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Thread: J.Crew - the end is near?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pesape View Post
    J. Crew used to be my go to clothing store, but that probably ended 7 or so years ago. The prices started getting way too high for the quality, and I couldn't remove them from just being a "mall" store. Basically I didn't think they warranted being expensive. I viewed them as good, classic, looking clothes at decent prices. Once the prices started going up, they started hitting "higher end" price levels. If I was going to spend their prices, I was going to look for something that I perceived as higher quality than J. Crew. I think that is what ultimately lead me to Bonobos.
    I very, very, very rarely look at J. Crew anymore, but if I were to buy anything, I've definitely been condition to never pay full price. With that said, as Bonobos prices have started to increase, I've started to be conditioned to not pay full price for their stuff either.
    id love to be there, but i cant pay bonobos prices. Jcrew on large sale is quite reasonable. Bonobos is mostly 70+ and i just cant justify it. I wish.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by neminat View Post
    id love to be there, but i cant pay bonobos prices. Jcrew on large sale is quite reasonable. Bonobos is mostly 70+ and i just cant justify it. I wish.
    Bonobos can be quite reasonable when on sale, though. That recent 40% off one they did really cut some items down into my price range.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pesape View Post
    With that said, as Bonobos prices have started to increase, I've started to be conditioned to not pay full price for their stuff either.
    Maybe it's just me, or the way the majority of retail is these days, but I feel that bonobos is starting to also go down the route of increasing MSRP and running more sales. I certainly wouldn't complain about the sales, as long as they keep up with the quality.

  4. #24
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    I've started buying old JCrew stuff, NWT or NWOT on ebay. Plenty of Wallace and Barnes stuff on there at a steep discount.

  5. #25
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    I do agree that a lot of retailers are starting to go down the path of higher prices with more frequent sales. I very rarely will buy anything from Bonobos full price anymore unless I really need some pants (I have had some dress wool pants need replacing and my favorite washed stretch chinos rip - both instances caused me to pay full price because I "needed" the items then). It seems like you can get at least 15% off if you wait a few weeks.
    I do hope the quality stays up though, but I am concerned by that. Just an hour ago, a cotton linen henley that I purchased via a sale arrived (normally $78, got it for $51 after tax). I already have one of these in a different color from a year ago, but the new doesn't seem to be quite the same as the older one. It seems to be a decent amount cheaper overall.

    The rising prices and lower quality have caused me to start poking around at the more premium brands. Ex - I needed a nicer, short sleeve shirt for some family photos that we are doing on a beach vacation in a couple of months. I kept trying to find something from options like Bonobos or that price range but was struggling to find something that was a 'good' enough to warrant the price. After a few purchases/returns to/from Nordstrom (side - their shipping takes so long compared to companies), I ended up purchasing a Hugo Boss shirt for $158. I absolutely did not want to pay that much and was hoping I wouldn't like it when it arrived, but fortunately/unfortunately, it will work very well. You can tell it is much higher quality than my Bonobos Riviera shirts (for ex). Further caveat - this is for family photos, so I know I'll be seeing whatever shirt I wear on my wall for a long time hence the rationalization on the cost. I'm fully aware that is a lot of money for short sleeve shirt.

    I might end up heading down the path of buying fewer but higher quality items if the nicer mid-tier (Bonobos level) cost/quality equation doesn't line up.

  6. #26
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    I've been told that traditional retail has three pricing targets for any given item:

    1. MSRP - best case scenario, high profit, helps subsidize loss leaders.
    2. Low to moderate sales - The actual price in which the retailer expects the item to move at, and reflects what they think is a more than reasonable bargain.
    3. Clearance - Selling at cost or sometimes at a loss.

    The next level after #3 would be selling to a TJ Maxx, a sample sale company, or another third party reseller that is buying stock for practically nothing. At that point, the retailer often isn't even recouping the cost of the product.

    I also prefer when retailers offer "true pricing" and don't constantly offer sales, but that's going to leave them with little recourse when a product doesn't sell.

  7. #27
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    Bankruptcy is certain, not so sure about "the end."

  8. #28
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    Not sure what the future holds for them. I remember the days (about the time they intro'd the Ludlow circa maybe 2006?) when their stuff was reasonable for what you paid for it at full retail, considering the styling, quality, etc. Then around 2011 or so their full retail prices made a big jump and you had to wait for sales to get items at what I would consider a fair price. E.g. back in the mid-naughts their jeans were roughly what you'd pay for a pair of Levis. Then suddenly they were three figures (literally - $114 for a pair of jeans, and not jeans made of some extra special selvedge denim either) and you had to wait for a 40% off sale to feel like you were getting a square deal. That's where things started to go wrong for me. Can't blame it all on that as many retailers are struggling these days but it's an issue - see an item you like but it's too expensive, then you wait for a sale, then maybe wait some more to see if it goes even more on sale, and then forget about it and never get around to buying it, or they run out of your size.
    “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.” – Mark Twain

  9. #29
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    I still find plenty of things I like from Jcrew at the right price. But I would say the same about Banana Republic or Bonobos. In my neck of the woods everyone is running around with a big silly pink whale plastered all over their clothes. You couldn't pay me to wear that stuff.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by caktaylor View Post
    I am taking a tangent for an old man rant.

    J. Crew and the Gap family of stores (among others) have trained us to never pay full price for anything, and now they are stuck. If they would just offer the clothes at reasonable prices to begin with, they would not need to have this never-ending stream of sales. I am old enough to remember when you could get good quality clothes from J. Crew at reasonable prices. Every. Day. Sales were just to clear out seasonal items. Of course, this was before e-commerce (and an extensive retail network) when you had to call the 800 number to buy from them.


    JC Penney found itself in a similar situation a few years ago when they tried to wean customers off the weekly sales in favor of lower prices every day, and it didn’t go so well for them (or the then CEO). So, I wonder if a change in strategy would work for these companies.

    Rant complete.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I think what's especially frustrating is that the level of sale is not consistent. I've been following BR long enough to know when their big sales are going to be, months before they come, so I just put a few items I want in the shopping cart, and check out when those big sales come, easy enough. But my wife buys clothes as needed, with not much tracking and planning for sales, and the fluctuation of sales drives her crazy, because it's hard for her to know when she is actually getting a good deal, or when she is overpaying, even with the sale on.

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