20 April 2011

Anthro: Farewell to an Obsession

I think my love affair with Anthropologie has officially ended. If it hasn't ended, it's on a long hiatus.

Anthropologie left a bad taste in my mouth after I read this post by Maya over at KinzieSays. It's like a light bulb went off in my head. Why was I singing the praises of a company that couldn't be bothered to put one model of color (oh, sorry there is one pouty Asian model up there) on their sister wedding website, BHLDN? That's bunk.

After Maya's post, I kinda avoided Anthro all together. I needed a breather. The pretty details I had obsessed over all these years had turned into nothing more than a blurred haze of overpriced shabby chic vomit.

One question turned into many. Why do I need a ballooning tank top with a ruffle on the collar for $90 anyway? Why was I so fucking giddy over a $2,000 chair the size of doll furniture I couldn't afford? What has Anthropologie ever done for me?

They won't even explain the purpose of that ridiculous yellow membership card I swipe every time I pay for something. I've yet to see a discount come from the fruits of my wallet's labor. Bah.

Ultimately, this means very little adjustment in my life, but for blogging purposes I thought I'd discuss it a bit more in-depth. I may still take an occasional stroll through my local store, or flip through a catalog, but I no longer view their merchandise through rose-colored glasses. I'm over it.

I'm actually pretty unaware of the history of most of the retail stores I frequent. I don't make it a habit of researching that kind of stuff. Maybe I should?

Do you think about the companies you patronize regularly? Did you ever learn of something that made you think twice or caused you to stop shopping there?

11 comments:

  1. I avoid Anthropologie since now I know the owner is an extreme right winger who supports the likes of Rick Santorum. (Which hey, if he's your dreamboat, then that's ok, but it doesn't sit well with me at all.)

    it's easy to forget that companies are owned by people, with agendas and beliefs that may or may not match up to our own. I do research and make the best choices I can.

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  2. Great post and thanks for the shout-out. After the whole Anthropologie/BHLDN drama, I started thinking about the other stores I frequent. How much do I really know about their history? Am I making educated consumer choices I can feel good about? I basically shop with my head in the sand unless the company's bad reputation is very well-publicized. It's something I continue to struggle with, even with Anthropologie because I do love their aesthetic, but how much personal responsibility do I want to take for my shopping habits? It's something I've been thinking about a lot lately.

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  3. I've avoided Anthro for a very very long time (and zip past blog entries that love it), and it's one of my few legit protests. Maya's post just reaffirmed my reasoning... let alone the pricing schemes on clothing that is made in the third-world with child labor and a CEO who is catering to you likes with no appreciation.

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  4. Like Maya, I pretty much shop with my head in the sand unless someone brings a good reason not to shop there to my attention. In addition to Anthro/Urban Outfitters, I also avoid American Apparel, Walmart, and now, sadly, Target.

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  5. Thanks, ladies, for your insight! Your comments are solidifying my decision to avoid Anthro.

    @Two Chicks Nest: Target, too?! Say it ain't so. Also, doesn't American Apparel claim they support fair labor laws? I guess there's a lot I don't know!

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  6. American Apparel's CEO has been accused of sexual harassment on many occasions and seems like such a giant A-hole that it clouds anything positive about the company for me. There's a good summary of his behavior at the bottom of his Wikipedia entry aptly labelled "Controversy": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dov_Charney

    The Target thing really has me disappointed.

    They are Michele Bachmann's largest corporate donor: http://chicago.gopride.com/news/article.cfm/articleid/17738401/michele-bachman-calls-for-criminalization-of-samesex-marriage-during-speech-in-iowa

    They've gotten a lot of flack for their donations to anti-gay candidates: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/03/08/lady-gaga-ends-target-lgbt_n_833209.html

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  7. Congrats on becoming a more concious shopper! I can definately be better about that too. I try to stay green friendly, when the budget allows!

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  8. i've also noticed that i started avoiding anthro after maya's blog post. it's better for my wallet :)

    another store i've avoided for years has been forever 21. their low quality of clothing was my first reason. then i watched "made in la" http://www.madeinla.com/ and was happy with my decision to stop shopping there.

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  9. Thank you for this and seriously, how true right? Hmm I think that's a great future post - how aware are we as consumers?
    I'm with Honey my Heart! I am grossed out by Forever 21's practices ever since the Jezebel/Business Week article (labor, blatant stealing and payoffs of small designers, "ignorance" about company practices) and am also happy to stop spending any money on disposable clothing.

    xoxo,
    Chic 'n Cheap Living

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  10. Ok, thank goodness you said this! Honestly...I own one dress from Anthro - and I purchased it because a friend bought me a gift that I had to return there and I had to take store credit. I still have a hard time understanding how they can charge so much for some of their things. I'll admit: I do click through their site every once in a while to see pretty things...but I never buy anything. But yeah, I am probably way too uneducated regarding the stores I shop at. I need to change this.

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  11. not to mention, they've shoved BHLDN down our throats via every blog out there.

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