Thymes' annual sale always a draw

Whenever there's a sale as popular as the Thymes annual warehouse sale (63 St. Anthony Pkwy., Mpls., 612-338-4471,, there's bound to be blowback. While thousands of fans enjoy the more than 20 fragrances for bath, body and home discounted 50 to 70 percent, I've heard others gripe about the strong, less-than-natural scents. It's more effort to find milder scents at the sale, but try Coco Monoi, Figleaf or Mandarin Coriander.

Assortments of lotion, shampoo, soap, candles, refresher oils, reed diffusers and gift and travel sets are sold for $2, $3, $6 and $10. Generally, the fastest sellers are body lotions/washes and candles.

Sale hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Additional discounts on Saturday are unlikely this year, one rep said, based on current inventory. Bring a reusable bag or small cart to haul heavy items, because the new location is huge.

Flooring discounted

If you're considering a flooring purchase, this is the time to save.

"Manufacturers are super hungry for business, said Ken Nash at ProSource Wholesale Flooring in Plymouth. "There are some amazing discounts."

ProSource showrooms (Bloomington, Oakdale and Plymouth) offer additional discounts on flooring through Saturday during their semiannual sale. It offers a large selection of moderate to high-end carpet, hardwoods, ceramic tile, laminate flooring and a new product called luxury vinyl tile that looks like ceramic tile but feels warm.

To gain access to the trade-only showrooms, call Jack Rubenstein Wholesale (952-922-4781, Rubenstein's customers normally save 45 percent off list price on carpet and 25 percent off hard flooring at ProSource. During the sale, save an additional 8 to 13 percent off most of the stock. Free lunches are served from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Sale on used furniture

Prices on used furniture are always low at Furnish Office & Home (850 15th Av. NE., Mpls, 612-789-3322, www.furnishofficeand, but they're even lower during the fall clearance through Saturday. All chairs will be an additional 50 percent off, including used Gibo/Kodama adjustable vinyl office chairs for $50 ($360 new) and Herman Miller and Haworth chairs for $130 to $160 ($500 to $700 new). New sale items include Frank Sepe fitness disc/workout systems ($5, regularly $50) and Elevations toaster ovens ($20, regularly $80).

Dresses for good cause

Operation Glass Slipper, a nonprofit agency that provides prom gowns and accessories to high school girls in need in the Twin Cities, often receives items deemed too tame or too sophisticated for its audience, so they're sold to support the cause.

Dresses ($5 to $20), shoes, jewelry and accessories will be on sale. At these prices, it's also a good sale to shop for Halloween costumes.

New to the sale are Alex separates for $25 each, a good choice for mothers of the bride and groom. Found at Macy's or Bloomingdale's for $100 and up, the dressy separates are made of velvet, crepe and chiffon up to size 4X.

The sale runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday at 10950 Club West Pkwy., Blaine. Call 651-994-7989, or go to www.operation

Operation Glass Slipper has no wedding gowns at its sale this year, but the Bridal Center (4116 N. Lancaster Lane, Plymouth, 763-550-3992, has everything discounted 50 percent or more for its store closing sale.

John Ewoldt • 612-673-7633 or If you spot a deal, share it at