Monday, October 31, 2011

Mauboussin's Discounts and Macarons

It's not often that you come across shoppers waiting on line on Madison Avenue. Somehow the French pastry shop, Laduree has customers lining up as if they were waiting for the newest Apple iPhone release.

If you're looking for a quick sweet and an even sweeter deal, we might suggest stopping into the French jeweler, Mauboussin. The store is offering Laduree macarons and 10% off everything every Saturday from 4pm to 7pm. Yes, it's a jewelry store and it's French but the prices are not too intimidating. For instance, this amethyst and diamond ring is $1100 and these diamond stud earrings are $1675. Both less than certain brands and styles of boots.

Oh, did they mention that Mauboussin will also give you a glass of chapmaign to wash down your macaron? Now that's some sweet jewelry shopping!

714 Madison Avenue

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Kid's European Sample Sale

Long time readers of Madison Avenue Spy may remember the wonderful sample sales for children that used to take place in the garment district. Since the recession many of those showrooms have closed or changed their warehousing structures, which means the days of buying fancy european chidren's clothing below wholesale are gone.

Well, maybe not completely. C&C Childrenswear, which carries popular brands like ADD Down, Custo Barcelona, Imps & Elfs, Lofff, Val & Max and Weekend a la Mer, is hosting a sale where prices will be under wholesale. The sale will begin Monday and run all week.

We stopped by before the weekend to catch a preview of what's in store and found quite a few nice items. Most if the inventory is samples from spring 2012 but we able to find a few things that can be used now. A Val & Max dress that retails for over $300 was marked $40, an ADD Down jacket retails for $288 was $125, pajamas that normally cost $90 were $27 and a baby Imps & Elfs baby set was $35 from a retail price of about $80.

The stock isn't as abundant as past sales at other showrooms but there are still wonderful items to be found at great prices. There won't be any restocking, so we suggest you attend the sale earlier in the week. (Like now, if you plan to go.) Also, the colors assortment is limited on the ADD jackets. Don't count on getting the popular shiny blacks and blues but be happy to settle on the plums and light lavenders.

Children's Luxury Clothing Sale
Monday, October 31 to Friday, November 4
9am to 5pm
12 West 32nd Street, 9th Floor
No Strollers
Credit Cards are excepted but charged an extra 3%

Lila Dishes for NYTimes Sunday Styles

The height of shopping season is just ahead of us and shoppers need to remember that all sales are not created equally. Specifically, those flash sales might not be offering as hot of a bargain as you think.

New York Times Style reporter, Stephanie Rosenbloom reports that shoppers can regularity find even better deals with just a bit more online searching. On, "for instance, a Kate Spade cabana-stripe medium tote bag was recently $169, plus $5.95 shipping. That same day, the bag was on for $130 with free shipping — about $45 cheaper," she writes.

So what about all this flash that can cost you extra cash?

Those who keep an eye on sales say there are more businesses proffering discount clothing than ever before, which means that no one channel is always tops for bargains. “It’s really hard to get good closeouts nowadays because so many places are fighting for them,” said Lila Delilah, who writes the designer sales tracking blog Madison Avenue Spy. “Now the Web sites are fighting the discounters, who are fighting the flash sale sites.”

Ms. Delilah said she tends to find the best deals in brick-and-mortar stores. “I always feel that there’s nothing as good as an old-fashioned boutique or department store end-of-season sale,” she said, explaining that returns are easy and that a good salesperson will call a customer when a coveted item is discounted. This is why Ms. Delilah posts salesclerk contact information on her blog. “Those relationships really count for something,” she said.

Click here to see Stephanie's full article, Bargain Hunters, Hold That Click? What do you think?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Duckie Brown Sample Sale

Hey boys, here's a chance to get back at your girl who perpetually drags you shopping all weekend.

Ducky Brown is hosting a sample sale Saturday and will include all categories of the brand including knits, shirts, jackets, trousers and leather good. We hear that the discount will range from 70% to 90% off and prices will be from $20 to $600.

Before you go, we suggest you hit the ATM. Cash is the only accepted form of payment.

