Friday, April 25, 2008

Premium Discount mall miasma

I visited two Premium Discount malls while in Florida recently- not my first trip, but hope springs eternal. What I found: an abundance of small sizes, which led me to dub the place XSMall.

Price reduction in many stores not as significant as the sale racks at Saks or Nordstrom.
But it was the quality of the goods in many shops that had me seething: the peddling of second-line shoddy merch (made exclusively for these outlet stores) that diminishes the brand.

Shame on you Coach, Aldo, Cole Haan.
Looks like these brands think we'd buy anything with their logo, even if the stitching is lumpy, the leather stiff.

J. Crew offers the same goods as in stores/catalogs, but it's just as cheap in an online sale. Banana Republic has a mix- some store items and some I suspect made for outlets.

You can find treasures
, if you're the right size: a sumptuous Etro silk poet shirt (in a pattern like that shown above) reduced to $400 from $1300 at Saks' Off Fifth. I wouldn't wear it enough for the price.

If you're a tiny perfect Prada devotee (with a large perfect wallet), you would have cleaned up.
But confronted by long rows of pallid Eileen Fisher cardigans in the throes of hanger death, it was a dispiriting outing.

My DH (an XL) hit pay dirt at Brooks Brothers- stocked up on spring-shaded polos, several linen shirts, and linen pants, all 40-55% less store prices.

Judging from the bulging racks, the
boxy 3/4 sleeve jacket (below) that looks like a truncated old-school maternity top is good for this season (if you liked it), then over.




3 comments:

Anjela said...

Hard to believe they can and do pull that off- manufacturing shoddy goods for the sole purpose of 'feeding the masses' love of, though sometimes lack of money for, their brand name. It is truly so unethical....But I have noticed last Christmas for the first time, how, as I shopped the small town I live in, rehashed goods and cards everywhere- Old stuff being offered as new:)

Duchesse said...

Angela, this is the worst: I once gave a blouse to Goodwill and saw it for sale several weeks later in an upscale boutique. Know it was mine because I'd had it custom made! And it was not even presented as "vintage".

Deja Pseu said...

I've also found the premium outlets to be a huge disappointment. Better to stake out the stores and styles you like and wait for the sales.