Thursday, June 26, 2008

What do you pay full retail for?

Slastena made a suggestion (in the "Love it or Leave it: Selima for J.Crew clear glass" post) to create a post about items that we have recently paid full retail price for and how we justified those purchases. I think this is a great idea, hence this post. :)

I know that there has been an item or two that I have caved in and bought at full retail price (although I typically- as in 99% of the time- buy on sale). The last item was J.Crew's Jelly Ballet Flats (Item 91531), in black for $45. I really wanted a pair of waterproof shoes that also looked cute enough to continue wearing once it stopped raining. I knew the flats would eventually be on sale, but thought for $45- who cares! :) Side note: A month later, I ended up buying the red version for less than $20. Also, I noticed that the black jelly ballet flats use to be "on sale" when the other colors-the red, green, and yellow- first went on sale. After awhile, I saw the jelly flats in black back in the regular price section while the other colors remained in the sale section... a bit weird.

So please share with us know what items have you paid full price on, the reason behind paying full price, and how you liked the product (e.g. was it worth the full price?) :)


  1. I pay full-price for basics, like the chinos or suits, or for gifts for my husband, when I can't wait for an item to go on sale.
    There are some items I WISH I had just paid full price for, like the scrolled-link bracelet. It went on sale and then sold out before I could blink an eye!

  2. I absolutely LOVE your blog. I am a J Crew fan to the 10th power. So much so that I think about 90% of my closet is J.Crew.
    OK, so I pay full price for items from the Collection and a few handbags. Everything else can wait.

  3. I was at J.Crew last night and was so close to paying full price for the flowy jersey bateau dress. It is so comfy and versatile, but I already have a similar dress (but not as cute). Now I'm regretting my decision and think I'll have to go back to the store to buy it!

  4. I'm a new reader of this blog and I'm getting addicted...
    Anywya, I'd like to share my experience with Jcrew (I visit their store almost on a daily basis! I'm on vacation right now...that's why).
    I just paid full price for the silk Elizabeth halter in ivory. ( I kept seeing it in the store and more and more fell in love with it. I hope it doesn't go on sale anytime soon. I have a feeling even if it ever goes on sale, it'll sell out in a blink of an eye!

  5. CashereLibrarian: I know what you mean about not minding to pay full price for an item that is no longer available. That has happened to me many a times. :)

    Anonymous at 12:42 PM: Welcome! It is always great to hear from another J.Crew Aficionada!!! I can totally see paying full price for some of their Collection Handbags- they are super nice and limited. :)

    Anonymous at 12:49 PM: I feel that way sometimes too!!! That feeling of, "I should have bought it!" Also, the Flowy jersey bateau dress is gorgeous and completely flattering!!! The moment that goes on sale, I am buying two! :)

    Anonymous at 12:55 PM: Welcome aboard!! :) The Solid silk Elizabeth halter w/out pockets; item 95001 is beautiful. It is definitely a great versatile piece.

    The Solid silk Elizabeth halter w/pockets; item 89704 is also gorgeous. That top took a long time before it went on sale online for $69.99 from its original $88. (I know because I have been lusting after it the entire time!)

    So I am sure the version you bought won't be on sale for some time. :)

  6. I actually paid full price for the Strapless embossed beach dress in Bright Flame back in April after trying it on in the store and LOVING pretty and feminine...great worn with strappy heels OR flats...perfect with a cardigan or without...IDEAL for the hot and humid Florida summer, too! However...after it hung in my closet with the tags still on for almost 2 months, I decided that while it was wasn't $98 pretty. ;) I am finding it difficult to pay full retail when I know that the price will be reduced in a month or two, but I AM having an extremely difficult time not paying full price for the Cotton taffeta Belle skirt in Dark Fog to wear with my Polka-Dot Lana Top in Bright Pink (or Neon Pink) as it is called. I just know that most items I have purchased on sale were worth the sale price, but I would have been disappointed with them had I paid full retail.

  7. FabulousFloridaMommy: I know what you mean! I have bought many items on sale from J.Crew to only see them reduced in price just a week later. It is hard to know "when to buy" something from them, sometimes.

