Friday, January 30, 2009
Andrew Lessman--who recently won the oh-so-coveted crown of Vitamin King in Queen Bea's Home Shopping Cage Match--just posted an interesting video on his Procaps website.
Andrew decided to pull all his weight management products from HSN.
Here's part of what he had to say:
"Because of issues that I cannot control and that I'm not comfortable with, my weight loss products will no longer be available at HSN. It is a decision that I labored very hard over, but because of the fact that, more than anything, I value your trust and respect that you have been giving me for the past thirty years I've been manufacturing vitamins. It was important that I make a decision like this."
Although he never mentions Sensa by name, there are two links about "a new weightloss product being sold on HSN" listed beside the video. One to a 20/20 Sensa expose video and another to an ABC News article also about Sensa.
When I last checked, all the weight loss products were still listed on the HSN website. I'm assuming that they still get to sell whatever is still in their inventory or Andrew hasn't gotten around to pulling them yet. In any case, Andrew said that all the weightloss products will still be available on his Procaps website.
So why is Andrew so upset about Sensa?
As y'all know, I love Andrew Lessman, so his opinion holds a little more weight with me--no pun intended. I would really like to know specifically what his issue is with Sensa and why he feels so strongly about it that he can't even be seen on the network with them.
And why would HSN risk upsetting their biggest-selling vendor for a new product?
What do you think of the video?
Here's a transcript of the Value Vision conference call where they try their very best to put a vermeil coating on their horrible numbers.
They claim, among other things, that they had reduced return rates, lower average selling price, and lower operating costs (i.e. they recently laid off a bunch of employees). But there wasn't enough vermeil to stop the stocks from falling sharply over the bad news.
ShopNBC is also trying to take a page from the number one home shopping channel, QVC, by taking some of their people. Keith Stewart, was promoted to CEO, Darlene Daggett was added as a consultant, ad Randy Ronning is joining the board--all of whom are QVC alum,
But the real news wasn't included in any of these reports. Rumor has it that ShopNBC is taking the tiger by the tail by joining up with the always entertaining Wayne Scot Lukas. I can't verify it, but I hope this is true. Can you imagine WSL and Charla together??? I mean the entertainment value alone. Praise the Lord and pass the plate twice!
Allegedly, Wayne Scot Lukas sent out an email to his fans leaking the news. I don't know if this email is the real deal is not, but it certainly appears to be authentic. What do you think? Check it out here.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Patti wrote that she will be more involved in the beauty and skincare categories, which are her "passion." And she will be starting a beauty blog on the Q's website.
She's also decided to choose to be happy, which she believes is harder than losing weight. Patti really sounds like she's struggling emotionally. I wish her all the best.
Mystery solved, y'all!
Sometimes I wonder about Miss Tina ... what am I supposed to do with hot pick studded leather fingerless gloves? Wear them to the office? My son's soccer game? Perhaps I can flip people off on the interstate in style. And what kind of manicure is appropriate to wear with this type of glove anyway?
I just finished watching Suzanne Somers on Oprah discussing her recent book, Breakthrough, about bioidentical hormones and menopause. Although the conversation was very interesting, I kept getting distracted by that gold necklace she was wearing. Wow! It was slamming! HSN needs to make that in Technibond so I can actually afford it. I heard that HSN kept bleeping Suzanne whenever she tried to promote her Oprah appearance. I'm sensing some bad blood going on between Somers and HSN right now.
Clark Elliott opened up his own clothing store recently. Who is he and why should you care, right? Well, he produced clothes for eight years for Suzanne Somer's HSN clothing line and recently left to open his own store. Does this have anything to do with the line being dropped?
Word on the street is that QVC model Angel recently lost 25 pounds and is featured in an article in First magazine. I haven’t seen it yet, but congrats to Angel on the weight loss and the article. She's making Queen Bea proud!
It's Bleepin' Golden Gold! Following in the footsteps of McCain’s Fine Gold, the Chicago Tribune has this little parody of Rod Blagojavich on QVC: “… you click on QVC and Rod and Patti are hawking his incriminating quotes from the federal wire taps in "authentic" yellow metal plated script. Don your Balkan Warlord outfit and wear the whole golden quote around your neck, like "I'm not giving it up for bleeping nothing!" Be the envy of every playah on the corner. Act now and receive an authentic State Sen. Rickey Hendon silver-plated "pro-Rod race card" for only $19.95.”
Washington Post makes a visit to QVC’s Studio Park. They just don’t get it.
Home shopping addiction and your tax dollars—a different kind of stimulus, perhaps?
Does this mean that Joy Mangano and HSN are being sued?
There’s nothing like free labor in this economy and HSN is looking for some interns. Do they at least get the employee discount?
Check out the video of the QVC and Extra inaugural Ball winners. If it weren't for the high security, crowds, and traffic, I think Washington D.C. would have been fun!
If you bought Nutrisystem from the Q, check to make sure that you don't have any peanut butter granola bars. They have been recalled in the big salmonella peanut butter scare.
Sorry about the lack of posts lately, but it's been a crazy week.
Do you wanna free purse??? If you haven't already, be sure to enter the IMAN-A-FREE-PURSE contest to get your free Iman purse from LabelShopper.com. Just email your name to Queen Bea at firstname.lastname@example.org with IMAN-A-FREE-PURSE in the subject.
LabelShopper.com will be adding some more inventory in the next few days so if you want to buy something, don't forget to use the 15% off coupon code, "thankuhsq" at checkout.
