Over the summer,  Washingtonians pile into their cars, head over the Bay Bridge and flock to the fun filled beaches of Dewey and Rehoboth in the little state of Delaware.  August is usually spent soaking up the rays but what happens if the weather doesn’t want to cooperate as so happened this weekend?  A rainy day at the beach, typically means 1 of three options: movies, cocktails or outlet shopping.  Since I had no interest in sitting in a darkened theater and I knew cocktails were already planned for later, we chose outlet shopping.

Delaware, home of the no sales tax, is known for it’s great outlet shopping, specifically at the Tanger Outlets.  With over 130 brand name manufacturers and designer outlets broken out in three large shopping centers, a day of shopping seemed just the ticket to chase away the poor weather.  My focus today was to snap up some work staples which would enhance some of the designer duds I’ve already planned for the upcoming season.  Top stores on my list were Ralph Lauren, Coach Men’s, Brooks Brothers, Banana Republic and Cole Hahn. I hoped to leave with some great finds at bargain prices.

Outlet shopping this time a year is always an interesting experience.  Stores are gearing up for back to school and fall but are also trying to clear the decks of their remaining spring/summer merchandise.  Needless to say, there were bargains to be had everywhere you looked.  Coach, Ralph Lauren, Kenneth Cole and Tommy Hilfiger all had sales discounts adding anywhere from an additional 25 – 60% off to already reduced prices.

Banana Republic touted sales of up to 60% off and had both end of season as well as fall looks.  I liked it’s selection for basic work items.  Two of the winners were a short trench raincoat listed at $149 and was 60% off and a suit jacket marked down to $94.  Although the matching pants were not available in my size, the jacket can get lots of uses paired with jeans or gray slacks.

Short Trench
Blue Striped Jacket

Once I got past the trendier looks at Express’ Last Hurrah, I found dress slacks and shirts for under $25 each.  The 40% off sales price was an added bonus to already reduced prices.  My little secret?  These clothes are great looks to leave at the beach in case you want to stay an extra day and be prepared to have something to wear to work when heading back on an early Monday morning.

White Jacket

While I didn’t find anything for work at Calvin Klein, I did fall in love with this hot white jacket.  Slim fit with great details, the jacket has a very modern look.  Marked down, after discounts, to $60, I can still get lots of uses from it for the rest of this season. In addition, Brooks Brothers which is always a hit for classic attire had blazers at 50% off.  I snapped up this number and will be wearing it well before fall hits.  Other great summer attire could be found at J Crew and Vineyard Vines at drastically discounted prices.

Brook’s Brothers Blazer

Most of the sales will last now through Labor Day.  It’s tempting not to blow your entire fall budget now but if you’re in the area don’t miss out! You can still look like a fortune and no one will ever know you spent much less.