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why we care about what we wear

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Why Can't a Smart Woman Love Fashion? [more inside]
posted by flex on Aug 15, 2014 - 33 comments

It crawled out from some dark corner of my computer

I've no idea what this video is. It crawled out from some dark corner of my computer after evolving from the virtual maggots that feast on rotting film footage. The new thing by Cyriak Harris.
posted by louche mustachio on Aug 15, 2014 - 45 comments

Korean fashion and design that is Having a Moment

Korean fashion and design is having a moment, but what is fueling it? It's complicated. Let's explore the K-wave. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 26, 2014 - 23 comments

Costco: "It's a water-cooler conversation company."

Costco Wholesale, or just 'Costco', is a membership warehouse store and the second largest retailer in the United States. Here are some notable blogs, fan communities, articles and commentary (mostly U.S.-centric). [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 3, 2014 - 175 comments

Hey, dummy!

Retail Therapy: What Mannequins Say About Us
Like the larger fashion industry, mannequin design echoes seasonal styles that come and go, both in regard to technological improvements and the way we view our bodies. “It’s often the body attitudes and facial expressions that reflect what’s going on socially,” says Hale. Accordingly, the stiff, unnatural bodies of early mannequins were well-matched for the Victorian Era‘s restrictive ideas about women’s rights and fashions, which dictated they wear many layers of heavy fabric over tight-fitting corsets.
[more inside]
posted by Room 641-A on Jul 1, 2014 - 14 comments

It's last call to do your shopping at the last mall

The Guardian on the decline of America's shopping malls. "Dying shopping malls are speckled across the United States, often in middle-class suburbs wrestling with socioeconomic shifts. Some, like Rolling Acres, have already succumbed. Estimates on the share that might close or be repurposed in coming decades range from 15 to 50%. Americans are returning downtown; online shopping is taking a 6% bite out of brick-and-mortar sales; and to many iPhone-clutching, city-dwelling and frequently jobless young people, the culture that spawned satire like Mallrats seems increasingly dated, even cartoonish.

The trend is especially noticeable in the Midwest, a former blue-collar bastion where ailing malls have begun dotting suburban landscapes. Outside of Chicago, Lakehurst Mall was levelled in 2004 and the half-vacant Lincoln Mall is costing its host village millions in botched redevelopment plans. Dixie Square Mall sat vacant for more than 30 years after serving as the backdrop for the iconic chase scene in the 1980 film The Blues Brothers. It was finally demolished in 2012. Many others will similarly lie dormant as they wait for the wrecking ball."
posted by porn in the woods on Jun 19, 2014 - 181 comments

Gr8 deal on Odorless surprises! 2 baker's dozens @nonstopscrshop

Oh, I'm sorry, they're out of Odorless surprise. How about a new-to-you gamin? They never have that at the end of the week, they get it fresh on Monday. What about a Refurbished gintleman? It's been out for two weeks. They were expecting it this morning. Well, there's always more to browse at the Non-Stop Scroll Shop! It's online, unlike Apple Cabin and it's curious mailers (previously; more) [via mefi projects]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 13, 2014 - 19 comments

The Brie People

It's 1976 and CBS reports on NYC's hot new pickup spot: the department store Bloomingdale's
posted by The Whelk on Feb 27, 2014 - 29 comments

The Snows Of Sbarro's

In 2011, the upscale White Flint Shopping mall was closed and planned for demolition, but not before someone went in and photographed the interior and food court in all its pastel-neon-plastic 80s glory.
posted by The Whelk on Feb 16, 2014 - 106 comments

I could have had a stable of white elephants

Looking for a gift under $20? $15? $10? Maybe you just want to know where all the shit you can afford on Amazon or ThinkGeek is hiding. We've all been there: a birthday or wedding coming up and no clue what gift to buy. Maybe your family disowned you after the last Secret Santa (and you were so sure that Heifer International donation was the way to go!), but 2014 is your year to shine.
posted by misha on Jan 9, 2014 - 13 comments

One Kid's Insane Christmas List, Annotated by Dad

Forget the pony, forget the teddy bear -- this kid wants a little thing that can turn into anything at anytime.
posted by flyingsquirrel on Dec 5, 2013 - 166 comments

"You are never alone at the mannequin factory."

