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DWR, New Canaan

A Consignment Boutique
33 East Avenue, New Canaan

Eight years ago, in Palm Beach, I stumbled across a vintage clothing store on Worth Avenue. They had just received two vintage c. 1955 Lilly Pulitzer dresses. Now, said another way (for the sake of clarity), they had just received two used dresses. We’re not talking couture or seminal contemporary fashion. The price, upon inquiry: $450. Each.

Horrified, I raised my eyebrows and smiled as if to say, “Wow, what a deal!”, pretended my attention was diverted by a $3,000 secondhand Pucci, and quietly left the store.

Well, folks, I’m vindicated: DWR has two of the same style vintage Lilly dresses for $98 each. Plus, as with all of their apparel, the dresses are discounted every 30 day period they remain unsold. It may not be enough to cripple Worth Avenue, but when the indulgent clotheshorse who bought the dresses eight years ago finds out, she’ll feel pretty silly. Assuming she remembers.

DWR (Done With Retail) is a year-old consignment boutique begun by Denise and Nicole, two disenchanted retail excecutives in New Canaan, and their store reflects a typical resident’s closet: Lilly, Rebecca Taylor, Trina Turk and the like, alongside J.‘s McLaughlin and Crew, and a smattering of high-end designers. The prices are reasonable: most pieces are under $100 with Lilly dresses averaging $65.The occasional Chanel bag drifts through, as do Hermes scarves, Dolce & Gabana blouses, and everything else in which you’d expect the New Canaan housewife (or her daughter) to be cavorting about town.

Robin’s note: DWR consigns a small collection of Tiffany jewelry, including an Elsa Peretti 18K pendant on a silk cord for $345 (minus 20% for being in the store for over 30 days), currently retailing for $825. Black suede Manolo Blahniks sell for $100, and I bought a pair of Lilly pants for my daughter for $14.

Click to read the rest ... "DWR"

Consignment     Fashion     New Canaan    
Tuesday, June 03, 2014 • Permalink

Designer Label Consignment

Designer Label Consignment

1344 Post Road East, Westport

Despite what the past few store write-ups may lead one to believe, my goal in life is not to troll the county for vintage clothing stores. But given the economy and my penchant for high-end designer clothing I can’t afford, it seems like a pretty good idea right now.

Which leads me to this place. I’ve driven by it a million times and it was only when I had to bring my car in for repairs (in the attached strip mall) that I decided to pop in. The first thing I spotted was a cotton Pucci dress for $95 and I cried out to the manager, “I’ve never been in before but I’m so excited I’m finally here!” She… didn’t share my enthusiasm and I stood there smiling like a mentally challenged golden retriever. A gorgeous pair of embroidered Manolos for $110 and a Stella McCartney dress for $45 heightened my solitary utopia, as did the $35 Marni top, Stella shorts, and Etro silk blouse.

Seeing a Chico’s cardigan broke my heart (please people: stop abusing the hard-won “Designer” appellation!), but a nearby row of Akris suits for $175 and a St. John suit for $110 were the threads that mended the fickle little muscle of mine back together.

Robin’s note: As I strode toward the dressing rooms with my bonanza, the manager stopped me and whispered of the elderly man occupying one of the two rooms, “Wait until he leaves. He’s very sweet, but the curtains separating the rooms are sheer and he likes to peek.” THANK YOU, SALES MANAGER.

Click to read the rest ... "Designer Label Consignment"

Consignment     Fashion     Westport    
Monday, January 13, 2014 • Permalink


Roundabout, Westport

606 Post Road East, Westport
48 West Putnam Avenue, Greenwich

If $60 Manolo Blahniks and $150 Gaultier suits send a riotous, teeming pack of non-sexual pheromones to your brain, then Roundabout is going to make you very, very happy.

Robin’s note: Try on everything before purchasing and make sure the shoes stay on your feet: just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean it’s wearable. And they don’t return ANYTHING.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Moms who love to shop.

Their specialty: Chanel suits and overstock Shin Choi.

What you should buy: The mint condition Etro/Prada/Gucci/de la Renta (etc.) hiding in the racks on the left side of the store.