Duckie Brown Sample Sale
Saturday October 29, 2011
11:00am to 5:00pm
321 West 13th Street, Suite 3A

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Steuben Liquidation Sale

In September, Steuben officials announced that the 108-year-old glass maker was shutting down its factory in Corning, N.Y., and its flagship store on Madison Avenue. This was sad news as Steuben is a brand that always represented great American craftsmanship without a lot of hype. It is clearly the end of an era.

Sadly, the glass must go. As part of the brand closing, their famous glassware inventory is being liquidated. The sale is taking place online and at the Madison Avenue boutique. Most items including barware, vases and bowls are priced at about 30% off retail. Nimbus wine glasses are $45 from $75, a crystal rhino is $1462 from $1950 and a flower vase is $609 from $950.

The Madison Avenue boutique plans to stay open through November or until it runs out of merchandise. We imagine that prices will be reduced as the closing date approaches.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The IT-it: Celine Luggage Tote

It seems that there is a new hot bag almost every season. This year, the Celine Luggage tote is hotter than coal on a BBQ. The bag has eye catching curves and is a must-have item on almost every girl's fashion list. There is one problem: It's perpetually out of stock and the waiting lists are miles long.

Of course, we have the inside scoop. Celine just sent a huge shipment of bags to all their retailers. The new shipment consists of the cruise 2012 collection and the popular color combinations from the winter collection are long gone. Shoppers can choose from the impossible to get neon pink, orange, yellow, royla blue, black, gray and beige.

We took a run to Bergdorf Goodman to get a feel for the hard-to-get bag and couldn't believe the clamoring. Women were swarming the two bags pulled out of stock like bottled water in the desert. The store's shipment only includes black and beige but we believe that that this is your best chance for a Luggage Tote. We couldn't even get a sales person to speak to use at Barney's.

Celine Luggage Tote
$2000 Mini
$2200 Medium
Contact: Jere Ann Waters @ Bergdorfs

Monday, October 24, 2011

YSL Sample Sale

Ever since Yves Saint Laurent closed their outlet in Secaucus, the annual sample sale has been a big hit for finding deals. Before heading over there, we want to warn our readers about the over-aggressive shoppers, merchandise hording and a random "hair-pulling" incident that occurred last season.

We suggest that the faint at heart go to Woodbury Common as an alternative or wait for the YSL boutique's second markdown, early next year. Shoppers that are ready to brave the crowds can expect a long wait on the first day. We also caution that you shouldn't set your expectations too high. Don't count on finding popular style bags or shoes like the Muse or Tribute shoes.

So what can you expect? Bag and shoe prices are usually about 60% off retail and the color assortment normally ranges from chartreuse green to plumb purple. Basic black is a hard order here. We suggest setting your eyes on the clothing racks and accessory tables, which are a much better deal. Last season, dresses were priced at $350, sweaters $250 and jackets $400, Real deal seekers should keep an eye out for the YSL jewelry. Last season rings were $50, bracelets $150 and big cuffs were $200.

YSL Sample Sale
Wednesday, October 26th to Friday, October 28
Wed 5pm to 8pm, Thurs 8am to 8pm and Fri 8am to 5pm
Metropolitan Pavilion -- 125 West 18th Street (between 6th and 7th Ave.)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sephora Friends & Family

This is the perfect week for cosmetics shopping because Sephora is offering a 20% discount to employees' friends and family. Unfortunately, the promotion is only online and the unique codes can only be used one time. You can click here to enter your email address and get your personal discount code. (It's a good thing most people have more than one email addy.)

The sale runs until November 2 and regular shoppers will notice that some of the higher end brands had been temporarily removed. Some items we are going to get with the discount: Nail's Inc. metallic polish, Privage face cream, Laura Mercier lip glosses and NARS Leguana bronzer (it always sells out as soon as the weather gets cold.)

What are your beauty bests?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mad-Spy Cashmere Shopping Guide

By ManhattanMataHari

With winter weather nipping at our heels, it is the perfect time to stock up on cold weather staples like a cashmere sweater. Unfortunately, not all cashmere is created equal. With the wide variety of styles, colors, and prices ranges it can be confusing to find the perfect sweater. There tends to be two schools of thought when it comes to buying a cashmere sweater: investment pieces in perennial colors and styles or more seasonal sweaters that don’t break the bank.

