Department stores are notorious for their liberal return policies, some more than others. Nordstrom, Macy's and Neiman-Marcus generally allow returns for either a full refund or a store credit. The type of refund may depend on the amount of time that elapsed from the date of purchase. Most stores allow for returns on sale or clearance merchandise as well, although we've noticed at times a sign will be posted indicating certain sales items are not returnable, such as those on a deep discount. Stanley Korshak gives a full refund within seven days. Keep your receipt! Target and Walmart, as you probably would expect, have the most liberal stated policies, allowing for refunds on sales within 90 days and with a receipt. Sales returns without a receipt become more problematic but not impossible, and there are specific rules, too numerous to mention here, that apply.
Smaller, exclusive boutiques have much stricter policies. Roberto Cavalli's stated policy on their receipts (in very small font) says "NO CASH OR CREDIT REFUNDS. Merchandise which has not been altered or tag removed will be accepted for exchange or STORE CREDIT within 10 DAYS of purchase accompanied by receipt. Store credit expires 1 year after date issued. ALL SALES ARE FINAL." Gucci, Versace, Bottega Veneta, and Valentino have the same policy. Louis Vuitton has a 14 day policy for an exchange or refund. Although not always specifically mentioned, sale or discounted merchandise is never accepted as a return at these stores. Hugo Boss allows for 30 days to get a full credit, while Carolina Herrara provides for 30-day returns but only for a store credit. Again, discounted items are not returnable. Gregory's provides only store credit, but the sales staff did not give us a number of days. Just remember to have the receipt with you.
Several of the stores we visited indicated that they are more liberal around the holidays, but don't count on it unless you're specifically advised.