What you may not know but should:
1. Consignments are only accepted with original sales receipt.
2. Cut-rate deals are even crazier when they’re clearing out seasonal merchandise, so go late fall/late spring.
3. Chanel rarely, if ever, gets further discounts. So don’t hold your breath.

Consignment     Fashion     Greenwich     Westport    
Wednesday, November 09, 2011 • Permalink


BAM, Norwalk

21 Lois Street, Norwalk

There are good real estate markets and there are bad real estate markets, but there will always be bad taste. Everyone has a “they sponge-painted their yard furniture and put it in the dining room next to the litter box” story, but who has actually purchased a home containing such atrocities? Exactly. Which is why savvy brokers enlist interior designer Barbara A. McEntee to “stage” (fully furnish and decorate) empty or visually offensive homes for maximum show-ability and quick sale.

But here’s the kicker: after the house is sold, all of the fabulous furniture, accessories, lamps and linens are homeless. So BAM was born: a warren-like warehouse in Norwalk where you can buy all of this stuff at 30-99% off regular prices. It’s like a glamorous, sheltered garage sale that changes weekly. If you enjoy the hunt, and you don’t bring children that like to push large paintings to see if they fall off the wall, you can find some amazing treasures.

Robin’s note: The women working in the store are lovely and patient: when my kids unburdened a chandelier of its light bulbs, Jane, a designer at BAM, chuckled and asked me if they’d like some candy instead.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Primarily moms from Westport.

Their specialty: Lamps, coffee tables, and sofas.

What you should buy: A new Carver’s Guild mirror with tags for $895, normally retails for $1,175.

What you may not know but should: Upon my departure, they loaded me up with free home design magazines.
Located next to “Sugar & Olives” (see “Sugar & Olives”)

Consignment     Home + Garden     Norwalk    
Friday, June 17, 2011 • Permalink

Second Time Around

Second Time Around, Westport

6 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich
135 Post Road East, Westport

This is a consignment store with a cushy downtown location. You don’t have to drive to a weird strip mall or exert any kind of shopping energy other than just, like, going there. Which gives ones shopping excursion a lovely continuity. But wait - there’s more. The Westport store has an events calendar so busy it’s amazing they have time to sell clothes. But they do. So many, in fact, most high-end designer pieces bypass the floor and go straight to “Wish List” customers. So you have to exert all your conserved energy putting your name on a Wish List. Don’t complain: it’s worth it.

Although STA is a chain, its inventory reflects the town in which it resides, with samplings of almost every designer from neighboring stores. The cache includes the girly triumvirate Milly, Nanette Lepore, and Cynthia Steffe (Lucy’s), Lilly Pulitzer (Splash of Pink), Theory (Mitchell’s), J. Crew, Talbot’s, BCBG.. you get the idea. The store is tightly managed, with tear-outs of outfit suggestions and “Selecting an Outfit to Flatter Your Skin Tone” articles in the dressing rooms.

Accessories include Prada and Gucci handbags, Manolos and Sigerson Morrison sandals. A small men’s section (from Robert’s) is in the waaayyy back, along with a clearance rack from which I purchased a Nieves Lavi dress for $43 (regularly $300-400.)

Special discounts are offered almost daily and painstakingly reported on Facebook and Twitter (making me realize the extent to which the rr.com Facebook page is lame.) The store regularly hosts charity functions and showcases rising clothing and jewelry designers, such as Renee du Mar and Polly Akers.

Robin’s note: Alex McCord of Housewives attended the Westport opening last year, which is so cringe-inducing it makes my feet sweat.

Click to read the rest ... "Second Time Around"

Consignment     Fashion     Greenwich     Westport    
Monday, March 28, 2011 • Permalink

Then Again


993 Post Road, Westport

Tidy and well-edited, this store isn’t fabulous yet, but seems promising.

Robin’s note: I’m a believer in consignment shops insofar as you can buy an aspiration piece you couldn’t otherwise afford (monetarily or psychologically.) But a used Liz Claiborne sweater? Pfft.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Women 35+ who don’t want to pay full price. Obviously.

Their specialty: Suits.

What you should buy: The lone Missoni, if you can make it fit.

What you may not know but should: It has a few well-priced high-end pieces, including the lone Missoni and an Emanuel Ungaro.

