Sunday, July 27, 2008

J.Crew Pins: A Tad Overpriced

I really do like most of J.Crew's jewelry. I own several pieces- from rings to necklaces to bracelets. However, I cannot imagine why these particular pins in the new Fall Jewelry Collection cost so much. Especially the Bugle-Beaded Bug Pin (Item 11348; $50.00), which I can probably make for less than $5 or find at Etsy for less than $50. I don't understand how "handmade, dimensional little brooch in glass-beaded charmeuse backed with tulle and charmeuse" can be worth fifty dollars (plus shipping & tax!)

The following are the items shown above in the pin collage image:
  1. Clear sun pin (Item 10376; $45.00)
  2. Bugle-Beaded Bug Pin (Item 11348; $50.00)
  3. Jet star pin (Item 10422; $55.00)
What do you think of these pins? Are you fans of the design? Would you purchase one of these pins? Do you think the pins are priced reasonably or overpriced?

59 comments:

  1. I have a problem with pinning my clothes, in general - plus a lot of J.Crew's stuff is so thin (tissue tees, featherweight merino and cotton sweaters, etc) that to me, it would be putting a $50 hole in my clothes. I like the idea of wearing a pin or two on a coat or jacket, but not for this price - I could go to the craft store and make probably 10 pins for the price of that bug! Try again, J.Crew.

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  2. Silver_Lining: I agree that some of their tees are too delicate to have pins.

    In general, I am a big fan of pins- but not so much these pins and at these prices. :)

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  3. Cute, but overpriced. I *might* pay $50 for a vintage brooch if I really liked it, but not these. You can definitely find comparable items on etsy for a lot cheaper.

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  4. Am not loving these - especially for the price. However, the Etsy site is the coolest! Thanks for mentioned that Alexis - I'd never heard of it!

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  5. I am not a fan of JCrew jewelry at all. The costume pieces I have bought I have all returned b/c I think the quality is lacking. The only jewelry I have kept was the real sterling silver they had out last summer. I would not buy any of these pins; that said, I love brooches in general. I bought several from GAP and second hand stores over the years.

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  6. Heather: I agree that these pins are overpriced. :)

    Kater: Etsy is an excellent site by artists and the like. My favorite shop is Belle and Boo. It's completely girly- but that is why I like it so much.

    Anonymous at 2:50PM: I agree that some of J.Crew's jewelry is not very good, but some pieces are quite lovely. I also like some of GAP's pins- especially the ones that come with a clip (so you can wear it in your hair.) :)

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  7. i agree that they are overpriced, and i also think they're not very pretty! the bug is just ugly, in my opinion. it would be great if they made brooches that were magnetic so they wouldn't need to pierce through fabric.

    like anonymous said, the sterling is the best, in my opinion. it will last and is worth the money. (you can buy a sterling chain from tiffany & co. for the price of one of those brooches!).

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  8. Sweetmint: I think you came up with a great idea- magnetic pins! I don't know if anyone is making them- but I think it is brilliant! I hate poking holes in my shirts for pins, so having magnets would be an ideal solution. :)

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  9. I'd love to see the hat pins back in style! They are so charming. I have one I got from a antique shop. I pin it on some of my short wool coats and some bags - people love it.

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  10. I know that this is the wrong spot to post this comment, but I used the EXTRA20 code today on a sale order (7/27/08) and it worked. I just wanted to confirm that it is still working. Happy shopping!

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  11. JCrewbug: Hat pins are fabulous- I love them myself. I also love pins that are versatile for bags, clothes, and hats.

    Incidentally, there is a great store in Spain that I love- "Nice Day Nice Things" that allows people to create their own style with bags, using different pins, buttons, and the like. It's too bad the store doesn't sell in the US. :)

    Anonymous at 4:31PM: Thanks for letting us know that the code still works- much appreciated! :)

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  12. First I have to say that if the bug pin is one that their stylist adores, then they need to fire her/him and get a new stylist! YUCK! It looks like a craft project I might do with my kids...definitely not worth $50!

    I love pins and brooches...I wear them quite often, but would definitely not purchase any of these. However, I think I may try to make my own...how hard can it be to sew acrylic beads onto cotton twill like J.Crew?

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  13. ffm: I thought the same one about the bug one - that it looked like a kids project from summer camp or something! you should totally make them and sell them on etsy.

    and what is up with all the "our stylist LOVES this item/can't live without it"? It's all over the website and the catalog. I know they've done this to a certain extent in the past, but I feel like it went full throttle with the fall merch

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  14. FabulousFloridaMommy & Kater: That is the perfect description of the Bug Pin- a crafts project! Too funny (and too true!)