Inside the Proportion>London factory in Walthamstow. - Not an invasion force, honest.
posted by Artw on Nov 4, 2013 - 14 comments

Talkin' Bout a Webolution

The awkwardly titled [2000] book, "FutureConsumer.com: The webolution of shopping to 2010," touches on everything from music downloads to grocery delivery, with a big emphasis on lists. And it's Feather's list for the 50 largest online retailers of 2010 which now stands as a fascinating time capsule of the first dot-com bubble. Naturally, Webvan makes the Top 5.
posted by Horace Rumpole on Oct 15, 2013 - 16 comments

Deals on Wheels

The first online shopping transaction took place from a Gateshead living-room in 1984, sixteen years before Tesco fully launched the web version of their stores. It didn't take place on a BBC Micro or an Acorn, but through Videotex, a service better known by the Francophone world as Minitel (previously).
posted by mippy on Sep 16, 2013 - 13 comments

Fourth floor, please

Does elevator music make you buy more stuff? Skeptoid's Brian Dunning explores the history and science of the insidious beast that is Musak. Can carefully crafted, topically tempoed, thoughtfully themed music cause consumers to part with more of their money?
posted by Annie Savoy on Jul 9, 2013 - 35 comments

Sweethome (not Alabama)

If product reviews annoy you with their lack of a definitive answer, you may already know electronics and gadget review site The Wirecutter, which tells you, definitively, what the best TV, office chair, smartphone, umbrella, and $100 earbuds are. Now there is The Sweethome, which does the same for home goods: ice cube trays, shower caddies, skillets, household drills, and the best toilet paper (unless you don't live near Walmart).
posted by blahblahblah on May 28, 2013 - 77 comments

Getting Stuffed

David Sedaris buys an owl.
posted by Artw on Apr 14, 2013 - 22 comments

“Shopping is so ritualised that we walk around like zombies,”

Sian Jarvis, the supermarket’s head of corporate affairs, had undermined her claims to care about the health of her customers and let slip one of the secrets of a multi-billion-pound industry ... she revealed that one in three Asda checkouts “are what we call guilt-free checkouts”. Jarvis insisted “guilt-free” was merely “a term that’s commonly used in retail”. But it was too late, and her “guilt” gaffe quickly invited scorn in the industry and among public health professionals. Whatever the damage, she had already opened a door to the arcane science of supermarket psychology. To the designers of the modern store, shoppers are lab rats with trolleys, guided through a maze of aisles by the promise of rewards they never knew they sought The Secrets Of Our Supermarkets
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Apr 10, 2013 - 238 comments

"Most of the big chains are trying video analytics"

How stores spy on you: Many retailers are snooping more than ever Gaze trackers are hidden in tiny holes in the shelving and detect which brands you’re looking at and how long for each. There are even mannequins whose eyes are cameras...Cisco is testing a system [that] automatically detects your mobile device and connects you to the retailer’s free Wi-Fi network. "Once the customer gets on the network, he has opted in, and the privacy concerns are allayed..." [via] [more inside]
posted by mediareport on Mar 28, 2013 - 51 comments

"My Gucci Addiction"

"My name is Buzz Bissinger. I am 58 years old, the best-selling author of 'Friday Night Lights,' father of three, husband. And I am a shopaholic." Link to single page printer format.
I began to buy, as silly an understatement as somebody drinking a quart of vodka a day and insisting that he or she is not an alcoholic. Clothing became my shot glass, another round, Net-a-Porter. But too often hits wear off, and the laws of supply and demand for an addict are pretty simple: You replenish. And replenish. And replenish. You fool yourself at certain times into thinking that's it and you have quenched the beast. But the beast is never conquered, and you don't really want to conquer the beast anyway, until there is disaster.

posted by gladly on Mar 26, 2013 - 132 comments

Retweet to add additional diamonds to your shopping basket

Twitter is experimenting with online shopping: "American Express card holders who connect their card numbers to their Twitter accounts can post on Twitter to trigger a purchase of select products, including discounted American Express gift cards, Kindle Fire tablets from Amazon.com Inc. and jewelry from designer Donna Karan. The program will roll out over the next few days." [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Feb 12, 2013 - 65 comments

Nuts

Yesterday, the Nielsen Company released a report showing that same-sex partnered households in America shop about 16% more than the average US household. Broken down into categories, Nielsen observes that gay couples drink a ton, while lesbian couples eat an awful lot of cottage cheese.
posted by schmod on Jan 31, 2013 - 63 comments