When looking for your perfect sweater, be sure to look for 100% cashmere since many sweaters are blended with wool. If you are looking for a lightweight layering piece, silk and cashmere blends retain their softness without adding bulk. The best cashmere yarns come from Italy or Scotland, and are usually two-ply since single-ply sweaters tend to pill easier. If you can see your hand through a layer of cashmere, it is most likely one-ply.

Either way you decide to invest, be sure to care properly for your cashmere by gentle cleaning and moth-proof storage. Dry cleaning or hand washing in tepid water with Laundress Cashmere Shampoo and laying flat on a towel to dry, is usually suggested. Cashmere sales associates suggest washing your low cost cashmere with baby shampoo. Aveeno baby wash is a favorite.

If you're looking to invest in cashmere that will last a life time there is no better place to start than Madison Avenue. Loro Piana  sweater, which retails anywhere from $1000 to $2000, is a favorite of many high-end consumers. To get the best price it's best to wait for Soiffer Haskin's sample sale where discounts run to about 50% off.

If you need your luxury cashmere now, we suggest heading to Malo (Joanna: 212-396-4721), which specializes in Italian cashmere clothing. With a variety of styles, blends, and colors you will certainly find the perfect investment sweater. Basic V-necks in various ply range from $580 to $490 and cardigans are mostly in the $600 range. . If you are looking for a good holiday gift, Malo does mark down their cashmere sweaters 30% to 40% in December.

It’s of some shoppers opinions that Brunello Cucinelli (Phillipe 212-813-0900) is the gold standard in cashmere and with prices ranging from $1500 to $3000 the statement may be literal. There is no sale currently but once December rolls around the discount can go up to 50% off.

A bit further uptown, specialist Manrico (Brigitte: 212-794-4200) has a great selection of lightweight cashmere sweaters for men and women. They are currently having a 30% markdown on their lightweight summer styles and colors. While the sale selection is not great, they will make for good layering pieces for fall and winter. Prices usually range from $540 to $700, so even with the discount you may still pay a hefty price.

For the best selection of colors and styles on Madison at non-investment prices that won’t cause heart palpitations, head over to the J. Crew Collection (Andrea: 212-824-2475). An entire wall is replete with various styles of V-necks, crewnecks, and cardigans in a dozen color choices. Despite ranging in price from $158 to $168, the cashmere is thick and baby soft without any bulk. The only downside was the perfect camel color from a couple seasons ago won’t be back until (supposedly) next season.

Venturing off Madison, the department store cashmere collections are also a good bet for quality sweaters at a fraction of designer prices. For the best deals, head to Bloomingdales where their entire collection is marked an additional 25% off retail. Crewneck shells start at $108, boyfriend V-neck cardigans are $165, and turtlenecks are $145. Interestingly, we didn’t spot at any regular V-neck options. However, there were plenty of plain crewnecks and V-necks available at Saks Fifth Avenue, albeit slightly more expensive at $208. Cashmere cardigans in a variety of fall and winter colors will set you back $248.

For even more budget cashmere buys, definitely check out the new Uniqlo flagship on Fifth Avenue. They have marked their $89.90 cashmere sweaters down to $49.90 until the end of the month. Hands-down, this is the best color selection anywhere in the city, with a rainbow of color options available. The only downside is the quality of the mass-produced cashmere is subpar, with the softness of a wool blend despite being 100% cashmere. For that pricing you can find softer quality cashmere in a multitude of colors and styles at Daffy’s for $39.99 to $139.99.

You can't really go wrong decideing on any of these cashmeres, especially if you find the expensive brands on sale. But, that's what we're here for. Right?

Pink on Madison

Pink is a color that comforts women big and small. How do you wear pink for Breast Cancer Awareness? Send us pictures through Twitter @MadisonAveSpy, to Facebook or email. We will post a picture each day of our favorite pink person during the Pink Ribbon Project campaign.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

DecadesTwo Goes Uptown... and Downtown

DecadesTwo, the LA-based consignment store, is rolling into New York again for their bi-annual pop-up shop. This time, however, they are splitting their personalities and sending their downtown looks to Soho house and their uptown riches to Lisa Perry's Madison Avenue boutique.

The "Uptown/Downtown" shopping event will take place from October 20 to 22. What's even better?  Madison Avenue Spy readers can get a 20% discount when shopping at either location on Friday and Saturday.

