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If memory serves, Alexander Wang's last sample sale was way back in August 2013 (long before we even knew to gird our loins for Alexander Wang x H&M), and many a Wang fan has been patiently biding their time until the day this legendary frenzy makes its return. Thankfully, the wait is over—we checked out the friends and family preview last night to let you know whether or not you should brave the elements to stand in line today.
Of course, the first stop for almost every Wang enthusiast is the bags, and inevitably one style reigns supreme in its ability to attract hordes: the Rocco (and its slightly smaller cousin, the Rockie). We're pleased to report that not only does this sale have both styles, they have lots of them in a variety of colorways, including everything from neutrals (nudes, browns, grays) to more statement metallics, pastels, and bold hues. They've also got the ever-popular Diego bucket bag, Brenda camera bag, and some newer styles (like Pelican clutches and structured top handles), though there are no Emiles to be found this time around. Also, as though apologizing for the long intermission between sales, Wang has dropped its prices from previous years, with clutches at $200, small bags at $250, medium bags at $300, and large bags at $350. There is also a nice selection of gift-friendly laptop cases and iPad covers for $75 each.
But that's not the only place where prices dropped. This sale, all shoes are going for $150 a pair, and we saw a good mix of flats (the Jacquette, the Ruby, the Simone), sandals (the Eva, the Marlene), heels (the Manuel, the Lovisa), and even a few boots (including those epic knee-high cage sandal boots). Be warned though that stock here appears to be more limited than in the bags, because there were some styles with only one pair remaining (like one lone pair of Mirte sock boots waiting for a 35/36 to take them home).
Ready-to-wear also seemed generally more affordable than in previous iterations of Wang's sample sale. Leather was $450, leather combo $100, dresses $160, outerwear $225, and sweaters $130 (though check the gallery for more price lists). However, beware of the small selection of "specialty items" throughout that are priced as marked: we spotted a comfy leather-sleeved sweater that would have been either $100 or $130 according to the price list that was actually marked at $225. Also, if you have been eyeing that uber trendy Parental Advisory sweatshirt, they have it... but for $400. Don't forget to check your price tags!
Also, we found that sizing in RTW tends to be on the smaller side: while we did see a few large leather jackets and sweaters, we only noticed one item in the whole RTW section above a size 8 (a pair of size 10 track pants for $130). It looks likes sizes XS/S and 0-6 will have the strongest selection at this sale.
T by Alexander Wang is in the bins by the cordoned-off fitting area, and prices are solid. Bras and tees are going for $30, sweatshirts, silk tops, knits, and bottoms are all $60, and dresses are $50-$75, depending on the material. On the other side of the fitting area, there is a small but very cheap clearance section, where T apparel is $10, RTW is $50, and leather combo RTW is $100. However, this "section" appears to consist of only one rack with three styles of dresses on it, as well as a few bins of unappealing red pants. Still, though: hard to get Alexander Wang much cheaper than $10.
The men's section, while much smaller than the women's, seems to have a nice array of merchandise (though possibly only five styles of shoes, all $150). The racks are spread out around a table of T bins arranged by size, which primarily seem to house t-shirts ($30) and sweatpants ($60). However, the surrounding racks have many sweaters and sweatshirts (also $60), as well as shirts (including some button-downs), outerwear (we particularly liked a puffy-sleeved tuxedo-style coat), and jackets with leather elements. T outerwear is going for $110, and while we somehow missed the men's AW pricelist, Mizhattan reports that Wang men's outerwear is selling for $200 (with leathers for $400).
Be advised that certain styles are a bit androgynous (we saw both men and women trying on a denim jacket with leather sleeves), and since price points vary in some cases based on gender, it would be worthwhile to confirm how the styles are classified before you check out. Staff let us know they would be restocking (and yes, bags too), but only styles that are already out. Also, while previous sales have had additional markdowns, we were told not to expect any this time around. We think that means that the opening day will be especially crazy, so don't forget your toe warmers for what will almost certainly be a loooong wait on line in the cold. That said, if we've learned one lesson from H&M in November, it's that there's no rest for the weary when it comes to Wang.
· Dealfeed: Alexander Wang [Racked NY]
· 112 New York City Sample Sales to Shop in December [Racked NY]
· Samples Sales [Racked NY]