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How to save on fall fashion: Buy now

Fashion Week trends can be had on clearance -- if you know where to go.

By Karen Datko Feb 26, 2010 11:01AM

This Deal of the Day comes from Kelli B. Grant at partner site SmartMoney.


Want to hear a secret fashion retailers won’t share with you? The trendy fall and winter items they are pushing out the door now will be just as of-the-moment come autumn.


In other words: Shoppers who know what to look for can get hot items for next fall at substantial discounts.


Among the trends to look for are fake-fur vests, studded shoes, colorful tights, and winter coats of all kinds. Also, pencil skirts and button-down shirts. “Coats tend to be expensive, but not so trendy that a year-old design will go out of style,” says Michelle Madhok, chief executive of trend-tracking site Madhok points to camel coats and military-inspired outerwear.

But before you get too caught up in the sales, go through your closet, advises stylist Alexandra Ryan, founder of the Boston-based Show Me Style. That way, you’ll know which on-trend pieces you already have, and which you should consider buying at clearance now to pull together fashionable outfits for fall. “You might find you want to pick up just one piece,” she says. You’ll also avoid the pitfall of overspending on items you don’t need.

We’re featuring valuable coupons and sales each Friday to help you spend less on the items you buy. Found a deal we missed -- or looking for a better price on a specific item? E-mail me at or send me a tweet @kellibgrant.


Old Navy. A “Fundamentals Sale” that runs through March 4 covers jeans, T-shirts, khakis and flip-flops. All women’s and men’s jeans are $19 instead of the usual range of $29.50 to $34.50, a savings of 36% to 45%. Stack coupon codes (you can use up to three per order) to save more. The code ONFREE75 at checkout gets you free shipping on orders of $75 or more. If you pay with an Old Navy credit card, using code THANKYOU gets you $10 off and TUESDAY, used on a Tuesday, gets you another 10% discount.


Caveat emptor: Old Navy cards carry rates of 18.24% (co-branded with Visa) to 23.99% (store card only). Don’t charge what you can’t afford to pay off in full on your next statement.


The Limited. Trying to move its coat stock, the retailer is offering 30% off on trenches, and throwing in a free umbrella as an added lure. Use coupon code 505 at checkout before March 18 and the discount increases to 40%. The Limited is also pushing sale items, and is reducing them by an extra 20%. For an additional discount of 20%, use code 774.

XOXO. The label is marking down winter and fall items in an ongoing “End of Season Sale.” You can save up to 65% by using coupon codes with sale merchandise. FRIDAY20 saves you $20 on an order of $50 or more; FRIDAY40 saves $40 on an order of $100 or more; FRIDAY60 saves $60 on an order of $150 or more; FRIDAY80 saves $80 on an order of $200 or more; and FRIDAY100 saves $100 on an order of $250 or more.


Gap. Cardholders received an e-mail Thursday offering them a 25% discount good through March 7. Don’t have a Gap credit card? Reach out to friends who do. The e-mail also offers a friend discount good for $10 on purchases from the brand’s 1969 denim line ($15 when you apply for your own store card). Cardholders can tack on up to three codes per order: MYCARD for free shipping on orders of $100 or more, THANKYOU for $10 off and TUESDAY on Tuesdays for an extra 10% discount. Again, keep in mind the high interest rates to avoid charging more than you can afford to pay in full.


Related reading at SmartMoney:



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