Monday, January 26, 2009
Check out Queen Bea's Sensa Sprinkle posts for my reviews of the new diet craze. Just click on this link and scroll down. There are lots of posts on the subject.
Why did I stop using them?
Honestly, I moved and lost them! However, they have since been found, so I might start sprinkling again. Anyone want to do it with me???
On a personal note, my poor son, who just got over Step throat, woke up this morning throwing up. I feel so bad for my little man.
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Take a quick look at the Suzanne Somers Fashion page on HSN. I count about ten pieces of clothing, most of which are on clearance.
What's going on? Is HSN dropping her fashion line?
This just makes the recent slight with the gold mesh necklace seem more suspicious.
Some customers claim her quality has suffered over the years. Maybe she's not selling like she used to. Maybe she has a high return rate or bad product reviews. Or maybe HSN is trying to get away from the "Thigh Master" image.
For all you Suzanne fans, she has a great new website up and running. You can order an autographed copy of her new book, Breakthrough, about health and bio-identical hormone replacement and read the first chapter free. All her products are for sale (or will be soon) and there is even a community forum section under construction.
Whatever your opinion of Suzanne--and, trust me, everyone has one!--she has created an empire with the notoriety that she got off a silly little sitcom in the Seventies. How many other actors have had so much success parlaying a little bit of fame?
BTW, it's California Gold Rush Day on the Q today. You might want to check out Queen Bea's take on all those fruity tooty colors of gold ... and it's just getting worse!
Friday, January 23, 2009
Here's all you need to do to enter: Email your name to Queen Bea at email@example.com with IMAN-A-FREE-PURSE in the subject line. This gets you one entry in the drawing. Simple, right?
However, if you want to increase your chances, you can also email me a link to where you posted on your personal blog, comment on another blog or message board, Twitter, My Space, Facebook, etc. about LabelShopper.com and Queen Bea's IMAN-A-FREE-PURSE contest that links back to this Home Shopping Queen blog post and you'll get a second entry in the drawing.
The contest will run from Friday, 1/23/09, to Monday, 2/1/09. And the winner will be announced on Wednesday, 2/3/09. The winner will be determined by random drawing and will be notified via the email used to enter the contest and will have 7 days to claim their prize. Your odds of winning depend on the number of entries received. This contest is only open to U.S. residents at least 18 years old. Void where prohibited. The winner will get to select the IMAN purse from LabelShopper.com. The purse can only be sent to an address within the United States.
Also, be sure to check out LabelShopper.com. All Home Shopping Queen fans--this means you!--get an extra 15% off your entire order just by entering the code "thankuhsq" at checkout. The code is good through 2/31/09 and can be used for anything sold on the LabelShopper.com website.
Not only are the IMAN purses more than 70% off what HSN sells them for, there's even a $200 Michael Rome leather hobo for $30! That's before you use the 15% off code. And don't forget, FREE SHIPPING on all order over $50. Queen Bea loves free shipping!
By royal decree, you must ENTER NOW! :-)
Here's my rather impassioned defense of Carolyn Gracie eating dog food.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
I have gotten sooo many emails asking me where-oh-where Jeff "Thanks for the Jeffrey!" Hewson is these days. Honestly, I don't have a clue. Sorry. Rest assured that Queen Bea is trying though.
In case you don't already know or just need to refresh your memory, Jeff was a QVC host known for selling jewelry in tuxes, singing karaoke, and thanking callers who referred to him as "Jeffrey" instead of the more pedestrian "Jeff." He married another QVC host, Judy Crowell amongst great fanfare--and yes, that's the same Judy that went to HSN and eventually married Paul Deasy.
The QVC fairytale marriage between Jeff and Judy ended practically before the honeymoon began. What happened? No one really knows, but it wasn't an amicable split.
This wonderfully written article, LOVE! DRAMA! SHOPPING! ALL ABOUT QVC!, perfectly captures what it was like to be an avid QVC viewer back when all this drama was unfolding.
According to Kathy Levine's biography, "It's Better to Laugh...," Jeffrey asked for a divorce right before Judy was about to go on the air. Stunned and scared, Judy called Kathy for advice. Angered tremendously that Jeffrey would do this to Judy Kathy told her this: Cry later. This bites but you are a professional. Go out there, smile, and sell whatever you have to sell. Do the best you can. It will all be okay.
Jeff, on the other hand, left QVC and supposedly sued for breech of contract. He then sold his story to the Enquirer--classy move, doncha think?
Allegedly this is the old Enquirer article:
Astonishingly, Hewson, who says he was QVC's top seller, moving as much as $2.4million worth of gold jewelry in one night, admits their troubles started as far back as their honeymoon. "We were on a yacht in the Mediterranean. Judy started making scenes. She seemed to delight in humiliating me in public," he said. "When we got back home, Judy said, it's not working. I said, let's get some therapy. We haven't given it a chance. But she didn't want to give it a chance. She never even moved into my home. I feel she married me just to get ahead. Judy's love for me was all an act. She went after me because I was a star. She got me to fall in love with her and marry her, thinking the publicity would make her a celebrity. She's a Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde and Mr. Hyde came out after we married." Hewsen said he threatened to slap QVC bigwigs with a lawsuit if they didn't stop Judy's harassment. But they did nothing. QVC made matters worse when they offered him a ridiculous new 5 year contract. "I would have earned less than I did two years ago. When I looked at that, and thought of my ex-wife's viciousness, I decided I'd had enough," he said.
