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Plan Your Holiday Shopping: Nordstrom Rack at Topanga Totally Merits a Drive Deep Into the 818

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Rewind to the point in time where us Racked staffers were sitting around, tossing around ideas about which stores should make the Racked 38. One of us vociferously, emphatically campaigned for the Nordstrom Rack at Topanga to be on the list. And we were shot withering looks, like we just pitched to Eater the idea that Olive Garden should be on their top restaurant list. Yes, it's a chain store that occupies a fugly building in one of the valley's endless stripmalls; it's basically been the same since the 80s or something archaic like that. But we're not making the drive for the atmosphere; we're making the drive for the prospect of scoring a $40 Phillip Lim dress, $100 Burberry shoes, or a $125 Alexander Wang goddess dress from just last season.

The Nordstrom Rack at Topanga Canyon is a label-whore-on-a-budget's dream. They sometimes (seasonally) have an entire "backroom" section stocked with everything from Chanel, Burberry, Lanvin and Nina Ricci to more contemporary brands like AWang, Thakoon, Ohne Titel, Elizabeth & James and occasional random Maison Martin Margiela pieces. The designer shoe section is hit and miss, but on the day we went, we found numerous pairs of Jimmy Choos and Manolos in our size that we wouldn't kick out of the closet. And if it's been a while since you've shopped there, they've eased up on their return policy -- so now, yes, like the rest of the merchandise, you have 30 days to figure out if you need to keep it, or it needs to go back to the store.

Still haven't convinced you that the Nordstrom Rack at Topanga is one of the most awesome things since sliced bread? This one boasts a hearty Savvy/TBD section, usually stuffed with recent Diane Von Furstenberg, James Perse, Robert Rodriguez, and Marc by Marc Jacobs. If you're not completely over premium denim, there are usually no fewer than 8 rounders stuffed with all the usual suspects: 7 for All Mankind, Hudson, True Religion, Joe's, J. Brand, and Diesel; usually all of it $99 and under. And if you're not afraid (or under time constraints), there's a lot of booty to be pilfered from the clearance racks. So what if it's from Spring 2010, it's still a pretty DVF frock. For $60. Top THAT.

And one more point in its favor: it's across the street from the Westfield Topanga, home to one of the area's nicest Nordstroms, as well as Neiman Marcus, Anthropologie, Free People, Jimmy Choo, Target, H&M, and Zara. This weekend, they're open on Friday 10am to 9pm, Saturday 10am to 8pm, Sunday 11am to 7pm, and Monday 9am to 8pm.
· Racked 38 [Racked LA]
· Nordstrom Rack [Official Site]

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