Where have I been hiding? Obviously under a rock. In a cave. Behind a wall somewhere. I may go back.
Last week when Libby and I were wandering in and out of stores at the outlets and one of Orlando’s premier malls, I found myself on the verge of culture shock. I guess I’ve just not paid attention. I felt myself morphing into a cranky old person as we wandered through Juicy Couture, for example. I’ve been trying to figure out my very negative response to that and a few other stores (stores, may I add, from which Libby made no purchases) for almost a week.
I explored some of the blogosphere on this topic and discovered that I’m not alone in my not understanding the trendiness of this store and it’s overpriced velour sweat suits (hoodies for $130+). I also discovered that, if anything, this brand is on the decline in popularity. I really did almost miss it. But alas, I did not.
I think that Juicy Couture, in many ways, promotes “everything” that I hate about the fashion industry. I own that this is my opinion, by the way. But really, what does it say to young women and girls when a brand produces over-priced and unattractive merchandise that you “must have” in order to be beautiful and cool and in? When a brand sells that merchandise under a banner of sexy to a clientele which has not had time to grow to understand the difference between beautiful and sexy, between valuable and expensive, between loved and lusted after.
I think my initial response was about what I saw as generally ugly stuff being sold at outrageous prices exaggerated by my own shock at how full the store was with customers who were buying said stuff. My deeper response is to the messages being used to sell said merchandise and the way those messages reinforce a self-image that is dependent on undependable things.
And I know this didn’t start with Juicy. I know they’re not the only ones. I also know that, like all business, if buyers didn’t buy then sellers would sell something different.