Purses, patterns and proceeds…oh my!
Vera Bradley's massive outlet sale will floor young and old alike
In Fort Wayne, the sun is out, birds are chirping and colors are popping up everywhere. Inside the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum, however, it’s even more colorful and full of life, during the legendary — LEG-END-AAAAARY — Vera Bradley Annual Outlet Sale, which runs from April 19-23. Known for beautiful prints and an intense passion for color, Vera Bradley encourages their devoted fans of all ages to celebrate beauty every day through their collection of handbags, fragrance, luggage and accessories, designed for and “inspired by the needs of real women.” This is the 34th year for the sale that brings about 50,000 shoppers through the doors over five full days. Holly Wagner, PR Manager for Vera Bradley, says 40 tractor-trailers delivered 700,000 pieces to the Coliseum and that the sale relies on 1,100 workers to staff the event. Wagner added that customers have registered from all 50 states, which boosts the city’s economy to boot.
If you haven’t been to the sale before, this is the year to begin a new tradition. If you’re a veteran of this annual shopping extravaganza, you’ll feel right at home with the company’s notoriously well-planned and well-executed event and be treated to new or expanded product categories. Vera Bradley’s massive assortment includes so much more than the brightly hued, iconic handbags die-hard fans know, love and collect. The luggage category, which originally inspired the founders to start the company in the 1980’s, features scads of soft totes, weekenders, travel goods and accessories, as well as durable yet stylish rolling suitcases. The Grand Tote, which normally sells for $65 is a fantastic outlet exclusive at $19.99. The leather and faux leather categories have doubled in size this year and feature gorgeous and supple handbags and accessories in a variety of prints, colors, sizes and textures, for luxury at an affordable price. Look for metallic finishes, jaunty fringe, alluring embellishments and high-end textures.
Small accessories like wallets, clutches, key chains, jewelry organizers, shower caddies and cosmetic bags offer functional solutions with a trendy kick. Many tables hold all manner of paper goods and supplies, device covers and other tech accessories, home goods like cloth napkins, placemats and aprons as well as pajamas, robes, slippers and incredibly plush throw blankets. Jewelry and sunglasses offer that finishing Vera Bradley touch to any ensemble. Shoppers will also find interesting, perhaps never before seen goods such as a funky and furry patchwork backpack or a brass ice cream pint holder, complete with a spoon holder for $9.99. Recently, the company introduced new categories such as footwear, including a charming selection rain boots and canvas slides, as well as fragrance, with candles, bath and body products to match, all of which are available at the sale, with the fragrance at 50% off.
On Wednesday, 2% of net proceeds from sales will go directly to the Vera Bradley foundation and the company encourages all attendees to wear pink in support of breast cancer research that day. On Saturday and Sunday, the ASPCA and Community Harvest Food Bank will be on hand. If you adopt from the ASPCA while at the event, you’ll receive a Vera Bradley leash and collar as a gift. If you donate canned goods, or a $5 cash donation, to Community Harvest, you’ll receive $10 off a purchase of $75 or more. On all days, teachers, members of the military and nurses, who show proper credentials, will receive $20 off a purchase of $100 or more. While shopping, take note of Center Stage, where you can take a peek at the latest collection to hit the stores. If you like what you see, take your outlet ticket to the boutique at Jefferson Point to receive 25% off current merchandise in store.
Vera Bradley has continued to evolve and expand, offering fans of all kinds something new and fresh around every corner. The company’s enduring success is continued through brand-new media ventures such as co-founder Barbara Bradley Baekgaard’s new book, “A Colorful Way of Living” and involvement in a new reality TV show, “Girl Starter”, which follows eight enterprising young ladies between the ages of 18 – 24 as they compete for a grand prize of up to $100,000 in funding and business guidance. The show will debut Friday, April 28th at 7 p.m. on TLC.
Before you can join in on all the fun of the Vera Bradley Annual Outlet Sale, you’ll first need to register by going to www.verabradley.com. While on the website, you’ll find lots of helpful information to ensure you have the best event experience. Happy shopping!