    I will say, the embossed beach dress in bright flame is very pretty! I can understand why you paid full price for that item. :)

  8. I must admit, I will totally cave when I see something I absolutely adore. I'll buy it full price with no concern b/c I've become the queen of the price adjustment/ exchange -- the sales associates see me coming a mile away!

    If you're an organized person, you can absolutely pull it off. I'll buy something, keep the tags on as long as possible, and file the receipt. Then patrol the sale sections online and in the stores (my favorite for that extra 25% then 15% educator discount) and check for the same exact item. I buy it on sale, then return it with the full price receipt.

    I've been really successful with this because I'm so diligent, I'd totally recommend it if you're organized. I'd say I've gotten about 95% of my items at full price and then reduced down to sale at unbelievable prices. It really works... and it's kind of a fun challenge to see how good a deal you can get.

  9. I NEVER ever buy the cashmere at full price as I find the quality to be pretty mediocre. Things I will pay full price for are items like chinos and t-shirts, stuff that always sells out. I do, however, get really annoyed when things go on sale only a short time after I buy them and J.Crew has a very unforgixing price-change policy. So, if it's in the 60 day period, I buy the new item on sale and then return that same item using the original full-price reciept.

  10. Alexis- This blog rocks! What do I pay full price at J Crew? Believe it or not it's their hair accessories. I love their selection for barrettes, clips, elastics and headbands. Their clips and barrettes are made in France, which are great quality and lasts a long time. Has anyone seen how much French hair clip costs at LV? They sell theirs for 275.00! Unbelievable!

  11. I am going to go a little off topic, but...I have been gazing at the hobo bag you pictured at the top of the post since my new catalog came on Monday with that on the cover. Has anybody seen it in person or bought it? I think it looks like a great autumn time bag, but am scared to pay $400 sight unseen!

  12. the ivory tartan miniskirt. my boyfriend got it for me for christmas, but I totally would have paid full price myself if he hadn't. I wear it with boots, heels, or loafers, yellow tights, blue tights, or black fishnets, and would wear it in the summer if it weren't so hot!

    I can't think of anything else recently that I paid full price. Possibly the shift embossed beach dress from a few seasons ago, I can't remember if I paid full price. I wouldn't now, though: they have changed the style and I don't like the new flourishes--scoop back, buttons down the back and no more wide waistband.

  13. Oops, I linked to the wrong mini. I meant the Burlington tartan.

  14. I know this is a J.Crew blog, but I just have to share this recent purchase. I bought these shoes from Target (yes, Target!):
    I got them in the mail today and literally gasped out loud when I opened the box. They are GORGEOUS! That picture online doesn't do them any justice. Plus they are VERY comfortable and have a built-in safe step pad on the sole. I am in love with these shoes and even though they're not J.Crew, they look like they could be and they coordinate well with my other J.Crew items. Plus they're not final sale, so they're totally returnable :-) (and their free shipping minimum is only $50)

  15. Aprildi - I've been eyeing on the Owen Hobo (95601) as well. I have the Uptown Tote, which is made from the same Borge Garveri leather that is used in the hobo. The leather is wonderful and I'm sure the hobo is beautiful in person as pictured. I'm waiting to see if the hobo will come in any other colors for the Fall collection.

  16. webbysuzy - I am glad to hear that the leather is nice. That's the most important part. I looked hard at the uptown tote, as well. I see that it is now in more colors than originally offered.

  17. CapeCodBetty: It sounds like you have a great system! I am really impressed by the organizational skills! :)

    Crewgal: I totally hear you on t-shirts. Especially since their regular tees (e.g. solid colors in popular shades like white, grey, black) rarely go on sale.

    Webbysuzy: Thanks for the nice comment about this blog! :) I also love J.Crew's hair accessories. For the most part, they are super well crafted. I also didn't realize LV made hair clips (and $275 is outrageously expensive!)

