STORE WARS: J. Crew vs. GAP
Starting March 18th and running through April 7th, Dappered.com is hosting a bracket based tournament with the purpose of eventually crowning the all around Affordable Men’s Style Retail Champ for 2014. 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: The defending champ, and probably the odds on favorite to repeat. Has been one of the top leaders in men’s style for the past few years. Blazer & suit construction is terrific, with substantial chest pieces and canvassing. Many of their suit jackets, blazers, and even sweaters come in high quality fabrics sourced from English or Italian mills. Non functioning buttons at their jacket cuffs make for easy tailoring. Cuts are already modern, but they make an even trimmer “slim” cut in many styles. Sales & codes seem to now be pretty plentiful, and if you’re good at playing the game, you can land high quality goods for a very fair price. Some of their in house shoe offerings are made in Italy and/or have stitched (sometimes Goodyear) soles. Their 3rd party “in good company” offerings showcase brands outside of their own corporate umbrella. On trend but doesn’t veer into crazy-town that often.
Weaknesses: Prices sure seem to be going up. Suits are real pricey compared to competitors like Suitsupply. Basics like shirts and sweaters can be crazy expensive… ($88 for a dress shirt that doesn’t even come in neck & sleeve sizes?) until they go on sale and an extra % off code gets posted. Leather goods can feel flimsy. Their watches are awfully expensive for being quartz. They killed off the plain, but still sharp-as-hell Super 130s Ludlow Navy blazer. And as much as some like their Ludlow suit jacket/blazer/sportcoat design, it might be time to widen those 2.5″ lapels a bit, and extend the jacket tail some too. At least on the suit jackets.
Strengths: Reliable. Casual. Can sometimes hit a home run with a cotton blazer or a pair of 5-pocket pants. Accessible by just about everyone. Some seem to like their affordable-for-most selvage jeans. Their basic leather belts in brown and black are an incredible value for a casual/smart-casual belt. Codes are plentiful, and stuff can get dirt cheap if you’re patient. Free shipping from their website kicks in at $50, and you can supplement your GAP cart with stuff from BR and Old Navy to get there.
Weaknesses: Predictable to the point of boring. Seems like a place that you’ll often walk into, around in, then back out without seeing anything that interesting. Blazers & sportcoats can sometimes suffer from chopped-in-the-tail/too-long-in-the-arms syndrome. Their 100% cotton sweaters can sometimes feel flimsy. The annual collaboration collection with GQ seems to disappoint.
Your votes determine who goes on to the next round. Cast your ballot below. Voting closes at midnight ET.
Store Wars: J. Crew vs. GAP
- J. Crew (86%, 2,581 Votes)
- GAP (14%, 429 Votes)
Total Voters: 3,009