Luxury for Less

February 14, 2008 11:39:57 AM PST
In these tough economic times, families are tightening their budgets but shoppers still covet designer labels. We've found a way you can get designer items at a fraction of the price without having to fight off other shoppers, at least not in person.

Mary Cannon's closet in New Hope, Bucks County looks like a designer showroom.

"This is Chaiken." Mary said. "The designer is Erin Snow, Alessandro Del 'Acqua."

But Mary does not pay designer prices and neither should you. Action News has learned how you can get a $625 Vivienne Tam dress for $198, $295 Gucci sunglasses for $99 and a $1300 Prada handbag for free!

"They have everything shoes, bags, dresses, casuals, sweaters, literally they have had everything," Mary said.

Mary shops on gilt.com, which is like an online sample sale. It offers one-day sales of top designers and luxury brands at up to 70% off and there's no fee to be a member.

"It's immediate gratification. You order a good, and if you're living here in the Philadelphia area you'll get it the next day," said Alexis Maybank, Gilt Groupe's co-founder

.

Gilt sends members emails indicating the start of a sale. Then you just click on your size, see what's available and buy.

"We work directly with the brands and we choose items that we know our members will really love."

Members of ideeli.comalso love the selection.

"There's nowhere else you can go where you can get these kinds of discounts on these kinds of items," said Danielle Fitch of Glassboro, New Jersey.

"People can expect to get 40 to 75-percent or more off the original price," said Paul Hurley, ideeli's CEO.

Like gilt, ideeli offers free memberships to shop on its website but ideeli also offers a paid membership, called a first floor membership for $7.99/month.

"As a first floor member you get notifications before anybody else."

Ideeli keeps the start times of sales a secret unless you're a first floor member, then you'll be alerted to start times via a text message on your cell phone. And only first floor members are eligible for giveaways, like a free Jimmy Choo bag, free Burberry hat and free Oscar de la Renta clutch.

And both ideeli and gilt deal directly with the brands which means they guarantee authenticity and the merchandise is current.

Unlike at traditional sample sales you can get merchandise on gilt and ideeli that are in season and all the merchandise is new, free from defects and irregularities.

But both sites do have a couple of catches.

"You have to get there right at the start of the sale, items move very, very quickly."

And both are exclusive clubs, memberships to gilt and ideeli are by invitation only! In order to shop you have to be invited by someone who's already a member.

SPECIAL INVITATIONS

Action News has negotiated with gilt and ideeli to offer special memberships exclusively to our viewers for the next week, through February 17th.

Here's what you do:
For gilt groupe: Click HERE for special link. (NOTE: This link is updated. We apologize to those users who were directed to the wrong location. This problem has been fixed.)

For ideeli:
Click HEREand put in the promotion code WPVI.

Again, this is a special deal exclusive only to our viewers and its only good through February 17th.

Also, keep in mind, you can return items to gilt within 14-days for credit but ideeli sales are final.

Hautelook.comis a website similar to ideeli and gilt but membership is not invitation only.


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