    Aprildi: That owen hobo bag (item 95601) is gorgeous! It was no accident that its image is used for this post. :)

    Heather: Kudos to your boyfriend for picking out a great skirt! :)

  18. If anyone is interested, I bought the Chessy brushstroke jacket and it was too big. It is brand new with tags and I am selling it on ebay. It is a size 14. Just search Chessy Jacket 14 on ebay and you will find it.


  19. I used to buy more stuff full price. Then again, I also had a job! :P

    I think jcrew winter jackets are worth the full price. I have a kelly green peacoat w/ thinsulate from 1999/2000. It was probably about $250. I still wear it, and it's one of my all time favorite winter coats. I also have a longer light blue toggle coat w/hood that I paid full price.

    When fall comes around, I may have to guy the new Glenbrae suede boots in grey, even if I don't have a job by then!

  20. Didn't someone already order/receive the Owen bag? I ordered one, but it is on backorder. I will let everyone know what I think when I receive it.

    FFM: I love the idea of Dark Fog with the Neon Pink Lana Top. I have both the Neon Pink and the Spiced Mustard and they are both so feminine and flattering. I know what you mean about the hot FL weather. We just returned recently from visiting friends in Windermere. Also, thank you so much for the "shoe info" I ordered a pair already (black)!!

    Cape Cod Betty: Well, I no longer feel weird about saving my FP receipts and then doing returns when the items go on sale since you do it as well. :)

    I bought the Metallic Market Tee at FP this week and absolutely LOVE it. Sooo comfortable in this hot weather.

    Cashmerelibrarian: I have the scrolled-link bracelet and wear it almost every single day! Have you checked Ebay to see if anyone has one for sale?

    jcrewjunkie :)

  21. I'll pay full price for cardigans, usually. I recently bought a simple cotton v-neck cardi from J.Crew (at $90 I was reluctant, but I liked it so much), then I re-bought it later with a coupon and returned the first one. That's my usual stance -- if I love it and feel it's worth paying for, I do.

    I have to think carefully about my purchases; so often with sale pieces, price is the driving factor -- then I end up with clothes I don't wear, just because they were "such a good deal." But even if it's inexpensive, it's still wasting money if you're not going to wear it! I also think of things in terms of cost per wear -- my $90 cardigan will be worn countless times, versus paying less for something I'll wear only once or twice. One *last* shopping strategy I employ is, when contemplating buying a sale item, I ask, "Would I be willing to pay full price for this?" If yes, I know it's a great piece I really like and will wear. If no, I know I'm just buying it because it's inexpensive, and probably won't wear it very much.

    Sorry for the digression!

  22. If you buy something at full price and then it goes on sale, there is a trick you can pull. Buy the item again at the sale price, then return the new item with the old receipt. Works like a charm.

  23. fabulousfloridamommy,

    I have the embossed shift in brown from last spring/summer, and like it better than the updated version (as I mentioned above). The strapless embossed beach dress is *still* so pretty, though, and I considered getting one this season. I'm still a little unsure about strapless dresses. I have a p2 in the shift, I wonder if I would have to go down a size in the strapless? The flame is a great color, I also like the cabana blue and wild peony. white and black would make for easy staples, too. all the colors are great :)

  24. I paid full-price($160)for the Alice sweater jacket in black. It's so versatile that I thought it was well worth it. When I wear it with a black wool skirt or pants it looks like a suit jacket. Since those are usually around $200 (at least at J. Crew) I still think it was a good deal. I also paid full price for the Camilla dress, but that was more of a panic moment of needing a cute dress ASAP for an event and not liking anything that was on sale.
    Usually I'm like you- 99% of the time I buy J. Crew on sale. It's hard for me to admit, but it's grossly overpriced.

  25. It's weird, but I usually pay full price more often when I'm in the store...maybe it's the "shopping spree" impulse. Denim, shorts, pants and hoodies I'll sometimes pay full price for, espcially if I feel like I really need them (if I haven't bought new clothes in a long time, going on a trip, etc). I buy at least one new jcrew swim suit every year, and since they tend to fit me well AND last a long time (I still have one from 8 years ago!) I can usually justify at least one at full price.

