Posted by: Debbie Abrams Kaplan | February 24, 2014

Bat Mitzvah dress shopping – part 2

We decided to spend one more afternoon shopping for Bat Mitzvah dresses, and this time ventured to the Jersey Gardens Mall. It has a different vibe than the Mall at Short Hills. Partly because it’s in Elizabeth, very close to Newark, and partly because it’s an outlet mall. But a much nicer outlet mall than many.  It has outlets for Saks, Nieman Marcus, Lord and Taylor, Banana Republic, Tahari, Calvin Klein, Ann Taylor and others.

We managed to find a dress at Century 21, a name I only associate with real estate. It’s a tacky looking store that carries many  top brands but at off prices. We found a cute Tahari dress for the service there.

You can see our final choice at the bottom. We continued shopping, though, looking for another dress for the dinner. As usual, my daughter had many things she refused to consider. Here are some of the categories:

No animal print.

No animal print.

No boob bling.

No boob bling.

No ugly.

No ugly (this is from Saks).

No flapper strings.

No flapper strings (this is from Saks).

No frilly green.

No frilly green.

No frill pink.

No frilly pink.

No "illusion" or bare stomach.

No “illusion” or bare midriff.

We spent time in some of the higher end department store outlets, including Last Chance – Nieman Marcus. We saw the suit below, a lovely pink Valentino number with a jacket on sale for $1,400 (from $4,000). The skirt was extra. Fortunately Dori didn’t want it.

No Valentino pink suits.

No Valentino pink suits (Nieman Marcus).

We also saw this bling-y top. Guess the price. Okay, we’ll tell you. On sale for…(see the caption).

$407. Previous prices were $815 and $2330

$407. Previous prices were $815 and $2,330 (Nieman Marcus)

We saw the same Calvin Klein dress at four different stores (including two at Short Hills Mall). We saw the same set of Calvin Klein dresses at Off Fifth – Saks Fifth Avenue and at Century 21. For the record, they $11 less at Century 21, though the setting was skankier.

I think the skirt is too big.

I think the skirt is too big. At Nieman Marcus.

We had some fun shopping together.


At Saks’ outlet…

at Saks...

at Saks’ outlet…

We also did some shoe shopping. Dori really wanted these ballet flats that had a face. And if she didn’t already have ballet flats, and they weren’t $70, I might have bought them for her.

not for $70

not for $70

We weren’t sure what to make of these feathered Charlotte Olympia Dolly rainbow feather pumps. They were in a special case at Nieman Marcus’ outlet. Online they’re originally $1,495 and are on sale for $672. Not sure of the price in the store, since they were locked up.

Our favorites

Don’t wear these in the rain or snow.

shoe collage

Disco platform, Ugg clogs with bling.

shoe collage2

The top right one is a baby bootie from Juicy Couture – $65, seen at Saks. The top left came from Nieman Marcus, and the bottom ones are from Saks.

And the chosen dress?

Do you like it?

Do you like it? (Just kidding – this isn’t the dress)



  1. LOVE the dress you finally chose — perfect for a 13-year old in that it’s stylish and a bit playful without being sleazy or tacky. And that’s no easy feat, judging from the “rejects.” Yay to all involved!

  2. Wait. I thought you said no animal print? By the way, I did like the animal print jacket: Also love the dress she chose. I’m now thinking that I just might go down to my basement and take all the different color boas and hot glue them on a pair of heels. Thank you Nieman Marcus.. not…

  3. Janet and June – that’s not really her dress! Janet – and you must wear those boa shoes. I want to see them when you’re done. Hee hee!

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