Banter about Dildoes

What were things like in the bars and shops of the ancient Romans?
posted by Chrysostom on Jan 3, 2013 - 51 comments

this is how I wasted my lunch hour

This Is Why I'm Broke: not just jet packs and flying cars - you could locomote in a hot-tub boat, a killer-whale submarine, or a light-up monowheel; exercise on a rock-climbing treadmill; sleep on a convertible futon bunk bed; set the world on fire; or hold a zero-gravity wedding. Only in your dreams? Well, you can still fritter away your money on a flying radio-control shark, a turntable for your wall or for your cat, geeky iPhone cases (cassette tape - han solo in carbonite - ordisguise it as a leather book), a Batman snuggie or a pizza-wheel + fork or a flying fuck. All this and much more collected & curated for browsing, updated daily. Default sort is by popularity: can change to price or newest updates first. [more inside]
posted by flex on Oct 21, 2012 - 32 comments

Buy Design: Meet Paco Underhill, retail anthropologist

"Nothing is in a grocery store is where it is by accident. Every item on a shelf has been planned." Theatrically lit fruits and veggies? Limbic system-triggering flowers up front? Subtle manipulation of the shopping path? Meet Paco Underhill, master of the science of shopping, author, and founder of a consulting firm that specializes in advising companies on how small changes in retail environments can add up to increased sales. Think of him as a tour guide (YT, from his firm) who explains how these spaces are designed and why we fall for it. [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes on Aug 10, 2012 - 42 comments

Some Shoppers Are More Equal Than Others

Supermarkets are attempting to customize prices for different shoppers. At a Safeway in Denver, a 24-pack of Refreshe bottled water costs $2.71 for Jennie Sanford, a project manager. For Emily Vanek, a blogger, the price is $3.69. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad on Aug 10, 2012 - 164 comments

In Canada, Alternate Currency Keeps Traction With Fans

Canadian Tire Company coupons, thought of by some as an alternative Canadian currency, may be on the way out. [more inside]
posted by reenum on May 14, 2012 - 63 comments

Costco has you figured out.

The Costco Craze is a documentary that will air April 26, 2012 on CNBC. [more inside]
posted by caryatid on Apr 26, 2012 - 178 comments

Get a load of these cuties

Design Decoded, a new blog on Smithsonian.com, kicks off with a seven part series on the century-long process behind creating and marketing the perfect citrus. [more inside]
posted by Horace Rumpole on Mar 17, 2012 - 10 comments

Don't take it personally

"I Was a Warehouse Wage Slave: My brief, backbreaking, rage-inducing, low-paying, dildo-packing time inside the online-shipping machine"
posted by vidur on Feb 27, 2012 - 242 comments

This Mall Had Everything

Dixie Square Mall, Chicagoland's rotting eyesore, urban archaeology mecca. and site of a Blues Brothers chase scene, is finally being demolished. For real this time. It sat vacant and rotting since closing in 1979, slowly becoming the grim epitome of dead malls. (Previously)
posted by Yakuman on Feb 25, 2012 - 36 comments

Beautiful bookshops

With Amazon slowly taking over the publishing world and bookstores closing left and right, things can sometimes seem a little grim for the brick and mortar booksellers of the world. Before they go completely, here's a list of the 20 most beautiful bookshops in the world.
posted by PeterMcDermott on Feb 17, 2012 - 30 comments

Bookstore cats

Bookstore Cats from Different Parts of the World [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Feb 4, 2012 - 78 comments

The Pepsi Paradox

How the Brain Reveals Why We Buy. "Most of us know that branding palpably influences our choices and shopping habits, but researchers suspect that branding can also fundamentally change the way we comprehend sense impressions. At least that is the obvious conclusion to be drawn from the only (so far) classic study in neuromarketing, a fascinating study of what can be called the Pepsi paradox. " [more inside]
posted by marienbad on Feb 3, 2012 - 23 comments

Alan Attraction

Here comes Alan Measles - WW2 hero turned benign dictator turned Godhead. Guru, muse, art critic, raconteur. In his capacity as minor deity he resides in a hand-tooled Louis Vuitton traveling shrine, and embarks on a pilgrimage to Bavaria to make peace with the Germans, in his custom-built personal conveyance. In his entourage are his devoted minion and bodyguard, and some other bloke named Alan. In London this weekend? Pay your respects to Alan's stunt-doubles in the Kenilworth AM1, and purchase Measles memorabilia from the gift shop. [more inside]
posted by Elizabeth the Thirteenth on Jan 17, 2012 - 3 comments

The Goods on Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Oren Etzioni is a renowned data mining expert who sold Farecast, his airline-ticket price predictor to Microsoft for $115 million. Now he's turned his focus to the general problem of finding when the best shopping bargains occur. Punch in a consumer electronics item and his website will tell you whether to buy now or to wait. Over time he'll be adding more product categories. In any case, he can tell you right now the best prices for most things aren't on Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
posted by storybored on Dec 1, 2011 - 14 comments