    I am kicking myself for NOT buying the sailor pants they had a couple seasons ago at full price, because then never went on sale in the color I's hard to judge when to buy sometimes.

    On a side note, a friend of mine who works for Gap Corporate told me that they are starting a new campaign to "train" their customers not to wait for sales anymore. (If you don't know Gap, typically EVERYTHING goes on sale within a month). What they're doing is producing a very limited amount of super popular items (capris, cardigans, silk tanks) so that they sell out quickly and demand goes up...she said the first time they did it customers freaked out, and sure enough now people are MUCH more likely to buy it when they see it, rather than wait and risk missing out. Interesting S&D strategy...

  26. Sorry if this is off-topic, but does anyone own the Cashmere Martine Cardigan in the Light Hibiscus? How does it fit? What are your feelings about it? I'm considering buying it but am not sure. Also, while you're at it, do you own the Rose Bateau top to wear under it? What is the fit like on that? Your opinion would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

  27. I paid full price for the Crystal Capri Sandals ($109! Yikes!) because they are going to be the shoes I wear on my wedding day!

    I also spent full price on DF's birthday khakis! Because, well, he desperately needed new pants!

    (See my post Me vs. J. Crew)


  28. Alexis, I was so flattered that you asked me to write about the Owen Hobo!!!! :) Ladies and Gents--it came in the mail and it is WORTH EVERY PENNY!!!! While I did take advantange of the PRIVATE 20% coupon and the every nice CSR granted me free shipping so I got a great deal..... It is made by Borge Garveri who makes the Birkin bag for Hermes (I also have the Uptown bag and I had done research on Borge). The leather is buttery soft and incredible quality. I had been eyeing the YSL Mombasa Bag with the horn handle and YSL wanted $1200! Compared to the plastic LV, YSL, Kate Spade bags in the $300-500 range you are getting a great deal. The CSR told me that it was an beautiful in person and only 60 were made in each color. I purchased the pumpkim-brown color since I felt that it worked best with what I have in my closet. Even if I did not have the PRIVATE 20%--- I most definitely would have bought it. It does come with a duster bag and carelfully double wrapped in plastic when shipped.

    I really try to wait on most stuff-- but I did buy the Bella jackets last fall full price and a few other things.... but most of the time I wait for a sale!

    Thanks again Alexis for this wonderful blog where I get to discuss my favorite obsession! I thought you would find it funny that my dog walker was at my house when the UPS man arrived and asked if I worked for J.Crew since I get so much delivered from there! :)

  29. cape cod betty - I understand how your idea works. But sometimes, when an item does go on sale, the right size may or may not still be available.

  30. Anonymous at 4:18: I saw your question about the Martine cardigan. I own it in Summer Lime, and think it's very pretty - though the color is rather bright. I like that it looks like something from the early 1960s (my favorite fashion era). I purchased it in an XS and a S because I wasn't sure how it would fit. I ended up keeping the XS because it's a boxier style (sometimes I take a S in more fitted cardigans). I've worn it with the Rose Bateau tank in turquoise & khaki shorts, as well as with a vintage white Lilly Pulitzer shift dress, and think it looks great with both!

  31. I pay full price for the suits; I am nearly six feet tall and it's hard to find feminine-looking yet classy suits for someone of my height. Plus, the wool crepe suiting is so wrinkle resistant that when I travel and am forced to live out of a suitcase, I still look good. Totally worth paying full price.

  32. I bought the cashmere Martine cardigan in light hibiscus, and paid full price. I think it runs a bit large, but I love it. The brushstroke top ooks ok under it, but you can't button it. I like it with a white tee or tank under it. BTW I wear it all the time!

  33. I paid full price for a purple Thinsulate Lady Day Coat, and it was worth every penny and then some. The coat is stylish, flattering, and warm.

  34. The last item I paid full price for was the Elizabeth halter in a cotton and silk blend. I can't find it online, but they had it in-stores. The blend was definitely the selling point for me, because its machine washable! And its really beautiful, too.

