clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

The Avant-Garde and Ivan Grundahl Await at IF's Famed Basement Sale

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

The scene in the basement of Soho's IF Boutique was fairly serene considering all the discounted Martin Margiela and Comme des Garçons floating around. No, it's not a dream, it's IF's semi-annual basement sale.

We were told the place was a mob scene yesterday when the sale opened—which may explain why there's some space on the racks today. But don't let the open air keep you from coming by: There is still a lot to be had. And some highly desirable pieces have been marked down three, four, five times—prices are up to 85% off.

There is considerably more womenswear than menswear—though that isn't totally unusual. Most of the space is devoted to avant-garde bits by Ivan Grundahl. Fun fact: IF is Grundahl's primary distributor and exclusive carrier—at least in New York. So, in addition to overstock there are sample pieces and the prices are pretty incredible. We loved patchwork wool blazers ($115 from $578); abstracted macro-leopard print party dresses in sort of a feather-light, waxed, techno-fabric ($156 from $780); billowy crinoline shrugs ($158); and an asymmetrical blue-gray cocktail dress with an amorphous tartan train ($340 from $1700). Other Grundahl's include floppy motorcycle jackets in waxed canvas ($145 from $473) and natural canvas ($120), and an assortment of trenches—military-inspired, leather-piped, assorted colors, symmetrical or not (starting at $150).

In other designers, check out the slew—at least three styles in a variety of sizes—of Margiela jeans (starting at $149); plus a nice selection of just slightly irreverent careerwear by Watanabe: A sharkskin-sheen blazer in gray-green ($435 from $1492), a hounsdtooth version ($249 from $875), and geometric-print trousers ($189 from $612). We also loved strawberry-print Comme des Garçons jeans, slightly cropped ($280 from $713). Over in shoes, several styles of Margiela pumps are surprisingly languishing. They're incredibly classic—in matte black, nude, and an emerald sort-of-post-industrial-snakeskin—and fashioned from perfect, buttery leather ($230 from $525, the roundtoe versions are $250 from $595). Next door check out the kind of terrifying platform-nurse-clog-somethings by Comme des Garçons ($280 from $713) and a checkerboard creeper-loafer morph by Watanabe ($300 from $778).

We spotted more brands but less stock over on the men's racks. There are jersey basics from Tim Hamilton (starting at $60 from $200), and one lonely print Dries Van Noten dress shirt ($177 from $230). A series of totally wackadoo patchwork blazers by Comme des Garçons are definitely not for everyone (about $300 from over $1000); but a pair of plaid tailored shorts by Watanabe—assorted sizes in stock—are absolutely wearable ($151 from $326). And get there right now if you're after Rick Owens—we spotted one majorly discounted black leather boy racer jacket ($781 from $2604).

Oh, hello Margiela: Across the aisle check assorted jersey pieces—tanks, polos, tees (starting at $54 from over $180) and basic jeans ($149 from $495). A dress shirt printed in woodblock roses ($115 from $385) might be too much for some; in that case some simple broadcloth and striped dress shirts (about $260 from over $500) are a great option. Ready to make a grander investment? A perfect navy blazer ($435 from $1450) and an absolutely delicious, suede moto ($975 from $1950) await. Plus, in shoes, there are low Chelsea boots with macro-perforations ($180) along with a series of more traditional boots (starting at $200) (other shoes are by Comme des Garçons and Muñoz Vrandecic).

Accessories are also still very much on hand. There is a box of Dries and Ann Demeulemeester ties ($40) and a variety of Margiela jewelry—monogram rings, bicycle chain bracelets—waiting patiently in their little white boxes (bracelets start around $125). There is also a vast selection of lovely leather handbags (starting around $150) and belts (around $100) in a plethora of sizes and colors by Johnny Farah. There's even a big, crazy, magenta-tinted muff.

The sale runs through Sunday and is under the sales floor in the basement. Prices are marked and there are fitting rooms (well, there's a screen for guys). The sale is very pleasantly and professionally staffed—IF's is definitely the most consistently boutique-like sale we visit. Credit cards are accepted. Go give some Margiela a good home.
· Dealfeed: IF Boutique [Racked NY]

IF Boutique

94 Grand St., New York, NY