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Harris Tweed Sport Coats Sold at Walmart Proxy

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by ThinkDerm, Dec 23, 2012.

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  1. poorsod

    poorsod Well-Known Member

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    $75 doesn't even cover the cost of the material via regular channels. I think by definition Harris tweed has to be home made and hand made. I've amazed that Walmart can make a margin from that. Someone on the supply chain has to be taking a loss.
     
  2. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Well-Known Member

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    How much do you usually spend on alterations? I assume that sleeves shortened, nip waist +/- lowering the collar runs you about $70 / 80ish.
    I usually get the sleeves shortened from the shoulder. This runs me about $75ish to $85.


    This. $75 for the coat is less than the fabric cost (likely $300ish). and you get the wood hanger that is quite nice (worth another $5 to 10 bucks, or $25-30 depending on your usual source).

    Walmart likely is making $. The loser is likely Brian Haggas (owner) of Harris Tweed. He made 75,000 of these jackets and they are not moving as well as he thought. I must say, they are pretty awesome all in under $200 (including alterations). These same jackets are for sale on the Harris Tweed website for several hundred pounds.
     
  3. K. Nights

    K. Nights Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone have measurements for a 38r?
     
  4. FillW

    FillW Well-Known Member

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    I have to report that the shoulder fit is pretty bad. I even tried to go down from a 44R which fits good in other respects to a 40 R and the shoulders were still too wide.
    I think it would depend on the tailor you took it to. I'll ask mine today if she can take the padding out but I think the shoulders would still be too wide.
    Yep but I'm still on the fence cause the fabric is awesome and the hanger is the same. The length on the 44R was OK for me though.
    We'll see...



    BTW- the one I like is a kind of light brown and they also had a light grey and a light grey herringbone version.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2013
  5. FillW

    FillW Well-Known Member

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    Can you post a pic of what yours looks like on you? I'll get one if I can get the shoulder problem looking OK.
     
  6. steveoly

    steveoly Well-Known Member

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    Usually about $40-50 to alter a jacket - sleeves, neck, waist, put on new buttons. If I bring in a suit it's probably another $20-25. I have never gotten the sleeves shortened from the shoulder (always been nervous to try shoulder work :embar: and I realize that's probably a bit more expensive. Mind you I am in Omaha so the pricing is probably on the cheaper side than in larger cities. That's awesome that you were able to get your's tailored to fit you well. I do agree that the fabric is nice.
     
  7. Septimus

    Septimus Well-Known Member

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    Is there any consensus or rhyme or reason as to what Wal Marts have these or when they got them? I checked a few in my area (western PA) a couple weeks ago, and none had them. Is it worth checking again?
     
  8. Master Squirrel

    Master Squirrel Well-Known Member

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    While Brian doesn't own all Harris Tweed, he did make the mistake of overproducing jackets for a sagging market.
     
  9. FillW

    FillW Well-Known Member

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    I think it would be a good idea. The one close to me just got them this week as far as I know. It was lucky that I noticed them so soon. I had to go in before work to get some cash from the self service register (no charge) as I paid for something cheap. Needed cash to go to a thrift store (they had a couple of pairs of nice slacks for next to nothing).
     
  10. kentyman

    kentyman Well-Known Member

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    Just checked 'em out at my Walmart in Austin, where they were going for only $50. I completely agree that they seem to be well worth the money. Unfortunately, 38R was the smallest I found, and it was a bit big and long for me. I, like a previous poster, would probably do better with a 36, but I'm unsure if they even come that small. They did have a wide range of sizes, all the way up to 50.
     
  11. Septimus

    Septimus Well-Known Member

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    Just checked and found none in Pittsburgh...
     
  12. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Well-Known Member

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    $50? wow. bargain
     
  13. Caustic Man

    Caustic Man Well-Known Member

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    I don't see what the attraction of this is. You can get better tweed for less almost every day of the week on eBay.
     
  14. cptjeff

    cptjeff Well-Known Member

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    He tried to kill off any production of Harris Tweed anything that he didn't own- the mill he does own made virtually all of the yarn, and he stopped selling that to outside weavers. And instead of just weaving fabric like the plant had done in the past, he had it all made into jackets, and ones with pretty awkward fit. When they didn't sell- at all- instead of going back to the bread and butter of the plant he bought, he decided to go scorched earth and shut everything down.

    The result of that was that yarn production got taken up by others, independent weavers were revitalized, and the industry started to move beyond him, but it was shaky for a bit, and he damn near killed it off. It was a failed attempt at vertical industry that very nearly destroyed something he claimed he was trying to save, just as it was beginning to have a wave of popularity, just not with his product.
     
  15. deveandepot1

    deveandepot1 Well-Known Member

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    Do they have 38Ls or a slim 40L?
     
  16. FillW

    FillW Well-Known Member

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    It looked like none of the jackets sold over the weekend. I went there last night to get something else. They had a couple at another Wal-Mart in a nearby town as well.
     
  17. Big Texas

    Big Texas Well-Known Member

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    This.

    It's a fascinating story, from a business strategy case standpoint. He was operating in basically a steady, no-growth B2B commodities market, and when tweed started trending in fashion, he decided to tap the consumer market directly, playing off the appeal of the Harris brand. Unfortunately, the Harris name -- while venerable -- matters less to consumers than he calculated, and certainly matters less to them than more decisive factors like cut, fit, style, and consumer or fashion brand.

    In and of itself, the underlying strategic rationale wasn't terribly misguided. But the tactics were. The better move would have been to juice the Harris brand name with dedicated PR outreach, hopefully leading to blog and magazine writetups, and maybe to partner with one or two big designers on special collections. Essentially, convince the consumer market that "if it doesn't say Harris, it's not the real thing." Then start charging higher prices to the B2B market -- but not immediately. The key would be waiting to see if demand was indeed increasing, and reliably increasing (i.e., not just as a flash in the pan, but as a long-term acceptance of Harris as an institution).

    I think back to the classic Intel case everyone learns in b-school, and I think a similar playbook would have served Harris better than what actually happened.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  18. FillW

    FillW Well-Known Member

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    Hey, can you post a pic of you wearing yours since you say you're happy with it? Thanks! [​IMG]
     
  19. Flake

    Flake Well-Known Member

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    Not the best pic but you will get the basic idea
    [​IMG]
     
  20. Quadcammer

    Quadcammer Well-Known Member

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    well, um, the fabric looks ok. The rest is not terribly flattering.
     

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