As for us? We just couldn't wait. We're glad we didn't because there are some dream items waiting to find the perfect new home. Clearly, the Uptown Decades location was curated with the neighborhood gal in mind, which means there is a lot of Chanel, Oscar, Carolina, Louboutin and Manolo. (Downtown is heavily stocked with McQueen, Philip Lim and Gucci.)

On the Chanel rack, which is quite extensive, we found a variety of light color tweed jackets, suit sets and coats. A long pearl colored trench style is $2900 and a limited edition nautical themed jacket worn in a Miley Cyrus video is $2,100. There are even options for Chanel shoppers who want to spend less than a grand. A soft blue linen dress with double-C buttons is $500 and a short red jacket is $895.

Among other designers, we found a long Bottaga dress for $1,200, an iconic YSL cocktail dress for $600, a Bill Blass sequin dress for $660 and an adorable Balenciaga skirt with original tags showing a $1900 retail price for $340. A dress by London-based designer Maria Grachvogel was crying to be taken home and was priced at just $350.

Shoppers keen on shoes, bags and accessories will not be discappointed either. We found Louboutin spikey high boots for about $1000, Alaia black and white pony hair pumps for $400, never worn Chanel ballet flats for $330, a white multi-color Vuitton note book for $220, black croc Manolo pumps for $350 and Kirckwood lizard pumps for $220.

For us, the best part of the sale is that there are a variety of interesting items that can fill the needs of someone with Fifth Avenue extravagance or First Avenue sensibility. You can click here to see a full photostream of the items mentioned above.

Lisa Perry
976 Madison Avenue @76th Street

Soho House
29-35 9th Avenue

Pink on Madison

Bright pink or light pink are the perfect pinks for shopping on Madison. We want to see how you how you wear pink you support Breast Cancer Awareness. Send us pictures through Twitter @MadisonAveSpy, to Facebook or email. We will post a picture each day of our favorite pink person during the Pink Ribbon Project campaign.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

C. Wonder Amazes

Although the new Soho concept store, C. Wonder doesn't open until October 22nd, we got a preview of their flagship store this evening. C. Wonder, named for it's founder Chris Burch, may not be the cure for cancer or help fortify world peace but the price point and product assortment will make customers' mouths water.

Much of the basic concept design is obviously inspired by the principal behind the Tory Burch brand, which is a modern twist to prep. In place of the Tory Burch cross logo there are lots of C's branded on a variety of products ranging from housewares, home decor, personal electronics, apparel, shoes, jewelry and accessories. Even the shopping bags have a Tory feel.

Lets first start by saying that most items in the store come in a verity of five colors-- pink, green, yellow, navy and orange. So most rain boots ($78), mugs ($8), monogramed shirts ($68), wheelie suitcases ($99) and bike helmets can all be mixed and matched to fall along the brand's color palate. It's hard not to imagine that Chris Burch went shopping in China and ordered one of each in five colors.

As you can imagine the cloths are styled with an eye towards bright Greenwich prep. Think of hot pink puffer vests styled with stripped button down shirts, navy blazers with nautical sweaters stripped sweaters and a bright green barn jacket ($178) paired with a basic black sweater.

Although the fashion is nice it's far from the highlight. It's the housewares that really make C. Wonder stand apart from other retail stores. The mix and match style of dishes, napkins, table accessories and hostess gifts fill a much needed market at the fast fashion price point. The styling is modern and playful similar to the styling’s of Jonathon Adler. Dinner plates are $12 each, salad plates are $10 and cereal bowls $8. Theoretically, you can walk away with a full table setting for $12 people for under $500.

Now, that's a meal, or table setting, that makes our mouths water! You can click here to see a photo stream of all our spy pictures from the store opening

C. Wonder
72 Prince Street

Pink on Madison

A reader writes: "My 9 year old daughter Paulina has been wearing lots of pink this month; I'm a breast cancer survivor and she wanted to show her support."

We want to see how you how you support Breast Cancer Awareness. Send us pictures of you wearing pink on Madison through Twitter @MadisonAveSpy, to Facebook or email. We will post a picture each day of our favorite pink person during the Pink Ribbon Project campaign.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Vilebrequin Annual Sample Sale

Vilebrequin is hosting their a sample sale this week and prices of their famous men's swim trunks and sportswear will be 50% to 80% off. The sale will run from Wednesday, October 19th through Thursday, October 20th.

