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What the Stylish Women Behind Gilt Groupe Wear to Work

Photos by <a href="http://drielys.com/">Driely S.</a> for Racked.
Photos by Driely S. for Racked.

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If you participated in The Flash Sale Phenomenon of the 2000s, you're likely a Gilt member. The site was one of the first to sell on the discounted-but-for-a-limited-time model, giving shoppers feverish, short-term access to brands like Marc Jacobs and Helmut Lang—and giving designers and retailers an elegant way to rid overstock. Win-win.

Flash sale sites ballooned in the years since, but Gilt has managed to remain a constant, regularly fine-tuning its offerings. These days, the mix includes private label brands and personalized sales across a range of categories stretching from fine jewelry to countertop appliances.

We got to know a handful of the team on a recent visit to their Manhattan offices. Check out what the girls behind your secret lunchtime shopping habit wear to work, how they got their jobs, and what some of their best Gilt scores have been, after the jump.

Angela Boccarossa, Buyer, Women's Contemporary Ready to Wear, wears a Dolce Vita jumpsuit and Narciso Rodriguez shoes.

How did you score your job?
"I was recruited by an agency. What sealed the deal for me, though, was the truly varied range of style roaming the halls. Being a fashion/tech company, Gilt allows its employees the freedom to express their own individual fashion persona—be it bohemian chic or Star Trek geek."

Top three brands you freak out over when they're on Gilt?
"3.1 Phillip Lim, Band of Outsiders and L'Agence."

What is an item you spent a lot of money on that you regret buying?
"A 3.1 Phillip Lim leather jacket; the jacket is gorgeous but ill-fitting on me. It's truly a fashion tragedy since a piece of clothing that amazing should be worn, not tucked away in the depths of one's closet."

What have you learned at Gilt about the fashion industry that you wouldn't have known otherwise?
"It's okay not to take yourself too seriously. Fashion should be fun, innovative, and inspiring."

What's your most legendary Gilt purchase?
"A vintage Rolex—classic and a deal."

Yvonne Yip, Director of Merchandising, Women's Accessories, wears a Dolce & Gabbana dress, Jimmy Choo shoes, and an Hermès bracelet.

What is an item you spent a lot of money on that you regret buying?
"I wouldn't say it's a regret, but I've accrued a collection of gowns that sit at the back of my closet and have never been worn. Most of them are from Gilt and I purchased them because they were such a good deal but I haven't found an occasion to wear them. I guess I should start going to black-tie events."

What is the best piece of shopping advice you've gotten?
"If you find something that fits you perfectly and you love, buy two. I live by this when it comes to jeans and T-shirts as it's so hard to find the perfect fit."

Top three brands you freak out over when they're on Gilt?
"3.1 Phillip Lim, Tabitha Simmons, and Helmut Lang."

What is your worst shopping habit?
"I do almost all of my shopping online now because it's just so easy. I'll end up buying a bunch of things just surfing the web at night with the philosophy of 'If I don't like it when I get it, I can always return it.' Somehow, I always end up justifying the purchase when it arrives. Oops."

Tracey Lomrantz Lester, Gilt Editorial Director, wears a 3.1 Phillip Lim jacket, American Apparel T-shirt, vintage Levi's shorts, and Bally shoes.

How did you score your job?
"I spent a while working in magazines—first Elle, then Glamour—and then decided I wanted to apply the editorial skills I'd honed to the e-commerce world. I was friendly with my predecessor at Gilt through the very schmoozy editor world, and she recommended me for the role when she moved on."

What have you learned at Gilt about the fashion industry that you wouldn't have known otherwise?
"So much. As a fashion editor, I spent hours poring over the wildest shoes and most unique dresses and the things that would photograph beautifully on a page, but it turns out black pumps and gray sweaters are most of what anyone buys."

What's your most legendary Gilt purchase?
"A pair of python Derek Lam sandals that I paid $150 for."

Top three brands you freak out over when they're on Gilt?
"Jason Wu, Chloé, Suno."

