The Boston Magazine June 2005

Second Best

Get more than you payforat Boston’s upscale resale emporiums. By Christie Matheson

Vintage Valentino. Ralph Lauren Purple Label leather. Marc Jacobs separates, barely a season past their prime. No longer do you have to borrow treasures like these from your fashionista friends. You can find, and probably even afford, them at Karma, a new North End hot spot that, along with several other local shops, is giving consignment a revital¬ized reputation. The store’s appealing appearance and couture content are a far cry from the bargain-basement aesthetic and pawed-over heaps associated with used clothing. On a recent visit we spied a timeless wool Chanel suit for $1,000.

At Garage Sale, consignment means high-end home design and accessories at take-your-breath-away prices. The ever-revolving selection of contemporary art and stately wood furniture is enough to make any heirloom-hunter happy. We fell in love with a pair of practically flaw¬less ivory Bergere chairs for $900 apiece. Also on hand is consigned jewelry from big-name stores including Tiffany— marked at 50 percent or more off the current retail price—and new pieces from local up-and-coming designers.

Looking to make less of an invest¬ment? Try Newbury Street’s tried-and-true consignment standbys. The Closet has racks of Lilly Pulitzer garb, with skirts priced around $33 and dresses at $68. Second Time Mound boasts two shops on the street, as well as locations in Harvard Square, Newton, and Wellesley. Last time we dropped by, we coveted a pair of previ¬ously pricey brown and pink suede Frye cowboy boots for a reasonable $112.

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