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Ancestral Star

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I feel like the refinements don't work well in something so inherently casual that is meant to be the alternative to Alden's LHS. Definitely not a fan of the upgrade over the original version, but honestly I would rather have the Alden or C&J Boston over either, anyway. I'll say I do think their foray into shoes is a misstep. No reason they could not have stayed with Alden, CJ, or Astorflex for the chukkas.

I agree as well. In my opinion, Drake's strength was always their collaborations. Rather than producing everything in-house, they partnered with brands that excel in their respective fields: Valstar for flight jackets, Arpenteur for chore coats, Mackintosh or Cohérence for rainmacs, Alden for shoes and boots, Fedeli for piqué polos and swimwear…the list goes on. It preserved the integrity of Drake's specialty in made-in-England ties and shirts and all the aforementioned brands produce in their native countries: Italy, France, Japan, USA, etc. It was a great way to get introduced to brands I hadn't been aware of before.

Now, Drake's attempts to make everything, mostly inferior in quality and in lower-cost countries yet sells at much higher prices. I get it…that's how the business grows and evolves but it leaves me yearning for the Drake's of years past. It's slowly turning into a J.Crew or Ralph Lauren and I don't mean that in a good way.
 
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Treble

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You're right, I did like the chelsea boot but it does seem to have disappeared. I do like the chukkas too, but not at the uncharge over astorflex. I definitely feel like there is no reason at all to buy the loafers over CJ Boston (easier to get in the UK than Alden, it seems). There's no value add. Many expensive things from Drakes at least offer unique value, IMO their shoes do not.

I think they are using a maker that is less well regarded than C&J, but the closed channel is designed to make it look like their 'handgrade' line. Doesn't really seem suited / necessary for that type of shoe really.

There are a lot of decent chelsea boots out there as well, especially if you want Black ones. RM Williams, C&J etc
 

SenatorV

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Agreed, it's so bad, as most of the recent lookbooks have been outside of the Hong Kong one.

Similar to many of you, I'm buying less and less of Drake's the last couple years and not feeling the same lust for what they're making. Could be the pricing going up every season + the bad lookbooks. Could be I'm not locked inside my house wishing I was out somewhere more exotic in the world. More and more I find their clothes don't really work for real life. I don't go out to dinner wearing a full suit. I cherish my safari style overshirts, a rugby, and the suede boots I bought before all the craziness. Their pricing truly is obscene, and it bears repeating given it appears to be rising every release. Shout out to Die Workwear who quit the thread due to too much pricing talk lol
The downtown NY hipsters have kidnapped Michael Hill and are keeping him in a closet somewhere on Canal Street. When they featured Walter Schreifels as some sort of style guru you knew they had lost the plot. Still good for socks and pocket squares and the occasional tie if you really ever need one. I have boxes and boxes of Drake's ties that never see the light of day anymore. For shoes, see Messrs Glasgow, Sr. and Jr.
 
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Trevallon

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48% is actually a low margin in the fashion industry where it is usually between 50 and 70%. I think what Drake's does suck but I also think I'd do the same for my business. What sucks the most is that prices go up but never down, even when markets conditions improve. But everyone does that.

They are in a position from which they can do it and we can whine all we want, we'll still keep buying from them.
Simon Crompton seems to disagree.

The piece is older, but I think that 50 to 70 % profit margins are highly unlikely. Where did you get those numbers from?
 

sushijerk

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Simon Crompton seems to disagree.

The piece is older, but I think that 50 to 70 % profit margins are highly unlikely. Where did you get those numbers from?
Simon is being a bit dishonest in this article when he repeatedly says there is no profit being made once sale hits 20% off msrp. Perhaps a 3rd party retailer is sacrificing the majority of their post operating cost profit but there is still certainly plenty of profit for the brand itself. Otherwise every luxury brand is losing money on every single piece they wholesale. Who knew luxury brands were so charitable?

The comments on this 9 year old article could have been written yesterday. Everyone says prices are out of control but the prices of yesterday seem so quaint now. Someone mentioned the price of a Chanel flap raising to almost 5k as ludicrous but the same bag is well over 10k today. I guess the lesson is to buy the items you covet now because nothing will ever get cheaper.
 

kid1002

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Simon Crompton seems to disagree.

The piece is older, but I think that 50 to 70 % profit margins are highly unlikely. Where did you get those numbers from?

I have a family member who works in the industry. 50%~70% is the norm for most mass-appeal fashion brands out there (think A&F, Levi's, etc...).
 

letsgofire

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Abercrombie and Levi’s are publicly traded. You can look up their net profit margins. Nowhere near that range.

Perhaps that is close as a product margin, but once you factor in labor, buildings, supplies etc you are much lower.
 

kid1002

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Abercrombie and Levi’s are publicly traded. You can look up their net profit margins. Nowhere near that range.

