Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Sample Sale Madness!

So if you're like me, you love a good sample sale... but hate the madness associated with it!

My first experience with sample sales was in the form of Kate Spade in 2003... my friend Leah had several Kate Spade bags and promised to take me with her to the next big (and secret!) sample sale in NYC. I eagerly awaited what I thought would be a "swanky" private... and sufficiently bougie event. I imagined waiters carrying glasses of lemonade to parched shoppers... and a sea of bags in different shapes, sizes and colors!

Clearly I was dead wrong in my imagining... arriving at the sale, we found throngs of New York women huddled in a long line circling the block. We were given dirty stares by determined women and resigned glances by men hoping to buy a nice bag for a female companion at a cheap price. The line was so awful, that by the time we got into the actual store... all of the bags were gone. What a disappointment! I quickly learned my lesson - if you're not first at a sample sale... you're last! (thank you ricky bobby!)

But in this modern day and age, sample sales have gone "le digital"... perfect for the smart and savvy shopping enthusiast. Kate Spade (and Jack Spade... for the men) still has a regular sample sale, but now you just have to click a button! Presto - no line, no cold, no bitterness!

There's an art to "online sample saling" and I've been fortune to meet some individuals extremely skilled at doing it.
Ekei, a bougie blogger in her own right, put me on to several sites that are wonderful, fascinating, and budget-friendly.

Ekei highly recommends the following sites and I wholeheartedly agree:

Gilt Groupe (invite only)
Koodos(invite only)
Haute Look (public)

Brand name designers like Tracy Reese, Vivian Tam, Alice & Olivia, Gucci (men & women), and Burberry (men & women) all participate in the sample sale arena... a perfect way for you to get that luxury item for a fraction of the price (and an affordable fraction). The sites also offer various financial incentives designed to provide even bigger discounts.

For more information leave a comment, visit Ekei's Blog, or e-mail me!

Also check up Ekei's write up on sample sales - she's much more eloquent in the art of fashion writing than I am, and provides detailed information about each one of the websites.

The Art of Sample Sales pt I
The Art of Sample Sales pt II

So happy "sample saling" everyone! I keep an eye out for the multitude of sample sales, so I'll be sure to post whenever the goodies hit. Be sure to check back for future updates!



ETA: Pratima was kind enough to remind me of the website Top Button which has links to online and in-person sales. Readers Plume and Rachelle gave some interesting feedback on Girl's Night Out at Shecky's which sounds like a ton of fun! Check the info page to find out more details about when Girl's Night is being held in your city, and to receive a group discount rate!

And for the men... I haven't forgotten about you. I spoke with a representative from The Gilt Group and they mentioned that they will be carrying menswear very soon...!

ETA 2: This just in...

"Chuckies New York - End of the Season Sample Sale!" Designers include Prada, Miu Miu Runway, Christian Dior, Marni, Jimmy Choo, and more. For more information, click here!

Cheers,
The Bougie Baller

18 comments:

mingbingconnection said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mboogie said...

OMIGOSH! Did you just read my mind...I was gonna email and ask if you could post something on how to do sample sales yesterday!!! haha I love this blog entry...thx for staying on top of the game!

e said...

you've introduced me to a whole new world of shopping. holla!

e.

The Bougie Baller said...

good times eva :) ... i find that window shopping can be just as fun as real shopping too... lol

and mboogie... e-mail me :)

Ma'at said...

bougie baller,

wanna know what you think about shecky's girl's nite out held bi-annually at the puck bldg, or do you not?

thx
plume

The Bougie Baller said...

hey plume, thanks for the comment!

to answer your question, I don't know too much about Shecky's Girl's Night Out because I've never been to one of their events... and as a general rule, I'm pretty resistant to paying a cover fee (regardless of how low it is) to access a sale... especially when the vendors aren't explicitly posted/advertised!

that being said... I did a little bit of searching and looked at last year's event... it looked like fun! I also love the Puck building (if I get married in NYC... my reception *will* be in the Puck building) so that's an added benefit :) The goodie bag looked fun and with crunch gym as a sponsor and handing out quasi-free membership... that's amazing! I also like the fact that they encourage groups by giving a 20% discount rate! If the cocktails and appetizers are free, then the event really might be the move... and it does sound like a fabulous night out for the ladies.

In any case, I'll try to dig a bit more and find out more about Shecky's.

so my question to you plume... have you ever been to Shecky's Girl's Night Out? If so, how was it?

Has anyone else been in any of the cities? What was your experience?

For reference:
http://www.sheckys.com

Ma'at said...

thx boug :-)

no i haven't been, however a really 'fashion savvy' friend put me on to it about 2 yrs ago and i am on there email list, so i get them daily. she spoke highly of it.....more about the goodie bag and free *drinks* note: she's an avid drinker. i've had the impetus to attend and the next one is in march.

i happened upon one of the event days and the line was virtually wrapped down the block (huge turn off as you already know). and as you mention earlier, i've been told if you miss the first day....you are in fact LAST!!!

-ciao

The Bougie Baller said...

plume,

i spoke to a friend (shout-out to rachelle!) and she said she's heard that shecky's is a really good event, especially if you are into clothes and makeup! might be worthwhile to check it out @ the $10 general rate :) Let us know how it is!

-bb

I AM GVG said...

Thought you and your readers might enjoy this:

A sample of dailycandy.com sample sale listings


Thu, February 07, 2008 16:29

Sell Out: Mini Sample Sale Roundup

SWINDLE

Savvy NYC Sample Sale
What: Save up to 75 percent on 3.1 Phillip Lim, Nicholas K, Alexander Wang, L.A.M.B., Mint, Tibi, Mara Hoffman, Rachel Pally, and more.
Why: Preview party tonight with DJ, vodka cocktails, snacks, and goodie bags for the first 100 customers.
When: Preview sale kickoff party, today, 5-9 p.m. Fri. & Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: 145 W. 18th St., b/t Sixth & Seventh Aves. (212-388-0339).

Issy Salomon Designs Trunk Show
What: Issy Salomon's oversize necklaces and such in plastic, glass, and stone.
Why: Pretty awesome baubles. See here.
When: Today, 6-9 p.m.
Where: 83 Mercer St., b/t Broome & Spring Sts., no. 2. R.S.V.P. to vivian@issysalomondesigns.com.

Showroom Seven Sample Sale
What: Erickson Beamon Techno Deco fluorescent Lucite bangles, Orla Kiely dresses and laminate shoulder bags, and A&G cashmere mini-tank dresses.
When: Thru Feb. 15. Daily, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: 498 Seventh Ave, b/t 36th & 37th Sts., 24th flr. (212-643-4810).

EMC2 Fashion Week Sample Sale
What: The Project Runway designer offers his spring coats for $100-$250, dresses for $100-$200, and shoes for $100 or less.
Why: Get your Passion Week on.
When: Thru Feb. 10. Thurs.-Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., noon-6 p.m.
Where: 240 Elizabeth St., b/t Prince & Houston Sts. (212-431-4134).

I AM GVG said...

P.S. I like the new paint job.

miko said...

dude, any sample sales in DC anyone knows about???

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