WTF thursday: label madness

Get ready for QUITE a story, my friends.

I've talked about how weird my job is before. What you're wearing--or who you're wearing--inevitably comes up everyday and not out of normal curiosity. It really means something, for status or taste or business.

It's sometimes awkward, and sometimes my feelings are accidentally hurt, but what happened a couple days ago was just too much!

I'm sitting innocently in my cube when someone who works near me comments on how much she likes my scarf as she passes.

"Can I have it?" she asks.

I laugh, thinking she's kidding, then realize she isn't. In fact, she's headed to a color meeting and my scarf is a mix of oranges and pinks [inspired by my recent post] that she likes. So I unwrap it from my [cold] neck and hand it over.

Hours go by, and she tells me they're actually going to hold onto it for awhile. Then she asks, "Where's it from, anyway? Everyone loves it!"

I'm typically shy about revealing labels (for this very reason), but encouraged by everyone's interest in it, I say, "Loft!"

She laughs. "Ohhh, umm, well let's just keep that between us, then--I won't tell anyone," She winks and laughs again.

I'm shocked. I'm sorry... WHAT? Why is that an unmentionable thing? Why should the place I got the scarf from make it less desirable? Besides... I legitimately like Loft--it wasn't just a one off thing! Why did it matter at all--especially since SHE liked it, too!?

Believe me, like anyone I dream of building my closet out of my favorite runway designers. But even if I had the cash, my generation has been shown to be incredibly disloyal to brands in comparison to older generations. We are interested in a look, more; we aren't inclined to stick to one place or designer to find something that speaks to us.

I'm definitely like that--I shop at the strangest collection of shops: from thrift stores in Nowheresville, Florida, Brooklyn boutiques, and Kohl's, to Intermix, Loehmann's, and NYC vintage stores. I'm driven by fit [being very petite, some places just DON'T work], value, and general curiosity of the retail industry [like, what does LC's new line look like?].

Sometimes, I feel stifled. And even like I'm not meant to be in an industry where I don't fit in unless I can afford to. I mean, I AM fresh-out-of-college and supporting myself entirely while living in Manhattan. Naturally my closet should differ from someone halfway through her career with a well-off husband. And dare I say I'm proud of myself for how I budget?

I got my scarf back today, and that was that--no mention about how much she liked it again.

Maybe I'm overreacting.. but this is the kind of thing that makes my blood boil--and makes me think of those ladies on Advanced Style. They probably would've just told her to f*&$ off!

What would you have done in that situation?


Fifth Sparrow said...

oh I'm so sorry, it really is a brutal industry! I think that's why I love the blogging side of it, everyone here seems to be so positive and encouraging, it makes you feel that maybe fashion does have a heart after all.
Personally I think that people who dress only in what labels are "cool" are usually incredibly boring with their style. Where's the personality and heart? fashion is an art and completely personal. One should be able to mix and match high and low (in my case, low and low!) without feeling less than. I'm sure you looked awesome and your boss just needs to grow up!
Keep your head up! xx

one sydney road said...

OMG, that's crazy and terrible - what happened to manners, right?? And mixing high and low - celebrities even do that!! And it looks awesome. Sounds like they're just envious you're able to have great style :)

alison (semi-fab lane) said...

i used to work at a salon while in college and it was exactly the same, all about gucci, chloe and so forth. who has money to only wear that! if i had that much money, i probably wouldn't be working! good point on mixing the highs and lows, do you know olivia palermo, from the city, even does that- i read. i'm not sure if that is true, but she said so herself. bi%@*s! it would have been great if you said something like " oh, you don't like it as much anymore?"

Victoria said...

Oh, I would have smacked her. And quickly ended up in the unemployment line because that's the kind of woman that I am. But seriously, she should be praising your ability to find fashionable items on a budget. It's not difficult to walk into a couture boutique and find something that looks high-fashion -- but to find something in the "lesser" brands or (gasp!) a department store or thrift shop that has serious style, that shows dedication and true fashion sense.

I agree that everyone's mixing highs and lows nowadays. When I was working over at Alpha Kitty, all of the fashionistas that we talked to mentioned brands like H&M in their wardrobes.

Stacey Kay said...

stay strong!

it takes much more thought, vision and talent to be able to pull something super fashionable together from the "normal" people stores and stay within a budget than it does for someone who can walk into Saks and buy something off the rack.

Stacey Kay

"Runway Inspiration, Vintage Decoration"

claudia bravo! said...

I think it's awesome that you're on a budget that fits you. It makes me sad to see those in my life that buy things beyond their means and therefore create a big fatty debt.