Wednesday, August 22, 2012

"Looking to VENT" with J.Crew

This is the weekly "Looking to VENT with J.Crew" post, a place to share our not-so-stellar experiences with J.Crew.

If you have recently experienced a frustrating situation with J.Crew, maybe you might be willing to share that information with us in this post.

Please feel free to share your story on almost any topic— including poor experiences with purchases & orders, promotions/ offers, in-store visits, transactions with store associates, etc.

79 comments:

  1. Current grievances:
    1. The Peter Pan collar tee I received had a folded/creased collar tab that couldn't be straightened. They had one in store that I could exchange for, but one of the collar tabs was obviously cut crooked.
    2. Overheard a woman making a return say something about "poor quality". I know, lady, I know! The sad thing is that quality is so low across the board that JC often looks not-so-bad by comparison...and don't they know it!
    3. Factory prices bouncing whenever there is a promo. Wanted to try the dot Charley sweater that was on promo for $69 but when the 30% started it went back to FP. It'll probably go back down when LOVEIT ends.
    4. I've always purchased something from JC on my birthday as a little gift to myself - but I can't bring myself to do it today knowing that there is 20% off for "select" customers. My recent orders have been coupon free.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Have you tried to get a VPS online? I did that, told her I was frustrated that I didn't receive a 20% off coupon in my latest orders or catalog, and she is honoring it for with, with free shipping. She also waives the "final" on final sale items. Might be worth looking into it.

      Delete
    2. Sorry about the typos. Smart phone not cooperating.

      Delete
    3. Wow. I have an online personal shopper and I mention that I won't buy final sale and for her just to let me know when it's over and I'll be back in touch and she has never offered to wave final sale you are really lucky and fortunate good for you

      Delete
    4. Happy Birthday Silver Lining!

      Delete
    5. Happy Birthday, silver_lining! Hope you get yourself a nice present!

      Delete
    6. Oh man... On vacation so I don't know if I got a coupon (but I doubt it)... I should see if my VPS will honor the 20% off too... September birthday baby over here to and I spoil myself rotten. :)

      Delete
    7. Happy Birthday to you, silver_lining! :)

      Delete
    8. Happy Birthday! I have an extra 20% off code and would be happy to send it to you if you're interested :).

      Delete
    9. @Caitlin, I'm interested in the code.... :)

      Delete
  2. I have decided to give up buying jcrew at least for the fall/winter season. Quality and high prices among other things have finally gotten the best of me! It is time. At least for me that is.. if I find something on super sale for my daughter I will still buy her crewcuts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And let's not forget the dreaded final sale! That has been the real kicker. Brand new fall items going directly to final sale... 1 poster yesterday commenting on how the collection pencil skirt was on promo but showed up as final sale on her receipt ! that was the only item I was interested in and will not be buying it because it is final sale

      Delete
    2. I just don't understand that all.

      Delete
    3. Me either. It is exhausting to shop jcrew anymore!

      Delete
    4. Totally agree. I am definitely purchasing less from jcrew than in seasons past, in part due to the exhausting pricing games and annoying final sale.

      Delete
  3. J.Crew’s September catalogues used to allure, used to beckon spending a wanton hour on the sofa with a cup of tea, imagining my autumn wardrobe renewed with tweed jackets, wool skirts, pretty accoutrements. The utter blandness of the August issue prompted me to flip through September’s at my dentist’s yesterday, and I demanded a hit of laughing gas when I opened at page 67 and saw a pretty purple top and then read it’s $110 for ... rayon.

    What has happened to this company that medication is required before viewing even the one season they used to do so well? “We know you’re out there?” Well not for much longer because I can find synthetic clothes anywhere.

    I had to go home and self-sedate with leafy-eared Prague & Paris copies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tell me about it... used to literally have dreams about fall J.Crew wardrobes...

      Delete
  4. Three weeks ago I got a message from J.Crew that my last rewards card amount was incorrect. To make up for it, they were sending me the balance owed plus 25 dollars. I thought it was odd. Reward Card arrived yesterday with a note of apology for the error. Did anyone else experience this?? I have to admit, it makes me wonder how well the rewards program actually works.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. this happened to me, too

      I got the card yesterday -- with the 25 they missed plus the 25 they added-- plus a free ship code

