• Is This the Death of Discount Retail?

    In December 2013, one of my greatest fears was realized – Loehmann’s went bankrupt. Memories of religiously thumbing through aisles of clothes with my mom and walking out with tons of beautifully discounted pieces flashed through my mind. And while the store shuttered it’s last minute stock, I shuttered to think just where I’d find cute, quality, yet discounted pieces to fill in my high/low designer closet. You can find everything from H&M to Saint Laurent, Zara to Alexander Wang in my closet. There’s no shame in my discount game but I digress. When Loehmann’s closed, I started noticing something about my other favorite discount haunts. Off the 5th, Neiman Marcus Last Call etc. started decreasing the quality of their stock! Gone were the deeply discounted designer pieces of yesterday, replaced with weird off brands that looked like sh*t. And when there was a sale with fresh off the department floor new stock? Getting to those size 41 shoes, or medium shirts or sale priced runway threads was like fighting through a pack of rabid pits, trying to get to the last meaty bone left on earth.

    And look here, I am a working journalist. And while you will see me on the gram with my Sophia Webster and Loubs in tow on occasion, I rather spend my money on experiences. 120mm heels can’t carry you through the world so I stack now, floss later. But I digress. The point is, what woman doesn’t want to look good for less? Why are all the spots billed as discounted luxury now cheapening their stock?

    My discount diva ire was raised once again after the shuttering and bankruptcy of Nasty Gal – the ubiquitously named fashion brand billed for the girl who loves edgy fashion, doesn’t take shit, and strives to be a #GirlBoss. In need of a quick party dress that I know will ship out over night and get to me in a day? Nasty Gal. In the midst of them shutting down, I went ahead and purchased the hell out of their last stock (at 70% off I might add) and have yet to receive my end-of-days merch. And even worst, much to my horror, I went to the newly possessed site (Nasty Gal’s brand only was sold to British company Boohoo) I noticed that all the new merchandise looked cheap, especially the shoes. Miss Piggy would have a field day.

    So. Welcome to the days of the cheap, over-done, insta-boutiques and cheap, sweatshop labor duds, pushed and peddled by b-list celebs straight into your closet. I finally succumbed to the insta-craze and ordered some Fashionnova, and as I suspected, much of what arrived to my house was minute thin, and one-wear only. Where has the quality gone?

    I’m more established and stacked than in my Loehmann’s days, but that doesn’t mean I want either my clothes to unravel or my bank account jacked. How annoying. Does this mean we’re relegated to insta-cheapery or retailers running off with our wallet twice? Are those the only two options? Or maybe I’m just too lazy to dig for discounts like my early-mid twenties self. Either way, something’s gotta give. Cause the way the quality of these clothes are going – they could blow away with the wind.

    Rant over. Later y’all. 




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