When contacted by the ENQUIRER, Judy Crowell had no comment. Hewson now hopes to land a job hosting a TV game show and he's thrilled to finally be rid of his ex-wife. "The biggest favor Judy ever did for me was to walk out of my life," he said.
"She's put me through a horrendous year, but it's time to move on. My fans will definitely see me again -- a lot happier and with an even more beautiful woman."
There has been all kinds of snarky and downright nasty remarks made about Carolyn Gracie eating dog food on air. The point she was trying to make was that Halo is just food like any other food you eat. The recipe was just developed with the nutritional needs of a dog or cat in mind instead of a human. What's the big deal?
Take a look at the ingredients: Chicken broth, chicken, carrots, celery, yellow squash, zucchini, chicken liver, pasta, green peas, green beans, turkey, calcium citrate, barley, oats, dicalcium phosphate, soy sauce, dried kelp, garlic, zinc gluconate, ascorbic acid, copper gluconate
Does that look disgusting to you? Try comparing that to all the prepackaged or fast food that you eat every day. This pet food is of a much higher quality than most of the stuff I eat, that's for sure! As Carolyn wrote in her last blog, "I'm telling you, HALO is so good and so nutritious and full of healthy ingredients for your pets, that it should not even be called "pet” food."
Regardless of what you think of her as a host, anyone who will rescue and care for as many neglected animals as Carolyn has must have a good and decent heart. Here's a video with just a few of her little fur babies:
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Although she's another soap opera diva like Susan Luci, this collection seems much more like Iman's Global Chic collection except that it's all done in Technibond with real gemstones.
Here's what she had to say about the new line:
"Inspired by cultures around the world, Jacklyn Zeman's vibrant designs tell tales of exotic locales and glamorous destinations. Each hand-selected piece takes you on a spellbinding journey through faraway lands."
If you haven't already, check out this post about the ongoing quality issues with Technibond from Paul Deasy himself that explains why people's experiences are so different.
QVC host David Venable--originator of the infamous "yum-yum" face and the new host of In the Kitchen since Bob Bowersox disappeared--sure has some dedicated online fans! Whoever they are put together this inspired collage of David showing some skin.
What do you think is his secret? Total Gym? Aero Pilates? Crab Cakes? Hmmm ...
Here are Queen Bea's picks for most ... ummm ... interesting home shopping Obama trinkets:
Yes you can(!) stay warm with this Commemorative Barack Obama "Hope & Change" Throw Blanket from ShopNBC. Only $47 + $6.99 S&H.
You will have time for change with this Barack Obama Crystal Image Dial 6-3/4" Bracelet Watch from HSN for only $49.95 + $6.20 S&H.
Now brace yourself for the home shopping coup de grace ... nothing more fully epitomizes the change that you can believe in more than this Spider-Man Comic Book Featuring Barack Obama from QVC for only $35.00 + $3.97 S&H.
And don't forget to check out Leah Williams at an Inaugural Ball this evening selling this amazing, amazing, amazing comic book.
Monday, January 19, 2009
He might not be on the morning show anymore, but John Cremeans keeps himself busy with his many, many websites. He seems to have some sort of website domain name hoarding disorder, although I'm not sure if that's the correct clinical term.
So I'm gonna take a deep breath and try to run through them all, but it's a rather comprehensive list and it gets a bit confusing, so just bear with me.
After a quick change in a telephone booth, John magically turns into Galaxy Man. If you love all things sci-fi and other-worldly, you should check it out here.
John also owns the Cremeans Media Group, which can be found here. There's not much to see here other than some slick graphics and handful of pictures. I can't quite figure this one out.
And if you want to know if you could be related to John, check out his Cremeans Family Tree site here. Be sure to click on the crest to view the actual database.
John's personal website is here. Along with his resume, he has posted some little known factoids about himself. For instance, did you know that his first crush was on Olivia Newton-John?
By far, the most comprehensive site is his My Space Page here (while you're there, be sure to check out all his pictures here) where we learn that he has purchased yet another domain name (SoldOutrageous.com). Isn't there some sort of twelve-step program available for him?
Anyway, he wrote about the difficult time he had with a surgery he had last year and how he is parlaying his love for cooking into writing his own cookbook. As the picture at the top of this post indicates, John loves all things motorcycle related. Not to mention his love of paintball. Cooking? Bikes? Paintball? John's such a Renaissance man--he should start a website about that!
Then we get to You Tube. He has two You Tube channels (so far).
First, he has Odd Planet here. It's basically a radio-show style news of the weird ... or, well, odd.
Second, he has a "Vault Collection" of old CVN and HSN videos and bloopers. They are absolutely cheese-tastic and definitely worth a watch. Check it out here.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
So who is the Home Shopping King of Vitamins???
My beloved Andrew Lessman who uses solar energy and has two really cute dogs ...
Or one of these other guys ...
Not that I'm biased or anything. Hah!
Be sure to vote on the top of the right hand column. :-)
Mr. Queen Bea has been wanting a new HDTV for some time now. And from everything I can tell, QVC's TSV is a great deal--a brand name TV for the price of a no-name TV at Wal-Mart.
Here's the specs:
Sharp AQUOS 42" Diag. Widescreen Full High-Def 1080p LCD TV
TSV price: $795
5 Easy Payments of $159
Even though it's on 5 Easy Payments of $159, it's still hard to part with that much money. I'm probably gonna sit around hemming and hawing all day until it goes on wait list. Ugh!
