Cititour: The New York Guide to Events, Restaurants, Music, and Nightlife

Change of Season

Neighborhood: East Village

Type of Place: Women's Clothing

Description: One thing we have a noted absence of in New York City: outlet malls. And for the purposes of wardrobe development, that’s too bad; why should cash-strapped New Yorkers miss out on these designer bargains? But a little pocket of help has arrived in the East Village in the form of Change of Season, which keeps a designer-boutique feeling (the shop is set up to look like an upscale hotel lobby, and merchandise is hand chosen by the owners) but ditches “It’s this or the rent” prices.

It’s exciting to see pieces from designers you never thought you could afford being made quite a bit more affordable. The first item that caught my eye was a charming See by Chloe jacket in yellow and white linen. It’s original price was a fairly unreachable $595, but it’s here for a much more doable investment of $175. Likewise a delicate Lanvin sleeveless blouse in champagne silk with a gorgeous oversized pink, orange, and yellow silk flower adornment was $645 but is here for $285; and an orange and white tank top from Ann Demeulemeester is here for $175, down from the retail price of $540.

It’s fun to compare the original prices to the deals you’re getting. Not all the price tags here include the boutique prices, but a little sleuthing can help. For example, I Googled “Prada sundresses” and found much plainer options than the ones here starting at about $650. These samples are lovely: gold, teal, chocolate brown, and emerald woven together; and one is $375, the other $395. There’s also a Vivienne Westwood fuchsia sweater for $195 and a Dries van Noten sash with purple and garnet beads for $135. Suffice to say they were originally much more.

For the fashion adventurers, I spotted an experimentally chic black Comme des Garcon sweater that was $498, is now $225, and (from my notes) “looks like it has a lima bean sewn on.” OK, not a look everyone can master, but worth checking out, for sure. Over in the men’s section, another explorer was trying on a Rick Owens tunic (price unknown as I did not want to grab this shirt while the man was wearing it). “Hmm,” he mused. “Does this look a little too ‘Star Wars’?” Maybe so. But I saw a green, yellow, and grey plaid short-sleeved shirt by Prada (was $300, now $135) that I thought would look great on this guy. Deciding not to be shy about it, I handed it to him and encouraged him to try it on, which he did. It looked amazing, and the guy seemed to think so too. My work done, I headed out…with visions of what I might score here myself dancing in my head.   -Pamela Grossman

Change of Season
341 E 9th St (1st & 2nd Aves)
New York, NY 10003
(212) 420-7770