TREAT YO SELF

Do you like men's clothes but don't like sweatshops / department stores / spending too much money? The Internet is here to help! Well Spent categorizes "honestly made" stylish men's clothes of all kinds. Their holiday gift guide might be helpful. Did you want to look at some pretty ties? Check out The Knottery. A belt? Narragansett Leathers makes belts of all sorts. Need some inspiration? My Grandfather's Ties or Evolving Style might help. Alternatively, just dress like Carl Sagan.
posted by Apropos of Something on Nov 28, 2011 - 34 comments

Malls track shoppers' cell phones on Black Friday

Shopper Stalking: Starting on Black Friday and running through New Year's Day, two U.S. malls -- Promenade Temecula in southern California and Short Pump Town Center in Richmond, Va. -- will track guests' movements by monitoring the signals from their cell phones. "It's just not invasive of privacy," said Stephanie Shriver-Engdahl, vice president of digital strategy for Forest City. "There are no risks to privacy, so I don't see why anyone would opt out." (Consumers can opt out by turning off their phones.)
posted by Blake on Nov 23, 2011 - 153 comments

"It’s going to end up like Memorial Day or the Fourth of July or Labor Day, where it’s all about the sales"

“I feel terrible,” [Best Buy chief executive Brian] Dunn told attendees at a conference in San Francisco. “It will change some Thanksgiving plans for our employees. It certainly changes mine...We were going to be open at much more civilized hour, like 3 or 4 [AM].”
Feeling pressure from a weak economy and escalating competition from rival retailers, stores like Best Buy are somewhat reluctantly planning to open stores at midnight on Thanksgiving evening. Traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year, Black Friday has become Black Midnight. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus on Nov 9, 2011 - 191 comments

7-11 Amazon delivery lockers

Unholy alliance of convenience: 7-11 Amazon delivery lockers (US / UK).
posted by stbalbach on Sep 12, 2011 - 169 comments

Stop by to look for a new shirt, enjoy an orange julius, and maybe experience a detention or two.

Under Suspicion at the Mall of America The Mall of America calls its counterterrorism unit RAM, or Risk Assessment and Mitigation. The unit is staffed with private security personnel. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad on Sep 9, 2011 - 97 comments

Cosmopolitan Corner

A look inside HMV's flagship store on London's Oxford Street. 1960s. 1970s. After a troubled year for the record chain, here's how the same building looks today.
posted by mippy on Aug 27, 2011 - 42 comments

Decision Fatigue

Do You Suffer From Decision Fatigue? "The very act of making decisions depletes our ability to make them well. So how do we navigate a world of endless choice?"
posted by homunculus on Aug 20, 2011 - 71 comments

No, you put your tea in a petrol can

Alex and Liam Do Walmart
posted by ThePinkSuperhero on Aug 4, 2011 - 109 comments

Going to the extreme with coupon clipping

Was J'aime Kirlew, self-proclaimed "Diva for Coupons" and participant on TLC's Extreme Couponing shown committing fraud? Many couponers (discussion begins with second comment on the page) think she's done it before going on TLC (youtube links in thread may be broken). Bud Miller from the The Coupon Information Corporation says "This whole thing is kind of sad.". Fraud may be reduced with implementation of the GS1 databar (wikipedia) which contains more data than the traditional UPC code.
posted by vespabelle on Apr 22, 2011 - 137 comments

ooooo shiny

Ever made an indie action film and needed something for that epic glass-break scene? How about the blackest black you can find? Want to adjust your boots so that they are mud repellant? Inventables has everything you need - for the budding inventor, busy set designer, or Q in training.
posted by divabat on Mar 26, 2011 - 43 comments

Careless...

♪ I feel so unsure as I take your hand and lead you to the dance floor as the music dies, something in your eyes calls to mind the silver screen and all its sad good-byes ♪
posted by boo_radley on Mar 11, 2011 - 63 comments

Vintage British Argos 1985 Catalogue

Vintage British Argos 1985 Catalogue [more inside]
posted by chill on Dec 9, 2010 - 39 comments

Bargain Junkies Are Beating Retailers at Their Own Game

A new brand of super shoppers use coupons and other discounts to get products for absurdly low prices. The Web has turned this group from a series of independent operators into cohesive groups, frustrating retailers.
posted by reenum on Dec 3, 2010 - 126 comments

Diceman at the dollar store

Real world implementation of the buy-bot from xkcd. Follow it on Twitter!
posted by Artw on Nov 9, 2010 - 33 comments

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