Fashion through the years has always been an essential part of a person’s lifestyle. The type of clothes and accessories someone wears can usually say a lot about their personality. The fashion industry itself, has blossomed into the multi-billion dollar giant it is today and with thousands of outlet malls and clothing stores around the nation, it’s easy to know what trends are popular.
There is a growing trend from one of the biggest clothing stores in the nation; however, this trend comes with tremendous controversy and anger from a lot of people. Abercrombie & Fitch has been known for providing fashionable clothes, but for sexy and thin people only.
The CEO of the company Mike Jeffries mentioned in a public statement that he doesn’t want larger people shopping in his store; he only wants thin and beautiful people.
“We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong in our clothes, and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely,” Jeffries said.
“Beauty is everything, that’s why we hire good-looking people in our stores. Because good-looking people attract other good-looking people, and we want to market to cool, good-looking people. We don’t market to anyone other than that,” Jeffries added.
It’s one thing to not want large people shopping in your store, but it’s another thing to actually exclude a particular gender from wearing your brand of clothing.
Jeffries talked about how he does not want overweight women wearing his brand of clothing and that they will never be part of the “in” crowd according to Daily.
It’s interesting that Abercrombie & Fitch offers XL and XXL to larger men but do not offer it to larger women. What’s the reason behind this? Robin Lewis, author of “The New Rules of Retail”, mentioned the reason the company offers larger sizes for men rather than women is to appeal to large size male athletes.
The author also explained the reason behind Jeffries approach to his limited target audience. “He doesn’t want his core customers to see people who aren’t as hot as them wearing his clothing. People who wear his clothing should feel like they’re one of the ‘cool kids’,” Lewis said.
“Companies that are in trouble are trying to target everybody: young, old, fat, skinny, but then you become totally vanilla, you don’t alienate anybody, but you don’t excite anybody, either,” Jefferies said.
The excitement to shop at Abercrombie & Fitch may be taking a big hit if this story angers a large portion of the company customer database. This issue will also give rival companies such as H&M who recently put a plus size model on their latest swimwear collection catalog and American Eagle the opportunity to add more customers.
The specialty retailer Abercrombie can’t be expected to appeal to everyone, but their brand’s standard of beauty may have run its course or least is decreasing in popularity.
67 percent of the apparel purchasing population fit the charts of “Plus Size” and it appears the numbers are growing all the time according to Yahoo.
“Too many companies are swayed into the “Pro-skinny fashion world” and the plus size market gets ostracized and seemingly discarded in department stores, if Abercrombie & Fitch continues to ignore this Plus Size revolution, it could be very costly for the business,” Margaret Bogenrief of ACM partners said.
“I don’t think A&F will ever change its approach of only supplying to thin attractive people, the company is only interested in people with washboard stomachs who look like they’re about to jump on a surfboard, it’s always going to be that way unfortunately,” Lewis said.
If you do shop at A&F does this story effect your idea of how the company operates? Will you continue to shop there?
Boycott Abercrombie & Fitch & Their Ugly Small Clothes!
What do you think of Abercrombie’s sizing and the statements of the CEO?
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