Aaron Bostrom | 

How to Save on Dooney & Bourke

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Dooney & Bourke has been making high-end leather goods since 1975 and is consistently found gracing the pages of fashion magazines from In Style to Vogue. Their bags are not only great-looking, but great quality, as well. This brand has built its reputation by making products that can be used for many years—but at a couple-hundred dollars apiece, quality comes at a price. Fortunately for those of us with handbag addictions, there are a variety of great ways to save on Dooney & Bourke bags:

1. Dooney.com Specials of the Month

Dooney & Bourke’s website has a constantly rotating selection of bags on markdown. The savings is only 25 percent across the board, but the selection is great, and they usually have a few accessories for as low as $25 that make great last-minute gifts.

2. 12 Days of Dooney

Every December the Dooney & Bourke website holds its annual 12 Days of Dooney sale. Each day has a theme, markdowns are huge, and things sell out fast. Typical markdowns are 45–50 percent off and include lines that almost never go on sale. They usually have a “surprise” sale on the 13th day where they make the deals from all 12 days available again, offering any merchandise that didn’t sell out the first time around. The sale usually starts the first week of December, so there is plenty of time to ship by Christmas.

3. Dooney & Bourke Outlet

Eleven lucky states and Puerto Rico have Dooney & Bourke outlets. The good news for the rest of us is they tend to be in hot vacation spots you may end up visiting anyway. On my last trip to Chicago I took a little detour out to the outlets in Aurora and was amazed at the deals. Not only were bags 30–60 percent off, but they also had a clearance section with further discounts and carried the nicer lines of bags that you usually don’t see, even in the nicest department stores. I picked up the Alto Mini Bubble Bag for more than $150 off the regular retail price, and I get no end of compliments on how cute it is. A complete list of Dooney & Bourke outlet locations can be found here.

4. T.J.Maxx and Marshalls

Overstock and clearance stores like T.J.Maxx and Marshalls often have a large selection of handbags. I am often found scouring the racks for Dooney & Bourke bags, and I have had some amazing luck. Most bags I see are usually at least 40 percent off and in a variety of styles. My best find at T.J.Maxx was a fuchsia Fairfield Champosa bag with a tortoiseshell duck detail that retailed for $265. I picked it up for under $60. That’s a savings of over 80 percent!

5. Department Stores

Contrary to popular belief, Dooney & Bourke bags are put on significant markdown at department stores. I have had good luck at Macy’s with their end-of-season sales, but for most department stores you usually have to look online. Dooney and Bourke is carried at a wide variety of locations including Macy’s, Younkers, Nordstrom and Dillard’s, so make sure to shop around for the best deal since what is not on sale at one site may be marked down at another. Savings are typically anywhere from 20–50 percent off. For example, I recently found an adorable giraffe-print satchel reduced to $88 from $178 on a department store website, but the same bag was marked full price in the store. Another great way to save is to combine a sale price with a promo code. Although promo codes often exclude Dooney & Bourke, this isn’t always the case, so make sure to check out RetailMeNot before you hit the checkout.

6. Amazon

You really can buy anything on Amazon, including high-end handbags. A simple search brought up hundreds of new and used results with the typical savings of around 30–50 percent on new merchandise.

7. Flash Sale Sites

KCL recently posted information on a Dooney & Bourke flash sale at Ruelala with savings as high as 60 percent. Although flash sales on Dooney & Bourke are rare and unpredictable, they are a great way to save—but you will have to act fast when you find one!

8. QVC

There are a couple reasons to try looking at QVC for your next Dooney & Bourke bag. The first reason is they sometimes put bags on clearance, but the savings is usually only nominal at $10–40 per bag. The best reason to check out QVC is their special arrangement with the manufacturer that lets them include bonus items with your purchase. Many bags come with up to three freebie accessories like key fobs, cosmetic cases, ID tags, and wristlets that regularly sell for between $25–100 each, so if you like matching accessories, this can help you save big. They tend to have more deals and promotions when an item is on air, so make sure to check their schedule to see if there is an upcoming feature for Dooney & Bourke.

9. Second Hand

These bags have been around for almost 40 years and tend to hold up very well over time, which means there is a vibrant secondhand market. I have seen Dooney & Bourke bags in a variety of secondhand outlets, from estate sales and thrift stores to consignments shops and eBay. Just last week I saw one for $30 in an antique shop that was in great shape. Given that the bag my husband bought me over six years ago still looks brand new, there could easily be lots of life left in a secondhand bag.

This is a guest post by April from Grand Blanc, MI
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