As a longtime member of Gilt, the online flash sales retailer, I was very excited to see their warehouse sale coming to Washington, DC.  When I first became a member of Gilt, I would eagerly await the noon sales to get a chance at picking up great looks from hot designers.  In the past, I’ve scored a one of kind sample shirt from Thom Browne, almost an entire wardrobe of John Varvatos at cut-rate prices and great looks from Marc Jacobs, Ted Baker and Adriano Goldschmied to name a few.
Lately however I hadn’t been really excited by the designers being showcased so I haven’t been rushing to get to the site as I used to.  Occasionally some designer would catch my eye: Versace, Burberry and Valentino but it hasn’t been as often as in the past. I can’t say that the thrill is gone because I’ve gravitated to Gilt Taste and have fallen in love with Pat LaFrieda burgers, Galaxy Desserts macaroons and I currently have my eye on a Lemon Blossom Cake from Black Hound New York.  If these are offered on Gilt, the prices are at a bargain when compared to buying from these places directly so yes I still love Gilt.
With Neiman Marcus doing their Midday dash and Saks with it’s Saks Fashion Fix, there is new competition for that flash sale attention.  So there was delay in getting my ticket for the Gilt Warehouse event.  Having logged on late, I was able to purchase a ticket for the second entrance time (12 – 2) for $10.  $15 would’ve gotten me to the first entrance 10 – 12 but it was sold out by the time I logged on.  Still with great anticipation I headed out to the sale.
Arriving about 20 minutes early, there was already a sizeable line for the 12 o’clock time.  Not knowing what to expect, I was encouraged to see people leaving the sale with bags of goodies.  Kicking myself for not getting an earlier entrance time, I was hoping there would still be good stuff for me. The sale was hosted at Longview Gallery (1234 9thStreet, NW DC).  Upon entry were the registers, coat and bag check, 2 dressing rooms and a bar serving signature vodka cocktails and bottled water.  In addition, Vita Coco Coconut water (not my favorite), Pop Chips (delicious) and Kind bars were available although I never saw the Kind bars.  Once past that the gallery was divided into two sections racks of clothes for women on the right and racks for men on the left.  In the center of the room were shoes, accessories, homegoods and kiddie items and a deejay playing music off to the side.
Having been to different warehouse sales in the past, at least I was prepared.  I headed straight for the men’s racks grabbed first and then put back things I didn’t want.  I have to say I was somewhat mixed about the selection.  I’m always up for a good warehouse sale hoping to find top designers at cut rate prices but there seem to be a lot of second tier designers at okay prices. There were some bargains to be had, a Billy Reid Leather jacket listed at $1495 was priced down to $349.  (I checked on the Billy Reid website a similar jacket was still listed at $1495.)  There were some nice Ferragamo and John Varvatos shoes (not my size) and tons of Vilebrequim swim wear for $59 or less.  (Typically these trunks go for over $100 per pair).  If you were lucky enough to find them in your size, one could snatch up Brooks Brothers, Thomas Pink, John Varvatos and Paul Smith, to drop a few names, at some greatly reduced prices.  In the end, I picked up a Hugo Boss sweater ($59), Walkabout saddle shoes ($59 normally $225 which they are still going for at Neiman Marcus), an American Apparel tank ($5) and 2xist underwear and socks ($10/each).
All in all, I think I got some pretty good things at good prices.  Would I do it again?  Probably.  I believe with the discount on the items I purchased, the free snacks and drinks, the $10 was worth the price of admission.  But next time, I would have to get the first admission time.