      I didn't even notice I didn't get my full amount so it was very nice

      Delete
    2. I experienced this! But then I never got the new cards & promised coupon in the mail. After 30+ minutes on the phone with various people at J. Crew, they did a good job of making it right in the end, but I could tell the first person didn't believe me about the amount I said it was supposed to be. It was a big discrepancy, and they were trying to tell me my ORIGINAL rewards card was half its value but they were going to bring it up to the value printed on the card, when I was really owed much more than the value printed on my original rewards card. That first rep finally slogged through the research and found that I was correct. She wasn't rude or anything, but it was frustrating that it took so long to confirm what I already knew. Plus, I wasn't making it up, I had a phone message from J. Crew telling me all about it in great detail. The reps on the phone were aware that some of the rewards cards went out with the wrong amount, though. The next couple of reps I talked to about it were much more informed and they did do a great job of making it right in the end. I still wonder where my card went, though, as it never did come in the mail. I do think they are trying to fix the problems, but I was a bit peeved to have had to insist I was right with the first phone rep (which I was). Isn't the customer right until proven wrong? Innocent until proven guilty? lol

      Delete
  5. Yet another complaint about the insane volatility in prices. A good example is the factory classic trench. I was eyeing it a few months ago when it was $113 but wanted to wait for a % off sale. % off sale comes, but the price has rocketed up to $160. Now it's up to $196. If anyone can explain why the jacket gets MORE expensive as time goes on, I'd love to hear it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I assume it is bc the item is selling so well.

      Delete
    2. I get that, but it's really frustrating.

      Delete
    3. Maybe because the coat is coming up on it's season, and the lower price was it's off-season price? I'm not disagreeing with you just taking a guess.

      Delete
    4. Retailers all this 'dynamic pricing' ... Amazon does it too, but the price swings aren't as noticeable.

      I hate it. I think it's deceptive!

      Delete
    5. Yeah I figured it had something to do with it being in season vs off season. But the price increase from $113 to $165 happened overnight in July, and just so happened to coincide with a % off sale. If you're just going to mark up the price of goods when you do a % off sale, what's the point?

      Delete
  6. Reply is not working for me, but I had the same experience as allyson. J.Crew contacted me to say my rewards card was short and that another card would be mailed with the additional amount and a free shipping code (I remember thinking it should have been a 20% off code for the hassle). I've always found it hard to understand the rewards totals on the J.Crew credit card website, but it got even worse when they updated the site in the last couple months. I've even been considering canceling my J.Crew card, as when I compare it to my BR card, J.Crew falls flat. No real benefits.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too! I've never had much luck figuring out the rewards and gave up on the new website. The reward program isn't much to speak of..and now I have my doubts about how it's administered. Is it possible that this has happened before and they didn't make corrections?

      Delete
    2. J Crew has a completely spastic rewards program! I have complained various times, and can't get anyone to listen who has a clue about marketing (apparently the program is administered by the credit card company, and those folks don't know or care if it actually works!). The problem for J Crew is that I don't feel rewarded-- I feel suspicious that I didn't get what I should have. What's up with accumulating by seasons? Why are the point totals so ambiguous? Why does it take so long for the cards to get in the mail? Why use plastic cards at all? I have participated in at least five other programs for years, and this one is just annoying.

      Delete
  7. I'm very disappointed to read comments that people are receiving defective items, especially something as pricey as a wool coat. These are brand new releases I'm reading about and not the dregs at the end of the season on final sale. But they will be final sale very soon and although I've never had issues returning a defective item, this trend has strengthened my resolve to never buy final sale. I just don't need the hassle.

    I also think the overall design is "off". Very few things are appealing to me at all. Gone are the days when new arrivals meant 20+ items in my cart and a few days of deliberating to pare it down to a reasonable few. Now it's rare if I find 5 items to even consider.

    The ridiculous original price points and rapid markdowns do not help either. I have absolutely no comfort factor purchasing anything at full price, which I used to do most of the time. Mickey was supposed to be training customers to buy at full price but I have to say that I'm doing the exact opposite and waiting for prices to drop. It's really annoying and the end result is that I lose interest in the stalking game and when I see how low the prices eventually go I convince myself the item isn't worth it and just don't buy at all.

    Sorry for the long rant.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ITA about the design. There is a lot going on but it's not pulled together like a real collection. It's more like TJ Maxx where you have a hodgepodge of things from all directions. Some of the items even have too much going on like the jeweled collar sweater. I know many like the design but patterned wool in two different drab patterns/colors and a jeweled collar? Why not a pretty solid color cashmere that doesn't itch and put the collar on that instead? You're right XOXO, it just seems off.

      Delete
    2. I agree. I wish they would have just made it single color cashmere. I took that thing off faster than fast due to extreme itching. For 178 dollars it should be cashmere.