What is your worst shopping habit?
"I used to have a bad Friday night outfit habit. If I was going out, I wanted to be wearing something new, which meant a lot of going to Zara and buying a $49 top. Every time I cleaned my closet, I found those were the things I was tossing, so I finally learned my lesson."

What do you splurge on, and what do you cheap out on?
"I splurge on shoes and coats, since I wear them constantly and they get a lot of visibility all season; I'll do fast fashion for things like T-shirts, costume jewelry, and total trendoid pieces like neon and crop tops."

What is the best piece of shopping advice you've gotten?
"A close friend who's a really talented stylist taught me never to 'save' a new outfit or pair of shoes. As soon as you wear something, that's the special occasion. Wear your new shoes out of the store."

Brittany Billings, Senior Director, Business Development, wears a Narciso Rodriguez dress, Monique Lhuillier shoes, and a Cécile & Jeanne cuff.

What's your most legendary Gilt purchase?
"Are we talking about today? This week? This month? Recently, my Miu Miu Vitello satchel, Helmut Lang leather motorcycle jacket, Frette duvet and sheet set and Bliss spa treatments on Gilt City have been my favorites. And for sentimentality reasons, the red satin Stuart Weitzman sling-backs I wore on my wedding day (and now every anniversary)."

What is the best piece of shopping advice you've gotten?
"When in doubt, buy it in black."

What is your worst shopping habit?
"Shopping Gilt on mobile while drinking red wine on the couch. It's also my favorite shopping habit."

What is an item you spent a lot of money on that you regret buying?
"A 50-minute massage when a 75-minute massage was available. You can't put a price on relaxation."

Top three brands you freak out over when they're on Gilt?
"This is like trying to pick your favorite child. I can't stop myself from hitting 'Add to Cart' when Vince, 3.1 Phillip Lim and La Roche Posay are on. And I can't stop daydreaming about our vintage Chanel handbags that remind me of my mom's amazing collection."

What do you splurge on, and what do you cheap out on?
"I always splurge on handbags, shoes and jeans. I cheap out on mascara, statement jewelry and tees."

Shayna Watson, Assistant Buyer, Women's Private Label Footwear, wears a Best Society for Gilt T-shirt, thrifted skirt, Wythe NY for Gilt shoes, and jewelry by H&M and Ava & Aiden for Gilt.

What is the best piece of shopping advice you've gotten?
"My mom always told me to 'have the vision' while shopping, which basically just means don't just shop for 'wear now.' Sure, it may be 90 degrees now, but if you come across the perfect fall statement jacket do not pass it up. While everyone else is stocking up on sandals to wear this weekend, I'm building my next-season wardrobe at great prices."

What do you splurge on, and what do you cheap out on?
"I am a thrifter at heart, but I will pay a little more for a perfect pair of leather ankle booties—they just take you through all seasons and add instant cool to any outfit. I definitely cheap out on fashion jewelry. Pixie Grey exclusively for Gilt is my go-to for adorable charms to layer."

Top three brands you freak out over when they're on Gilt?
"Isabel Lu, MinkPink, Dolce Vita."

What have you learned at Gilt about the fashion industry that you wouldn't have known otherwise?
"Labels and brands should enhance your personal style, not define it."

Alex Smith, Associate Buyer, Fashion Jewelry, wears a Vince shirt, TBags skirt, Ava & Aiden for Gilt shoes, Elizabeth Cole necklace, and bracelets by Melanie Ault and Pixie Grey for Gilt.

What is an item you spent a lot of money on that you regret buying?
"Because I'm tall I purchased a pair of Giuseppe kitten heels. Turns out I hate kitten heels and they broke the first time I wore them."

Top three brands you freak out over when they're on Gilt?
"Helmut Lang, Elizabeth Cole, Jason Wu."

What is your worst shopping habit?
"Feeling like I need to fill my Gilt cart with five items before I make my purchase. It's probably okay to just buy one or two."
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