Two things are holding me back: 1) they don't tell you the exact model number, which makes accurate comparison shopping difficult, 2)the shipping and handling is ridiculous!
Will I kick myself tomorrow if I don't get this???
Thursday, January 15, 2009
HSN has been doing this Faces of Beautiful You thing, which is a cutsie show about some college girls who use HSN products to solve all their problems. Just wave the magical mascara wand and your blind date will be perfect!
It appears HSN is trying to use these webisodes to capitalize on the social networking sites, since each characters has her own fake MySpace page, fake Facebook page, fake blog, and even fake Twitter too. But they’re gonna have to come up with something cooler than “if he’s a hottie, show some shoulder!” if they want any traction.
Unless these girls are planning on hanging some Huggable Hangers off their nipple rings or camouflaging that tattoo they got after a night of shooters by using Lauren Hutton's face disc, I just don't think that Gen Y kids are gonna care about Hallie, Smith, and Nicki.
This People magazine article from 1994 is so interesting ... home shopping was still up-and-coming and Bob Bowersox reigned supreme. (emphasis mine)
[quote] Bob Bowersox, salesman supremo for QVC—and the cable home-shopping channel's chef-in-residence—is really cooking today. His corn, squash and green-chili stew looks mmm-mmm good. But, wait, there's more: check out the 12" Castex nonstick pan Bowersox is using. That pan, he says (as the camera zooms in), can be yours for the low, low price of $46.
And now, back to our stew. "Let me add a little pepper," says Bowersox, 47, reaching for a pepper mill that's "available to you today," he says, "if you'd like to have it." The price: just $47.14.
Viewers who phoned in on a recent Sunday at noon during his weekly cooking show, In the Kitchen with Bob, obviously thought the brass pepper mill (No. K-2943) was nothing to sneeze at. They bought 70 of 'em in less than a minute. Meanwhile the Castex pans (K-4167) were going like hotcakes (50 of them sold in 15 minutes). Small wonder, then, that Bowersox's show is a virtual zirconium mine for QVC, grossing a lot of celery each week in sales of pots and pans, cutlery and gadgetry.
The bait, of course, is food, glorious food. Since the show's premiere in 1991, Bowersox, a onetime chef and restaurateur, has received as many as 4,500 requests a week for his easy-to-prepare recipes. So it was inevitable that In the Kitchen with Bob should hatch a cookbook of the same title. The result: a merchandising miracle. Flogging the cookbook on Sept. 25, Bowersox wowed his bosses by receiving orders for more than 155,000 copies—the most of any single item offered in QVC's eight-year history.
"It was an exhilarating, proud day," says Doug Briggs, president of QVC Electronic Retailing. "Everyone was ecstatic." Who wouldn't be? Not since last May, when In the Kitchen with Rosie, by Oprah Winfrey's personal diet guru, Rosie Daley, sold 20,000 copies nationally in Barnes & Noble bookstores in one day, has a chef whetted so many appetites so quickly.
Bowersox thinks he knows why the cookbook, now in its third printing by William Morrow, is selling so fast, both at bookstores (for $20) and on QVC (for less). "It's really fine food—fast," he says. "In the same time that it'll take you to throw a hot dog in a pot of water and warm up a can of baked beans, I can cook you swordfish with steamed baby carrots and asparagus."
In his book, Bowersox leavens his recipes with chatty asides about his family and friends such as Barbara Prender-gast, a loan officer at his bank who supplied his recipe for German potato soup. The same folksy banter pervades his 20 hours a week of on-camera spiels, both on his cooking show and his stints as a QVC senior program host, happily hawking everything from power saws to jewelry to computers to linens. "What I want to be is more a friend than a broadcaster," he says. "Part of how you do that is to let people into your life." Which is why Bowersox often talks about Toni, 38, his wife of six years. "QVC viewers saw us meet, get engaged, get married and have a family," he says.
"Well, they've heard about it," corrects Toni, a former lighting designer now studying for a degree in education while raising their daughter Taylor, 4, and Toni's half-sister Stephanie, 9, in a comfortable, contemporary brick home in Wilmington, Del, an hour's drive from his TV kitchen in West Chester, Pa.
As a child, the closest that Bowersox ever got to a grill was when he was 8 and his father, Don, a sales manager for DuPont car products, taught the Cub Scout how to broil a burger in the backyard. (Don's Unbelievably Good Garlic Soup recipe is in the cookbook, along with his wife Marilee's Sweet Potato Puffs.) His dad's job took the family, including Bob's younger siblings Maggie and Paul from Charleston, W. Va., where Bob was born, to Denver, West-field, N.J., and finally Wilmington. After his junior year at the University of Delaware, Bowersox dropped out to become a rock and roller in New York City. In 1974 he was back in Wilmington, booking acts for a nightclub chain. "I ended up hanging out in the kitchen a lot," he says. By 1978 he had learned enough to open his own eatery, the Crepe Chalet, which he sold two years later. He then launched a music magazine, Fine Times. That exposure won him a local radio show, a newspaper nightlife column and a job as a lifestyle host for a local cable channel. The then-fledgling QVC beckoned in 1986. "All I did was follow opportunities," he says. "I just went for it," including, finally, a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Delaware in 1991.
Now the shopping channel's Renaissance pitchman is planning a second cookbook, as well as a line of In the Kitchen-brand utensils. But Bowersox takes his culinary stardom in stride. "The people who walk up to Toni and me on the street don't talk to me as if I were Mel Gibson," he says. "It's 'Hey, Bob! How come you're not at work?' " [/quote]
Times sure have changed, haven't they???
