J.Crew Sample Sale: Winter Coats or Bust
If you’re in the market for a winter coat — namely one made of 100% wool – then a morning trip to the JCREW Sample Sale is essential.
If you’re in the market for essentially anything else (i.e. blouses, jeans, shoes, bags, etc.), then a trip to 260 5th Avenue may not be worth your while.
During tonight’s press preview of the JCREW Sample Sale, editors and bloggers alike were stunned by the fact that there are absolutely no mirrors, let alone a changing area, for fit-questioning shoppers. The employees of 260 5th Avenue claim that during the sale, which begins tomorrow at 10AM, they will be frowning upon shoppers trying on their goods, which I’m sure will be enforced given their plethora of employees and security that frequently flutters about.
No try-ons, and more importantly no mirrors, makes a decision on big ticket items, such as the aforementioned wool coats, significantly difficult.
Various sizes exist within the extra long rack of wool coats, which are all priced at an extremely reasonable $150. The best of the bunch was a Green Nello Gori Wool Peacoat ($150, Size 6, pictured), a Double Cloth Thinsulated Turquoise Coat ($150, Size 4, pictured), a Tuxedo Style Peacoat ($150, Size 10, pictured) and a beautiful Cream Collared Knee Length Coat in various sizes ($150). Only about a dozen leather jackets can be found in this section, and they range for a not-worth-it $300-$400.
I recall browsing the exact same racks of silk blouses during my last visit to the JCREW Sample Sale about a year ago. Looking back and reminiscing about that sale in particular makes it clear that this time around just doesn’t match up. Both sleeveless and long sleeve silk blouses were marked at $40, but I could not find a single top to highlight.
The $15 cozy tee shirts and $25 button downs are worth a peak, namely their Red Plaid Perfect Fit Button Down ($25, Size 6, pictured) as well as the various chambray and denim shirts. Please note that there are many defects on these tops, some of which are pointed out by small pieces of red tape (see photo of red plaid top). The defects and imperfections are nothing horrible, but do be sure to examine your purchases thoroughly before checking out (No Returns!).
A small rack held a small collection of super cozy and soft sweater dresses for $30, namely the cute Camel Sweater Dress ($30, XS, pictured). Within this same rack were a few striped sailor dresses that are worth a peek (also $30, pictured).
If it wasn’t for the small, two rack section of Madewell clothing, there would be no denim at all inside the JCREW Sample Sale. There was only a very small selection of jeans — all priced for $40 – but only featured a minimal array sizes and styles, which were mainly their Rail Straight style (only one pair of denim leggings and about two pairs of their Skinny Skinny jeans).
Although slight, the collection of Madewell tops and sweaters definitely trumped JCREW’s selection. Check out Madewell’s Wallace Sweaters ($35), namely their Wallace Double Breasted Grey Sweater ($35, One Size, Pictured), and button downs, including their Army Button Down ($25, Medium, Pictured), and their Denim and Corduroy Denim Jacket ($40, Small, Pictured).
Back to JCREW, they did have a wonderful (although, again small) collection of cashmere for as low as $35 for a blend and $90 for 100% cashmere. Further, check out JCREW’s Nude Maxi Dress ($40, various sizes, pictured) and collection of dress pants $40.
Their accessory department was wildly disappointing. Many people flock to this sale for JCREW’s buttery leather handbags. If you are among this group, don’t bother! There was only one large leather bag ($130), with the remainder being small cross body bags ($90) that could only fit a tube of lipstick and a MetroCard.
On a positive note, JCREW’s winter accessories were plentiful in a large bin, with hats, scarves and gloves priced at $20 a piece. Infinity scarves were also $20.
Unlike last year, the shoe selection this time around was disappointing. The same flats ($65), boots ($100) and heels ($100) made an appearance, with no new or recent styles to report.
Sadly it looks like this go-round of the JCREW Sample Sale is a whole bunch of leftovers from past sales. For those in the market of a new coat and matching accessories for winter, then certainly make a trip to 260 Fifth Avenue, but for everyone else: Skip it.
WHEN: 11/27 – 12/2; Tue-Sat (10-8), Sun (noon-6)
WHERE: 260 Fifth Avenue
between 28th & 29th Street
New York, NY 10001
By Caitlin Colford
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