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  15. I am excited to see that brooches and sparkling pins made a return to a fashion scene. Remember that season couple of years ago when everyone was crazy about them? I still have some brooches that I can wear now. So , I 'll just use them instead of the new ones. They are big time overpriced in my opinion.Sorry, J crew, I will pass.

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  16. Love brooches, pins..but these are pretty lame. Come Fall, I will scout antique stores for pieces that are unique.

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  17. I love the J. Crew jewelry-- but sometimes I need to remind myself if is costume, not real-- so I have never paid full price....

    Alexis, I know that you have mentioned this in other posts, but same goes for J. Crew's fun belts... a lot of them are nothing more than chiffon, tulle flowers, polyester flowers on satin ribbon.... I never pay full price for those....

    On another note--- was in NYC today at South Street Seaport-- and CHELSEA CLINTON and I were going through the sales rack!!!!! :) She is really quite stylish and by our simple conversation-- seems to be a gib fan of J. Crew!

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  18. sorry, BIG fan of J. Crew!

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  19. Nicole R: That is so exciting getting to see Chelsea Clinton!!! I know two people who have met her (a friend of mine briefly met her because he went to school with her in Oxford and another met her briefly while working at McKinsey & Co) and they both had nothing but nice things to say about her. I personally think she is fabulous- educated and classy.

    I also agree with you about the belts- they are nice, but totally not worth the full asking price. ;)

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  20. Chelsea Clinton???!!! That is so cool!

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  21. Did you see what she bought?

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  22. OK, I need to confess...in the past three days I have placed two online orders. I THINK I NEED TO BURY MY J. CREW CARD!!! Now...I just hope that I actually receive my orders. Not sure about these pins, either.

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  23. I don't know if any of you ever shop from QVC, but they sell an item that allows you to convert your pins into magnets. I've never bought this so I can't testify to whether it works, but for those who may be interested, here's the link:

    http://www.qvc.com/qic/qvcapp.aspx/view.2/app.detail

    On a different topic, I pre-ordered a tartine sweater and now that they're available online, I wondered when it would come. So, I emailed J Crew, and they told me: "The item that you preordered is a part of our August line. The item waspreordered as it was not a part of our inventory at the time of your call. We usually receive full inventory by the end of the first week ofthe month our catalog is for. As soon as we receive the new inventory your order will be placed and shipped out to you."

    So, I'm not getting my item until halfway through August, even though it's now available online? Has anyone else had any experience with a pre-order?

    Sorry for the long post.

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  24. I am actually a HUGE J. Crew jewelry fan. I buy most at discounted price, but have paid full price for a few things. I also really love brooches, but not these! I find the whimsy of their jewelry charming. It reminds me of things we found in my Grandma's jewelry box when she died. Not these. Tres horrible. There are magnetic pins available in the marketplace. They only work on medium weight garments though,

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  25. hey, math teacher! thanks for the magnet pin converter suggestion!

    as far as preordering, unfortunately i have had the same problem. i placed a phone order last week, of 5 items. only one of those items shows up on my jcrew cc statement and my order history online. however, i emailed jcrew to change the order (i hate being one of those annoying people who makes life difficult for them, but whater'ya gonna do). i had to change the color of one item and delete the other. the item i wanted deleted, they misunderstood and are keeping. in the meantime, because i saw that only one of the items in the order was placed, i went online and ordered the others.

    to make a long story short, i'm going to receive duplicates and have to return things to the store. lesson learned: don't make a preorder no matter how anxious i get. wait and shop at a store. or pray that the web site starts working perfectly. sigh.

    i love jcrew, but they've certainly been wearing on our patience lately!

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  26. Jenn-brak,
    I am so with you! I absolutely love J crew jewelry, but wait for the most part to get my pieces on sale. Few items I buy full-price just as you are. I am thinking of buying a lady-bug necklace and flower ring from the upcoming collection as soon as they hit stores(sometimes next week). Just can't wait!

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  27. sweetmint: thanks for the advice about the preorder. The only reason I preorderd is because it wasn't in the store, and if I order from the red phone, I get free shipping. Maybe I'll call and see what I can do. I don't want duplicates, but I think it's silly to have to wait 3 weeks because I ordered something one day before it became available online.

