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Offering found vintage items that we design ourselves
April 11, 2012 10:48 AM   Subscribe

"we have replaced the mundane, bothersome functionality of a wristwatch with whimsically impractical sparkling flowers...WELCOME TO ANTHROPARODIE"
posted by the young rope-rider (78 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite

 
Oh yeah! I think when this started I wanted to post it here but there were like two entries and I thought 'Nah, better give it a bit' and then I totally forgot about it so I'm glad you're better at things, the young rope-rider.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:51 AM on April 11, 2012


Holy shit that is spot on.
posted by hincandenza at 10:51 AM on April 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I want to see an overpriced accessories store for cannibals called ANTHROPOPHAGIE.
posted by Faint of Butt at 10:52 AM on April 11, 2012 [19 favorites]


ahhhhh so good..
posted by peachfuzz at 10:55 AM on April 11, 2012


Nobody could ever come up with anything funnier than this item's actual description.
posted by theodolite at 10:56 AM on April 11, 2012 [47 favorites]


re: the bothersome uptick in frame clusters - I have been greatly enjoying the fuck your noguchi coffee table tumblr lately.
posted by elizardbits at 10:58 AM on April 11, 2012 [9 favorites]


Nobody could ever come up with anything funnier than this item's actual description.

That is amazing.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 11:01 AM on April 11, 2012


Well, at least this $1300 monstrosity can be re-purposed as a noose from which to hang the person who said "you're right, that would look good in the living room."
posted by griphus at 11:02 AM on April 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


$698 for a mirror by a zombie boat builder, theodolite? Look, that's obviously a quality mirror you could use for your whole life. A bargain, really, compared to the scotch-taped mosaics of Juicy Fruit wrappers most of us end up using and replacing over and over again.
posted by maudlin at 11:05 AM on April 11, 2012 [10 favorites]


Nobody could ever come up with anything funnier than this item's actual description.

Oh my god. I'm picturing a boatbuilder all of whose clients have terrible lacerating wounds on their feet.
posted by yoink at 11:06 AM on April 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I can't decide if that would be a zombie boat builder, a Hindu/Jain/Sikh boat builder, or a boat builder in the witness protection program.
posted by elizardbits at 11:08 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


The teapot is actually pretty cool
posted by The Whelk at 11:09 AM on April 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


Sure, if you have a de-saturated post-kitchen in which to enact it.
posted by clockzero at 11:11 AM on April 11, 2012 [16 favorites]


I worked in the Urban Outfitters/Anthropologie home office for a couple of years a while back answering customer service emails and I pretty much hated every goddamn minute of it.

I was working there when the December 2004 tsunami hit. It affected the company's business tremendously, because the sweatshops where maybe 90% of their branded crap was made were located in Sri Lanka and were effectively wiped out. The disaster struck right after the holidays, a typically busy time of the year due to exchanges and post-holiday sales. Anthro's customers were not pleased that their $128 camis and $248 shrugs were held up because the hellholes where they were made no longer existed and the people who made them were busy burying their dead family members. I saved a bunch of the angriest emails, though I've since lost whatever device I was storing them on. Anthro dealt with the tragedy (well, *Anthropologie's* tragedy) by issuing a special catalog supplement that explained that the whole world was bearing witness to this terrible event and the company stood with the people of Sri Lanka in their time of need. You know, because their sweatshops were wiped out. It was one of the most tasteless things I'd ever fucking seen. I never felt dirtier working for anyone before or since.
posted by item at 11:11 AM on April 11, 2012 [56 favorites]


I think around the third time the combination of the size of the handle and angle of the spout has you splashing hot water all over your guests, you probably relegate it to the display cabinet and go back to using the greasy, tarnished teapot you bought at Target when you moved into your first apartment.
posted by griphus at 11:12 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Faint of Butt: “I want to see an overpriced accessories store for cannibals called ANTHROPOPHAGIE.”

I was actually hoping for an overpriced accessories store for millipedes called ARTHROPODOLOGIE.
posted by koeselitz at 11:13 AM on April 11, 2012 [10 favorites]


Sure, if you have a de-saturated post-kitchen in which to enact it.

I'm not sure I've ever seen a mot more juste than "enact" in that sentence. Brilliant.
posted by yoink at 11:15 AM on April 11, 2012 [9 favorites]


I didn't realise those were actual items for sale at first.
posted by jeather at 11:20 AM on April 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


It was one of the most tasteless things I'd ever fucking seen. I never felt dirtier working for anyone before or since.
Yeah, but that one dress was really pretty.
posted by four panels at 11:22 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Bird Take-off Ramp.