      Delete
  8. xoxo, your "long rant" isn't long to me as it is exactly on target...

    ReplyDelete
  9. I also don't agree with this crazy pricing, why are new fall releases already on sale? If JCrew wants to offer a discount on new pieces then do a small percentage off for a limited time. I'm seeing new items almost half off pretty quickly after being introduced and some are final sale. I have zero incentive to pay anywhere near full price and I have not in years. I also agree that the asking prices on synthetic fabrics are a bit ridiculous. I bought the leopard merino Tippi on FS for all of $35, this was just released at $89 what a few weeks ago? Great deal for me but why the drastic markdown so soon?!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Crazy pricing games - I should know better by now, but I still want to SCREAM. While out of town last week visiting family, I stopped in and picked up the zebra silk top and toothpicks in huron wash because I needed an outfit quickly and the items in my suitcase weren't cutting it. OF COURSE I wear the outfit on Sunday and just days later, BOTH items are marked down (top to 69.99 and jeans to 110.00 - before promo). I paid full price for both, which i hate doing, but was experiencing a clothing meltdown and needed an outfit fast. $260 later I could've purchased both items for significantly less. I know this question is asked all of the time.... but where is the incentive to purchase FP when this happens constantly???!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Carly, I hear your frustration! I would suggest contacting CS to see if they will give you a price adjustment since the items were purchased so recently, and if they refuse, I'd buy the items again on FS and return them in store with the receipt from the original purchase. While this is a hassle I realize, if JC is going to play pricing games, why shouldn't we?

      Delete
  11. - short (i.e. mini) dresses / skirts (enough already)
    - short pants (would it seriously kill J.Crew to make a full length pair of pants??)
    - ugly jewellery
    - crazy prices on shoes (hey J.Crew, you're not Manolo - and even Manolo didn't want to pair with you!)
    - online catalogue (sorry, SYTLE GUIDE) not released at same time physical ones are mailed
    - crappy customer service (I have so many stories)
    - models with vacant, vapid stares, slouchy stances, open mouths, messy hair - THIS is what I'm supposed to use as "inspiration"?

    I think that's all for today =)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The sept catalog models were the worst I've ever seen. there is 1 model in there whos head looks ginormous compared to the rest of her body and it just creeps me out! I know in the past others have complained about the models but this is the first time 1 has truly bothered me

      Delete
  12. I'm going to complain about the Jules dresses. They are so close to being great but they are too short. Not edgy, just too short, J. Crew! Imagine how many they could sell if they'd add some length. I won't buy one until they add length, and I am only 5'4" so it's not like they should be too short on me off-the-rack.

    I think the jewelry this fall is a huge miss, too, for the most part.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I got my September StyleGuide and 3 orders over the past two weeks and no 20% off coupons. So I did a chat today and asked what the criteria is for getting these random discounts. I was directed to a VPS, so lets see what they come up with. Did another search through the sale and nothing grabbed me and I still have $50 rewards to spend before 9/9 since I leave for vacation. The shipping charge really annoys me and so many times I just never order.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    2. Yup, I juse got another box yesterday with zippity inside for me. FAIL!

      Delete
    3. JRSConifer - I asked my in-store VPS about it and she said the promo was over & that it was a way reel in former customers. I wouldn't say she was blowing me off, but usually she would offer me any discount the store has. Well, not educator/student of course, but ykwim. I was surprised that she was sort of quiet about it. Not secretive. She did mention -- perhaps changing the subject -- that this is the 3rd time they've changed the title. It was client specialist, or something like that. Personal shopper and now VPS.

      ~*~*~crickets~*~*~
      I haven't heard a thing.


      Rant alert!
      I did a chat about it yesterday and was told that a VPS would be in touch with me. The whole damn thing is odd and the whole no cardholder benefits really irks me. Yes, they have a right to offer a discount to whoever they want, but they tend to operate like they're in a vacuum with no Internet. It's gonna get out, J Crew. It's gonna get out. Offer some real cardholder benefits, see your JC credit card holders increase & resulting purchases.

      DUNCES! And now that I've shown my age using the word dunce they're thinking...she's not in our target market anyway! lol

      Delete
    4. Thanks gigofca, I know I am going to hear the same thing even if a VPS calls/emails me but what the heck. Since I can't find anything I really like I will buy something with my rewards card before I go on vacation and return it prior to the 30 days or 60 days if online and either get a gift card or credit card credit. I am happy to wait out J Crew until there is a discount on something I really want. And I am way beyond their target market :)

      Delete
  14. I recently bought the new Peplum Jacket in Navy only to get home and discover a hole in the lining of one of the pockets! So mad! I will most definitely exchange but the store is an hour away. What a hassle.

