresh at and JCP stores March 15, 2013.

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Check out photos I snapped at a Canadian Joe Fresh here), plus read comments from Canadian fans about sizing and quality.

Deal du Jour: Clinique Bonus Time at Bloomingdale's

It's Clinique Bonus time now through March 1 at Bloomingdale's! Your 8-piece gift set is free with any Clinique purchase of $30 or more. The set includes your choice of eye shadow quad in nudes or violets, Different Lipstick in Tenderheart or Grape, dual-ended high impact mascara, Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector, Rinse-Off Eye Makeup Solvent, Moisturizing Lotion and the cutest cosmetics bag set. Click here to find a participating store near you.

NYFW Diaries: The Empire Hotel

When Fashion Week rolls around, I usually just bite the bullet and commute daily from my home in Connecticut to NYC. That means waking up at the crack of dawn to get to the train station, riding the crowded Metro North for nearly 2 hours (each way), then taking the subway to Lincoln Center - and doing it all over again, day after day. It's exhausting to say the least. So this season, since I'm pregnant, I decided to invest in a hotel room at The Empire Hotel - and I am so glad I did. Not only was it convenient, it made covering Fashion Week possible because when a huge storm struck the northeast and the Metro North stopped running, I was safe and warm in my Deluxe King Suite. Take that, Nemo!

I'm a little reluctant to write this post because I don't really want the word to get out but The Empire Hotel is the ultimate place to stay during New York Fashion Week. It's literally steps from Lincoln Center, which is where the majority of shows take place; it's gorgeous, it's cool, and the service is friendly and helpful. It's also a hub of fashion week activity, like The HP x Style Coalition Lounge. And there's a Starbucks and Duane Reade just around the corner. What more could you ask for?! Oh, and it's the hotel from Gossip Girl fame, which adds another layer of fun.

What I'm trying to say is, if you ever come to NYC for Fashion Week, please don't stay at The Empire - I want it all to myself. Special thanks to The Empire Hotel for making my stay so special.