Winner!
posted by ShutterBun at 11:22 AM on April 11, 2012


I didn't realise those were actual items for sale at first

Same here!

What a perfect company to make fun of, too. They are very, um, proud of their products, apparently.
posted by foxhat10 at 11:24 AM on April 11, 2012


> They are very, um, proud of their products, apparently.

Probably so, but they also know how to market to people with more money than decor sensibilities.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:28 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh my god. I'm picturing a boatbuilder all of whose clients have terrible lacerating wounds on their feet.

The Little Mermaid didn't just get that way, you know. Bleeding from the feet requires craft.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:30 AM on April 11, 2012


Odd that the reincarnated boatbuilder never learned to splice rope.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 11:30 AM on April 11, 2012 [12 favorites]


Glub glub.


This comment was inspired by the MeFi user's past life, in which he was a boat builder. And not a very good one, at that.
posted by mazola at 11:31 AM on April 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


"Mr. Owl Smokes a Pipe" is completely adorable and I want to punch these people for making fun of him.
posted by Gator at 11:31 AM on April 11, 2012


I meant HIS pipe. Mr. Owl Smokes HIS Pipe. Wow, I guess I should stop telling people I can still read French.
posted by Gator at 11:32 AM on April 11, 2012


They are very, um, proud of their products, apparently.

Probably so, but they also know how to market to people with more money than decor sensibilities.


Yes, they definitely dress it all up in a very whimsical, tempting way, until you shake your head and say to yourself, "what the fuck, I almost considered buying a $700 mirror with a rope through it!!"
posted by foxhat10 at 11:36 AM on April 11, 2012


It was one of the most tasteless things I'd ever fucking seen. I never felt dirtier working for anyone before or since.

But what were their bathrooms like?
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:40 AM on April 11, 2012


I really like the cock rings. I also liked the throwing knives.

And I'm relieved that I wasn't the only one who thought the photos were also parodies.
posted by jeather at 11:40 AM on April 11, 2012


in what world is this worth $700? is that what you meant by funny?
posted by ninjew at 11:41 AM on April 11, 2012


The Twisted Roots Altered Ego Chair ... for only $980. Unbelievable.
posted by Allee Katze at 11:48 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, at least this $1300 monstrosity can be re-purposed as a noose from which to hang the person who said "you're right, that would look good in the living room."

Holy Shitstained Christ. I think we've found suitable criteria for eugenic sterilization.
posted by cmoj at 11:49 AM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


The Twisted Roots Altered Ego Chair Holy crap. That was so much worse than I could imagine. I was expecting something like a chair cut from a single giant root or something. Not "here we glued some branches to a weathered chair".
posted by flaterik at 11:56 AM on April 11, 2012


I hope my mother never stumbles into the path of this site. She'll be buying or crafting more junk than you can imagine. Please God, this is my wish this day. If you grant it I'll supply you with never ending hamburger, Amen.
posted by RolandOfEld at 12:14 PM on April 11, 2012


Metafilter: scotch-taped mosaics of Juicy Fruit wrappers
posted by jabberjaw at 12:27 PM on April 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


The Twisted Roots Altered Ego Chair

Christ! I once took a dining room chair out to my front porch during a party, and never got around to bringing it back inside-- you know how it is-- and I kept thinking I really should bring it back in, but it just stayed out there, and got rained on, and it started looking too bad to ever be brought back in, so I left it there for months, until I eventually had someone haul it away with some other bulk trash.

Now I find out I could have sold it for a thousand bucks!
posted by Faint of Butt at 12:28 PM on April 11, 2012


This is gold! GOLD, I say!
posted by Scientist at 12:34 PM on April 11, 2012


Twisted Roots Altered Ego Chair

If I am ever in the home of someone who owns that chair, no matter how casually I know them, I will slap them across the face on behalf of everyone here. THIS I VOW.
posted by elizardbits at 12:36 PM on April 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


this $1300 monstrosity

OK. Seriously. What. The. Fuck. That is a real thing? That thing, it is real? It exists and is actually for sale for $1300?

I don't know how to feel about that.

On the one hand, it makes me want to punch people in the throat.

On the other hand, offering such a thing for sale is an act of such breathtakingly brazen hucksterism that it's practically conceptual performance art, to be admired in the same way one might coldly admire a particularly well-plotted murder.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:42 PM on April 11, 2012 [12 favorites]


Gator: I meant HIS pipe. Mr. Owl Smokes HIS Pipe. Wow, I guess I should stop telling people I can still read French.