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
The Kirks Folly fans are in open revolt over the bare bones set during their most recent visit to QVC. If you aren't familiar with Kirks Folly, in a nutshell, it's a line of costume jewelry and accessories that revolves around faries and magic.
Kirks Folly is known for its over-the-top fairyland sets with costumed actors--faries, Captain Jack the pirate, those half-nekkid men in the picture (I have no idea what's going on there!) It's like a costume drama that sells stuff.
With no fairy dust, the shows just weren't the same.
Here's what Kirks Folly FairyGodmother, Jenniefer, had to say about the controversy:
Kirks Folly Sets and Magic
Let me start by telling you that we are as unhappy as you are about these sets. Qvc has rebuilt all their sets and they want to keep a uniform feeling and branding of Qvc. I am fighting very hard to get our magical forest back but it feels like I am fighting City Hall!!!
We have always presented magical backgrounds and we feel pretty naked out there without our enchanted home. Trust me, this has nothing to do with us-we are dying to get our sparkle back.
We have also been approved for 3 shows and a live audience for our Anniversary in late April-however, we have to wait for the show schedule to come out to get an actual date and to make sure the studio audience set is free-so, we are working very hard to make it all happen When we get a date for the show and the live audience we will put together a Fairy Gathering at our hotel in West Chester with our usual cast of characters!!!
FairyGodmother is in there working for you girls.
I will get back to you if there is someone you can contact about the set situation.
Hmmm ... does QVC need to shed their Fairyland skin in order to move forward and be relevant today or are they taking away all the camp and charm that made them who they are? I suppose the bottom line will ultimately decide the fate of this fairytale.
Be sure to check out these old photos from past Kirks Folly shows. You'll see some old familiar faces!
Scott Barnes cosmetics has been discontinued after a relationship with investors soured. Right now his products are still on the QVC website. I wonder if they will go on clearance soon.
Check out this site for some cheap Iman purses. Instead of selling for over a hundred dollars like on HSN, you can get them for only thirty bucks. Now that is a globally chic price.
This blogger believes all those stars at the Golden Globes managed to stuff themselves into those form-fitting gowns without having a muffin top by using various Dr. "hands all over the models' boobs" Rey shapewear. I found him mildly entertaining on Dr. 90210, but he just skeeves me out on HSN. Those poor models. And while I love the award shows, they aren't the same without Joan on the red carpet.
How YesPilates got started on HSN and the patent battle that ensued.
The "Not Available on QVC" contest (not horrible, but probably NSFW).
Some advice on how to get your product on QVC, but I'm pretty sure that they just want to keep showing the same old stuff over and over and over again.
Website customer satisfaction ratings for the holiday season look good for the Q, which came in third behind Amazon and Netflix and ahead of Walmart. HSN, on the other hand, had the largest decline in satisfaction by dropping nine points and landing below industry satisfaction standards. If other customers had the bad customer service this blogger did, I’m not surprised.
Mindy Grossman, CEO of HSN, was honored for her outstanding contributions to the fashion industry by the Fashion Scholarship Fund. HSN vendors, Iman and Patricia Fields, were presenters.
HSN has fired nine more people. This time in Virginia.
Not only are QVC customers in debt, so is QVC. Suze Orman would not approve. Where is their emergency fund?
MTV’s reality show “Run’s House” will feature some behind-the-scenes footage of Justine Simmons presenting her Brown Sugar jewelry line on HSN this season.
Tosca Reno, creator of the Eat-Clean Diet, is very excited that she was asked to be on the Q as a clean eating and cooking expert. What’s clean eating you ask? No sugar, white flour, alcohol, or processed foods. While I appreciate her passion for health, I couldn’t live like that and be happy. I’m curious to see how this type of eating will go over with the QVC audience or if it will be modified in some way. In any case, she changed her life around with her diet so kudos to Tosca!
Recently ousted ShopNBC host Kerry McNally quickly got a new gig as a traffic reporter. He must have seen this coming.
The It Cosmetics girls had a great time kicking off the new year on HSN.
Ever wonder what Christmas dinner would be like if it were catered by QVC? This lady did it and loved it. As much food as she bought, Yum-Yum Face David should have been her free gift!
If you aren't already familiar with the big Tova perfume brewhaha, you can catch up here. You might also want to read about what keeps her husband Ernest so young here (and it ain't perfume or vitamins, y'all! Definitely not for the faint of heart.)
Tova now believes that any perceived change in the fragrance of the perfume is due to the fact that the spray pump doesn't spray as much perfume as it used to in a single squirt and a change in the bottle,
"When I celebrated the fragrance's 25th Anniversary I introduced a new art deco bottle. The original had a frosted, opaque finish and the new one is completely transparent. With a new bottle, it's easy to perceive the fragrance differently. It's like eating ice cream from a bowl you don't usually eat it from - you think it tastes differently!"
I will concur that most drinks do taste better out of a glass than out of a plastic cup, so I can see how the container could change the scent, which only leads me to believe that she (or QVC) should never have changed the bottle! Keep your hands off the Tova!
My son has Strep throat, so I can't go to the hospital to see the baby in person. There's just nothing like a newborn. Hopefully I'll get to see her soon.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Between her engagement and her beloved Philadelphia Eagles still in the running for the Super Bowl, things are looking up for Lynn.
