May 14, 2023, a particularly sun-flooded Sunday in downtown New York City, will go down in fashion history as something of a Battle Royale—a gauntlet meant only to be braved by the most dedicated, or delusional, thread-heads in America.
That’s because, tucked away on the second floor of Keith Haring’s former studio in NoHo, actress and enduing style icon Chloë Sevigny was presiding over a sale of a huge chunk of her enviable, endlessly-documented It Girl wardrobe.
By the end of the day, as the throng of thousands in line went viral on Twitter and TikTok, the event was being dubbed “The Sale of the Century.” Chelsea Manning was in attendance!
“I love Chloë, and I’m a big fan of her personal style so I knew she’d probably be selling some incredible stuff,” Charlotte Rose Benjamin told The Daily Beast. “My friend Olivia told me about the sale and asked if I wanted to go, I guess I thought it would be cool to poke around and maybe get a little souvenir.”
“After 4.5 hours—I never thought I would wait that long for anything—we finally got inside,” she added. “Most of the good stuff was gone but I felt like I needed to bring something home, so I bought a tube of $35 Gucci toothpaste. Olivia got a cute black beaded bag.”
Chloe Sevigny is selling her clothes on Broadway and the line is INSANE like wraps around 3 blocks pic.twitter.com/vZpTRsvXnS
— baby gorgeous (@pippajane_) May 14, 2023
The sale, organized by ex-Vogue writer and jack-of-all-trades fashion influencer Liana Satenstein, was announced just under a week ago and was born from Sevigny’s simple, relatable desire to unburden herself from cumbersome sartorial archives.
The sale featured other notable sellers: Lynn Yaeger, contributing editor at Vogue and an iconic character whose signature, flame-red bob is legend, was offering gorgeous jewelry, and socialite Mickey Boardman was also featured, but Sevigny’s closet was indisputably the main event.
“I decided to properly care for or store some things in Los Angeles,” the star explained to the New York Times. “And then there was a lot left over and I was like, you know what, I’m 48, I’m a mother, there’s a lot of stuff I don’t want to wear anymore. This is a big purge to pay for a few years of storage, give a chunk to a charity and pay for some more storage.”
Hopeful potential buyers began lining up for the event, which ran from noon to 5 p.m., in the wee hours of Sunday morning.
“It was the best day ever,” Char Shelton told The Daily Beast. “We got in line at like 9:30, became friends with the girl behind us and just chatted in line all day.”
“Chloë was amazing,” Shelton said. “She was just hanging out in the showroom, talking to everyone and signing whatever. I got the Chloë x Opening Ceremony clogs cuz I wear tons of clogs, and these were some of the coolest ones I’ve seen. I was like, I just have to have her sign the clog cuz why not, since it was her collab.”
chloe sevigny signed my chloe x opening ceremony clog pic.twitter.com/SQS2EklqwB
— x 🦢 (@poshgirl42069) May 14, 2023
By a little past midday, the mammoth line had curled twice around the block, like a demented, extremely-well-dressed cinnamon bun. This reporter arrived precisely at noon, knowing I had made a grievous error; if I had not been meeting up with friends who had secured a place in line earlier in the day, it’s likely I would not have made it onto the coveted sales floor at all.
yeah i bought the gucci toothpaste at the Chloe Sevigny sale… pic.twitter.com/DSaHadV3OF
— Charlotte Rose Benjamin (@charlobenji) May 14, 2023
Myself and my well-heeled comrades waited, for the most part mercifully shielded from the sun by construction scaffolding, for nearly four hours before we got our turn to shop.
While we languished, we took turns making Duane Reade runs for sandwiches and water. After the 45th passerby asked, “What are you guys waiting in line for,” we just started lying out of boredom and rancor.
“I basically arrived at the sale 30 minutes late and already knew I was fucked, but I had nothing better to do, and I was just tempted to see what might happen,” attendee Emma Davey told The Daily Beast. “It felt like Schrödinger’s Closet Sale.”
Davey eventually made it inside, picked up a sweater from Lynn Yaeger and talked to Chloë briefly. “Sounds delusional, but it was worth it,” she said. “When you consider it, the whole thing is kind of silly, but it’s sort of the proximity to New York Coolness that I feel like we were all chasing.”
I myself had around four existential crises in line, but was rewarded for my suffering with the discovery and that me and Chloë wear the same shoe size.
I bought a pair of her red velvet-and-gold Thierry Mugler lace-up heels for $55 dollars. Sounds delusional, but it was worth it.