The Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales are over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still find incredible bargains for your Christmas Shopping Gifts. In fact you can probably get all of your Christmas shopping done for a fraction of what you expected to spend. Especially if clothing and apparel are on your list.
So just where are these bargains? Down in the Los Angeles Fashion District. Just be sure to wear comfortable shoes. The LA Fashion District covers 100 blocks of independently owned retail and wholesale businesses with apparel, accessories, footwear, beauty and cosmetics for men, women and children.
I am stunned at times at just how low the prices are down in the LA Fashion District. I bought a faux leather jacket in the Santee Alley for just $20 a year ago. I found silk shirts that I would normally be paying $150 for at a shop on 14th and Maple for just $15 each! True, they aren’t Tommy Bahama’s, but my friends aren’t likely to know unless I tell them.
Around 12th and Maple are the men’s formal wear stores. Three piece suits can be had for about $120.00! Likewise with women’s wear which is also located in the same area. On weekends, vendors line the alleys along Pico Blvd near San Pedro Street and even bigger bargains can be found. Be sure to come early for these, they start packing up early in the afternoon.
The LA Fashion District spans from Main Street on the west, to Central Street on the east (though most of what you want will be found west of San Pedro. And from 8th Street on the north to 16th Street on the south. For the most part, you will find types of clothing such as menswear, bridal wear etc grouped together in sections.
Handbags, shoes, jewelry, sunglasses, hats, belts are primarily found along Olympic Boulevard, from Main Street to Wall Street and on Main Street and Santee Street, from Olympic Boulevard to Pico Boulevard. Santee Alley also has a large number of fashion accessories stores.
- Women’s wear is concentrated along Santee Street, between 9th Street and Pico Boulevard; Pico Boulevard, between Main Street and Santee Street; Wall Street and Maple Street, between Olympic Boulevard and 12th Street.
- Bridesmaid and prom dresses are mainly found on the northeast corner of Olympic Boulevard and Santee Street, and down Santee Street to 14th Street.
- Most of the children’s clothing shops are located along 12th Street and Pico Boulevard, between Maple Avenue and San Julian Street.
- Men’s athletic wear and casual wear is located along Main Street, Los Angeles Street and Santee Street, from Pico Boulevard to 16th Street.
- Men’s suits, dress shirts and slacks, from all price points are located on Los Angeles Street and Maple Street, between 7th Street and 9th Street.
- Fabric for apparel and home decor, beading, trim, and other textiles and notions are in the area bounded by 8th Street to Olympic Blvd between Maple and San Julian Streets. The LA Fashion District has the largest concentration textile and notion stores in the United States.
- The Santee Alley with its bazaar like atmosphere and high concentration of vendors is bargain central for all types of shops. While it is predominantly apparel and accessories, you can also find children’s toys, computer games, jewelry, boom boxes and more. Santee Alley starts on Olympic Boulevard between Santee Street and Maple Avenue and continues for two blocks. It’s open 365 days a year. so you can even shop on Christmas Day for that gift you forgot to get.
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Much of the LA Fashion District is wholesale to the trade only. These tend to be on the east side. On the west side you will find all of your retail shops as outlined above. Be sure to bring cash. Many are cash only, but there are plenty of ATM machines if you forget.
Parking lots are abundant and many will let you park the full day for about $5.00. But beware. Some have sign wavers saying $5 but when you get inside they tell you that is just for the first 5 or 10 minutes and demand $20. If this happens, leave and go to another. There are plenty that will honor the $5 advertised rate!
Here is a video tour we put together of the fashion district during the summer. Happy Christmas shopping, and we wish you a Merry Christmas and fantastic New Year!
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