I am a self-confessed shopaholic who has "shopped until I dropped" all over the world.
Like many women, I just LOVE to shop and whenever, and where I travel, I try to allocated plenty of time to engage in many different types of retail fun: window shopping, outlet excursions, scouring the flea markets and hitting the famed shopping streets such as Rodeo Drive, Via della Spiga, the Kurfurstendamm, the Champs-Elysees and Fifth Ave. High-end or low-end items, designer goods or trendy seasonal fashion, I have a thing for clothes, especially shoes.
Because of this shopping lust, I have had to develop a knack for bargain shopping or I would be deeply in debt. I like to keep up with the seasonal trends, but feel more comfortable in classic clothes. My signature style is timeless simplicity with interesting or trendy accessories. Updating my shoe collection is the best way I keep my look current. Yes; I love shoes! Likewise, I am drawn to the high-low look which combines expensive items and low end pieces. I am of the opinion the "all high-end" look is on the way out.
Discovering the LA Fashion District
On my last trip to California, one of my stops was a quick trip to Los Angeles to do some reconnaissance of the LA Fashion District, have two meetings, one with a fashion designer and another with a marketing rep about developing my upcoming AstridTravel clothing/accessories brand and of course, do some "bargain" shopping. After two and a half days of pounding the pavement through the maze of streets, shops and warehouses, I felt like I had discovered why so many young, trendy shoppers like the Fashion District.
This is a happening place in the fashion world
Affordable, cutting edge style with many of the goods that are sold and created here are "made in America," was a big turn on for me. As an American, it's such an exciting place to be where creativity, passion, ingenuity and entrepreneurship all come together to foster American fashion. Besides New York, this is where it is happening in the American fashion world.
Now for what I bought:
3 pairs of stylish sunglasses ($3/pair)
3 hats(2 sun and 1 bling cap ($25)
4 purses and 1 tote ($95)
3 backpacks(1 dove grey, 1 beige and 1 yellow ($9)
1 pair of black, ripped jeans ($20)
4 maxi dresses ($40)
1 cute, star sweater ($15),
1 bamboo denim jumpsuit ($25)
10 PAIRS OF SHOES (fluffy slides, sandals, black patent, pointed toe with thick soles tie ups, and 1 pair of low, heeled sandals ($200)
1 white, embroidered tunic ($30)
4 loose fitting coverups from Bali ($60)
1 off-white frocked, velvet pants ($10)
3 fringed shirts ($45)
3 bomber jackets ($45)
3 shirt body suits ($24)
1 ripped t-shirt with trendy roses ($15)
1 rhinestone embellished dog collar for my grand dog ($10)
A 3 piece set of shiny, black spinner luggage I needed to purchase to bring this HAUL home ($100)
Approximate grand total spent: $800. Yep, this is the shopaholic habit at its best. I set a limit of $1,000 and was just happy that I came in under this figure!
Now, what about the quality of these items?
Some are higher quality than others with the price ranges being 30%-80% off of retail. Typically, if you buy several items you really get a good deal with bargaining or haggling expected. I never paid the marked price on anything. The four maxi dresses I bought for $10 per dress would retail between $70-$100 per dress.
Many of the items sold in the LA Fashion District are of the same quality you would find in a nice department store or trendy boutique.
Not high end but nice enough that you would feel comfortable wearing the clothes purchased here. Merchandise sold along the Santee Ally tends to be lower quality than the free standing wholesale shops and manufacturer showrooms along the streets in the area.
I must warn you: this type of shopping is brutal and not for the shopper who is easily overwhelmed or who doesn't like to bargain. With that said, if you are up for the ultimate shopping hunt when in Los Angeles allocate a day or two to of shopping bliss to comb the streets of the fabulous LA Fashion District. I bet you won't leave empty handed!
Enjoy this video highlighting what it’s like to shop in the LA Fashion District!
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Author: Astrid Clements
Astrid Solo Travel Advisor CEO and founder, Astrid, has spent over 40 years traveling around the world. She is passionate about embracing the world’s diverse cultures and sharing with others the global need and personal benefit of cultural literacy. Her focus is on affordable luxury travel that is both substantive and fun! To read more about her and each one of our Solo Travel Advisors, head over to the About page!