How to beat crowds and win big at Century 21

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Photo by Flickr's Erik Töyrä

How can you survive the Century 21 shopping experience? Simple! Go only on your cousin’s birthday, stand on one leg, close your eyes, and make sure your name is Edgar. Racked asked fashion writer Mark Ellwood for his expert discount shopping secrets and he came up with a 7-point attack strategy that would impress a Navy Seal. To start:

• Visit in February and August, the prime times for showroom overstock.

• Visit three times a week for two weeks in 15-minute targeted attacks.

• Arrive early (the store opens at 7:45 AM).

• Don’t go to the dressing room; buy mutiple sizes and try them on at home.

There’s more (three points to be exact) but we’re going to show some blogger etiquette and leave the rest to Racked. (Plus we’re behind on our Century 21 shopping by about six trips.) Got any Century 21 shopping tips and/or horror stories? Let us know in the comments.

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  1. When I was 13 and visiting NYC with my Mom we went to Century 21 for the first time.
    Among other treasures, I found a pair of “sideways pants” (one front pocket and one back pocket in the front, button fly on the side) by some strange Italian designer for $15. I got tons of compliments and queries on the streets of NY for the rest of our trip.

    When I debuted the pants at my suburban high school the next week, I was immediately ostracized. I believe that my lack of homecoming date for the next two years was a direct result of those pants, but the experience also convinced me that I needed to move to New York as soon as possible.

    The pants are long gone, but I’ve been living in BK happily for 2 years and do not plan on leaving anytime soon. I still think homecoming is lame.

  2. Cross the bridge? You, um, do know there’s a Century 21 in Bay Ridge, right?! And I’m sure the crowds are far less epic.

  3. This website seems to be for the so-called Brooklynites that crossed the Brooklyn bridge from Manhattan when the cost of living became unsustainable.  Well listen up, there is more to Brooklyn than Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill, Bushwick, Prospect Park, etc.  There is also lovely Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Brighton Beach, Coney Island, Midwood, etc.  If you wanted to save on groceries, for example, you could try shopping at Great Wall on Fort Hamilton Parkway.  It is a chinese supermarket and you can get meat and fish usually for half the price you would get at Whole Foods.  There are terrific deals on fruits as well.  You can buy asian fruits during the summer months like leechi and longans.  After you are done shopping you can head on down to 8th avenue for Dim Sum or dinner.

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