For the longest time we thought of TJ Maxx as a resource for discount Apple accessories and children's story books. It wasn't until a recent trip to Miami that we fell upon a treasure trove of designer discount merchandise. We found Fendi and Valentino bags, Prada shoes and Missoni knit sweaters.
We knew we needed to the bottom of the mysterious uber-designer TJ Maxx finds. After a few phone calls we were connected with Sonya Cosentini, a style expert for the discount chain. Turns out the story is much like stores' commercials: There's a designer with overstock merchandise or returns and TJ Maxx is there to snatch up the off-the-runway looks at a fraction of their retail price.
What we witnessed in Miami, however, was different than the Juicy Couture and Eli Tahari we find at most of TJ Maxx stores. There was an entire luxury department delineated by purple and black signage within a department called Runway. According to Sonya, there are only 50 TJ Maxx stores with Runway departments in the country.
With in Manhattan, the Columbus Village TJ Maxx (at Columbus and 101st Street) is the only location that has a specific designer Runway department. Sonya adds that all TJ Maxx stores do have an assortment of designer labels and don't have the department broken out because of space constraints. "You have to be on the lookout for merchandise with black and purple tags that are dispersed throughout the entire store," she says.
In the name of "research" we made a few calls to TJ Maxx stores with runway collections. We couldn't believe what we were able to find: a Bottega Veneta overnight bag for $1200, a Helmut Lange tank for $40, Prada and Manolo shoes for $200, Fendi totes for $800 and a Valentino bag for $700.
Going forward, we are going to spend a lot less time playing with the Apple accessories at TJ Maxx and a lot more time searching out purple tags. Have you found any interesting merchandise while shopping at TJ Maxx. Tell everyone about your finds in the comment section below. We can't wait to drool!