Around Town: There's nothing like a good discount

Despite their lame ad campaign (“Calling all Maxxinistas!”), our local T.J.Maxx is the jackpot for inexpensive fashion.

Amazingly, T.J.Maxx made it into the Urban Dictionary with “Maxxinista,” which is defined as “[a] person who shops at the discount designer department store T.J.Maxx. One who finds unique and original designer items at discount prices. Some individuals are obsessed with the store and even know what days they have new merchandise arriving.”

The La Cañada Flintridge store has always seemed to be a cut above those other T.J.Maxx locations. Our T.J.Maxx has soaps, Italian purses and sunglasses. Need some china for the holidays? Go to T.J.Maxx. Sheets? Towels? T.J.Maxx.

But don't forget the shoes. Currently, the shelves at the La Cañada store are full of those flat-soled leather and Leatherette ankle boots that have popped up all over Pasadena and West Hollywood. It's a rocker look that's finally gone mainstream. The flat soles allow ladies to walk with a normal gait, and T.J.Maxx stocks them for under 50 bucks.

They also have those high-heeled ankle boot knock-offs. It's that pseudo Chanel look, but pseudo Chanel is the new Target.

About my shoe obsession. This is recent phenomenon, born from wistful acknowledgment of physical limitations. In other words, I think about shoes continually because I sort of broke my toe three weeks ago and had to wear Brooks running shoes to work. It's not a complete fracture, just a little chip. But not enough to cramp my style last weekend at the Marine Corps Birthday Ball.

With the ball coming up, I was terrified. Three weeks before the ball and what to do? Cortisone? Drugs? Suck it up?

None of these options seemed holistic enough, until I remembered T.J.Maxx and, as usual, T.J.Maxx saved the day.

While I tried on every flat-soled shoe in the store, two long-legged, 40-something, drop-dead gorgeous Korean ladies browsed nearby. They tried on the highest heels. They looked way cooler than the Maxxinista ads and that made me feel like I was also cool, even though I'm not.

I not only scored one not-too-ugly pair of Bandolino sandals with a little rhinestone thingy for $15, but a comfortable pair of designer flats for $27. All I needed was a pedicure at Salon Finsel and I was set.

The ball, of course, was a blast. The Marine Club in San Francisco, in a historic building at the base of Nob Hill, is open to all veterans, not just Marines, but the Birthday Ball is about 100% Marine Corps. From the moment you walk in the door, it's “Happy Birthday! Happy Birthday!” and “Semper Fi.” It's like New Years, Mardi Gras and Independence Day combined. All the young Marines remind me of our son. All the old Marines were friends of my husband.

So many uniforms. No one noticed my shoes!

Shoes purchased right here in La Cañada, at our uniquely upscale T.J.Maxx.


ANITA SUSAN BRENNER is a longtime La Cañada Flintridge resident and an attorney with Law Offices of Torres and Brenner in Pasadena. Email her at and follow her on Twitter @anitabrenner.

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