Those who have a weaker stomach or are not so chipper can check out Levis’ Free Store, where they free themselves of the burden of most of their clothing and some of their shoes. Even up to Londons West Village store (which is looking pretty uncool at the moment), the only clothes a shopper must pay for are Denim items of standard decent. Every four weeks the chain shops, say, Number 10, for a new set of wardrobe staples.
No, it’s not simply that Levis are looking to build community as much as create a name for themselves. They are serious – and aware that one of the most touted failures of the big US retail world since the Great Recession was Wiltumb (last name, speaking of stock, from biblical terminology) in Dallas, which went completely under in the mid 90s, throwing out 750,000 members and thousands of jobs. You can check out the story here.
A retail casualty in Canada, Reitmans, closed all 860 stores in this country this summer, citing “irreparable damage” to revenue. Reitmans had been expanding its stores and didn’t understand the trend towards online sales. Reitmans is also known for its Gypsy & Joanna Wilson’s line of dresses in which, apparently, jeggings are now acceptable. You can check out the story here.