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Personal Shopper To The Stars Shares Secret To Sample Sales

LOS ANGELES ( — Designers with factories in Los Angeles are a hidden source for deals, where shoppers can find their favorite high-end brands for a fraction of the price.

Joe Katz, a personal shopper to the rich and famous, shared his insider tips with CBS2's Suzanne Marques on where to find the best brands at a deep discount.

"I feel like I'm giving my secrets away," Katz said.  "A lot of people don't know that a lot of designers actually have factory stores."

American Apparel is one of the designers that holds sample sales on an ongoing basis at its Los Angeles flea market.

"When we're testing out a new product for production, we'll make some samples, we'll have people wear it, we'll do the photo shoots and then they'll bring it here," said Michale Filippone with American Apparel.

Located in the heart of downtown L.A., American Apparel's Flea Market is inside the factory where the clothes are made — upstairs from the outlet store, and with even lower prices.

Among the finds were shorts ranging from $2 to $5, a men's terrycloth polo shirt for $3 and a mini-skirt for $10.

Next door to American Apparel are the Splendid and Ella Moss factories, where factory sales are held twice a year in the Cooper Building at 860 S. Los Angeles St.

The Guess Factory also offers deep discounts on an ongoing basis at its factory on 1901 E. 15th St., Gate 3 downtown.

Online, shoppers can find major sales at the Barney's New York Warehouse site year-round.

For shoppers unsure of where to start, Katz advises signing up for your favorite designer's newsletter online to find out about sample sales.

And with the holidays approaching, Katz says, the best time to shop is now, before these discount spots are cleaned out.

"Come now before everything gets picked over — grab your T-shirts, stocking stuffers," Katz said.

Some sales to watch for:

3.1 Philip Lim Sample Sale: Nov. 7 in the Cooper Building, 860 S. Los Angeles St.

Rebecca Minkoff: Sample Sale: Nov. 11 at Confederacy L.A., 4661 Hollywood Blvd.

Tibi Sample Sale: Nov. 21, Cooper Design Space, 880 South Los Angeles St.

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