Starting March 19th and running through April 8th, Dappered.com is hosting a bracket based tournament with the purpose of eventually crowning the all around Affordable Men’s Style Retail Champ for 2013. For a full introduction see this post. The bracket on the right will be updated as the tournament progresses. Click on it for the full size. Make a case for your preferred competitor in the comments section, but don’t forget to vote at the bottom of each match up. On with today’s showdown:
Strengths: Young (to the tournament) and hungry. Scratching and clawing to make some sort of real impact on the buying public. And the high seed for a rookie reflects the amount of noise they’ve made so far this year. Their relaunch has produced numerous items that are/were stunningly good for the price. Such as: The $60 Stafford Wingtip Boot and $60 Claiborne suede wingtips. The all wool light grey blazer for $100 (but less on sale). Their $25 OCBDs. The Clairborne cotton suit separates in both navy and khaki, which run around $100 for the pants and jacket. Plenty of guys who pay attention to style will now walk through a
JC Penney sorry, jcp, and have an item catch their eye. More often than not, that item looks and feels good up close, and when that guy reads the price tag, he’s probably saying… “Really? That’s all?” inside his head.
Weaknesses: Aside from the serious financial trouble they’re in? Does that impact your vote for Store Wars? At this rate, jcp will be back to the normal, forgettable (for most of us) JC Penney by this time next year. Part of the issue has been their slow t0 catch up in-store experience. Many were still a mess visually when the new products starting hitting shelves. Their sizing is still an issue for some of their garments, with going a full size down being necessary on lots of items. Bad shoulder pads in some of their wool blazers. The wool Stafford suiting line has just one slim-fit option right now, and it’s a louder plaid. Their “Stafford Prep” line is mostly a disappointment when it comes to fit, and there’s strangely lots of stylistic overlap between other in-house brands and the outstanding jcp line (multiple navy cotton blazers / seersucker jackets).
Strengths: As affordable as it gets this side of a thrift store. One of the places that those who are on a real strict budget actually like to shop at. You could easily assemble an entire, good looking outfit from Target’s merchandise if you had to. Terrific basics like t-shirts and shorts. Their substantial collar, decent enough fitting Ultimate Dress Shirt, which plays extremely well under blazers and sportcoats. The Merona Kensington blazer. Dirt cheap pocket squares. Timex weekenders. Even pieces of furniture for your place if need be. God bless ‘em for making the Mossimo Kimono Sleeve Dress.
Weaknesses: Still waiting for them to bring back the Mossimo athletic fit polo. Collaborations can be a let down (see The Shops at Target and the Neiman Marcus collection). While obviously affordable, sometimes the quality of their goods can feel… a little on the wimpy side. Lots of things to be happy with, not necessarily a ton to be thrilled with. You can’t wear a red shirt and khaki chinos to their store (not that you were itching to do so). Fitting room dimensions in some stores are downright coffin like.
Your votes determine who goes on to the next round. Cast your ballot below. Voting closes at midnight ET.
UPDATE: After being neck and neck all day, Target pulls ahead in the end to move on in the first upset (small one, seed-wise) in the tournament. Thinking many of us thought jcp would win this one, but, no dice.
Store Wars: jcp vs. Target
- jcp (44%, 1,373 Votes)
- Target (56%, 1,727 Votes)
Total Voters: 3,089