    ReplyDelete
  15. a little annoyed that there hasn't been a promo lately. i know i shouldn't feel entitled to one, but i keep holding off ordering until one comes alone. when it doesn't, i buy comparable items elsewhere.

    i did get a 20% off a $250 purchase with a VPS in store in the sept catalog, but my store doesn't carry tall inseams nor most of the items i'd want to buy.

    sorry. this rant is frivolous but it feels good to get it off my chest. lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lauren - You can make an appt w/the VPS and s/he can use the red phone to call in the tall sizes you need. The VPS can ask customer service to apply the 20% off.

      Delete
    2. Where was the 20% off a $250 purchase in the catalog? I saw the VPS insert, but am I just completely blind or does mine not have the discount?

      Delete
  16. A sequined and feathered dunce cap, Gigi! I can see an upcoming "Jenna's Pick" now...

    Thanks for the bday wishes, ladies! It has been one of those days - car troubles, USPS troubles, baby teething troubles, work craziness... Caitlin, that is so super nice of you - my email is silver.lining.jca at gmail. One thing I will never vent about is the JCA community.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will send the code when I get home tonight (probably not until about 10pm EST, sorry for the lateness)!

      Delete
    2. Sent it! Let me know if you don't receive it and I'll send again (and maybe check your spam folder just in case).

      Delete
  17. I think the 20% off coupons are an urban myth...has anyone really gotten one? Anyway, besides the usual gripes (obscenely short dresses, ugly jewelry, cheaply made overpriced shoes, juvenile theme items and hideous trends that won't go away) my only complaint is that nothing is exciting me. I'd buy something....if I could find something I wanted to even bother trying on. Seriously, I went into the B&M today and couldn't even get excited to try anything on! That's a bad sign.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Let me start by saying that I'm a fairly new reader to this blog and I enjoy it. I find a shopping blog like this more applicable to my life than a "style" blog where someone is pairing $1,000 shoes with their 95 year old great aunts sweater dress.
    But just a thought from an outsider, the constant negativity is somewhat off putting at times. I'm expecting any day now to see a post titled "Mickey Drexler killed my cat".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. While I can totally appreciate what you're saying, and I'm at fault as much if not more than anyone here, I just wanted to clarify that we're basically all lovers of the J.Crew brand or we wouldn't frequent this blog; the negativity, unfortunately, has grown over time as quality has sharply declined while prices have steadily increased. I think it's safe to say we are, for the most part, big fans of the JC aesthetic but often frustrated by the quality issues, the up-and-down pricing and the inconsistent customer service policies. Many, like myself, have been shopping at J.Crew for years and years and it wasn't always this way, so I think that when we feel frustrated, we vent here where others can appreciate and empathize with our concerns.

      Delete
    2. Also, my cat's kind of annoying, so Mickey can have him ;)

      Delete
    3. mmp - Welcome to JCA. This is the vent thread, you're likely to see the most passionate dissatisfaction in this area. Ironically we wouldn't be so angry or irritated if we didn't care. I can list a number of stores I've walked out of, unimpressed, never to shop there again. Many of us stick w/J Crew because of the great things the brand has to offer, awesome colors and excellent past experiences included. I have experienced garment fails and it's too bad to see that they're not only happening with 1 or 2 wears, but are arriving with holes in them. I agree w/another poster that the current collection is a mess. Plus items are going to final sale at 2 and 3 weeks after release. They're going thru a transition w/Marisa Webb leaving, so it looks like it's getting worse before it gets better. You will see me and some others that vent here and then love something in another thread. I.e. the Martina wedges in leopard that I'm excited about. Stick around.

