Monday, May 3, 2010

J. Crew's Great White Misstep

Sigh. J. Crew and I have had a tumultuous relationship since I was in high school. They used to go around to various appropriate college campuses and recruit students to model for the catalog--my cousin K who went to Swarthmore was featured in the early 1990s--but I was never under the illusion, even when they started including the occasional gorgeous black or Asian model in the catalog, that the company was trying to appeal to anyone who wasn't white.

When the company's website started trumpeting that Michelle Obama was a lover of J. Crew I thought perhaps things were turning around. The prep aesthetic is available to anyone who will pay $100 for a pair of 'matchstick' jeans or $45 for a t-shirt with little rosettes sewed on.

So imagine my dismay when I got the above email this morning. Lest you believe that the last catalog was welcoming a rainbow of young prepsters into Crewland, be reminded--J. Crew is for white people. And, in fact, a world for "Great Whites" is a "White Paradise."

Really, J. Crew?


  1. I'd like to think they're living in a post-racial world, where white doesn't refer to the color of one's skin, but the color of the clothes one is wearing...probably wishful thinking, but I prefer that to some sort of clothing-manufacturer conspiracy to "keep them coloreds out of our stores."