Friday, April 24, 2009

Steals and Deals

My husband has accused me, on a number of occasions, of recoiling in horror at sale items. I can't say that he's completely off-base.In my defense, it's not necessarily the full 200 percent retail markup that I love, it's more that I like the fashion-y aspect of designer clothing and that costs money.

The tides have been turning over the last few years, though, with high-end contemporary designers hopping in bed with big-box retailers like Target, WalMart and more.

Target and Topshop were the pioneers of this trend and now, just about everywhere you turn, there is some partnership brewing between an of-the-moment designer and discount retailer. Tack on a dwindling economy and there's no stopping such collaborations.

Charlotte Ronson (yes, her sister is Samantha of Samantha/Lilo fame) and JC Penny are one of the latest to embark on this designer styles-for-less roller coaster ride. Recession-proof prices start at under $10 for a tunic to $20 for a dress. Can't beat that with a stick.

So, with all these labels swirling around at my local department store/retailer, I had to have at least a look. I went to a local Target and purchased a couple of super-cute Thakoon pieces. The gray and black stripe knit top sewn together in a geometric patterns was extremely cute -- and you can't go horribly wrong with a knit top in terms of quality. However, some of the more fashion-y pieces -- like a blue and green color-blocked mini tank dress made out some cotton/poly blend that felt silky-ish -- didn't fare as well. The fit was decent (not amazing), but then again, it was only $20. The downfall of the garment, though, was that it fell apart after a couple of washes (it was marked "machine washable").

I have to admit, I felt just a tad vindicated in my clothing snobbery. I'd recommend shopping these labels for trendier pieces, but spend a little more when it comes to those special investment pieces (little black dress, trench coats, etc.). Cause guess what? At the end of the day, you get what you pay for.

*Photo of I ♥ Ronson line at JC Penny courtesy of Nylon Magazine.

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