As far as pricing goes, we are told that men's and boy's swim trunks will be about 50% off and ready-to-wear and accessories will be marked down a bit more. The company's solid color and print swimwear normally run from $150 to $280 and boy's swimwear runs from $110 to $140. We can't think of a more adorable sight than a little tot matching his big daddy.

This summer, Vilbrequine moved most of their merchandise from their location on Madison and 81st Street to their new store on 1007 Madison (between 77th & 78th), tucked between Missoni and Intermix. A small selection of solid swimwear is still being sold at the 82st Street location their lease ends in January. We have a feeling that the Intermix and Missoni shoppers are going to have a hard time resisting a warm weather impulse purchase for their boys.

Vilebrequin Sample Sale
Wednesday, October 19th to Thursday, October 20th
9am to 7pm
100 Varick Street (Between Charlton and Vandam) 2nd Floor
ID Required for entry

Pink on Madison

The contrast of hot pink against a grassy shade of green adds pop to both colors. How do you make pink pop? Send us pictures of how you support Breast Cancer Awareness through Twitter @MadisonAveSpy, to Facebook or email. We will post a picture each day of our favorite pink person during the Pink Ribbon Project campaign.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Chanel Cosmetics 10% Off

For the first time Saks Fifth Avenue has excluded cosmetics from their friends and family sale. Those who were counting on stocking up on their beauty necessities should not fret. Lord & Taylor is hosting their friends and family sale from Wednesday, October 19 through Monday, October 24th and Chanel cosmetics are included in the promotion. The discount is 10% off.

Presale is already underway and we suggest ordering quickly because department stores often run out of items during friends and family promotions. If you're anything like us, you can't begin to anticipate what you may need or want. Perhaps we can make a few personal suggestions. We are in love with the green/gold nail color called Peridot and have also become big fans of the Roughe Coco Shine, which is part lip gloss/ part lipstick.

Lord & Taylor
Janet Hagen
Chanel Counter Manager

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The IT-It: Moshi Moshi Phones

Pop-culture is such a big part about shopping and trends. It's hard to ignore all the new and interesting items that sweep retail culture. So starting this week, we are going to hightlight the newest, the hotest and hard-to-get items that make our mouths warter and hearts pump.

The big buzz can come from a $5 braces bracelet or impossible to get $995 Christian Louboutin men's spikey sneakers. Regardless of what IT is, it's obviously an IT-it.

This week. with the launch of the new iPhone we are struck by Moshi Moshi headsets. They are bright plastic retro shaped headsets that plug into your cell phone. Fans range from those concearned about SAR radiation to others who are tired of crooking a skinny cell phone under their chin.

Moshi Moshi headsets come in a wide array of bright colors ranging from bubble gum pink to electric blue. They are sold in cell phone and variety stores inlcuding, Lester's and Feldman's Hardware on the Upper East Side.

Moshi Moshi Headsets
$34 Lester's
$29, plus shipping Amazon

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Think Pink on Madison

It's hard to imagine a color more perfect than pink. It's sweet, cheery and oh so girly. Seldom do we need an excuse to wrap ourselves in magenta, blush or bubblegum but the Madison Avenue Business Improvement District is sweetening the deal.

In support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Madison Avenue BID is hosting its 12th Annual Pink Ribbon Project. Approximately 30 Madison Avenue retailers have selected items from there stores and a portion of the sale proceeds will be given to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Mount Sinai Hospital’s Breast Health Resource Program.

The event will run from October 17 to October 23 and there is a wonderful array of products from which to choose. Theory has designated their Pink Project item as a cold weather scarf, Pratesi has picked a Mongolian cashmere throw, Paola Quadretti chose a taffeta blouse and Kimara Ahnert elected their pucker lipstick.Click here to see the full list of Madison Avenue Pink Ribbon items.

In addition to purchasing a Pink Ribbon item, you can show your support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month by sending us a picture of yourself wearing pink on Madison Avenue. Send your pictures through Twitter @MadisonAveSpy, to Facebook or email. We will post a picture each day of our favorite pink person during the Pink Ribbon Project campaign.