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  28. math teacher: I ordered the Tartine cardigans on Thursday, and they have already shipped except for the snow color, which is shipping tomorrow.

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  29. math teacher: Which color did you get?

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  30. vivian: I decided to start with bright rhubarb. If I love it, then I may include more colors. Didn't you try on the herringbone sweater and the tartine? How did they fit? I tried on the herringbone and it was so big and boxy. So, on the sa recommendation, I sized down on the tartine. I hope I did the right thing. I don't plan on wearing it buttoned (I really have a hard time with buttons on tops), so I hope it works.

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  31. I called cs and she looked for my pre-order and couldn't find it. So she re-ordered the cardigan and made a note to cancel the pre-order if anyone found it. She also gave me free shipping since I orginally ordered from a store. I guess we'll see if I get two - I'll have to make a trip to the store (darn) to return it. :)

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  32. Slastena - Thining about the ladybug necklace too. There is one on Ebay with a best offer option. Also really like the acorn necklace (looks so vintage). However, the best new piece is the turtle bracelet on which I can find absolutely no info. If you look at the Collection Look Book it is draped over the blue snakeskin bowed peep-toe slingback. The detail on that bracelet is amazing!

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  33. Hi everyone.

    I love jewelry in general. I remember not too long ago when brooches/pins were a rage along with fur caplets and shawls. Instead of buying new, I purchased some vintage brooches on eBay. There's plenty of different styles, and some names like Cora, Triffari, Napier and Monet have become collector's pieces.

    $50 for a J Crew brooch, no not for me. I'd rather spend it on clothing.

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  34. I will not be purchasing any of those, WAY overpriced!

    I just got off the phone with CS about a missing item in an order. They explained the system keeps showing items after they're sold out and they've been having a lot of problems with it. But the lady I spoke with was so sweet. She refunded me for the item (a 2.79 hair band) and then also refunded the shipping I'd paid. There's now $9 something going back to my card, not a huge amount but I thought it really spoke for their service.

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  35. math teacher: I got the Tartine in snow, black and deep persimmon. Initially I wanted the bright rhubard. I want a true red, and CS rep was nice enough to traipse to the in-house "store" to check the colors for me. She said the online color swatches are mixed up for the deep persimmon and bright rhubarb (more orangey). I haven't received my order so I don't know if she's right after all.

    I also sized down on the tartine, I'm giving the fiona herringbone a miss. It looks too boxy on me.

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  36. I have mixed feelings about the ecole jacket. Somehow it doesn't look right - texture and style-wise, or as someone here put it: a tad too christmassy. So I decided to get a herringbone bella - bought it this morning off ebay. Hope it turns out good.

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  37. vivian: Bright Rhubarb should be more deep reddish pink, and Deep Persimmon should be more orangey...is that not what the sweaters truly are? How can J.Crew mix that up?

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  38. vivian: oh, great! I wanted the more pinky color, not orange. Just one more reason I may have to return. Thanks for the info on sizing. I'm just hoping I chose correctly. Also, congrats on the bella. I'm keeping an eye on ebay as well, although there's so much I want from J Crew... I may have to save my $ for the new items.

    I tried on the ecole and didn't care for it. I don't think this jacket works on busty girls. :) Just my opinion.

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  39. Vivian,
    As someone who owns and loves three herringbone Bellas, I can give you the highest recommendation on that jacket :-) In my opinion, it's just spectacular. What color did you get?

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  40. BTW, I think it's kind of funny J.Crew is dubbing the Ecole jacket their "it" jacket - they're pretty obviously hoping to self-generate it into the same hemisphere as last year's Bella. I don't dislike the Ecole (on sight, anyway - haven't tried one on) but I don't think it's all that special.

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  41. FFM, math teacher: You're right! Your bright rhubarb is more likely the right color you want.

    I'm so confused about the Tartine colors. Well, I'll just have to exchange it for the bright rhubarb. In any case, I bought a few other fall items that I didnt get to try in the store, so I'll probably need to do a few returns anyway.

    The ecole: I'm flat chested, and it still doesn't look good on me!

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  42. la belle helene: I agree that J Crew is trying to "push" the ecole. On my most recent visit to my b&m, one sa told me that it was this year's bella. I don't think so as it's not flattering to everyone. Why do they seem to market so many clothes to small chested girls? Drives me crazy! :)

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  43. vivian: don't you think buttons would have been better on the ecole? I think I might have loved it that way (and probably bought it). As for the tartine, I guess we'll each find out when they arrive if we chose the correct colors. Since your cs went and looked, you'll probably get the right one.