Ce n'est pas un pipe.
Ceci, c'est une arnaque.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:44 PM on April 11, 2012


The poor do not know how to manage their money.
The rich do not deserve to handle their money.

People who deserve to be punched in the throats prey on the former; douchebags who prey on the latter only really deserve the mud splashed on them by passing buses.

*Not true in all cases. YMMV. Offer not good in CA.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:47 PM on April 11, 2012


It was one of the most tasteless things I'd ever fucking seen. I never felt dirtier working for anyone before or since.

But what were their bathrooms like?


Well, once you realize that I was a full-fledged junkie at the time, shooting speedballs in the bathrooms with a greater frequency than most people get up to piss, you realize that their bathrooms were covered in tiny little splatterings of my dried blood.
posted by item at 12:48 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


If I am ever in the home of someone who owns that chair, no matter how casually I know them, I will slap them across the face on behalf of everyone here. THIS I VOW.

Lack of disposable income limits my social activities AGAIN.
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:52 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


The parody site is entertaining, but now I'm looking at the actual Anthropologie site and finding it much funnier. I mean...This smashed, enameled iron tub adorns a wall with distressed interest. That's comedy gold right there. ($4,800, by the way...)
posted by neroli at 12:54 PM on April 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


I bet that this parody website makes a mint for Anthropologie.

I am also amused that Mod Cloth has an ad on the page.
posted by bilabial at 12:58 PM on April 11, 2012


wow, I looked over some of the stuff at the actual anthropologie, and I'm totally boggled.

people would pay that price for something assembled out of stuff you could find at goodwill for under $3? really?
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:05 PM on April 11, 2012


I wonder how much of that comically insane garbage actually comprises Anthropologie's bottom line, though. I suspect leggings, blouses, and such probably account for 99.9% of their revenue.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:08 PM on April 11, 2012


"It was the first and last time Heather would hire Christo as her interior designer."

I LOLed.
posted by notsnot at 1:12 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I thought for sure the robotic wrath-hopper prototype was made up
nefarious features included:
wind-up deathray ovipositor
flame-throwing compound eye
prothorax of terror
ultra-spring femur (for transcontinental launching)
precise 17-jewel movement
waterproof to 100 m
Nope: only $1298
posted by exogenous at 1:31 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Art is an interesting topic. I'm a little worried when people mock or criticize it because they think it's weird. Anthropologie does sell art pieces, for what appears to be a lot of money. That grasshopper thing is pretty cool, likely a one-of-a-kind piece, was not easy to craft, and appeals to a certain demographic. Here is the artist's website. I'm not on board with the $4,800 enamel / iron bath tub, but I can see its appeal. I don't know who Pierre Malbec is, but Anthropologie is pushing his art pretty hard. The mirrors are a different story, especially after looking at the customer reviews.
posted by jabberjaw at 2:18 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


$2,100 "Studio Days Easel"
posted by doreur at 2:20 PM on April 11, 2012


I remember browsing the website one day and mentally supplying a new description for this item, which was "We are charging you $4 for a clothespin because we think you're fucking stupid."

This is perhaps why I am not a copywriter.
posted by duvatney at 2:27 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


$2,100 "Studio Days Easel"

Jesus One-Eared Christ. What a savings.
posted by maudlin at 3:36 PM on April 11, 2012


Art is an interesting topic. I'm a little worried when people mock or criticize it because they think it's weird.

Really? I think that's a healthy discussion. Especially ultra-commodified art that's sold in a web catalogue with super-pretentious descriptions along with overpriced twee sweatshop clothing.

The intensive appropriation and monetization of "outsider" art traditions is something I have A Lot Of Thoughts About. A Lot of Thoughts. Lots. Thoughts.
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:43 PM on April 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


I remember browsing the website one day and mentally supplying a new description for this item, which was "We are charging you $4 for a clothespin because we think you're fucking stupid."

This is perhaps why I am not a copywriter.


I have been a copywriter, and I can tell you that every copywriter thinks this way. Then they laugh with their friends, swill more coffee, and write whatever crap the client wants.

I did some work in the early 90s for a now-defunct women's clothing catalogue that was kind of on the order of J. Jill (it was not actually J. Jill), in which the clothing came in colors like "twig" and "kindness" and we had to write "little stories" (per the client brief) "about how the X Catalog clothing makes women's every day magical."

