Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Lord & Taylor NYC (yes, I'm serious)

I tend to stay away from department stores and malls unless I know that there is something specific that I need and can only be gotten there. I have sworn off Macy's in New York - it is friggin' insane in there in every way that you can conceive. Bloomingdale's is better, but not much. Sometimes I will go to Barneys or Bergdorf's or even Henri Bendel...but just for inspiration, sort of like going to a museum where you know you are not buying a thing.

However, I am a Lord & Taylor junkie. Yes, I know - not exactly cutting edge. Probably where your grandmother or 3rd grade teacher shopped in the 70s. I don't know what is going to happen to the flagship store on 5th Avenue and 38th, now that they have been bought and I believe several L&Ts around the country are shutting down or changing to Macy's. But I digress. I go here because:
  • I get lots of coupons, 15-20% off
  • It is not crowded
  • The merchandise doesn't look like it has been dragged through the streets by a pack of wild rats
  • The salespeople are extremely nice and helpful and seem to hook you up with good deals, whether or not they were supposed to
  • The store in NYC actually has some beautiful clothes and decent designers (esp. on floor 3)
  • Their men's house label is actually very nice and much cheaper than designer
  • Because nobody cool would be caught dead here, there is lots of merchandise, on sale

I go here to buy gifts for my mom and dad because I know they can return without hassle at the L&T near their house (note to self: make sure that store still exists!).

This year, I had reason to buy two formal outfits - I got them both here, in their fancy section (floor 3), where you get to try on high-end dresses in huge personal dressing rooms. I purchased a dress by Melinda Eng to wear to the Oscars (me: seat-filler, he: my boss) for around $800 (see photo, also note shoes, which are Charles David acquired at DSW for $80). OK, to a normal person this is an eye-popping sum. And I have never spent so much on a dress. But it was originally twice that, and far less than most people paid for their gowns. I have even worn it one or two more times since then!

Then, a few months later, I bought a pink Tahari suit befitting "Lovey" from Gilligan's Island for an awards ceremony. Although I can't recall the exact price, I know that I got it for at least 25% off retail. And good thing I bought it, because I actually won the award and had to thank the audience of 800 people!

So yeah, Lord & Taylor IS your mother's store, but it's probably the best overall department store experience in town.


jayfader said...

I forgot all about L&T - we don't have them here. The days of the good old fashioned department store seem to be over. OK, so who remembers Gimbels? Bambergers anyone? A&S?

julia d. warner said...

Yes, there is still a L&T in Paramus and it also rocks as much as the flagsip store for all the same reasons.

Michelle K. NJ said...

Word on the street here in NJ is that they are closing the LT's in the Fashion Center. Alas, there are still 2 LT's within driving distance...Garden State Plaza, and Palisades Center (also open on Sundays). Hey, how about B. Altmans's, anyone remember that one???

Beautiful dress G.S.