Now, that's what we call Pinkalicious!!!

Diamonds for Daugthers

Most little girls have a similar dream of meeting prince charming and having a fairytale wedding. Once we grow up, we learn what's really important-- diamonds!

Like finding a good anti-aging regimen, it's never too early to start planing for your daugthers' or daugthers-in-law. One women with four sons recently started diamond hunting for her boys. Her first call was to Missy's Divorce Your Jewels.

Missy has eliminated the middle man and created a business channel where both buyer and seller are winners. By buying diamonds directly from her clients, she is able to sell them directly to buyers.

Right now Divorce Your Jewels has a great variety of diamonds to be snatched up. We are in love with 3.04 carat princess shape diamond that's flanked by two smaller emerald shape stones, a 3.07 carat diamond that has lovely baguettes all the way around the ring, an eternity band with more than 7 carats of emerald shape diamonds and 1.50 carats of diamond trillion stud earrings. How does one choose?

You can check the Divorce Your Jewels online store to see a full range of sparkly diamonds, gold and watches or you can contact Missy to start a new chapter of your life and Divorce Your Jewels.

Sponsored Post

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Judith Ripka Sample Sale

The Judith Ripka road show sample sale is on the move once again. New Yorkers will be able to take advantage of steeply discounted 18kt gold and silver bracelets, necklaces, rings and earrings from Thursday, October 13 through Saturday, October 15. Prices will run from 50% to 75% off retail prices.

There will be a total of 14 Judith Ripka sample sales cross the country this month. Once can only imagine the vast amount of inventory needed to stock outlets spanning from Colorado to Texas. You can click here to view scheduled sample sales for November and December.

We also recall seeing a coupon that can be used for additional discounts. Try mentioning the ad while checking out to access further savings.

Judith Ripka Sample Sale
Thursday, October 13 to Saturday, October 15
Thurs 10am to 8pm, Fri 10am to 6pm, Sat 10am to 5pm
The Double Tree Metropolitan - 569 Lexington Ave @ 51st Street

Monday, October 10, 2011

Rosie Pope's First Sample Sale

Bravo Network's resident maternity expert, Rosie Pope is hosting her first ever sample sale at her Madison Avenue boutique. The three hour sale will take place on Wednesday, October 12 from 6pm to 9pm.

We are told that all items included in the sale will be priced from $10 to $50. After several pregnancies, we would recommend grabbing the form fitting black Carla dress. It can be worn almost anywhere at anytime and looks great throughout your entire pregnancy.

Rosie Pope
1265 Madison Avenue

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Chris Burch Opens C. Wonder

Retailer-extraordinaire, Chris Burch will open his newest boutique, C. Wonder, October 22, in Soho. The grand opening will include a myriad of games and prizes. The new concept will sell housewares, home decor, personal electronics, in addition to apparel, shoes, jewelry and accessories, according to our sources.

"Think of it as a really cool and updated ABC Carpet," our spy says. Chris Burch is best known for being the brains -- and money-- behind ex-wife Tory Burch. Not willing to just sit on his wallet, Chris has been working on several concepts, including the launch of lifestyle brand Monika Chiang. (That's Chris' current girlfriend.)

The office supplies sold in C.Wonder draw from another Burch venture, called Poppin. Poppin's chicly redesigned office supplies are currently sold online at an affordable price point and come in an array of bright colors. Totally cool (or at least they photograph really cool.)

C. Wonder is slated to attract the Anthropology customer in a more fashionable and modern environment. The 5,100 square foot space was first built out in a warehouse in China, as to perfect the design and merchandising of the concept.

If all goes according to plan, C. Wonder will multiply across the country. As a matter of fact, Chris Burch is so confident about his self-named venture, he's requested others call him, The King. Perhaps he is testing the name of his next retail concept.

Photo Credit: Racked

Saturday, October 8, 2011

442 Columbus Avenue (@ 82nd street)

Sponsored Mention

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Joe Fresh Comes to Madison Avenue

Joe Fresh, a Canadian fashion love child between H&M and Zara, will be opening their first New York boutique on Madison Avenue on Thursday. The store, located at 1055 Madison Avenue, at 80th Street, is supposedly just a pop-up store to prepare for the unveiling of several more stores throughout the tri-state area.

