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A fashion and style blog for the over 40s covering body shapes, colour palettes, how to wear neutrals, style personality and capsule wardrobes. Come on in!

1.31.2014

Zara Bash



No not as in a party, I'm talking bashing as in over the head. Sorry, I did promise this Zara post but was so excited about my new trainers earlier today that I blogged about those instead and completely forgot.

Never did I think I would be criticising nay let's call it critiquing, I like to give balanced opinions after all. But to me Zara is god or at least the goddess of all things fabric so it pains me to write this post but I need to get it out of my system. And then I can move on.

I can't even remember entering Zara for the first time, it must have been the mid 90s but I do recall the prices. Boy were they cheap! The quality was ok, not great but that really didn't matter when you could kit yourself out for pip squeak pounds (I had never heard of Primark back then).

And as time went by, the designs got better and better. I remember a green blouse that I had, quite Victoriana it was, the detailing was beautiful. Ok the fabric left a lot to be desired, the cheapest of cheap cotton and you wouldn't want to look too closely at the stitching but the design itself more than made up for it. And to be fair it lasted a few years.

But then something went wrong. I blame the recession squeezing the margins which has resulted in workmanship going down and yet prices going up. No longer can you pick up a jacket for £30, you're more likely to part with £70 or £80 a time. And actually, I don't mind that because I do like many of the pieces Zara produce but I refuse to pay for crap quality. I've purchased a couple of jackets from H&M recently, both of which are very well made for the price I paid. So it can be done. Ethically I don't know. That's a story for another day.

Take this cardi-jacket that I had for Xmas. It's my comfort cardi, you know all snuggled up watching the tv. I've already had to stitch the fastener back on and look at the bobbling. For goodness sake we're only just out of January.



A silk top that I bought in the summer split at the seams under the arm so that went in the bin and then blow me down a blinkin hem has come down on a dress that I have worn once, ONCE I say.

The navy jumpsuit I purchased just before Christmas, well that's still going strong, bobbling a little but not too bad. My problem with this is that the pockets are soooo bulky that they stick out. Let me explain , they're knitted pockets so you have all this bulk going on around the hip area. I end up feeling as if I'm wearing something from the military, a little like these circa 1941 Russian soldier's battle trousers...



Oh you may laugh but I have to walk about with my hands in the pockets all day as I don't want to be known as the one with the haunches! More of a design fault that one. Had the pockets been made out of a thiner silky fabric they would have sat much better.

I bobbed into Zara at The Trafford Centre a couple of weeks ago. It wasn't quiet but it certainly wasn't busy. The shop floor was a disgrace, there was stuff everywhere. I took a couple of things into the changing room to try on and this was the cleanest one I could find. It was filthy, dust balls in the corner, dirty tissues on the floor, stray hair...you get the picture.



This was at about 11.30am and had so obviously not been cleaned from the previous day. OCD alert, I really couldn't try the tops on so I just bought them in the hope they fitted. Maybe this is a new marketing ploy!!! Everything seemed so tired and worn, serious investment is needed me thinks. To be fair I know the Manchester branch has just been revamped but it's not very often you see a store in such a sorry state in the Trafford Centre. Maybe it's next on the list.

I still love Zara collections, I'm sure I always will but I'm less inclined to use it as my go-to shop at the moment. The quality just isn't there anymore.

Well, got that off my chest. I feel much better.

And this is what I wore earlier today before I got drenched walking the dog (so over this weather). And, contrary Mary me, yes it's a Zara jacket, and it frays at the edges like mad (it's suppose to fray but the rate it's going at the moment, there'll be nothing left). I love my new scarf which is actually mustard in real life and not cat-sick yellow. The only decent one I've been able to find after a couple of weeks of searching. It's from T K Maxx and was less than £20 if I remember rightly. Good old TK Maxx.




Have a good weekend y'all

Donna
19 comments on "Zara Bash"
  1. I agree! It's gone downhill fast - I used to be on their site every day now Asos has taken their place for me - their quality is far better and delivery is much quicker - but Zara does still do amazing jackets! We'll have to meet up at the at TC one time I'm back in Bury - I love the Selfridges and AllSaints there!

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    2. Agree with everything you say Joanna. I love ASOS too. Yes Trafford Centre meet up sounds great x

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  2. Completely agree agree as well, I also go to the Trafford branch, but totally agree with your points Donna. I've found miss self ridge and warehouse have some lovely pieces , even for us non teens !

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    1. I'm loving Warehouse at the moment. They've really got it together this season x

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  3. I haven't bought anything in Zara for ages! I did pop in to my local branch in Bristol the other day and I tried on a parka from new season stock but to be honest it just wasn't worth the £89.99 price tag....it was so flimsy! It did resemble a jumble sale as there was still loads of sale stuff.....I just couldn't be bothered to root through the piles of stuff heaped onto tables. On the whole I find their staff leave a lot to be desired too! xx

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    1. Luckily I've found the staff ok on the whole. Those tables are horrendous aren't they. You go into Superdry and everything is so tidy even the piles of t-shirts x

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  4. I agree with you also, the last blouse I purchased all split down the seams. That changing room is bad!!! Xx

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  5. I gave up on Zara 2 years ago which saddened me at the time.
    I'm over to Mango who are 10 x better than Zara

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    1. Yep with you on that Fiona, I like Mango too x

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  6. I've never really been a big Zara fan and only have a couple of pieces but I agree with Michelle about the staff - they can be so rude sometimes. Serious investment needed to refurbish and perhaps retrain staff in customer service. Lynne x

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    1. I haven't been into our city centre one yet since the refurbishment. Can't wait to see if it's been transformed or is just a half hearted attempt x

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  7. Are you on Twitter Donna? You should link this to Zara. I don't buy a lot in there, love it but it's not big enough, most XLs are more fit for a size 14 but I did get a top in the summer which all came apart at the seam so that's put me off for sure.

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  8. Forgot to say I bought my 13 year old boy a load of clothes in there for xmas including a cardi which he wore on Xmas day and the button fell off on day one!

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    1. So bloomin frustrating isn't it. You get better quality from Primark x

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  9. I received the same cardigan for Christmas as a present! I have to say being honest, I wouldn't have gone near it as it's not my style and I knew it would be a bobbly monster and it lived up to my expectations. However, in it's favour, it is warm and snuggly and I have worn it to death. The idea is that it will be "ditched" very soon as I have no intention of keeping it looking like it does - it is a total embarrassment - I want it out of the house!

    And those changing rooms are shocking aren't they?

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  10. I love how warm and snuggley it is too Sue. I actually really like the cardi, just not the bobbling. Those changing rooms were minging x

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  11. There is no excuse really! I remember Zara back in the day & it was cheap yet fashion forward! I used to love shopping there on holidays before it came to the UK! Its been off my radar for years since being overseas & seeing this post has truly shocked me as there are a lot of bloggers who love it! I'm hankering after some jeans from there atm & hope they don't fall apart on me after the first wash! Ax

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