I happened to catch her discussing her engagement with interior designer, Nate Berkus, which reminded me that you must check out his new boyfriend, shoe designer Brian Atwood here. Wonder if he'll be coming out with a new line of shoes on HSN soon?
In other home shopping wedding news, rumor has it that Dan Hughes will be officiating Sandra Bennett's wedding. Some people seem to think that it should be Dan Wheeler since he got his degree in Biblical studies. Either way, she's keeping it all the highly-dysfunctional QVC Family.
Monday, January 12, 2009
Lately, it seems as if many of the hosts are--amazingly enough--having a difficult time coming up with amazing adjectives to describe the amazing products they are presenting.
This crisis has gotten so bad, that many hosts are resorting to doubling up on the same amazing, amazing adjective.
But we can help!
Just like the "leave a penny, take a penny" bin at the gas station, we can put our collective adjectives together and help out. It takes an amazing village, y'all!
Here's my contribution. Feel free to take or leave whatever you want ... give until it hurts!
alluring, bewitching, charming, classy, cute, dazzling, delightful, divine, elegant, enticing, excellent, exquisite, fascinating, good-looking, gorgeous, graceful, grand, handsome, ideal, lovely, magnificent, marvelous, nice, pleasing, pretty, radiant, ravishing, refined, resplendent, shapely, splendid, statuesque, stunning, sublime, superb, wonderful
There's always a bit of controversy during the holiday season about the political correctness of Christmas.
Home shopping is not immune to this.
There's been an ongoing debate about whether or not the hosts are encouraged to say "Happy Holidays" and not "Merry Christmas."
Well according to an article in the Tennessean about former QVC host, Steve Bryant, they certainly are:
His [song] "I Still Say Merry Christmas" was inspired "by the many years I spent on QVC and had to say 'happy holidays' instead of 'merry Christmas' on-air," he said.
Although there were Christmas trees and decorations everywhere at QVC, the phrase was verboten on the air, Bryant said.
"I slipped the occasional 'merry Christmas' in, and I heard about it," he said.
Also, be sure to check out his website here and the Christmas song here. He's got a great post on the home page about the current and many woes of home shopping channels. Here's a snippet:
At QVC, we used to debut new and exciting products all the time. Today, it seems that most televised shopping channels rely on a core of products they sell all the time. Recently, one of them sold a cookware set for over 3 hours straight. Now there’s compelling television. They sold a bunch of them, but how many viewers did they turn off in the process. How many of those disgruntled viewers/customers will be back soon?
I just love three hours of Green Pans, don't you? Ugh!
Anyway, this all seems so strange to me since home shopping channels, along with other retailers, make most of their money in the forth quarter because of Christmas sales. Besides, who exactly is offended by Christmas? I'm not offended when my grandma's Jewish boyfriend celebrates Hanukkah. Nor was I offended when a co-worker fasted during Ramadan. And, for the record, my friend's agnostic husband doesn't bug me either. I just don't get it.
Isn't it almost time for Christmas in July?
Sunday, January 11, 2009
If you've read my blog before, you probably know how much I looove Andrew Lessman. He's been featured on HSN for the last three days and he needs to hurry up and leave before I'm completely broke, but exceptionally healthy.
Anyway, if you're interested in trying the Today's Special Secure Meal Replacements, but you aren't sure if you're ready to take the plunge by spending money on yet another diet product, try it for free--yes, free! my favorite four-letter f-word next to food--here.
I've tried it, so I know it's not a scam or anything.
My favorite flavors are coffee and vanilla and I like to actually mix them into my real coffee. It's quite tasty if I do say so myself. You can check out other recipes here.
And, in my ongoing effort to promote home shopping products that are made right here in the USA, I would like to point out that all of Andrew's products are not only made in America, but they are made with solar energy.
QVC host Gabrielle Kerr, formerly Gabrielle Abiera, got hitched September 27th, 2008. And former QVC host Davinia Palmer recently posted a short video from the big day:
She also posted some behind-the-scenes footage from one of Gabrielle's photo shoots here. You can also check her out in her old job doing the traffic reports in Baltimore on Fox 45 morning news here.
Gabrielle has a cute wedding website where you can take a quick quiz about the happy couple--who like to call themselves Gabby and Juddy, check out the wedding party (Gabrielle's sister looks just like her!), leave a message in the online guest book, and find out what they are registered for.
Sadly, Gabby didn't register at the Q. She's more of a Crate and Barrel and Macy's kind of a girl. Although she did register for a Kitchen Aid blender and a Rowenta iron. That has to count for something!
Be sure to scroll through all the wedding pictures at the wedding photographers website (they aren't posted on her site yet). Just click on "Full Weddings" on the left hand side and then click on "Gabrielle and Judson." When I said this was a "big fat Greek wedding" I wasn't kidding. I can't even imagine how much money they spent on it--Wow!!! Very Madison Avenue!
Friday, January 9, 2009
Looks like Leah isn't the only Cinderella who's going to the ball ... Click here to watch the Extra video about how to win an free trip to an inaugural ball and a total makeover courtesy of Marc Bouwer and the Q. Patti Reilly looks fab too! Go Patti!
Here's all the info:
Starting Monday, you can be a part of history! QVC is sending an "Extra" Friend and guest to party, in high style!
We're giving away an all-expense paid trip to the Creative Coalition Inaugural Ball... and that's not all; we're going to make sure you're ready for this red carpet event by giving you... a head-to-toe makeover! You'll even get to wear a Mark Bower couture gown!
