I know of four different types of outlets where you can find clearance dinnerware at great prices.
A lot of the manufacturers have started focusing on opening internet-based dinnerware outlets to distribute their dinnerware. Signing up with your choice manufacturer is a great idea because they will email you when they have a sale. It's kind of like having an inside scoop to great discounts.
By signing up for email communication with most dinnerware distributors, you also will be updated on the news about your favorite patterns. For instance, when a new piece is introduced you will be among the first to know. If a pattern is being discontinued, sometimes this is communicated through opt-in email. When a pattern is discontinued is a prime time for clearance sales.
I started my Royal Albert Moonlight Rose dinnerware set by buying the tea set in seconds. They had the flaws circled so that you could see them. It was little, unnoticeable things like maybe one rose was an off color or the glaze on the bottom of a cup had a little bubble in it.
Evidently their inspectors are picky because I would have bought those pieces at full price. To the naked eye, you cannot even see the flaws. I have since bought the rest of the set and the pieces match perfectly.