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  44. la belle helene: Thanks for the vote of confidence on the Bella! What colors do you have? I bought the camel. Too bad there are limited colors on ebay.

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  45. math teacher: Exactly - having just a hook and bar just cheapens the style.I told the CS I have a sweater in deep persimmon and it's more orangey, but she said that every season the colors change. Since she checked the Tartine colors at their store, I was dumb enough to go with her recommendation.

    la belle helene: Ecole is definitely NOT J.Crew's "it" jacket for 2008.

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  46. vivian: why would she not tell you the truth? Do you think you're going to end up with an orangy sweater again? Maybe she was right. I wonder what she looked at. I've never looked - are the colors coded in the item's tag?

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  47. Vivian,
    I got the Bella herringbone in heather azalea, heather charcoal, and black. I would have also liked to get the velvet one in purple, but they were gone by the time I made up my mind ...

    Re: the Ecole - I, too, think the hook & eye is a miss. That's part of what makes it not very special to me. The Bella had the to-die-for ruffled stand-up collar, and nice buttons. The ecole, well, it just looks like not a lot of thought went into it. I think the herringbone Fiona has a lot more charm to it ....

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  48. Regarding all the talk of colors, I really think J.Crew shouldn't change the nuances of colors that have the same name. I'd prefer to know that anything I buy in violet this year matches what I bought last year, ditto with azalea, etc. If they want to come up with a new shade of pink, blue, green, etc., just give it a new name.

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  49. la belle helene: I totally agree with your comment. Especially for those who don't have a b&m close by and have to buy online.

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  50. Math teacher: I'm not sure if the colors were coded but I'm mad enough to call CS and ask them to send me the bright rhubarb. My store here had only a few colors and not these two reds.

    On another issue: I mentioned this a few times, and someone else here also had questions abt sales tax.

    I received my Banana Republic order this morning and found that the sales tax charged was much much lower - it's exactly the same rate that J.Crew used to charge me before the upgrade. Does this make sense? Why would BR and JCrew charge different sales tax rate shipping to the same address?

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  51. vivian: I thought some said that J Crew was charging tax on the shipping, too, which I don't think they're allowed to do. I would have thought they would have that straightened out, unless they think it's a way to make a few extra bucks (although, if they do it all their orders, it's probably way more than a few extra bucks!). Are you going to call about it? If you do, let us know what you find out.

    As far as the color, they should ship you the rhubarb with free shipping.

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  52. la belle helene: The Herringbone Fiona is very cute. It definitely looks like more thought has gone into it. It looks too boxy on me, plus I got my Canvas Fiona just last month. And after my purchase of the Tartine cardigans last week, DH has banned me from buying anything with ruffles for the next six months.

    The Bella colors you have are fabulous! I wish I could get the charcoal and azalea on ebay! I'm eyeing the velvet versions but they're hard to come by for a reasonable price.

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  53. math teacher: I called - and they're sending me the bright rhubard sans shipping cost. As for the sales tax, they insist it's correct. I just don't understand how my sales tax rate could increase 7 percent overnight with J.Crew's upgrade. And especially when BR is still charging me the same rate. Another FTC case?

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  54. vivian: too funny about the ruffles! I am also in love with the argyle vest with the bow. I like tie blouses (don't ask how many I have), so I'm hoping the tie vest is just as cute!

    I agree with you that the herringbone fiona is too boxy, although it is a pretty jacket.

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  55. Sorry, I mean bright rhubarb. Why do I keep typing bright rhubard?

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  56. vivian: I'm glad you're getting the rhubarb sans shipping. Now, you'll be able to compare the colors and let us all know. As for the tax, it doesn't make sense. If both stores are charging the same percent, then it should be the same. I wonder how much those cs really know? Are they just assuming it's correct, or are they checking with a calculator?

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  57. math teacher: That vest is sooooo pretty! I love ties too.

    I have a silk-line solid swing tie cardigan from final sale waitlisted. This morning it showed "open."

    I ordered the dream tie cardigan last week.

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  58. vivian: I saw the dream tie cardigan, but didn't try it on. I probably will next time I'm there. I hope that my b&m will eventually carry the vest so I can see it. The only bad thing is that I think it will not work with a white shirt, which means I'll probably have to buy the ivory shirt, too. Ivory button ups are so hard to find here.

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