These two sets of Spring outfits are exactly the same, but in each set, one has a fabulous secret? Can you guess what it is?
The answer is simple: one set in each pair is from a department store. The other set is from one of the famous off-price stores: TJ Maxx or Marshalls!
Fall 2010 Fashion week just ended in NYC, but in the real world, we’re all thinking about what we’re going to get for Spring, 2010. So this is a perfect time to tell you a little bit about TJ Maxx and Marshalls, and how “off-price” stores like these can help you get the brand new, brand-new items you want, without going broke.
I really don’t like the term “off-price” it sounds negative. But there’s nothing “off” about shopping at stores that offer discounts “off” the retails prices. TJ Maxx and Marshalls offer many of the same, trendy items that are seen in big department stores and retails outlets and in some cases, you can take home the exact, same item at more than 60% off the suggested, retail prices. You can see the actual tags on the garments and know this to be a fact. And TJ Maxx and Marshalls don’t just have women’s clothing, they carry items for every member of the family, and also housewares, beauty, decor, hobby, and gourmet items. These are not damaged or seconds, or from last season (85% of items are current season). And the items are exactly the same, not low-quality outlet items, or knock-offs.
Even better, the merchandise changes constantly so it’s always fresh, and always a “treasure hunt.”
How do they do it? Off-price stores like TJMaxx and Marshalls buy merchandise directly from designers, but much closer to the season than department stores do. That means that they can purchase whatever “overage” is available. The designers want to sell all of their merchandise, so they negotiate a good deal. The savings get passed on to you, the consumer.
I’ve been a fan of TJ Maxx and Marshalls, for years. While there is some pleasure in bringing home a dress in a high end retailer’s shopping bag, once the item is in your closet, no one knows where you got it. They just know you look great! There is some difference of opinion about which off-price store is trendier: TJ Maxx or Marshalls. But it’s really a matter of taste. I’ve shopped at so many of both of these stores, I think it has more to do with when you’re there (so go often) and what area you are in (different parts of the country appear to have items that would be most appealing to the local population, but not always). In any case, I have rarely been at either one of these stores where I haven’t found something I wanted (or didn’t know I wanted until I saw it–and a great price). When I go to TJ Maxx or Marshalls, I know I’ll be spending money…but I’ll be happy about it because I got what I wanted for less!
No matter what time or in what town you visit one of these stores, you’ll see different merchandise that reflects what’s trendy and current. If you like to shop, the idea that you can get true bargains every single time you visit, is exciting. But even if you’re the “I just want to get what I need and leave” type of shopper, if you like to save money (and who doesn’t?) , you will find that the stores are easy to access, clean, and pleasant to shop in.
Here are a few photos I took at a recent TJ Maxx/Marshalls Spring preview showcasing some Spring trends you might want to consider. These items are representative of what’s in the stores, right now:
I hope these photos make you want to get off the net, and go shopping. Visit: http://www.tjmaxx.com/index.asp and http://www.marshallsonline.com/ to get customer updates, information, and find stores near you!
Copyright ©Alison Blackman Dunham. All rights reserved. The Advice Sisters is a registered United States trademark. No content may be used or copied with written permission. If you want to use my work, please obtain it legally: Email: advicesisters-at-advicesisters-dot-net Subscribe to this blog by email or in a feed reader (See the right hand column of this blog). Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/advicesisters
or Facebook http://www.facebook.com/alisonblackman
I use provided samples for most of my reviews. Learn more in the “A Note About Compensation” section of my What Works Beauty, Cosmetics and Fashion review column: http://www.advicesisters.net/whatworkscol3.html