Frieda Loehmann and my love of discount designer dresses

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Growing up a  nice Jewish girl with a mother and grandmother who loved to shop, Loehmann’s was practically a second home to me. I thought all dressing rooms were like Loehmann‘s: big open rooms where overweight women flaunted their curves as they tried on discounted designer dress after discounted designer dress after discounted designer dress.

I suppose that’s why I never was terribly self-conscious… because I was raised to believe that women should celebrate their bodies as there would always be a discounted designer dress sized zero to eighteen which would make one look good. Great even.

Those afternoons spent in the Loehman’s dressing rooms weren’t just about trying on clothes, they were about camaraderie and bonding and collective consciousness. Conversations flourished, negotiations occurred, my guess is even a deal or two was made. Loehmann’s for Jewish women was like the cigar clubs were to men… a social event.

The brainchild of Frieda Loehmann (1874-1962), who opened her first store in Brooklyn in 1921, the chain continues to thrive. From the seventh avenue Loehmanns in NYC to the one on La Cienega smack dab in the middle of Beverly Hills, I’m glad Loehmanns is still around.

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