  35. Like most of you I purchased most of my JCrew items on sale in the past few years....however, recently, I have been buying more and more full priced items for fear they would sell out. I don't save receipts and if it goes on sale "Oh well" I am just glad to have the item b/c in the past waiting for a sale lead me to miss some items. I have purchased several of the JCrew collection items at full price.

  36. I know that some people have been asking questions about what items to pair with other items that they have purchased, and so I wanted to share this website I came across. It's called Polyvore, and it allows you to put together different outfits with clothes on various websites. is one of the sites in their database, so you can put together different J.Crew items and see how they look. You can also find things you may own from other places and see how they look with those. It's a neat little website, not to mention a creative outlet for the obsessed. I hope you enjoy it!

  37. Technically, I don't ever buy anything 'full price,' because I get the student discount. However, I've bought the Jackie cardigans and the Egyptian cotton short-sleeve cardigans at full price. They don't seem to go on sale very often, and when they do, they don't usually have the size/color I want.

    Also, off topic - I received the dark chambray swing skirt and... it's cute. For $15, it's really cute, but I don't think I'd be willing to pay much more. The color is much lighter than the images online, and it really is oddly short.

  38. Anonymous at 3:30 PM: I buy pieces because of price sometimes (ok most of the time) as well.

    KP: I think we all have items that we regret not buying from J.Crew's seasons past. :) On a bright note, sometimes J.Crew's sales will bring back items from a couple of years ago. Also, ebay is known to sell a few items as well. :)

    Also, thanks for the heads up about GAP's new product merchandise program. GAP use to be really bad about stocking merchandise. They would sell out of the popular items and overstock too many of the non-popular stuff, causing those massive sale sections (that take up half the store sometimes).

    Prep-e Girl: Congrats on your wedding! That is super exciting and a great reason to pay full price on an item!!! :)

    Nicole R: Thanks so much for the review!!! I already took your review and made it into a post for tomorrow. I am even more excited about the Owen Hobo now! :)

    I also think your stroy about the UPS man is hysterical!!! I can totally understand his reasoning. :)

    Natalie: I love their suits too, for the exact same reason as you: feminine and classy. :)

    Candid Engineer: I love their Lady Day Coats. (I have three of them myself and they are great.)

    Michelle: Thanks for the website. I will have to check it out! :)

    Jennifer: I also thought the color was different from the image. However, for $15 it is a great buy! :)

    (Incidentally, there was a post on the skirt awhile back for those interested in seeing more reviews/ opinions: Not what it seems: the Dark Chambray Swing)

  39. Here is what I have purchased at a full price in the last couple of months:
    In March I was going on vacation and I got Sanur dress in Clover, and Santorini sandals in Gold. While I never regretted buying a Sanur dress( it's truly a versatile piece), I found Santorini sandals to be very uncomfortable. I could not return them since I wore them in Jamaica, but they are back in box since March and I am not sure if I will ever wear them again. They look very cute, but lack arch support and are very narrow. BTW, someone was asking earlier about Helena Pavé Sandals - love them,got them on sale, but they are little tight too. I have a narrow ankle and a medium width foot size 8, I barely strapped them on a very last punchhole. I would recommend trying before buying if someone does not have very narrow feet/ankles.
    Several other full-retail purchases- Elizabeth halter in Dk Navy (later I was fortunate to buy a Yellow one on sale in store). This is an amazing top. Sooo beautiful. If I could, I would buy it in every color (mine is a pocketless version in pure silk) .I had to buy this top in XS as it is quite billowy. And finally 2 bottoms: Collection item Platinum linen bermuda (seen here with my beloved Elizabeth halter tank) and Glitter-dot linen cuffed short . Both are so pretty and easy to pair up or down depending on occasion.

  40. Heather, I totally agree with you about the embossed shift!! Last year, I bought two, one in chocolate and one in red. I paid full price for one and snagged the other when it went on sale. I LOVE the cut of these dresses.

    Then they went and changed it and frankly, the new version sucks. I don't know how it can look so flattering on the model, it's hideous in person. Makes you look so lumpy.

