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Shopgirl: An app that helps you work; holiday deals

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WHAT’S TRENDY

From eyeliner styles to Coca-Cola cans, everything is affected by the latest trends, whether we can tell at the time or not.

One of the more noticeable trends in design right now, from print magazines to mobile apps, is that simplicity is more powerful than a million bells and whistles.

Paper, an iPad app by the new startup FiftyThree, aims at getting us back to the reason technology advancement is important: to help us do stuff.

You won’t find options to put cat faces on photos of your friends or highlight in a thousand colors. Paper is carefully designed to replicate exactly what it feels like to scribble on the back of a napkin or a wedding program, no more and no less. Download it free from the app store.

WHAT’S AFFORDABLE

Holiday shopping should be happening right now so you aren’t cramming the last few days before Christmas, and most retailers are doing a great job with creating promotions that make you want to keep coming back to the store.

Banana Republic, Handpicked and other retailers are doing Christmas countdown/Advent calendar kind of things where each day has a surprise discount or freebie. Banana Republic gave out tickets to the upcoming release of the film Les Miserables, and Handpicked has a scratch-off card for each day of the month.

And don’t forget about online shopping. If you know exactly what you want, most retailers are running free shipping specials for the entire month. Having gifts shipped directly to your door or your recipient’s is super convenient, especially for out-of-town relatives.


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