Every once in a while you come across an ethical dilemma. Let’s say you find out, through the kindness of a friend (who is obviously a lot more generous than I am — thanks Alice!), about a super secret but awesome source of brand name clothing where everything is 80%+ off. You go there and confirm, it’s true, this place is for real. This could be your secret source of inspired and interesting apparel at prices that rival those of Target…but then you meet the owner of the store who says she would love some publicity because she isn’t allowed to advertise. Do you keep this information to your self, continuing to mine it for a suspiciously evolving wardrobe? Or do you share it, introducing competition for the the inventory but bringing benefit to the business owner?
Sigh. I must really love you guys.
Emme J sells excess merchandise from the distribution centers of such major brands as Joe’s Jeans, Athleta, Free People, Anthropologie, Wilt and Urban Outfitters. Joni, the founder, came upon this business in a most tragic way: years ago, while she was working for Seven Jeans, her family was killed by a drunk driver in a highway accident. Joni, understandably, couldn’t stand to commute on the highway on a daily basis anymore. Her boss suggested that, as she was a veteran of the garment industry, she may be able to work out a way for her to set up a retail operation close to home — essentially leveraging her years of trunk show experience, while alleviating brands of their excess inventory. Though brands were initially concerned about cannibalization, she’s been able to prove that their brands and sales remain intact, while she’s able to provide for them a valuable service.
And what a valuable service it is! Especially for me (er, us). Joni gets 11,000 pieces of inventory a month (with a shipment of 5,000 bags from Nordstrom on the way!).
When you walk in, you’re greeted with racks and racks labeled $15, $25, $30 and $40. Joni also told me that most items would probably fit me well, since I was pretty much the size of the fit models they use for the brands she carries — at which point I loved her immediately, since no one has every accused me of being a fit model.
It was here that I discovered the joys of Wilt clothing, delightfully clever and slouchy awesomewear with uneven hems and clean lines.
Emme J also offers event services, such as birthday parties, girl’s night out, fashion shows and fundraisers. Tell ’em Sandi sent you!
6840 Embarcadero Ln (directly across from the Carlsbad Coaster station)
Open Tuesdays / Thursdays 9 AM – 6 PM and on select Saturdays