The depiction of Elaine's job at the J. Peterman Company on "Seinfeld" was remarkably accurate except that she got paid enough to have a nice apartment on the Upper West Side.
posted by Sidhedevil at 3:45 PM on April 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Really? I think that's a healthy discussion.

I think it's worth a healthy discussion as well, so I think we're on the same page. Immediate snark for the sake of snark isn't really a discussion though, and I think it can be as knee-jerk as people who dismiss the stuff you find in MoMA. I guess what I'm saying is, it worries me when people mock for the sake of mocking what appears to be an easy target. I'm not saying that people should never mock art (because, sure, so much art is mock-worthy), but I worry that people mock without any consideration. But I guess that's just kind of what happens in a hater thread where hating is the default mode.
posted by jabberjaw at 3:59 PM on April 11, 2012


fuck your noguchi coffee table

Ok, but I liked the toilet decal and I am not so against a frame cluster (possibly because I make things that go in frames and I want people to buy them)
However, I would like to know if a "clock vignette" is a thing, and if so, why.
posted by Glinn at 4:05 PM on April 11, 2012


I think it can be as knee-jerk as people who dismiss the stuff you find in MoMA.

But it's not in MoMA. It's on a twee overpriced catalogue site with descriptions written by catalogue-copy writers, not artists' statements. The photos are taken by clothing or decor photographers and styled by clothing or decor stylists, not by photographers who document art.

It's not being sold as art. It's being sold as accessories to a "lifestyle" brand.
posted by Sidhedevil at 4:12 PM on April 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


That grasshopper thing is pretty cool, likely a one-of-a-kind piece, was not easy to craft, and appeals to a certain demographic.

Yeah, I have nothing but love for that thing, and in no small part due to the ovipositor description. I wouldn't buy it, but I shall wave my internets scepter and declare it Art.

And yeah, that noguchi tumblr is a giant goddamn ruiner because 01) GODDAMMIT I WANT AN EAMES LOUNGE AND OTTOMAN and 02) I am pretty sure I will soon be hanging my nerdy arts (hark a vagrant prints, sigh) in a frame cluster in my front hall.
posted by elizardbits at 4:35 PM on April 11, 2012


Sidhedevil, I think both the tub and the grasshopper are being sold as art pieces. The grasshopper:
This fascinating specimen has been fitted with antique watch parts, metamorphosing it from preserved Orthoptera to striking work of art. Handcrafted by artist Mike Libby as a part of his Insect Lab collection, a series devoted to blurring the line between nature and machine.
The tub:
Lauded for his ability to create works of art from household objects, acclaimed French artist and antiques dealer Pierre Malbec's one-of-a-kind pieces lend vintage-meets-modern appeal to every space. This smashed, enameled iron tub adorns a wall with distressed interest.
Okay, maybe that copy is a little offensive. But I'm sorry you don't approve of the Anthropologie catalog or audience. I don't know why 'twee' is being used as a harsh slur.

On the other hand, all art is sold as accessories to the buyer's lifestyle. I think it is a good thing that artists have a venue to showcase their work, even if it is something as twee as Anthropologie.
posted by jabberjaw at 4:38 PM on April 11, 2012


I'm not saying that people should never mock art (because, sure, so much art is mock-worthy)

It's "arty". It's not art. This mirror frame thing is not the mirror frame thing that you get. You get whatever kind they can throw together with what they have on hand. As has been mentioned, if you read the comments most folks were quite disappointed because the thing they got was really not much like the thing advertised, at all.

As for the steampunk grasshopper you can find similar stuff all over Etsy.
One
Two
Three
Four

And that was just on a hunch without looking very hard.
posted by Glinn at 4:44 PM on April 11, 2012


(By the way, I'm not saying the grasshopper isn't art. I'm just saying, look at the difference in prices and ask yourself how much the artist is making. I suppose it's possible he got a good deal, but if you consider the markup on something like those damn frames. Well.)
posted by Glinn at 4:46 PM on April 11, 2012



Could it be that the twee aesthetic at Anthro is due to...database management?

Items in catalogs used to be identified by numbers, back when you had to fill out a paper form with the number, size, and color and send in your check.

I've never worked for one of these companies, so I don't know for sure, but now it looks as if they're identifying items by unique words. This would explain the proliferation of girls' names for items at J. Crew (e.g. "Bettina cami") and the bizarre titles at Anthro. As they start squeezing the dictionary, the items have to get weirder too.

