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The Theory/Helmut Lang Sale at Clothingline Is a Madhouse

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After braving the one-out, one-in line-wait policy at the Theory and Helmut Lang sale at Clothingline, we headed upstairs to the second floor...and found two more monster lines, one for the fitting room and one for checkout. That about sums it all up, really. Let's just say that it's pretty busy inside the sale, which offers women's and men's irregulars and samples starting at just $30 and topping out at $75 for leather pieces for the ladies (men's suits go up to $149.) Also, because we know this is on your mind: Sorry, but there are no Theyskens's Theory items on offer this time. We checked with a staffer to make sure.

The sale is a mix of irregulars and samples for the ladies, all priced the same for Theory and Helmut Lang: $30 for tanks, tees, tube tops ("tubulars"), shorts and skirts; $35 for shirts, blouses and pants, $45 for sweaters, knits, dresses, jumpsuits and rompers; $55 for blazers and outerwear; and $79 for leather and sequined pieces. Theory makes up the bulk of the womenswear and the "organization" is just as chaotic as the Club Monaco sale, but the clothes are thankfully hanging on racks (or they're supposed to be, anyway).

There are tons and tons of black, white, cream and khaki basics, but we also saw various printed and bold-hued frocks and tops mixed into the racks. We especially liked a silky, drawstring-waist maxi-dress in ochre—a color we saw all over the fall/winter runways last Fashion Week. The samples are a size six or small and irregulars are sized randomly. Be on the lookout for any damage on your intended purchases. It's best to try the clothes on—if your schedule permits.

The Helmut Lang offerings are a bit slim. If you're looking for pants of the stretchy variety, you're in luck. There are loads of skinny blue jeans, distressed black moto-cross jeans, and also leather-paneled jeggings. We also saw a smattering of very minimalist (and some damaged) one-off dresses and tops and a rack of denim cropped jackets.

The men's section was thankfully—and unsurprisingly—less crazy than the ladies' area. Guys will find pricing that runs $40 for tanks, tees, shirts and shorts; $45 for sweaters, knits and pants; $75 for blazers, outerwear and leather; and $149 for suits. Sizing for the samples are medium and the irregulars are randomly sized. There is an overwhelming abundance of sample shirting—plaid, striped, basic, bright colored, short sleeve, long sleeve, etc.—and fun swim-trunks and shorts. There are also countless t-shirts hanging along the walls. The suiting options were a bit more spotty, but we saw some guys perusing the racks.

As we mentioned before, there is pretty daunting line for the ladies' dressing room and despite the 10-item maximum rule, it was at a standstill. There is an even longer winding line to check out, so set aside lots of extra time. Don't forget the bag and coat check at the front, too. As we left, we happily noted that the staffers this time around were quite helpful. One actually cracked a smile when we asked for help. Clothingline, are you getting soft on us?
· Of Course There is a Lunchtime Line Outside the Theory Sale [Racked NY]
· Dealfeed: Theory, Helmut Lang [Racked NY]