Bonnie Barone is ready for the big Black Friday rush. With ongoing sales and plenty of brand new merchandise, her Gold Coast designer resale shop has seen more business from holiday shoppers looking for more bang for their buck..
"They come here. They look at something then go to Michigan Avenue and come running back to buy it because they realized it is 50 to 80 off of retail," said Barone.
"You can find anywhere from Prada to Gucci and Louis Vuitton at a very discount price," said Stephanie Joly, shopper.
With only the holiday spirit to keep them warm on a chilly Friday morning, shoppers staked out a North Avenue Best Buy looking to gobble up after Thanksgiving deals on electronics and the latest tech gadgets.
"I think the prices are good. I think they are affordable even in this tough economy," said Dasnar Makins, early morning shopper.
Expanded hours meant long lines and jammed parking lots at Woodfield Mall and other suburban shopping centers as many retailers offered special deals.
"Macy's reported in October a 5-percent increase on the year. We're anxious for that trend to continue. we're seeing good traffic today. This is our important 4th quarter season," said Linda Piepho, Macy's.
Not everyone was thrilled with the discounts at the kickoff of the hectic holiday shopping season.
"I haven't found so many good deals yet, but shopped anyway," said Ann Sofieforsten, shopper.
"It's a lot of sales going on so it's good," said Kevin Yon, shopper.
Some experts say despite ongoing concerns about the economy a lot of consumers will spend.
"Sixty-five percent of Chicagoans will spend the same amount or more," said Seema Pajula, Deloitte.
Even with the promise of increased spending, it's still too early to tell if Black Briday was a success for retailers who will now turn their sights to getting customers online on cyber Monday.