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Update: As of Thursday morning, all merchandise is an additional 40% off. Original sale prices are reflected below.
The preview for this week's Ann Demeulemeester/Haider Ackermann sample sale was calm and austere (much like the edgy black and leather garments these brands are known for). Far removed from the hubbub of monster sales like Manolo Blahnik or YSL, shoppers here could browse calmly and carefully through two floors of merchandise, all around 60% off.
The sale is organized by brand—each rack is labeled with its designer—and by color, so if you gravitate towards a monochromatic color palette (especially in black or white), you won't have to waste any time sifting through the brighter options. As for the lay of the land, you'll primarily find Haider Ackermann ready-to-wear for women on the first level, along with women's shoes and accessories from both brands. Upstairs is dominated by Ann Demeulemeester for both men and women (in fact, we heard a sale organizer saying that Haider Ackermann for men had already sold out).
While the sale was well-organized and there seemed to be a good amount of merchandise, we would not recommend this one for those looking for a bargain. The very lowest price point we saw on anything was $99.99, and that was for an extremely generic white tank top (think Hanes, but fancy). In general, we think a fair price range to expect is from about $250 to $700 for most clothing, with outerwear options—including leather and fur—escalating in price substantially.
That said, if you're in the market for a serious investment piece, there are some really beautiful items available. We loved a black peplum leather jacket from Haider Ackermann ($1,599.99), as well as a strappy men's leather jacket ($2,099.99) and a cropped metallic option ($1,499.99) from Ann Demeulemeester. There were also some epic, sumptuous furs available, including a long vest coat from Haider for $4,549.99 and a full-on arctic level design from Ann for $4,299.99. Other leathers and furs are available in non-traditional colors (like olive for $1,369.99) or patent ($3,549.99).
As for the ready-to-wear, we saw pieces from both summer and winter, though we think the Haider Ackermann selection is skewed towards the colder months. In general, we liked the jackets, including a blue velvet blazer ($479.99), a lightweight white blazer ($699.99), and a cropped military-style jacket ($659.99). There were also cool, billowy caftans, sheer dresses, and fringed tops ($489.99). A word of warning—everything that is out is out, so there is no backstock or additional sizes. We did see a good range of options (i.e., not everything is super tiny or super big), but we also saw a lot of one-offs.
In the accessories department, we favored the men's footwear options over the women's. There are some really great men's boots, with styles ranging from simple ($399.99) to combat ($479.99) to fur ($699.99). Women's shoes are less versatile, though some of the best known styles from the brands are included. We loved Ann Demeulemeester's strappy black wedges, but beware: here, we noticed some inconsistent pricing. The same shoe was marked at both $469.99 and $549.99, in the same size no less! So be careful when checking out. We also saw some go-anywhere flat sandals ($172.99), boots ($699.99), nude strappy heels ($439.99), and olive/gray strappy heels ($259.99). There's a good assortment of belts and hats (in leather, for $349.99 and $489.99), though we didn't see any handbags (except one clutch behind the register).
All in all, if you're a fan of the brands and ready and willing to make a substantial investment, you'll find something beautiful. However, if you're looking for the Demeulemeester/Ackermann aesthetic at a serious discount, the prices here will likely still be way too high. That said, there is a ray of hope: we were told there might be additional discounts towards the end of the sale (think Thursday/Friday), though this has yet to be confirmed.