Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Forever 21: taking over a mall near you

An interesting tidbit from Women's Wear Daily: Forever 21 is positioning themselves to be a mall anchor store within four years.

It's telling that Forever 21 is growing aggressively, even in this crappy economy. It gives the masses what they want: cheap, stylish clothes. In addition, this news signals the end of the era when only department stores could be mall anchors. Department stores have largely fallen out of favor, especially among teens. They're huge and stodgy and not fun or streamlined in the way that Forever 21 is. Forever 21, unlike department stores, has an ever-changing stock of trendy merchandise, young employees, cheap prices, and a hip image. And Forever 21 is friendly to young people, in the sense that teens can hang out , gab as loudly as they want, and not be thrown out.

I remember the first time I shopped at Forever 21. I was a college freshman, and there was a Forever 21 in the (upscale) mall near school. I gorged on the offerings for awhile, before realizing that the items tended to shrink or disintegrate in the wash. Still, some of my closet staples are from the store: a great stretchy pencil skirt, as well as a great pair or shorts and some of my favorite necklaces. As soon as I learned to be picky, and look for cotton blends, my Forever 21 shopping experiences became much more fruitful over the long run.

The story of Forever 21 fascinates me because it's a story of meteoric, uninterrupted success. Also, I love how Forever 21 has fantastic designers working for them that rip off hot designer items and bring them to the masses before you can say "lawsuit." Forever 21 has won the hearts of the nation's young people in a way that department stores were never able to do.

Even as someone who's on the older side of Forever 21's target demographic, I welcome this news. I'm much more likely to find something I like in a Forever 21 than, say, a Macy's or JC Penney. Plus, even if I don't find anything I like, I enjoy Forever 21's frenzied, festive atmosphere, though the long lines for dressing rooms sometime make me want to tear my hair out.

2 comments:

drwende said...

Fascinating.

Given how fashion magazines are jettisoning their old target age ranges, I'm wondering when Forever 21 will come out with a Forever 39 brand for the cougars.

Diabolina said...

i heart all things forever.

cute blog!