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Above the Fray: Shopper Camaraderie at J.Crew

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We already told you about the line at the J.Crew sample sale, and apparently fashion enthusiasts don't like to be kept waiting. As soon as we walked in the door, it was a mad dash for the clothes—after the mandatory coat and bag check. As always, Clothingline runs a tight ship: No pictures, no trying on, and no mirrors. Despite all of this, the sale is pretty well laid out, with cashmere, coats, suits, and other outerwear neatly divided on racks. But the clothing was not categorized by menswear and womenswear, creating a few awkward moments while digging through the hangers.

The real dash was for the cashmere, and at $65 a sweater, no one could be blamed for animalistic behavior. Coats also already looked picked over. Only larger styles remained, but then, the wool jackets were just $100. The sale had a strong focus on menswear, and plenty of gentlemen were reveling in the options. Women, on the other hand, had few choices other than sweaters, outerwear, and... ah, yes. Shoes.

J.Crew's shoes were available in men's and women's sizes, but the women's section was crowded. Even with shoes, Clothingline enforced a strict no-trying-on rule, not that anyone was paying attention. Fashionistas frantically slipped on heels ($99) (the patent leopard print was a fave), boots ($99 to 149), rainboots, and flats ($45 to $65). Bags, scarves, and belts were limited, but were the first to go.

Our favorite part, though, was the scene we witnessed on our way out: One woman turned to a complete stranger and asked, "Excuse me, how does this fit? I can't see. There's no mirror." The response? "That looks great on you. Buy it." J.Crew truly brings us together.—Phillip Picardi
· Lineblogging: J.Crew Not As Bad As It Looks [Racked]
· Dealfeed: J.Crew [Racked]