For those who plan, prepare, and welcome adversity there are deals to be had on Black Friday. In downtown Seattle, hunting out those deals is urban hiking at its best and a black diamond trail at that.
I’ve avoided Black Friday like the plague for years, but this year the deals on things I actually needed, were too enticing. First stop, Aaron Brothers. My office has a whole bunch of blank walls that I plan to fill with framed photos my husband took on our trips to India, Paris, Italy and of course, the Indy 500 (he’s an awesome photographer). This project is a lot less expensive than original artwork but it still means a whole lot of frames (more than 20 to be exact). This morning I opened the paper and my eyes fell upon a 25% off coupon – 25% off your entire purchase valid 8 am to noon only. I hustled downtown, parked my car at my office and nearly ran the 6 blocks to Aaron Brothers. I arrived at 15 minutes til noon. I was able to score all but seven of the frames I needed (and couldn’t have carried those anyway). Total savings: $89.66. Arms weighed down, I hustled back to my office to drop off the frames.
Next stop: Macy’s. My route from my office to Macy’s took me down Pine and past the major shopping centers and department stores – big mistake. People clustered the streets like moguls that needed to be negotiated on a black diamond run. PETA protestors had to be dodged, as did street musicians and other shoppers. Fortunately, as a So. Cal. native, I spent a lot of time at Disneyland and have mastered the art of weaving through crowds. It was worth it. At Macy’s I scored two sets of Henckels steak knifes, normally priced at $50 each for $19.99 each (they were marked down to $29.99 and then I used two $10 off coupons). I also discovered that the placemats and napkins my husband and I registered for and received when we got married were 40% off, so I bought a few to supplement our supply, as we have dinner parties often and placemat and napkin death by red wine is not unheard of. My last Macy’s purchase was a Kitchenaid food grinder attachment at 20% off, if only the pasta attachment had been discounted a bit more . . . .
After Macy’s I headed the 6 blacks back to the office to drop off my purchases but took a detour to stop by Barnes & Noble. At B&N I scored Christmas cards I had been eyeing at 30% off plus an additional 10% off with my membership card. I bought three boxes, with the discounts, basically getting one for free.
After my drop off, I needed some fueling and so ate 1/2 of the Optimum Energy Bar (really good, organic and made in Washington – 1/2 a bar kept hunger at bay for hours) I had stashed in my purse as I headed to my last Black Friday stop – Nordstrom Rack. I never was a Rack frequenter until I moved to Seattle – I hate combing through stuff and that is pretty much de rigour at the Rack. When my friend Tal, visited the first year I lived here, she dragged me in and I was hooked. Being just blocks away from the Flagship store means the Seattle Downtown Rack has this season’s fashion at incredible deals, and staples like True Religion, Seven, Hudson and Joe’s jeans for $99-$109 – a serious savings. They also carry high-end designer clothes and shoes. My forays to the Rack have kept my husband well-supplied with Hugo Boss dress shirts at 40% of the price and I’ve picked up $1000 Chloe sandals for $100. This trek was only moderately successful, a few sweaters (an additional 25% off for Black Friday) some stocking stuffers and some Miss Sixty sandals that I am going to rock on my next trip to warm weather Cali.
Learning from my prior mistake, I took the bunny hill up Union on my way from the Rack back to my office avoiding the mayhem on Pine. I made another stop but can’t disclose that now as the name alone would disclose a gift I picked up (at full price – almost sacrilegious on Black Friday).
All in all, I saved over $200 and with all my back and forth, walked at least a mile or two. Not bad for four hours work!