Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Century 21: Fashion Worth Fighting For?

By ManhattanMataHari

Century 21 is known for their name brand designer deals. It's a city landmark filled with epic stories about unearthed treasures and luxury deals. As with every store, however, the merchandise and prices seem to range widely from season to season. We thought it was about time to start our spring shopping and find out if Century 21 is truly serving up: "Fashion worth fighting (tourists) for!"

We started our review in the accessories department. Right away we found an exemplary selection of silk scarves, including Pucci ($59.97 to 79.97), Versace ($99.97) and Missoni ($79.97) neatly organized in trays in glass cases.

It was a bit disappointing not to see any of Missoni’s iconic woven scarves in the accessories department, but a quick foray into the shoe department proved a plethora of Missoni shoes ($249.7to $399.97). There was also wide assortment of Marc Jacobs and Givenchy high heel sandals. Both brands were priced at $199.97, while Derek Lam espadrilles will set you back $219.97. We also found a decent selection of Badgley Mischka formal shoes priced nicely at $79.97 to $89.97. (After all, it is bridesmaid season.)



Moving upstairs, we went straight to the European Designer section but were sad to see so many ill-sorted dresses already damaged. Some of the better (and easy to spot) finds were $775 Missoni dresses selling for $199. On the bright side, there was a wide assortment of discounted Stella McCartney but the prices still seemed a bit too lofty. A fabulous $2460 pearl embellished silk tank was $849.97 and other embellished silk tanks and tees were still $349.97 to $499.97.

Not far from Stella’s loot, we found Lanvin sequin embellished blazers for $1899.97 from $5875. A Chanel-inspired Lanvin wool blazer was $1799.97 from $5425. Also in the mix were Jil Sanders and Derek Lam apparel. The real deal seemed to be the selection of Dolce & Gabbana bustier corset style tops ($229.97 to $349.97) and filmy satin and lace camisoles ($149.97 to $179.97).



Racks of Marc Jacobs apparel dominated one whole area, and there was a large selection of their classic black trench coats for $329.97 from $628. For a more unique spin on the classic trench there were some nice Gyphon khaki studded collar versions for $259.97 from $690.

Overall, we were a bit disappointed by the amount of damaged inventory. Shoppers mus review their purchases carefully prior to checking out. That in combination with the overwhelming lack of organization, clueless tourists and overall high prices, makes us think that shopping boutique and department store sales may be a better option. Bottom line: Fashion not so worth fighting for.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

couldn't disagree more. One trip to Century will not give you the information to make the determination whether it's fashion worth fighting for. This isn't Saks or Neiman Marcus. Sometimes the selection is great, sometimes not as great. And yes, it can be overwhelming, but once you figure out the lay of the land it's pretty easy to go right to the good stuff. There are some amazing deals to be had, but it requires some effort as bargain hunting traditionally does. If you want it to be easy go to Saks and pay full price. This kind of post defeats the purpose of this blog and disappoints me, as I'm quite a loyal reader.

Anonymous said...

BTW C21stores.com is launching an online shopping pretty soon... so keep checking in for more info... the only down side is that u have to become a member to shop and the only way to do that if u recieve an invite from a friend, or u can try by puting ur self on a site waitlist...

Anonymous said...

I think Century is very hit or miss. I've found Jimmy Choos for $250 while they were still full price at $900 at the Jimmy Choo boutiques and other times I've left empty handed. Its all about timing; if you go once they've gotten a shipment and it's not as picked over, you have a better chance of finding something good. I also prefer the Long Island location over Manhattan because it doesn't have the pushy tourists and is a lot more organized.

Anonymous said...

Century has disintegrated as they are catering to tourists who want trashy euro wear and trash the clothes and Midwestern tourists who want cheap seven jeans..long gone are the Jill Stuart, Rebecca Taylor and upcoming fashion designers...plus who canshop with tourists twirling those horrifying red carriers...plus the security there is scary where everyone daring to go into the dressing room is treated to trip to rikers island they have loss prevention detectives counting your items.....that store treats everyone like a potential thief... And hand them a 20 bill and they start inspecting like counterfeit....and don't even bother returning anything..I saw an " inspection return expert" screaming at a terrified teenager that she didn't buy the 19.00 skirt at c21 but that if she insisted on returning it they would key up the cameras in the loss prevention department to view her and her transaction from 2 weeks prior...who treats customers like criminals. C21 that's who! Oh yea by the way therebwas a rack of the same skirts right behind the expert

Anonymous said...

Century 21 has become a degrading experience to new yorkers

Little Bird said...

Did you see that Century 21 is opening a location on the Westside where Barnes & Noble closed on Broadway?