August Silk Homage to Chanel available at Macy’s for under $50.00

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Pictured: What do Beyonce, Victoria Beckham & I have in common?
Only one thing: Love for Chanel

As my regular blog readers know, I am a Chanel lover. My search for Chanel has taken me to consignment and thrift stores around the world, DecadesTwo in Los Angeles and numerous eBay listings. The search for Chanel for less is not for the faint of heart. Today I own six original Chanel pieces, all purchased pre-owned. Countless hours were expended in the search. And truly, this is the way the founder Coco wanted it. She wanted Chanel to be an exclusive luxury brand, not one accessible to the masses, and not one that anyone could own. Even in the midst of World War I, with many designers facing clothing shortages, Chanel was still selling at a premium price out of her exclusive boutique in the seaside town of Deauville, France. Just to get to Deauville to buy Chanel you had to be in a certain social strata. You had to be wealthy to enjoy this seaside town and Chanel’s beautiful garments.

Pictured: Coco Chanel and Suzy Parker in LIFE Magazine in 1957. The Chanel garments in the photo still look fresh.

Today, things are different. Although Chanel is not budget priced, there are many Chanel “inspired garments” available for less. My find du jour is this August Silk cardigan at Macy’s for less than $50.00! If you live outside of the US, look for August Silk at your local department store.

Pictured: Channeling Coco, August Silk Sweater at is newly reduced to less than $50.00 USD. If you have a savings pass for Macy’s, you can get a further discount.

Of course, there is no substitute for the beautiful tailoring of Chanel garment, but if you can’t afford Chanel, its nice to be able to enjoy the look for less. I call it Coco-less. Earlier this year, Chanel successor Karl Lagerfeld noted the upside of the recession downside: an end to over the top excess. “Bling is over. Red carpet-y covered with rhinestones is out. I call it ‘the new modesty.'” Or to state things more precisely, Le bling-bling, justement, est en disgrâce. Viva la Recessionista!

So I have to ask, will there ever be another H&M Lagerfeld collaboration, or at some point a real Coco for Less line?


Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.


  1. CailinMarie

    November 29, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    I adore Chanel. But I'm apple shaped and even if I could purchase it I'm fairly convinced I'd look dumb in it. But I think she – Coco – is an amazing icon and I LOVE all the textures. I recently saw a bit on the embroidery and how when so many other design houses are cutting it out of their lines, Karl Lagerfield is keeping the hand done needle work shops in Paris open with his designs.

  2. Berenice de la Salle

    August 4, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    Hi Recessionista

    My name is Berenice and I was married for 40 years to a man who knew Coco Chanel intimately. In fact, I have written a book that includes many interesting comments about Coco. It is entitled BEAUTIFUL RIDDLE, and you can learn more about it by going to my website: Your comment that Coco “wanted Chanel to be an exclusive luxury brand, not one accessible to the masses, and not one that anyone could own” is not quite true. Coco was one of the rare designers who actually encouraged other designers to copy her, including the designers responsible for 7th Avenue knock offs. She felt that it was a supreme compliment to be copied and was particularly pleased when her fashions “descended into the street” as she put it. She wanted the average woman to look and feel good about herself. and, in her mind there was no better way than by being dressed in Chanel. Berenice de la Salle

  3. Mary Hall, The Recessionista

    August 5, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    Bernice, what I wrote is accurate as it is about the Chanel brand. Chanel sold HER fashions in exclusive luxury locations in Deuville and Paris. Prices were not cheap and she didn't do a lower price line.
    So, yes, she may have allowed imitators and not take legal action against them, but she never discounted Chanel. And that is my point. I will have to check out your book.