Sooner or later catalogs will go back to numbers, and to charging $49.99 for a plain white T-shirt (recall the white T-shirt fad?), only with inflation it will be the $99.99 white T-shirt.
posted by bad grammar at 5:30 PM on April 11, 2012


now it looks as if they're identifying items by unique words

Eh? Here's an anthropologie url: http://www.anthropologie.com/anthro/catalog/productdetail.jsp?id=22665285 That "22665285" is the product id used in their database, unless they have some truly weird artisanal code running their site.
posted by I've a Horse Outside at 6:50 PM on April 11, 2012


I really doubt they're indexing by the item name. They're probably indexing by SKU or something similar.
Companies give items these unique names because it actually helps them sell, believe it or not. People like a name they can discuss. And it's a creative exercise for the merchandizing team.
posted by ch1x0r at 7:03 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


jabber jaw, if it doesn't bother you to see art marketed as a design element ("lends appeal to every space") you and I apparently have different bother zones. For myself, who collects art and who occasionally writes about art, I have some issues with it, but you are obviously someone who thinks seriously about art and has a different response, and I'm glad to hear your perspective.

Also I am a Foe of Twee. Twee, to me, is to real charm as sentimentality is to sentiment.

But let a hundred flowers bloom, let a hundred schools of thought contend, we're thinking and talking and that's awesome even when we disagree.
posted by Sidhedevil at 7:10 PM on April 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I had an uncanny experience in an Anthropologie a couple of weeks ago. I didn't know I'd walked into the store and then I didn't know what it was and then I didn't know how to leave it.

The local Anthropologie is in a 1980s building, very basic, pure concrete lines and floating glass panels, not a whole lot of distinction between inside and outside. I walked off the sidewalk and up a short flight of steps, then turned right, found myself inside and thought: Huh, how did I not see the door there?

I was actually looking for another shop. At this point, I had no idea that there even was an Anthropologie there, because I hadn't seen any sign. I poked around at some nice things, then thought: wait, this doesn't look like an Ann Taylor. Where am I? I checked labels on the clothing, walked up and down several small split-level landings loaded with merchandise -- still no name. Finally, I thought: I am actually going to have to step outside the street door to see where the hell I am. It took several turns to find the exit. The entrance was unlabeled. It was like the Hotel California of overpriced decor. I felt downright haunted by the time I got outside. I looked up towards the storefront to see the name of the store . . . which wasn't there.

I don't remember where exactly I found a sign saying Anthropologie, but it took me a few more minutes. I think it was at basement level, which is foot-level at the street. If it weren't that I were shopping with someone else, I don't think I'd have gone back into that place.
posted by Countess Elena at 7:40 PM on April 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


That is my local Anthropologie as well, Countess Elena. It's kind of spooky, I agree. I pretty much only go there under duress to buy sweaters for the teenaged girls in my life. Also, it smells really strange in there.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:00 PM on April 11, 2012


Thank you, Sidhedevil -- I now feel less ridiculous about walking into the Dionaea Store.
posted by Countess Elena at 8:12 PM on April 11, 2012


On the other hand, all art is sold as accessories to the buyer's lifestyle.

Hmmm...
posted by yoink at 9:05 PM on April 11, 2012


Regretsy Platinum Reserve
posted by speicus at 1:20 AM on April 12, 2012 [4 favorites]


I actually kinda liked the clothes, but recently heard that the guy who owns Anthropologie and Urban Outfitter was a major donor to Rick Santorum's campaign and suddenly I felt unclean.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:42 AM on April 12, 2012


That distresses my interest.
posted by The Whelk at 6:45 AM on April 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


On the other hand, all art is sold as accessories to the buyer's lifestyle.

Hmmm...


Hmmm LOUDER, Yoink! Upon further introspection, I concur with your Hmmm.
posted by jabberjaw at 9:09 AM on April 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


suddenly I felt unclean

Urban Outfitters also unapologetically promotes and profits from Native American cultural appropriation. I'd like to hire an unruly frat boy to piss on the front door of their store on 14th and 6th every morning but I have been told this is apparently a misdemeanor.
posted by elizardbits at 9:21 AM on April 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'd like to hire an unruly frat boy to piss on the front door of their store on 14th and 6th every morning but I have been told this is apparently a misdemeanor.

This being New York City, it's likely that something very like this is happening on a regular enough basis anyway. You need hire no one after all.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:54 AM on April 12, 2012


From @minakimes: at $530, this sexy beekeeper hat is a real steal!
posted by lukemeister at 12:04 PM on April 13, 2012


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