  41. Sadly too much! I get so excited when the new stuff comes out!!!

  42. I think I've only purchased three items at full retail price (and for two of those, I actually paid $70 and $20 over that price to have it altered).

    Italian Wool Pinstripe Suit (skirt, jacket, and pants): the cut is perfect for me, and it's such a classic style/cut/color that I doubt it will ever be out of place. This was my graduation gift to myself...though I'm not entering a corporate environment (I'm going into academia), I figured that I'll always need a classic suit.

    Campo de' Fioir sweaterdress. I still can't justify it...I normally avoid bold prints (especially when orange is the dominant color), but this just seemed so comfortable and so cool. I ended up buying it again when I saw it on sale...

    Jcrew also had a velvet jacket (bella jacket, I think? It had a standing ruffled collar, and leather buttons) that I purchased at full price. The gorgeous midnight blue color was too difficult to resist.

  43. Here's a off-topic question, that is in no way meant to offend anyone - what do you guys feel about people who Ebay J Crew stuff? I'm not talking about buying a final sale item, disliking the fit or color, and reselling it online. I'm talking about buying up multiple sale items in every size and color and reselling them on Ebay.

    I have mixed feelings about this. On one hand, it's annoying to have a favorite item sell out online and have it come up in multiples from a single vendor, for a much higher price of course, on Ebay. Especially for those of us in Pacific time zones who miss all of the really good stuff first thing in the morning! For example, I just bought an Emily blouse, NWT, on Ebay for $26 plus shipping. Not a bad price. However, it was selling for $19 on sale, and $14 during the 20% off sale, but I couldn't get to it quickly enough.

    However, it's nice to have an alternate venue in which to purchase those 'must have' items that have sold out online.

    Again, I don't mean to offend anyone if you're an Ebay seller, but I'm curious as to what other people think. Thoughts?

  44. Alexis, I swear the UPS story is true... the UPS man even went on to say that he does not even look at the address because he already knows where it has to go! :) Thanks for letting me share my excitement on the bag!

  45. Speaking of the Strapless Embossed Beach Dress, does anyone own it in Bright Berry? The color looks like a deep red in some pictures and like a bright pnk in others. For those of you who have seen the dress, what color is it?

  46. Lynn: Cute Shoes!

    jcrewjunkie: I only live about 5 or 10 minutes from Windermere...what are the odds? Did you get a chance to go to the J.Crew at Mall of Millenia? That's the one I'm always talking about with the great managers and employees. Oh yeh, and great sales, too! :) Let me know what you think about the shoes...I hope you like them! :) BTW...I just LOVE pink and gray together. :)

    Hi Heather: I actually have the updated Shift Embossed Beach Dress in a couple of colors and really like it (though I never tried the older style, so I can't say which is better). I like to tie a long scarf just under the bust (like where the wide waistband would have been). I place the square not and extra length of the scarve in the front slightly to one side...sometimes I place a flower or pretty pin over the knot for an added feminine really adds alot to the dress, and emphasizes the empire cut of the dress, too. :)

    I am wearing a 2 in the dress, but think I could probably also fit into the 0 just fine. The strapless dress I had was also a 2, but felt like it would "sneak" down a little everytime I tried it on, so a 0 might have been better. It think it really depends on your bust size...I am only a 34B/C (depending on the bra I wear)so on the strapless and sleeveless J.Crew garments I tend to take a 0/2, and this was the case for this dress, as well. I hope this at least helped you a little...the flame is so pretty...I am a huge fan of all the Bright Flame pieces J.Crew has out right now...looks so great with a tan, too! :)

    Stephanie: I would consider the Bright Berry to be more like a Raspberry or Watermelon color...bright but not gaudy. :)

  47. Stephenie: I bought the Halter Embossed Beach Dress in Bright Berry (it just came in the mail today, in fact), and it's very raspberry-ish. Much closer to pink than red, but still very pretty.