Watch "Extra" Monday, January 12 for more details!
(Notice that they totally misspelled Marc's name? Hah!)
And did you also happen to catch Meredith Laurence's new show the other night, Blue Jean Chef?
Seems as though QVC wants to move in a new direction where there aren't many distinctions with the on-air personalities. Program hosts are models, vendors and product specialists are hosts ... whatever works.
Meredith has been working as a product expert for Technique cookware, which I believe is owned by QVC. She's always worked alongside a host--usually Bob--but took the plunge with her own new show. I watched part of it. And while she seemed nervous and a little uneasy with the additional host duties, she did a good job--informative and entertaining with a soft sell. I think she just needs a little more time to settle in to the job.
(BTW, be sure to check out Meredith's website here for some more of her recipes.)
QVC also seems to be placing more of an emphasis on host-themed shows in general, like Get Fit with Rick, My Time with Mary Beth, Antonella's Italian Kitchen, and You're Home with Jill. Of course, the problem with all of these new shows is that they are showing the same tired old products. That also leads me to believe that none of these hosts have much of a say as to what products they showcase as their "favorites" in these new programs.
Anyway, I have to wonder where this is all headed or if they are just testing the waters a bit.
When the Botox-loving Dr. Will Kirby appeared on QVC to sell the Neutrogena Dermatologics Retinol NX Serum, I kind of recognized him from Dr. 90210. However, I had no idea that he's been around the reality television block a few times. I haven't ever watched Big Brother, so I wasn't familiar with his Dr. Evil shenanigans on that show. Evil is not an exaggeration, y'all! Check him out in this video trying to convince another contestant that he had cancer as part of a strategic ploy:
It has to take a special kind of evil to use your medical knowledge to fake having cancer just to propel yourself into the next round of a reality TV show.
He made his big splash on the Dr. 90210 show by getting one of his buddies from Big Brother to come to him to get a genital wart removed from his ... well, you know ... his bits and pieces. I won't traumatize you with the clip, but here he is talking to Chelsey Handler about it (plus they discuss his girlfriend from yet another reality show and his love of injecting himself with Botox--you didn't think that smooth skin came from using Neutrogena, did you?):
So why would Neutrogena want Dr. Evil as a spokesperson??? Well, I am talking about him and the product. I normally don't pay attention to the cookie cutter skincare vendors. *Sigh* I'm complicit in this, aren't I? Evil Queen Bea is going to take a shower or go to confession now ...
Thursday, January 8, 2009
QVC financial guru, Suze Orman, is working with Queen Oprah to help out us little people in these tumultuous economic times.
You can download a copy of Suze Orman's latest book, Suze Orman's 2009 Action Plan, for free here.
Ok, so it's not a free car like Oprah used to give away, but times are tough, people!
I've always thought that Suze and the Q were an odd pairing. Aside from wanting couples to start out their married life out of debt by using Diamonique as an engagement ring, they don't have a whole heck of a lot in common. I just can't see Suze agreeing with the whole QVC "spend! spend! spend!" mentality--unless it's her stuff. That's different.
You probably remember Art Krull selling his Ultrex by Innova cookware on HSN.
Yeah, I know these home shopping channels sell loads of cookware. But these pans were super special. They exploded! How exciting! Making dinner will never be the same boring drudgery again.
After going out of business and not honoring their touted 75-year warranty, this cookware company seems to have reconstituted itself into Classicor on ShopNBC.
Didn't anyone at ShopNBC think to take just a quick minute to Google Art and his infamous pans before getting into bed with him? Just a thought.
Take a gander at all the complaints here and here--everything from the nonstick coating scratching (even though Art said that you could use metal utensils), the nonstick coating flaking off, bent and cracked pans, broken knobs, to handles falling off. Whatever. Handles are for wusses, right?
To top it off, there was an official government recall (that's still posted on HSN). Hers's the money quote, "The non-stick part of the pan can separate forcefully and be propelled when the pan is preheated, used on high heat, or used for frying, deep-frying or braising. This can pose a serious burn hazard from hot oil or food contents spilling onto consumers."
Even the Ultrex pressure cooker was recalled. "The pressure cooker's lid can open while its contents are under pressure, allowing the hot contents to be expelled and causing burn injuries to bystanders. ... HSN has received two reports of injuries which involve second and third degree burns to the upper arm and an unspecified burn injury."
Here's the letter that HSN sent out after they finally had enough of the exploding pots and didn't want to be left sweeping up the broken pieces--leaving the customers no where to turn.
Dear Valued HSN Customers,
As you may have seen in our earlier post, or heard from other members of the community, an HSN cookware supplier, Innova, Inc. (makers of Ultrex, Country Cottage and select products under the Cooks & Chefs label), ceased business operations and is liquidating its assets. Innova going out of business was as much of a surprise to us as it has been to our customers - we had virtually no advance notice and we stopped selling Innova products as soon as we were informed. The reasons for the business closing are unclear, but we have no information indicating that it was related to any health or safety hazard with respect to the non-stick coating on the Ultrex cookware. And while millions of HSN customers have enjoyed their Ultrex products over the years, we, at HSN, are extremely disappointed that Innova, an independent company, not owned by HSN or any of our affiliated businesses, has discontinued operations and is no longer available to provide warranty support. We sincerely regret being involved in any way with a company that has disappointed you. However, in the event you have any questions or concerns related to your Innova products, our customer service team is prepared to assist you at 1-800-284-3900.
