There are certain categories of merchandise that have very few factory outlets, and one is lamps and lighting. So I hit the San Diego Freeway as soon as I heard of the Dynasty Classics Factory Outlet Store that recently opened in Carson.
There are several categories of merchandise: lamps, ceiling fans, mirrors and framed prints. The day of my visit, six-foot-high torchier halogen lamps (in black or white), which were on sale at one of the big off-price retailers for $79.99, were $14.99--while they last. The halogen bulb alone is worth $14.99!
This was an exceptional deal, of course. Once in a while, if one item is overstocked, the price is drastically slashed to move it out fast. The company often runs ads in the Recycler for these specials.
But even without specials, the bargains here are great. Figure half off the retail price on most items, and better on some. The store carries simple and classic contemporary and traditional designs--with an emphasis on the contemporary--in desk lamps, table lamps, wall sconces and some chandeliers. A French baroque chandelier with six sculptured solid brass candelabra arms, candlelight holders, 20 inches in height, retails for $218.99. The price here is $109.25.
There are many designs in brass table lamps. We loved the candlelight accents, a 21-inch-high brass base with fabric shade for $14.75. A lovely table lamp of traditional design with a ceramic floral base and brass trim, 21 inches high, with a fabric shade, was $39.99. The traditional ginger jars with shades were $9.99, and a 14-inch China vase lamp was also $9.99.
Some excellent designs in floor lamps are available, ranging from traditional brass lamps--some were as low as $19.99--to the Southwest shades in a stone finish, standing 63 inches high, for $61.50 to $73.50.
Indoor spotlights run from $12 to $21. Three-head track systems, 48 inches long, are $36.25 to $46.75; an antique brass six-light terraced vanity is $16.
You'll find some nice designs in outdoor lighting, ranging from $3 for a simple porch light with a ribbed glass canister shade to $34.50 for a solid brass shaded by curved crystal panes with beveled edges.
Most of the inventory here is in lamps and lighting, but there are also some excellent deals: half price on ceiling fans, mirrors, framed prints and--a bit of serendipity--Christmas ornaments. The mirrors are all beveled, about 28 by 40 inches, and priced between $39.99 and $69.99, depending on the frame. The framed prints are $49.99 (two by three feet) and $69.99 (three by four feet).
The closer we get to Christmas, the higher the prices will be on some major decorations. Animated Santas and angels, 27 inches tall with harmonic music, are $49.99 now, but will probably be tagged around $90 later on.
This is a sparkling clean, beautifully organized store with prices that make it well worth the drive.
The Dynasty Classics Factory Outlet, 22333 S. Wilmington Ave., Carson, (213) 549-5172. To reach the store, take the San Diego Freeway south to the Wilmington exit. Turn right; the outlet is just behind Squires restaurant. Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays. MasterCard and Visa.
Geri Cook's Bargains column runs every Thursday in Valley View. Questions about shopping may be sent to her, in care of Valley View, Los Angeles Times, 20000 Prairie St., Chatsworth 91311. Letters will not be answered individually, but topics of general interest will be discussed in future columns.