    Jennifer: I am also wary of those who buy up sale items for the sole purpose of selling on ebay. I've bought various dresses from ebay sellers who have obviously done just that, since they are selling multiple sizes and colors at once. But then again, that's what I get for not buying something I really want full price and waiting for a sale.

  48. Jennifer,

    I've noticed the same thing, too. Since I'm the west coast, I make a point of waking up early to catch the sales and always see things that were posted on the sale pages later on ebay! I guess people make a living doing this sort of thing. Just not sure how I feel about it...

  49. Paying full price- yikes, it feels like I've committed cardinal sin when I do it, but, we all 'have to' from time to time- especially when we really LOVE it. I can easily rationalize purchasing items that are more classic in style such as cardigans, pencil skirts, and suits, of which I've done several times. Otherwise, I'd wait for the item to go on sale, or buy it when I get a coupon from somewhere...

  50. I love the J. Crew sales, but recently I bought the Chelsea shirt (93628) and polka-dot short sleeve slim shirt (93695)... I was stalking them on the website and saw that all the sizes were rapidly disappearing and not being restocked. I could have waited for the polka-dot shirt, but the Chelsea shirt is a wonderful basic, soft, can be casual and more business-y at the same time.

    Otherwise, I think their coats are a really great investment... I did not buy mine at full price, but I would consider on some of them. I also missed out on the Bella jacket from a couple seasons ago...

  51. I buy the Liberty print shirts at full price....just bought one a month or so ago. They are usually sold out in my size by the time they go on sale. I have 5 now. Love them!

    I also bought the several sundresses and tops at full price last summer. If I see something I really like and it fits great I don't worry about the sale...

  52. I buy what I want, when I want, on sale or not. My shopping philosophy is that if I wouldn’t pay full price for it, I don’t need to buy it at all. This actually saves me money in the long run and gives me a higher quality wardrobe.

    This is not to say that I don’t hunt for deals or feel a bit sad when I see something on sale I recently paid full price for. But a sale after purchase does give me permission to buy every color available. :-)

    I wanted a pretty purple strapless embossed beach dress. So I paid the full $98. I liked it muchly, so I scooped up six others. Those others just happened to be on sale between $30-$70. All at the same store on the same day, of course. J. Crew sales work…how? But I was okay with that, because it was all savings on something I would have been willing to buy regardless, you know?

    I’ve paid full price for swim separates. I’ve also paid full price for suiting. My favorite go-to skirt for the weekend is from J. Crew, and yup, I paid full price for that, too.

    To recap: I can justify paying full price on items because that means I buy only what I truly want to wear, and I don’t have a closet full of clothes I only kind of like that I bought just because they were on sale.

  53. chini,
    I agree with your shopping strategy. That way I too don't end up with a closet full of unworn clothes with the tags still on! Yes, if something goes on sale after I buy it, I too feel a brief "twinge" of sadness but it quickly passes b/c I've already worn the item several times to make up for any saved $$. Plus, I admit it; I like to be the first to wear the latest and greatest...but then again I do hang onto my clothes for a while and don't mind wearing something that is "so last season" b/c I like it a lot.

  54. Heather: Absolutely go down a size in the strapless embossed beach dress. Or, more accurately, by it to fit your chest. The cut is really forgiving to the hips/butts/thighs, so even though my dress size is usually a 6, my strapless beach dresses are all size 2. (Yes, TWO! And honestly, the top still slips a little, but the cut isn't THAT forgiving that I could go down to a 0.)

  55. How about a post on everyone's most favorite JCrew item of all time?

    or your top 3?

  56. I would shop at full price if I knew I would not purchase from the sale section, thus keeping my spending under control (since I do not have an endless supply of $).

    Unfortunately, I cannot resist a good deal on an item I like (even if it's not a love item) so I try not to purchase full price. Plus, there's usually sooo much to like from JCrew.