We very much appreciate your business and your continued support of HSN, and we look forward to serving you in the future.
Senior Vice President of Customer Care
So tell me again why ShopNBC wanted to sell this???
Approximately 70 ShopNBC employees were laid off yesterday in an effort to "cut costs."
Even the hosts weren't spared at the chopping block this time. According to an anonymous sources, hosts Bill Fahey and Kerry McNally were both let go. And Jim Fisher's contract was not renewed, but he will now be a guest for the coin jewelry shows. Daniel Green is also gone, but he resigned a few weeks ago to do a local television kitchen show.
Per CNN, ShopNBC's "salaried work force was reduced by approximately 11%, which is effective immediately. This represents a total reduction in the salaried workforce of 27% from fiscal 2007. Impacted team members were offered competitive severance and outplacement services. Additionally, the Company will suspend its 401(k) match for fiscal 2009, and there will be a salary freeze with no merit pay increases in the coming fiscal year."
Jewelry Television also announced yesterday that they were starting yet another round of layoffs. They already have reduced their workforce from about 2000 people to 1300 in 2008. They aren't saying how many employees will get pink slips this time. However per the comments I'm reading here, it sounds like they were short staffed and encouraging call center employees to work overtime in December. Strange.
I wish everyone effected by these layoffs the best.
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
My son isn't feeling well today, so I've been a little remiss in my blogging duties. *sorry* But, it has given me some much-needed time to mull over the whole Bob thing. I've read your comments and emails (y'all don't like to beat around the bush!) and looked through the message boards (before the posts are quickly poofed, of course). Suffice it to say, there is no clear consensus of opinion.
So why is everyone so interested? Why does it matter if Bob suddenly disappears in a cloud of controversy with nary a goodbye cheesecake from Juniors or even a stinking plate of celebratory crab cakes? Well, maybe not the crab cakes ... but you get the idea.
I think I finally know.
Not respect for the host or the management, but respect for us, the loyal viewers and customers who keep them in business. A simple explanation, a little warning, and a decent sendoff is the very least that they can do for us. I realize that sometimes circumstances won't always allow for this, but it seems to be the trend now to ditch hosts like a used Kleenex.
What separates home shopping channels from all other retail outlets--brick-and-mortar like Wal-Mart or online like Amazon--is the entertainment and community they provide. Sure, the hosts are just glorified salespeople, but we get to know their on-air personalities, we become accustomed to seeing them--to the point of being annoyed by their quirks, and we are naturally curious about what goes on behind-the-scenes.
So whether you were an avid "In the Kitchen with Bob" fan or you snidely called him Bob Boringsox on the message boards ... and no matter what you believe the circumstances of his departure really were, you deserved better.
If they want to attract new customers and keep the old loyal base, they need to learn a little respect.
I will now climb down from my soap box and hand things over to an expert in the area of repect. Preach on, Aretha!
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Monday, January 5, 2009
On the night of January 20th, QVC will be celebrating the swearing in of our country's next president the only way they know how--by selling lots of useless "collectible" merchandise.
Host Leah Williams will broadcast from the Creative Coalition's inaugural ball in a fancy-schmancy inaugural gown (take that Lisa Robertson selling Swarovski crystal Diamonique stuff in a ballgown in Vienna!)
In between hawking commemorative coins, stamps, a simulated pearl necklace, and even a purse, QVC will broadcast parts of the parade and talk to random spectators on the street.
There is just nothing more American than this.
The ever-industrious Joan Rivers has a new book coming out about one of her favorite topics, plastic surgery, "Men Are Stupid . . . and They Like Big Boobs." I would have to agree with her on both counts.
In this funny interview with the New York Times, Joan claims to have had two face lifts, lip plumping about every six months, and liposuction on her thighs. And, no, she doesn't think that she's addicted to plastic surgery at all. She's just in a youth-obsessed business where growing old gracefully doesn't pay the bills.
"I’ve had so much plastic surgery," Joan said, "when I die they will donate my body to Tupperware."
And just in case you were curious about her political views, well, she also thinks that the President-Elect Barak Obama should have had his ears pinned back years ago.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
My biggest complaint with all the home shopping channels is their affinity for all things manufactured in China (and other countries with cheap labor and low standards). In these horrible economic times, I want to support American jobs whenever I can.
But what can I do about it?
Since I don't have the power to change everything, I'll just do what I can. Hey, we're all in this together, right? I certainly don't want everyone to just stop buying from these homes shopping companies so they are forced go out of business. They provide many American jobs (although the number has been shrinking lately) and endless hours of entertainment.
So I decided that I'm going to try to spotlight great items made right here. If you're already in the market to buy, you might as well support American companies with your purchase.
On the Q's Silver Style show today (where is Jill, BTW?), a chain I've had my eye on for quite a while is on easy pay. It's got a heavy gram weight, a five star review, and looks designer, "on trend," "fashion forward," and all those other infamous home shopping-isms.
Check out the Sterling 32" Textured and Polished Status Link Necklace, 61.0g, here (there's also several other lengths available on easy pay too). Or, if you want something with smaller links, go with this one (also made in the USA). I'm leaning towards the smaller one since it's a 36-inch chain. I want to be able to double it up.
Happy shopping, chickadees!
Saturday, January 3, 2009
After all those years at QVC, I'm pretty sure the Chester the Cheetah cheesiness didn't phase him a bit!