      Delete
    4. This was the whole reason the vent post was created! this section is supposed to be about negativity and complaints! if you don't want to read about it then don't click on the section please:-)

      Delete
  19. Regarding the rapid markdowns, I will never complain about markdowns! I almost never pay full price, and if I do because I have to have something right away, I have to accept that the trade off is that someone else might be able to buy the same item 1-2 weeks later for significantly cheaper and/or I will have to play the buy/return game.
    I think customers are just balking at the ridiculous starting prices. For example they jacked up the price of the double serge wool pencil skirt from last year and made it in a lower quality fabric--customers are not stupid and now it costs $68 with the promo (about what it's worth with the cheaper fabric) rather than $130. Last year when they were still made out of the nice thick fabric they didn't go on promo until way late in the season, like November.
    I think the merino tippi tiger cardigan went on sale so fast, even though the item seems to be good quality, because they just rehashed the same design everyone bought last season in the pullover style but added buttons. People probably don't want to own both. The Jules dresses are marked down so quickly because as everyone has said, they cheaped out on the length. Etc. Etc. They just need to put out original, wearable designs made with good fabrics at fair prices and they won't have to mark things down so quickly...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the Jules dresses but was disappointed to see the snowcat print in a synthetic fabric and not silk, ill pick it up at a deeply discounted price but certainly not anywhere near full price. Why did JCrew issue another navy and white Jules dress? No wonder it's already deeply discounted. With that said I love the Jules dress in the collection foulard print, I'm hoping and fairly certain it will go on sale and I'll pounce. It will be one of my splurges this season, I think it's lovely.

      Delete
    2. Cass - I am with you on markdowns. :) My qualm is that items are on final sale, which is absurd for the ones that are online only. Not to mention that there are no customer reviews online for non-bloggers & others (that don't know about this site) to share info.

      Delete
  20. One of the bloggers on the JCA sidebar list posted a pic of the 20% off cards they received (one for them and a friend) - I can't remember who, but the cards were red and so was I for being pissed off that my orders received "nada" - but I did receive the VPS card asking me to try them out and the strange thing is I already have one ... Go figure they really need to get their act together and they are clueless.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Luckily I have very understanding store managers that do price adjustments outside of the designated time frame because they are aware of the very fast debut then onto sale marketing scheme. I'm not talking months out, but a reseasonable time. They realize that it's stupid, expensive and time consuming to rebuy and return, so they'd rather keep me happy and just do the adjustment. And I'm thankful.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Jcrewcrazy.....yah, they're really pushing the VPS thing. I've been getting that in all my packages...in lieu of a discount coupon I might add.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The coupons that XOXO had were not for a VPS and only $150 minimum spend but only online.

      Delete
  23. @Jcrewcrazy it was XOXO on her pencil skirt review post. Here is the link.

    http://willwork4shuz.blogspot.ca/2012/08/jcrew-reviews-no2-pencil-in-double.html

    ReplyDelete
  24. The reply button isn't working for me, I apologize.
    I posted that comment in this section because it seemed the most appropriate place, but when I was commenting on the negativity I wasn't only talking about in the vent posts, it seems to permeate other areas as well, even posts about an upcoming sale or markdowns. I don't mean to sound critical, but it does take the fun out of some blog posts on an otherwise informative and interesting blog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Personally, I feel that taking note of J Crew's flaws and areas in which they can improve still qualifies as informative. I really like knowing, before I buy it, that my No 2 pencil in double serge cotton has a pretty high chance of splitting right up the seam. I also like knowing I'm not alone in my opinions on prices & customer service issues.. Something I really like about this blog is that it's a place where the consumers are actually allowed to discuss the problems. I feel like if I wanted 100% positivity all the time I'd just read everything J Crew writes about the product themselves.

      Delete
    2. I agree with you emilybethzzz...I am more of a lurker here but I have made/not made several purchases due to JCA reviews, and it's been a great help!

      The negative comments are informative and often ring true. I'd rather read an honest opinion on an item than something J Crew puts out (which will, no matter what, be positive).

      Delete
  25. Thanks for the link - I remember seeing that 20% red card and just could not remember which blog.

    ReplyDelete
  26. What the HECK with the sequin bow critter pants?!?!?!?!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. lunarary - I like those pants! lol

      Delete
    2. I think they just seem more fitting for holiday season...

      Delete
  27. I love the bow "critter" pants too, lol, but not the price...sad face...

    ReplyDelete
  28. What is up with the downtown field jacket? I feel like I bought it 4 years ago and it has been rereleased so many time that now I see the thing everywhere I go. Can't there be a smidge of exclusivity. Prices are just insane sometimes too. $120 for cashmere lined leather gloves that I ended up getting in the sale for $26. What the heck with the mark up dudes? Kinda frustrated too.

    ReplyDelete

Dear J.Crew Aficionadas & Aficionados: Please feel free (and encouraged) to share your thoughts and opinions. :) However, please note that this is still a personal blog. So comments that are considered inappropriate (e.g. obscene, racist, homophobic, personal attacks, rude, and just plain mean) will be removed.

And now back to J.Crew! :)