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  • Writer's pictureKathy Condon

Palm Springs Day Trip to LA Garment District

Your friend owns Kimbals, a clothing and accessory shop in Palm Springs, California. She asks you go on a buying trip to the Garment District of Los Angeles. Now really, what are the chances anyone would say, No? Natta.

The day arrived. The weather was checked: Cold but sunny! A heavy sweater should do it. Comfortable slacks and top for ease in out of the car multiple times. Oh yes, the most comfortable walking shoes completed the comfort outfit.

Day Bag

This is what I included:

• Two of my reusable water bottles filled to the brim. I’ve seen way too many documentaries on plastic water bottles to think they would be a good idea to take on this trip or any other trip.

• An extra pair of shoes. I find a change of shoes half-way through a walking day makes a big different to my feet and my disposition.

• Snacks. Those corn muffins I made from scratch and have in the freezer would be perfect. Also included some almonds, love their portability. Bananas are good too to give you a boost. A welcome fruit for my drag time around 1:30 p.m.

• Mobile phone battery charger. Not only do I post pictures of the sites I see, I use my phone to send gift ideas to friends, keep up with text and phone calls. One needs it because before I know it my phone is drained have a 2.5 hour drive back to Palm Springs.

First Stop – Often called Chinatown

Even if you are not shopping for something, this area of the Garment District between 1st and 4th and Los Angeles is an experience. Think of huge warehouses with vendor booth upon vendor booth filled with things you equate with Made in China items.

Want a fan to cool yourself in summer heat? No problem, you can buy them by the dozen and hand them out to friends at your next hot backyard party.

Need ribbon? Every color and size imaginable is available.

Party favors? Adorable boxes for favors as your friends go out the door.

You get the picture. All these vendors and items produce a sensory overload.

Next Stop

Near 12th Street and San Pedro Street, we find ourselves surrounded by small boutiques selling their brands. Mannequins beg us to come in to view next season’s lines. Yet, this trip, the goal was to purchase jewelry so their beckoning to us to come in proved to be ineffective. We were on a mission.

Now if you want jewelry, this area will most certainly meet your needs. I commented to my friend, since I am a lover of jewelry, this place makes me feel like A little kid in a candy store.

Each store has hooks of row upon row of earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. I found a pair of gold earrings I liked, but I wanted it them in silver? No problem, I found a silver pair right next to the gold one. At this point, I knew if it wasn’t there, it would be, more than likely, located in the silver aisle.

Thus, I ended up with jewelry I didn’t need, but it was arty and unusual, so how could I leave them behind?

Alas, we looked at the clock. If we didn’t head back, we would get stuck in traffic with the in Los Angeles folks traveling to

Palm Springs for the weekend.

Snack on the Way Home

My friend, and driver, was getting weary, so we made a stop at Starbucks. She selected a cheese/fruit plate and we sat there and ate while smiling about our purchases. She was pleased for her next Las Vegas trip tasks had been cut down considerably and she has great new merchandise for the store.

As for me, my treasures are still on my kitchen counter. As I finish this article, I am smiling for now it is time for me to open, my bags, and put away my treasures.

PS - People ask if you do not have a business can you shop in the Garment District? The answer is, "It depends." In the stores, most likely you will need a vendor number assigned to your company. However, it doesn't hurt to ask. The street vendors are happy to sell you products, which include things such as hats, shoes, toys etc.

Kathy Condon is a travel writer and blogger, and founder of the Palm Springs Insider Guide. She was recipient of US Book News Finalist Award for her book: It Doesn't Hurt to Ask: It's About Communication. 760-902-3094

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