So, What’s a White Sale, Anyway?

 

Now that Internet shopping rules, the department store has become a relic of days past. But that doesn’t mean we don’t take cues from our retail ancestors. Quite the contrary, in fact. Today marks our incredibly, massively huge White Sale – a term I was previously unfamiliar with (“but there are colorful sheets in here!”). After a little digging, I discovered the origins of this home goods extravaganza – and the reason behind the name.

Conceived by John Wanamaker (of Wanamaker’s – the first department store in Philadelphia) in 1878, the White Sale was initiated to keep shoppers coming through the doors during the slowest sales seasons. How? By providing heavy discounts on bedding and linens (because who doesn’t love a sale?). And thus, the first White Sale was born.

So, where does white come in? At the time, colors and prints were nowhere to be found in bedding. The vibrant linens we know now didn’t become popular until 70 years later, in the 1950s.

Today, White Sales have (thankfully) evolved to include items of every color, not just for the bed but for the bathroom, too. Plush duvets, eye-catching sheets, softer-than-soft towels, and more – they’re all here.

Now that you’re practically a historian yourself, stock up on necessities (and not-so-necessary indulgences) for the bed and bath.

Our (Winter) White Sale Boutique opens Wednesday, November 14, at 3PM ET.

By Anna Kuchinsky, Staff Writer

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November 14, 2012