a new york moment

 Years ago when I worked in the garment center, I'd go to sample sales all the time.  I ended up spending more money on things that I never wore but thought I was getting a bargain.  Over time, I became a little bit more discerning.  My reasoning was if I would buy it at full price then I should get it.  But if I never would have even looked at it before, I passed.  In the end, I stopped going to the sales because they were overwhelming and full of stuff I didn't want. 

Fast forward to yesterday.  My friend told me about a handbag sale.  Would I buy these bags at full price?  The answer is yes but no.  No because I think they are ridiculously overpriced and yes because they are beautiful but I would never pull the trigger.

So we went to the sale.  It reminded me of spending time in Loehmann's back room years and years ago.  The sale was calm and there was not a lot of merchandise.  Yet there is that feeling that everyone is cautiously looking over everyones shoulder to make sure they didn't miss something good.  Then there is the camaraderie too.  What do you think?  Does this look good?  Is it me?  Totally comical.

In the end, I stuck it out and ended up with a great purchase.  If it wasn't for my friend, I would have taken one look and walked out the door.  You must persevere in these situations.  I am glad I went but the event was a serious new york moment. 

Comments (Archived):

  1. Ann

    Did you get a Chanel 2.5 (black) with a silver chain? Oh sorry, such items are never on sale are they? What did you get?

    1. Gotham Gal

      I actually got a bag by Nancy Gonzales. Years ago I had dinner with a friend and met his wife who was carrying a Gonzales bag. I had no idea who made the bag but commented on it. She told me who the designer was. I was in a store a few weeks later and saw the bags. Asked the sales person to show me the bags and when I saw the price point I gasped. I had no idea. I couldn’t afford the bag and would have never pulled the trigger if I could. I could pull the trigger now but can’t seem to do it. A sample sale is a whole other ball game!

        1. Gotham Gal

          Next time I will take a pic!

          1. Satish Mummareddy

            Love the pictures you take of food for your blog posts. 🙂 Am alwaysimpressed that you remember to take the pictures.

  2. TanyaMonteiro

    I’ll be re reading this over & over in my life time.

  3. Tereza

    I was raised as what my mom called a “third generation Loehmann’s shopper”.What I used to hate but eventually loved was the communal dressing room. Because you could ask a stranger for unvarnished feedback and she’d give it to you.I’m trying to channel this experience, digitally, into a web/mobile application. For me, it all started at Loehmann’s.

    1. Gotham Gal

      That’s hilarious. I always believed when I was in the back room or the communal room at Loehmanns that I must have had a sign on my forehead that said “ask me”. People would cross the room to ask me what I thought. Brings back serious memories

      1. Tereza

        Me too, I’m like flypaper for strangers needed advice or directions.I think with Mother’s Day this weekend, I might just steal into a dressing room and ask a random person her opinion on some silly outfit. I know my mom would get a huge chuckle out of that; call it an homage.My thing is called “Honestly Now” and I’m just in love with the name.

        1. Gotham Gal

          I might have to steal that saying “flypaper for strangers”

          1. Tereza

            gotham gal, i’d be honored!

  4. ellen

    Gotham Gal must see the bag. I am a handbag collector. Love Nancy Gonzales Found one on sale at one of the stores here. Love the brightly colored skins. I was 10 when the original Loemanns came to Natick, Ma. I was introduced to Mr. Loemann as a future shopper. It was great for sport clothes before it got sold. could never find good evening wear there. . We had 3 suburban stores and we traveled to each one. There is still a Loemanns but it is horrible now. Looks like an old Ames or Zayres or Caldors now.At Loehmanns people were nice. At filenes Basement it was every woman for herself.

    1. Gotham Gal

      I went with a medium toned grey bag. Probably not very Nancy Gonzales butmore me.Loehmann’s is definitely not what it used to be. In the old days theyactually bought clothing that was over produced or leftovers for the store.Now vendors actually make clothes specifically for Loehmann’s so the storeis chocked with knockoffs of best sellers made in lower quality fabrics.Alas.

  5. ellen

    You never had the REAL Filenes Basement in New York. Now that was the absolute best. I have more Ferragamo Cashmere fringed capes than what is in the Ferragamo store in New York at any one time. In Sept. they would have the boutiques of the world sale and it was heaven. One of my best purchases was a Halston at that time $7500 dress for $150. It weighed almost 40 pounds but gorgeous ( he was into his heavy beading then). I still own it but it is a size 4 and that was 5 sizes ago. Just can’t seem to part with it.The appeal was that if you did not make a decision immediately you lost out. The competition was fierce. After everyone purchased and went home, we would make our decisions and then call everyone else to trade our booty before getting into the long lines to return.Their handbag choices were intense. My sister has a white mink Valentino from one of their sales. I bought a lizard covered with mother of pearl just for the collection factor. There were Ferragamo’s, Bulgari’s, Valentino’s Gucci’s, Trusardi’s and so much more. The fur coats and accessories were something else too. After two bankruptcy’s Syms owns filenes Basement and it has to be the worst. The management was so stupid.I only wish Boston had the manufacturers for sample sales. It is not worth it to fly into New York. I don’t need anything else ever.