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Twice a year, shoppers queue up on 18th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues for a shot at luxury goods from Hermès marked up to 70% off. It's one of the great semi-annual sale lines, and it's happening again today. Let's turn to the live updates from our intrepid reporter Fawnia Soo Hoo, shall we?
7:55am: Good morning! I just arrived and it looks like a bunch of people beat me here. The line is about 3/4 of the way to Sixth Avenue. I'd say it's about 90% female (and well-dressed.)
8:00am: It's official: I count exactly two men in line toting man bags. One of them is carrying a leather Gucci with studs on the shoulder strap. Not just any messenger bag will do at Hermès!
8:09am: Coffee hasn't kicked in yet for the majority of the line. Everyone is quiet except for a group of three very excited girls in front of me.
8:11am: The line is getting close to Sixth Avenue. I just saw two ladies running to cut off someone coming from the other direction. This is going to be a good one!
8:12am: Oh! One baby in a Bjorn! The mom must be friends with the excited girls—they all just said hi—but apparently not good friends enough to cut in line. Baby, Bjorn and mom all just went to the end of the line. Baby count: 1. Man bag count: 2.
8:15am: A tourist just walked by and asked what the line is for. She assumed we were waiting for "free stuff." No, ma'am, we are waiting in line to pay $2000 for bags.
The line at 8:17am: Almost at Sixth Ave
8:24am: The baby is out of the Bjorn now and is walking around. I think she might be the best dressed person here. Babies in skinny jeans always get me.
8:26am: Staffers are staring to pen the line-goers in with rope and stanchion.
8:33am: The sale staffers must have gone to the bowels of the Met Pavilion to find enough rope to herd us into line. The barrier might make it all the way to Sixth Ave.
8:37am: Oh wow, I just saw the ultimate man bag. A guy just got out of a cab carrying a really nice oversized woven leather clutch. Bottega?
8:42am: A guy on his way to work walked by and yelled "What are they giving away?" I think he was mocking us. Honestly, you'd think people who work near the Met Pavilion would be used to seeing those crazy lines.
8:44am: Baby #2! This one is in a stroller. The mom was practically jogging down the sidewalk to get to the end of the line.
8:49am: Oh man! Big garbage truck loading next to us.
8:51am: Seems like a staffer just made an announcement, but we're too far back to hear what she said. Maybe word will trickle down like a game of telephone.
The Container Store and the tail end of the line
8:56am: The line is now onto Sixth Ave, ending in front of the Container Store. I see four more babies in line and that is definitely a Bottega Veneta clutch.
8:57am: We're moving a little bit.
9:06am: With the exception of the girl wearing North Face in front of me, no one in this line is dressed weather-appropriately, including me. Everyone is shivering and getting antsy to get inside.
9:08am: We're moving and stopping in spurts. It's probably that stupid 15-person-max elevator. Couldn't we just use the stairs?
9:09am: Staffer announcing what we already expect: Coat and bag check. The girls behind me scoff, "That's for the newbies."
9:10am: The guy with the studded man-bag is preparing for bag check, putting his valuables in his pocket. Moving again! Getting close.
9:11am: Now the staffer is walking the line making sure we're all here for Hermès since there is another sale going on. Kinda late to check now, isn't it?
9:16am: So close! The staffer was nice—she let a lady get out of line to use the restroom inside. Hopefully that wasn't a plot to sneak in ahead of the rest of us. There are about six people in front of me. I should make the next cut.
The liveblog continues with information on prices, selection, and the chaos inside the sale, right this way.