Consignment     Fashion     Westport    
Monday, March 21, 2011 • Permalink

Swap Shop

Swap Shop, Darien

The Darien Dump, 126 Ledge Road, Darien

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, depending on how loosely you define the term. If you “treasure” TV sets that may or may not work, you’ll be as happy as an alley cat at Nobu. I did find a few things, such as a white wood crib, a child’s bicycle seat, a complete Encyclopedia set and “The Divorce Handbook.” All needed minor repairs and a hose-down but, shoot, they’re free. If you live in Darien.

Robin’s note: The term “swap” is loosely defined, as well. About a half dozen residents routinely troll the shop and sell the stuff at yard sales. Others show up with small stacks of VHS/Beta tapes and “swap” them for a dresser. One man took a set of silverware later valued at $1,000.

Their specialty: Books and televisions.

What you should take: Furniture for dorms or au pair rooms. Oh, and anything really valuable.

What you may not know but should:
  1. You can post “items wanted” on a bulletin board inside the shop.
  2. The Swap Shop does not “accept” anything broken, cracked, stained, or damaged… umm… yeah.
  3. We’re sorry, but the large, ugly collection of refrigerators and air conditioners isn’t for the taking.
  4. Swap Shoppers must be Darien residents and have a trash permit.

Consignment     Home + Garden     Darien    
Wednesday, February 02, 2011 • Permalink

The Silk Purse

The Silk Purse, New Canaan

118 Main Street, New Canaan

You can’t throw a rock in New Canaan without smashing the plate glass window, mirrored console and white ostrich-skin sideboard of some tony home décor boutique.  So it was all the more delightful to enter this traditional, neatly cluttered furniture/jewelry consignment store. This town’s cast-offs are pretty swishy and the prices are delightfully affordable.

Robin’s note: Dear old auntie isn’t hocking her Tiffany baubles at the corner store, so manage your expectations before shopping for cut-rate jewels here.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Women, ages 30 – 60 years old.

Their specialty: Dining chair sets.

What you should buy: Baker coffee table, good as new, for $715.

What you may not know but should: Their website lists most – but not all – of their items and is updated daily.

Consignment     Home + Garden     New Canaan    

Twice is Nice

Twice is Nice, Southport

3519 Post Road, Southport

This consignment store caught my eye the first time I blew by it in my minivan on Post Road. It’s situated on an odd corner and I typically drive by it too quickly to brake without causing a five car pile-up and, as you can see above, it falls short of warranting that kind of pain and suffering.

But the other day I found myself cruising along with a rare spare moment and unusually light traffic. So when I found myself careening past the store, I slammed on the brakes, hooked a U, and screamed into the parking lot with nary a police car in sight. (Note to law enforcement officials: It never happened. I have nothing but the utmost respect for traffic safety.)

Anyhoo, the tiny lot was packed and I practically had to grease the sides of my ride to squeeze into a parking spot. The store was packed, too, with gobs of gew-gaw and gaggles of gabbing women. Most were buying something, be it a $24 wood-framed mirror or an armload of Lilly Pulitzer sundresses at $16-22 a pop.

Robin’s note: In a fit of breathless hysteria, I snapped up a ~$450 Tracy Feith sundress for only $16. Then I got home and noticed the atom-sized lettering on the label “for Target.” Bluh.

Click to read the rest ... "Twice is Nice"

Consignment     Fashion     Fairfield    
Tuesday, January 18, 2011 • Permalink

Double Exposure Consignment Boutique

Double Exposure

1090 Boston Post Road, Darien

Haute mingles with humble on many levels in this unassuming shop. Chanel suits hang amid lesser label outcasts, and designer pieces in varying degrees of wear & tear are squeezed onto every rack.

Robin’s note: Don’t expect bargain basement prices on quality designer duds: you’re still in Darien. But you can get a worn Vince cardigan for $48.

Who you’ll see shopping here: Women 18 to 80 who love the thrill of the hunt.

Their specialty: Fur coats and business casual separates.

What you should buy: Size 6 cream Chanel suit for $688.

What you may not know but should: They consign beautiful fur coats if you don’t mind last season’s cut. But stay away from the home décor crammed in the back of the store. http://www.doubleexposureboutique.com

Consignment     Fashion     Darien    
Tuesday, January 04, 2011 • Permalink

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