Shop ’till you drop (and still have money to take a cab home)

One of my biggest wardrobe challenges is finding work-appropriate clothes that are within my budget. Working in a pretty conservative office, I need to look professional but still want to maintain a sense of personality. So what’s a girl to do?

Here’s a list of some of my favorite stores in Manhattan to find clothes for work that don’t leave me with empty pockets.

Loehmann’s, 101 Seventh Ave., New York, NY & 2101 Broadway, New York, NY

I have a strong aversion to paying full-price for anything. This is a great spot to find mid-priced designers like Free People, Kenneth Cole, and Michael Kors at discounted prices. And despite the common notion that discount designer clothes are always from last season, I’ve found things here that are being sold full price in department stores at the same time.

Century 21, 22 Cortlandt Street New York, NY

This is one of my favorite spots to buy shoes and purses due to the sheer volume and variety. Be prepared for huge crowds of European tourists who walk out with bags by the dozen. I prefer to go at quieter hours, like right before closing (closing is 9pm Mon.-Wed., 9:30pm Thurs.-Fri., 9pm Sat., and 8pm Sun.).  

Zara, Soho, Flatiron, Midtown East

Zara mixes fashion with professionalism very well, with colorful tops, funky jackets and classic dresses. This store often takes me out of my comfort zone, and I actually buy clothes with some color (gasp!). Don’t worry, New Yorkers, there’s plenty of black, too.

Marshall’s/T.J. Maxx, 18th St. and Sixth Ave

These are my old standards. I lump them together because they generally sell the same merchandise (though Marshall’s has a much better shoe department). This is a great place to come for the basics—brand label socks, underwear, tees and jeans at a discounted price. If you have the patience to browse through the racks, you can find some steals.

I’m always on the lookout for new and interesting stores, especially when it comes to work attire. What are your favorite places to shop in NYC?

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4 Responses to Shop ’till you drop (and still have money to take a cab home)

  1. Dan G says:

    Elizabeth! I’m posting on your blog, good friend that I am…don’t forget sample and warehouse sales, these are something NY is famous for. Barney’s yearly warehouse sale is just the tip of the iceberg, just google NY Sample Sales to find out what’s happening. Usually you can find high end stuff at 70-80% off retail…Woohoo!

  2. Thanks for posting 🙂 I will have to Google ‘sample sales’… I never know where to find them!

  3. Kelly T. says:

    To Dan G’s point, sample sales are a fun and frugal way to score stylish designer duds. The only nuisance, though, can be dealing with long lines and ferocious women. If you want to be in the loop about all the latest sample sales, I suggest subscribing to It’s free, and you receive an email Mon-Fri of fun, exclusive and sometimes inexpensive deals around NYC. Every so often, they publish a running list of upcoming sample sales and sometimes offer a discount or perk for being a subscriber. So try it out! If nothing else, it’s a read on the latest and greatest happenings in the Big Apple.

    p.s. Drinks/dinner soon, please!

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