My Encounter with Zara: on Special Prices

FIRST ENCOUNTER

The first time I learned about the brand Zara was in 2007 as a college freshman. I was walking around in Union Square in San Francisco when I stumbled into the store that I would later spend too much money in.

Everyone knows Zara as a quality fast-fashion brand enough to know that if you like something and don’t buy it right now, it might not be there in a week. Which was what I did. I do not regularly splurge on dispensable items and felt guilty swiping for the $99 wool coat, but thinking about it, with a 80% wool shell and heavy fabric, I would not be able to get such a good deal now even in Zara.

In the past six years of heavy usage, it held up pretty decent for the first 5 years. Nothing is breaking apart, but I do feel the shell thinning. I would keep it anyhow just for sentimental reasons.

Since then, I have purchased many items from Zara especially blazers, dresses, and some coats. Most of the time during the two sales season in late December and late June, but some of the it-items, I did buy at regular price. The only comfort comes from knowing the pieces you purchased are taken off the site within a week or no longer there in store the next time you visit because that tells you they will never go on sale (maybe I’m just trying to justify my splurge here).

FIRST FULL PRICE PURCHASE

I gave into temptation in 2012 for this Gathered Shoulder Blazer from Zara. It looked so put together and chic on me and I had to have it despite the $99.90 price tag, which really isn’t too high considering the quality and how much I would get to wear it.

Even though that season, I visited at the beginning of sales season and saw the exact same blazer for only $69.99 in my size. I was annoyed, but I had already worn it often enough to justify my purchase.

To my surprise, Zara brought the same design back and introduced it in the original navy and black for a season, the following season in red, and then kept bringing in back and I still see it this season in Spring 2014 in baby blue and bright yellow.

The price had fluctuated from $99.90 to $119.90 to $89.90 to the $69.90 now. I originally thought that it was just a pricing strategy, but when I purchased a black gathered shoulder blazer last season for $39.99 on sale, the quality was so horrid that I sent it back even at that low price.

The cut is the same, but the lining was low quality and the fabric is itchy. These I will not tolerate even at that price. This season, I have not gone into store to try out the baby blue and the yellow. I can guarantee you that the cut is fabulous, but it is up to you to decide what quality you expect in a blazer. That’s my take.

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SPECIAL PRICES

In recent seasons, there is a new “special prices” category under women. It used to be a phantom category that comes and go, but it looks like it is here to stay starting this season.

If you haven’t noticed this section and you love a good deal, you should check it out. It sounds cheesy to say this, but the prices are truly special. They are reduced by 40-60% from the regular price during regular season and it is updated sporadically. With that said, you got to be fast to snatch the real steals.

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One thing to note, these special promotion runs out fast, if not faster than the sales season. You never know when Zara renews the Special Prices page, but when it does, those items run out within the day if not the morning. I’ve been able to get the jacket and pants in my size purchasing at 7am. The coat I was only able to get it in my sister’s size because I saw it around early afternoon. With that said, check out the special prices section, you never know what you would find.

Even though Zara’s quality has been slowly going downhill while price continued to climb, but you can still manage to get some good steals here or there.

Categories: Style