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We hate to say it, but it's true: The whole menswear-on-two-floors situation at the Barneys Warehouse Sale is a real kick in the teeth. Downstairs, suits, shirts, and ties are business as usual (no pun intended), as is the consistently-paltry accessory selection. But shoes seem extremely condensed, and there's no separate spot for sneakers. The lone narrow aisle might make trying stuff on easier, but it makes shopping that aisle a whole lot harder, especially on opening day when earlybird hoarders with clear plastic garbage bags full of things they probably won't purchase are thwacking you in every which direction.
Upstairs, the double-decker racks of shirting are replaced with a tightly crammed maze of single-level racks. Jeans and casual pants are still in bins, but they don't seem entirely runneth over. There are a fair amount of coats, ironically placed adjacent to a fair amount of swimwear. Knits and tees are on hangers, which is probably easier for previously constantly-folding staffers but can't be good for the life or fit of any sweaters you haven't taken home yet. Designer items are laid out similarly while those seconds and damaged items—of which there used to be so many—have all but disappeared. We didn't see any belts.
Now some specifics—and admittedly less than we usually report, but it was so crazy in there. Let's start with knits (you know, the ones that are stretching to death on hangers as we speak). A lovely and utterly classic Shipley & Halmos cashmere-blend v-neck sweater in cobalt was $129 (from $265). Striped Band of Outsiders polos in faded neutrals were $69 (from $160); a pique version by Gant by Michael Bastian was $49 (from $115). RRL Cream-colored henleys—great for layering—were $59 (from $145). And a single gray-on-black baseball jacket-esque T by Alexander Wang track jacket was $69 (from $175).
We started spotting reruns over in shirting—specifically some geometrics by Burkman Bros. and florals by Paul Smith, as well as a tribal, tropical summer shirt by 3.1 Philip Lim for $99 (from $250). Otherwise, find subtle-printed cabana shirts by Trovata for $69 (from $145) and Marc by Marc Jacobs shirting for $79—specifically a navy dress shirt flocked in pindots (from $198) and a short-sleeved tile-printed color-blocked number (from $168). A chambray-denim shirt with epaulets by Vince was super on-trend—there was only one price on its tag, it said $149. Your standard issue Steven Alan plaids are $69 (from $185), while a super-soft gray chambray was $99 (from $205). A Peter Pan-collared John Varvatos in blue with soft gray pinstripes was $119 (from $298), while a gamut of Paul Smith prints—tiny leaves, larger florals, a mosaic print, paisleys—were $99 (from $250).
Over in casual pants, they're still sitting on a slew of Levi's for Opening Ceremony cords plus the usual roster of denim. Standouts (some for being good, some for just standing out) include a wide-leg herringbone trouser jean by Balmain for $409 (from $1240); gingham-checked Marc by Marc trousers for $99 (from $188); and over-dyed Bess skinny jeans with studded pockets for $119. Also, if you're so inclined, look for leggings-tight leather jeans, also by Bess. Next door we spotted a Barneys sale veteran—star-printed Marc by Marc swim trunks for $79 (from $158). One or two more seasons and these guys could be considered vintage.
Coats were a mess: We saw a small handful of the Schott NYC for Barneys collaboration—a green car coat/hunting jacket morph and the patchwork plaid peacoat ($299 from $595) amongst them. Elsewhere a slew of handsome Rag & Bone barn jackets in waxed canvas were $249 (from $495).
Designer was madness but we noticed an extended array from Patrik Ervell and a ton of great Prada prints. A quick scan of ties unearthed several amazing Prada and Dior options plus some fantastic novelty numbers by Salvatore Ferragamo and Etro (elephants, owls, butterflies).
Now, what you've been waiting for: Shoes. There are a lot of oxfords and saddle shoes by Band of Outsiders, in assorted colors—they're $379 (from $768). A great Prada penny loafer is $335 down from $695. (Can we talk about the fact that a part-canvas Band of Outsiders shoe retails for over $70 more than a leather one by Prada? Just sayin'.) A variety of laceless Margiela sneakers—blue, beige, red-splattered white, brown—were $229 (from $465). A few Dries van Noten styles stood out—a canvas and leather saddle shoe morph was $329 (from $640). And a row of ankle boot boats shoes—navy canvas with white perforated leather insets—by Generic Man were $149 (from $305).
Whew! Stay tuned for a more detailed, more varied post-weekend update. We've only just begun to shop this sale.
· More Barneys: The Menswear Is Abundant This Season [Racked NY]
· Dealfeed: Barneys Warehouse Sale [Racked NY]