Most items at Joe Fresh are priced around $100 and many are below the $50 mark. We checked out the boutique while staff were putting on the finishing touches. We saw a table full of colorful sweaters, lots of tweed coats and work-appropriate outfits. We are told that those merino wool sweaters will retail for $49, while a metallic pleated miniskirts will sell for just $39.

Low-cost fast-fashion is a new concept for Madison Avenue, which is more known for items that cost the same as a mortgage payment. In this case, we welcome any impulse purchase that costs less than a Tom Ford lipstick.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Saks Friends & Family

The amount of exclusions associated with any department store promotion reads like the ingredients of a Twinkie. We are starting to think it might be easier to make a list of items that are included in the shopping incentive.

If you're not worried about getting wrinkles from studying the fine print, you may want to take advantage of Sak's Fifth Avenue's Friends & Family promotion. The discount will run from Monday, October 10 through Saturday, October 22. The discount on clothing and accessories is 20% off and online shoppers can use the codes: FRIEND9.

We actually went though the full list of exclusions (ordering botox as we complete this post) and found a few interesting items that are actually in the sale. For readers that have children or shop for kids, you can use the friends and family discount on almost the entire children's department. Only Little Marc Jacobs, kid's UGGs, Prada shoes and Gucci shoes are blacked out. Housewares is also a good department to hit up.

Of the more popular clothing brands sold at Saks, DVF, Milly, Vince, Rag & Bone and Tory Burch, Theory are included in the sale. Now, please excuse me while I massage my crow's feet.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Dior, YSL, Fendi & Prada at TJ Maxx

We have come to adore the TJ Maxx at Columbus Square almost as much as we love Whole Foods. During a recent trip we found an unexpected array of designer shoes, accessories and clothing.

Following our own advice, we headed straight to "The Runway" section that is delineated by lavender signs. A table of yellow Fendi boxes first caught our eye. Upon the table we found lots of designer iPad accessories. A hot pink leather YSL iPad case was $280 from a suggested retail of $450 and a Fendi rubber iPad protector was $100 from $150. In the same area we also found an interesting unknown Italian designer bag made of mink and leather for $230.

Further along, we spotted a lone nude silk and sequined Versace dress for $400 from $1000, a very Fall 2011 cashmere Ralph Lauren Black Label cape for $500 from $1250 and a Black Label shearling jacket for $700. The store tags were still on the shearling jacked and showed a retail price of $3,600!

In addition to the more expensive high-end designer clothing, we found lots of McQ by Alexander McQueen priced almost as attractively. A two tone wrap dress from last year is $130 from $325. (The same dress is $425 on A McQ silk dress with zippers is $200 and an iconic print seethe is $300.

Shoe lovers brace yourself. We found Dolce & Gabbana sandals, Miu Miu pumps, Christian Dior slingbacks and last season's Prada patent two-tone pumps all priced at $300. We dare you to find a single pair of shoes on the 8th floor of Saks priced under $300.

See, it's even better than organic veges!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Scoop Warehouse Sale Fizzles

By TJ Kennedy

The final consolidation of the Scoop Warehouse Sale is well underway at the Meatpacking location. Although the racks are stocked, it takes quite a bit of determination to find a stand out piece that is actually in your size.

The top floor is mostly summer tanks and jeans, with a few exceptional Missoni print tops & dresses. Prices, unfortunately, still range around $1,000. The jeans, however, were marked down a fair amount. Pairs that retailed for almost $300 were down to just $100. If you're in the market for denim, now is the time to pounce.

The downstairs selection of accessories is grim, but there were several light sweaters that are ideal for this time of year. There are very few pairs of shoes, no handbags, and a ton of belts. A gorgeous hunter green Marc Jacobs wool jacket caught everyone's eye, but only large sizes were left.

The men's selection was much more plentiful, with John Varvatos tees for $50, Rag & Bone knit sweaters around $200, and cashmere crew sweaters from a variety of designers. Might we suggest picking up a thing or two for your over-worked, under-styled boyfriend?

While prices were generally marked down just 50%, an employee pointed out that select items would be further discounted at the register. We assume the deals will get better as the sale continues but we wouldn't suggest attending with very high hopes.
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