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Almost Everything is 80 Percent Off at the Jil Sander Sample Sale

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As we mentioned this morning, there was quite the line at the surprise Jil Sander sample sale in Soho. First off, the sale is in the showroom on Crosby Street right next to the store and they were, in fact, letting people in one or two at a time. We're still a little confused if it's invitation only though, since that's what our e-mail said, but not what the PR guy said, but that's what the doorman said, but we were in lazy sweatpants, so maybe it was just us that got grilled. Anyway, it was worth the wait.

The discount breakdown is simple: Just about everything is 80% off (women's and men's ready-to-wear, knits, accessories, bathing suits, and shoes included). Bags are 75% off, and there's two racks of women's ready-to-wear marked down to 90% off. Finding the original prices, however, was not simple at all. They're printed teeny tiny on the vendor labels (three of which are attached to a given garment, so good luck figuring out which one has the price without looking like that cheapskate), and they're all neatly tucked into each item out of sight. But the discounts are good.

For the most part, sizes and selection were surprisingly great. Let's start with the women's: There's a 90% off rack that's not too exciting—mostly loner pieces that aren't that tempting despite the extra 10%. The best of the bunch were some of the blazers (like a white one that was originally $2,670, now $534) and a navy skirt (maybe the cheapest, originally priced at a random $595, now $119).

There was a ton of RTW outerwear, including heavier wool coats (like a gray tweed number, originally $3,395, now $679) a few sizes in an olive green puffer coat (originally $1,545, now $309), and lightweight jackets and blazers (such as a black silk one, originally $1,675, now $335). Sizes here, as well as for most of the ready-to-wear in general, were good. There were typically about four or five of the same item out in a variation of sizes.

Some favorite dresses were a cream-colored shift (was $1,245, now $249), a sleeveless red plaid print (was $2,645, now $529), a blue velvet dress with ruching in the front ($495, down from $2,475) and the same one in gray, for $66 cheaper.

And since this is a Jil Sander sample sale, you can bet there were a lot of signature trousers hanging around. Since many of them were hanging in that annoying way that's made to keep the pleats, these price tags were even harder to fish out. But basic black silk (originally $945) goes for $189, gray wool (originally $795) goes for $159, and gray wool with yellow plaid (originally $845) goes for $169. The skirts? Not cute. Unless you want to look like a psychedelic pony in a printed mohair pencil skirt (for $395 after discount).

Onto the big guns: The bags. What we heard in line about there only being one or two bags out was not, in fact, true. There's actually a wall of bags behind a counter, where the staff will personally hand them to you. To repeat, these are 75% off. This area was naturally crowded while we were there, and since it was obvious that we were there strictly in a journalistic capacity, it wasn't all that easy to get in and take a look at those tiny price tags, so refresh your memory here. There's a good selection of leather totes in small and larger sizes, shoulder bags, and some clutch/wristlet hybrids.

The shoes were well stocked, lining a good portion of the entrance way in addition to taking up a lot of space in the center. Lots of styles and sizes, here—36s (even 35s!) can all find something, as well as 37s, 38s, 39s, and 40s. Whether brown pointed loafers (originally $405, now $81!!), lilac suede heels ($139 from $695) or sparkle purple platforms ($195 from $975) are your fancy, you'll probably find at least one pair to take home.

There's also a center table of knits (ranging in price but a lot of which were originally marked $495), denim in normal colors and bright colors, bathing suits, and nearby belts, mostly priced around $295 to $395 originally (so $59 to $79 after discount).

And here's a look at men's: A tipster mentioned to us that they were lacking in size 48s at the sale, but there was a wide selection of merchandise to choose from regardless. Not nearly as much as the women's, mind you, but it was there. We found a great black wool sportcoat ($589 from $2,945) and another unlined gray one ($515 from $2,575). Dress shirts were pretty full and vary as much as dress shirts can—striped white, plain white, white and blue striped— priced at $89, $69, and $89, after discount, respectively.

Whew! As you can see, there's a lot at the sale, and a lot to read about the sale—so here's our summary: Go.
· Crowds Gather on Crosby Street For Surprise Jil Sander Sale [Racked NY]
· Dealfeed: Jil Sander [Racked NY]