    Take some time & try to put together a few outfits at full price in your shopping bag. It's a whopper of a bill if you like to buy new outfits each season ;)

  57. Frankly I pay full price for their jeans. I did just buy a pair on sale for 39.99. But typically the only jeans that go on sale are the matchstick or the boy jeans niether of which I like. I did just buy the cropped jeans full price (in indigo not over dyed or white) but I wanted them before I went on Vacation to europe. Frankly they are my new favorite 3 season item! I love love love them! It was the best 85 bucks ever spent. Other than that, I try to hold off on full price purchases from J Crew. the sale is inevitable although it sometimes can take a while and you have to be on top of your game to do well int he sales.

    I have bought stuff from J crew at the high sale price though... and then sometimes get annoyed with myself for not waiting longer.

  58. Hey guys: Yes the e-bayers sometimes really tick me off! Other times though there is great stuff online from past season that I couldn't get any more and someone saw it somewhere and bought it.

    Also Chini- that sounds like a good strategy for me. and I would probably do that but I just finished my masters program... so money is tight.

    I have heard other stores (other than big designers) have sample sales. Alexis have you ever heard of a J.Crew sample sale. I live in NYC so we get a lot of them but I havent heard of a j crew one.

    My favorite sale of all time was the day before thanks giving last year when in the store it was 50% off of everything on sale. I bough about 15 items all for under 200. Including two of the satin purses for 13 bucks each. Which was great because we were doing scret santa and had a 20 dollar gift cap. My friend robin loved it and kept accusing me of going way over budget!

  59. I think if the i do buy the strapless embossed beach dress, I will get a 0. I have a small chest so while the p2 fits pretty well it makes sense that without straps I could have a problem with slipping!


    The sash underneath the bust on the new embossed shift sounds like a good idea. That is pretty much the effect the wide waistband had on the older version, to define the smallest part of the body. Plus, with your suggestion, the scarf can add another color and really make it more personalized!

  60. Thanks everyone for sharing your full retail purchases- It has been great reading all your responses!! :)

    Jennifer: You raised a good topic (I might make it its own post in the future).

    I am personally not a big fan of those ebay-ers who buy in bulk. But the reason is completely selfish- because I would like to buy them from J.Crew and not on eBay for a higher price. :)

    But I do understand where those ebayers are coming from... they are trying to make some money.

    Nicole R: Too funny that the UPS guy already knows the J.Crew packages go to you! ;)

    Blumre: I have personally not seen a J.Crew sample sale. However, there have been a few visitors on the blog who mentioned that the Crew had sample sales in their areas awhile back (but they were no where near the northeast region- which I would have been all over if there was since I live in Connecticut). :)

  61. Chini, I think your buying strategy is such a smart idea. Growing up, my mom and uncle were the type of people who loved a good deal and would buy something even if they didn't need it if it was a good deal. I think that's rubbed off on me some because there have definitely been times when I've liked-but-not-loved something but bought it because it was a good deal.

    But after going home to visit and finding out my uncle has bought TWO GPS systems (really!!! TWO! You only really need ONE, if that!), it's made me realize that's definitely not what I want to end up as. So I'm going to start being more like chini and asking if I'd pay full price for something before buying it!

    And speaking of, the last thing I paid full price for was a denim knee-length pencil skirt from the Gap. It fits like a dream and the denim is so soft. And, in the two weeks I've owned it, I've worn it multiple times already. So there is definitely something to be said about only buying things yo ulove!

  62. jennifer - I understand how you feel about certain eBay sellers having bulk J Crew items online. I live in the East coast, but sometimes I can't wake up early enough to get to the computer to check on the sales. I noticed that there are at least two veteran eBay sellers who buys from the J Crew distribution center (somewhere in Lynchburg) because the items were returned and might have a minor flaw, so they can't be restock for retail. These sellers have the merchandise with the marked J Crew label, and I'm sure they purchase the item fairly inexpensive, but they mark their items up to whatever price they feel anyone is willing to pay for it.

    I would like J Crew to have a better system of selling their clothing that can be fairly distributed to all customers across different time zones, and perhaps they should have a quantity limitation on how much a customer can purchase on one specific item. For example, if you ever go to Neiman Marcus or Saks, they have a statement that says due to a large demand on certain items, a customer can only purchase no more than a certain amount.


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