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VALLEY WEEKEND | BARGAINS

Resale Store Puts Even Chanel Within Reach

P.J. London sells other high-quality labels and custom-made wedding gowns too.

July 18, 1996|GERI COOK | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Those who have read this column for any length of time know that I'm a big fan of resale stores, particularly apparel resale. These shops provide the average women with an opportunity to own the finest clothes in the world. But it has always been a puzzlement that so many women get rid of these beautiful clothes. Why, for instance, would one lady place brand new, never-worn Chanels on consignment?

Phyllis London, owner of P.J. London, where these sought-after Chanels are being put on the racks today, doesn't know the answer. "We still haven't figured this one out," says London.

But they are at her store and for one-third the original price. She has two or three black jackets, pants, a light-weight wool navy suit, a cranberry tweed jacket, shorts and other goodies with price tags that make Chanel much more affordable.

A jacket, for instance, that would carry a price tag of $1,000 at a Chanel boutique would be priced here at $375. If you're a size 8-10, you could be the lucky buyer.

Discovering new Chanels is a coup and just one of the many joys of shopping resale at established shops such as P.J. London, a store that has graced the Brentwood area for over 14 years. There is only one of most items and the inventory is constantly changing. Sizes range from 2 to 12.

There's something here for every budget, from Ellen Tracy to Karen Kane. An Ellen Tracy linen pant suit that was $600 new is now marked $150, and a Karen Kane pant suit that was $300 new is now selling for $50.

P.J. London is one of a handful of resale stores that carries wedding gowns (most say they don't have the space). A size 4 bride-to-be can find an incredibly beautiful custom-made gown that was $10,000 and is now $695.

You'll find a plentiful supply of goods from some very hot Japanese designers such as Matsuda and Yamamoto, obviously favorites from London's carefully guarded client list. And like other retailers, the summer stuff is now on sale with a lot of romantic, flowing-type dresses priced between $25 and $35.

If the clothing doesn't suit you, you can focus on accessories. London offers shoes and handbags priced far below the original cost.

P.J. London, 11661 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood. (310) 826-4649. Hours: 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday; noon to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Weekend Super Sale

The folks over at Collector's Eye, the Southland's leading source for vintage costume jewelry, are maintaining their patriotic mood all through the month of July. This means that their "Red, White & Blue" sale will hold for another couple of weeks.

The prices here are always reasonable, but now they're even better. One lovely sterling and blue crystal necklace from the '30s is regularly $73.50, but now is tagged at $58.80. Don't rush while here, you've passed through a time warp. Collector's Eye, 21435 Sherman Way, Canoga Park. (818) 347-9343. 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday, noon-4 p.m. Sunday.

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