If you are familiar with the Barneys Warehouse Sale, then this season's edition will hold few surprises. If you are unfamiliar, then the above photo may give you some idea of the vastness of the assortment and the patience required for success in certain departments.
Do we need another sport shirt? Not really, so we couldn't muster up the patience to pore through racks of random shirts. Perhaps our bargain hunter instinct was muted since we were already feeling the shopping glow from the pair of Nudie Jeans we ordered from Gilt Groupe moments before setting out for the Chelsea Barneys Co-op.
So here's our report. We will not be itemizing our findings, because there's no guaranteeing that that pair of Louboutin sandals we saw will be there when you show up, or were ever there in your size. We will say that the women's shoe racks were full of Prada, Manolo Blahnik and Louboutin when we breezed by. Don't expect basics. The racks were a tangle of straps and torturous looking platforms, which might look good today, but we suspect may be on the last of their fifteen minutes. The rest of the women's section was crammed with customers, relatively well behaved, but slightly frantic. The only thing there worth reporting on specifically was a large group of racks featuring an abundance of Lanvin x Acne Jeans at 80% off at least. Of course, it was all indigo denim, but it looked worth going out of one's way for.
Downstairs in Men's, things were a bit more civilized with more room to breathe. The set-up remains as usual, and it's still the best place to go if you need business suits at a great price. There were lots of well priced classics from Barneys private label, and for those willing to invest more, we noticed lots of good options in all sizes from Isaia, still expensive at $999, but not compared to their usual $3,000+ prices.
Dress shirts are almost exclusively private label, which makes us wonder why none of the store's branded shirt inventory seems to ever make it to the warehouse. Ties? A crapshoot. Jeans, sweaters and t-shirts were piled in their usual heaps, waiting for the ravenous rummagers. These are the sorts of things that we wait to look at until at least a week into the sale, when further reductions start to begin. Men's shoes, which can be a parade of horrors in weird colors and materials, were much more appealing this time, with great styles from Prada, Jil Sander and Paul Smith that were worth grabbing. The one style that appeared in great supply (and there's always one) was a black velvet evening slipper from Crockett & Jones embroidered with a gold peace sign on the toe. Apparently there were not enough formal pacifists this year to move them at retail. We expect those to hang around until the bitter end. The less said about the wall of belts, the better. Chelsea Passage was dregs-y as usual, but if you are interested in a few random pieces of Hermès porcelain, head on over.
So that's our visit. There are some more detailed examinations of the various departments over at Racked, but as a general rule, we don't start shopping the Warehouse Sale seriously until next weekend at the earliest, when the signs indicating additional discounts start appearing. The final day, Labor Day, as most know by now, offers the deepest discounts if you can brave a long line.
We wish you the best of luck!
Barneys Warehouse Sale 255 West 17th Street through September 7th
It's That Time Again: Barneys Warehouse Starts Today
Barneys Warehouse coverage on Racked