Sample Sale Season is Here! What’s Your Plan of Attack?

May 30, 2013 • Fashion Blog, Industry, Sample Sales, Shopping


With the month of May drawing to a close, if you listen closely in the streets of New York City you can hear the faint whir of claws being sharpened. That’s because sample sale season has officially begun. It’s as expected as the swallows of Capistrano: New York’s (in)famous industry of designer merchandise being slashed up to 80% off and lined up in a hotel, event space, or warehouse for normally civilized women to claw each other’s eyes out over an amazing deal.

And as unpleasant as that experience may sound to the average city dweller, anyone who knows the value of a truly amazing deal will eagerly and willingly sign themselves up for it. The New York Post takes a closer look into the dastardly deeds of New York’s fashionistas, eager to slip behind the velvet rope of sample sales, and the increased difficulty of actually getting into one. The article reads, “With a limited number of invitations, claws come out — and bad behavior rules the roost, with many fashion experts lamenting it’s easier to get into Harvard than a sought-after sample sale. The frenzy stretches throughout the summer, with Dolce & Gabbana, Tory Burch and Fendi offering sales in June, Stella McCartney in July and — rumor has it — Alexander McQueen sometime later this season.” Alexander McQueen?! Tell someone to call the National Guard.

Before I moved back to Chicago this Spring, I only attended one sample sale — Rebecca Minkoff — which was less insanity-inspiring as I’m sure something like Gucci or Louboutin would be. Still, the bags were lined up like eager little playthings, hoping to be adopted and taken home to a new family. It was difficult to see the actual value of an $800 bag when it was laying on the floor, discarded under a folding table and caught in  swath of plastic. And that’s just the thing: sample sales seem to turn the fashion elite into exactly what they loathe the most: regular everyday people. People who pick through $1,000 bags like melons at the supermarket and even grab things out of people’s hands (the horror!) when faced with what they consider to be a life-altering decision. A woman interviewed by the Post explained this harrowing situation firsthand. ” At a vintage sale last year, DeRose found an estimated $3,000 Dior jacket for $800, which she considered a steal. “I literally had my hands on [it], and this girl tried to take it! It was about to get serious.” The fracas resulted in an epic showdown — but DeRose stood her ground.“I have the jacket now,” she says coolly.”

So is all the potentially dignity-compromising behavior worth it to save a few bucks? Well, a few thousand bucks. The jury may still be out, but with lines continuing to wrap around not just blocks but avenues in NYC (raise your hand if you know the difference) it seems that not many deal-hunters are abandoning this fight or flight sample sale mantra anytime soon. Check out the full article in the Post here and if you want to start your SST (sample sale training) regimen now, here’s a lineup of the most coveted sales in the coming months, also compliments of the Post. Ladies, start your engines. And God speed.

* Rodarte

June 1

Ace Hotel

20 W. 29th St.

* Helmut Lang

June 2-5

261 W. 36th St., second floor (between Seventh and Eighth avenues)

* Ralph Lauren

June 3-6

317 W. 33rd St.; 718-747-1656 Women’s and men’s luxury apparel and accessories. Includes cruise, spring and summer collections.

* La Perla

June 9-13

225 Fifth Ave. (between 26th and 27th streets)

* Alice + Olivia

June 10-14

260 Fifth Ave. (between 28th and 29th streets); 212-725-5400


June 11-16

72 Greene St. (between Spring and Broome streets)

* Tory Burch

June 11-15

261 W. 36th St. (between Seventh and Eighth avenues); second floor

“Her trademark Reva flats are always sought after,” says

* J.Crew

June 18-23

260 Fifth Ave. (between 28th and 29th streets); 212-725-5400

“Jewelry and shoes are the crowd-pleasers,” coos Mizhattan.

* Rachel Zoe RTW

(ready-to-wear) and accessories

June 20-23

Chelsea Market, 75 Ninth Ave. (between 15th and 16th streets)

* Stella McCartney

July (exact date to be announced)

210 11th Ave., at the corporate office

“Bags are the ‘It’ items at this sale,” confirms Mizhattan of the private sample sale.


Date to be announced

“Archival print pieces, labeled as ‘vintage,’ are the way to go,” says Tiffany Yannetta of


-Alia Rajput

Article Source: New York Post

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