Midwestern Fashion Frustration: Shopping

becca and I frequently hear that the Midwest is where fashion goes to die. This either means that people in the Midwest have no sense of style, or that our lack of good shopping insures that trends only hit here once they have died on the coast. The first meaning is asinine because where you live does not dictate your level of creativity. The second possible meaning, however, holds some truth.

The shopping here in northern Indiana is not good. I frequent boutiques (especially their clearance sales), Goodwill and TJ Maxx. My tangible shopping universe is four stores. The mall is slowly weeding out any store that sells clothing for young professionals and replacing it with clothing for Aberzombies and the middle aged scrapbooking set. The general argument is that we don't have better shopping in this area because marketing research says this area won't support more fashionable or more expensive stores. But that's not the case.

The boutiques in this area are thriving, but it takes a considerable amount of money to start one. The chain stores just don't do their research. I live in a shopping no man's land within a hundred miles of Chicago. I've heard from several reliable sources that when our Marshall Field's became a Macy's, they just assumed anyone with style would go to Chicago. So instead of having a similar department store with a name change, we have a department store full of embroidered tee-shirts. I looked for these shirts on their website, but their "I'm eighty and wear colorful yatchs on my shirts" collection seems to be reserved for Indiana. Meanwhile, I'm in my mid twenties and can't buy BCBG, INC, Anne Klein, FCUK, Michael Michael Kors, or Calvin Klein at Macy's without ordering it. Thankfully, the local boutiques know local shopping habits better.


becca said…
I don't understand why stores in the Midwest don't want to sell the best stuff they can. Stores that sell the good stuff are always selling out. If I was a buyer, I'd want to stock the shelves with things that were sure to sell.
Anonymous said…
The same goes for when you live half way between Detroit and Grand Rapids. Heaven forbid our Macy's stock cute things. The boutique next to where I used to work is thriving though. They're about to open up their 3rd store.
Anh said…
That bites, but hurray for at least having boutiques who are better at fashion trends.
Anonymous said…
I live in the Midwest as well (Kansas) and have the same problem. However, I buy most of my stuff online, so I can still get designer brands and the latest styles that way. When I open my brick-and-mortar boutique, I will probably be moving to Southern California.

Popular posts from this blog

Happy 10th Anniversary... and goodbye.

Shop: Green Tree Jewelry

Dramatic Makeup