Perhaps that is close as a product margin, but once you factor in labor, buildings, supplies etc you are much lower.
You are correct. I have misread. I was referring to their product margin.
 

Trevallon

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Simon is being a bit dishonest in this article when he repeatedly says there is no profit being made once sale hits 20% off msrp. Perhaps a 3rd party retailer is sacrificing the majority of their post operating cost profit but there is still certainly plenty of profit for the brand itself. Otherwise every luxury brand is losing money on every single piece they wholesale. Who knew luxury brands were so charitable?

The comments on this 9 year old article could have been written yesterday. Everyone says prices are out of control but the prices of yesterday seem so quaint now. Someone mentioned the price of a Chanel flap raising to almost 5k as ludicrous but the same bag is well over 10k today. I guess the lesson is to buy the items you covet now because nothing will ever get cheaper.
You are right. Simon is certainly biased.

I think it is an interesting subject and found a Vogue piece on the topic (more recent) where it was said that the industry, having "taught" consumers to expect a sale, actually add the future sales discount to the garments in some cases. Thus still making a profit on sales.

What I wanted to point out in the original post was that Drake's is probably, at least according to the limited data I have read on the subject, doing better than average on the profit side. Probably because they are, let's say, more daring than most when setting their prices...
 

Trevallon

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Everyone to their own fantasies, I suppose. Maine, Scotland, Brittany, the English coast (minus the wastewater) are some of my favorite places, including the chill, the mist, the rain, the lobster, the oysters... When I saw the latest lookbook, I thought Drake's was on to me, and this was a scary new form of personalized content!
Same here! We're actually going to St. Malo for the summer holidays and it instantly upped my happy anticipation when I saw where the lookbook was shot.
 

cedarlake23

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How I'm voting: prices are too high, the new look book is good, and the ellipse on the Charles loafer is good (I think it's a softer look than than the traditional hole, which adds to the relaxed vibe of Drake's).

I was curious about this too (NYC taxes make it dizzying high). For a recent purchase I used an online proxy to buy from the UK store (there are a bunch of these but I ended up using Forward2Me). Aside from the significantly lower cost on higher-priced items, you can opt to ship to their tax-free warehouse in Guernsey, which means the prices are even lower than what you see on the UK site as those also include tax. The shipping cost is higher for using their tax-free warehouse but the difference is negligible if you’re doing a multi-item order. To see the Guernsey site just select that as your location at the bottom banner of the Drake’s site.

EDIT: forgot to mention, you can also opt to have it declared a gift, if you’re ok with the risk for the customs fee savings
Could you add any more information about this service? I'd seriously consider using it since the UK prices are so much cheaper. I imagine I'd need to be fully confident about sizing, though, since returns would likely be a huge hassle (maybe not, though?).

Also, it looks like Matchesfashion and Ssense are having sales (25% and 20% off, respectively). Just snagged a university stripe OCBD for $153, including tax and shipping.
 

astrobuoy

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I've heard iffy things about Matches right now, since they're in administration. Mostly about people trying to return their items for refund and hearing nothing back. I guess if you're buying from them consider it final sale 😅

Could you add any more information about this service? I'd seriously consider using it since the UK prices are so much cheaper. I imagine I'd need to be fully confident about sizing, though, since returns would likely be a huge hassle (maybe not, though?).
For sure. I've only done one order (so far) but it worked great. My prior experience is using Japanese proxies for trawling YahooJP, Mercari, Rakuten etc., and this is somewhat similar. I'll use Forward2Me as the example. You sign up for it (free to register) and they provide you with four different shipping addresses depending on where you're wanting to buy from, for Germany, Japan (I use FromJapan as my Japanese proxy), the UK, and UK tax-free (in Guernsey). The tax-free shipping cost is higher (in my case it was £66 vs £44 for UK VAT-included on Drake's, but the difference was made up for by the savings since I'd purchased multiple items). Select your location on the Drake's site (either UK or Guernsey), add your items to the cart, then for shipping put in the specific shipping address provided to you by F2Me. Part of the address is a number that's specifically tied to your account, so F2Me knows it's for you. Pay, then in the F2Me dashboard upload the receipt for your purchase, the type and the number of items. Once you get your tracking from Drake's enter that to the dashboard too. When your order is delivered to the F2Me warehouse you'll get an email from them letting you know it's arrived and is waiting in storage. They'll hang onto it for a certain amount of time free of charge (maybe 30 days or something?). That's in a case where if you're purchasing from multiple places and shipping them all to F2Me you can have them combined all into one box to be sent to you, to save on shipping. Once you're ready you just select which courier you want them to use (and if you want them to declare it as a gift to avoid customs fees), pay the shipping cost to F2Me, and they'll dispatch it and give you a tracking number. There are a few other options if needed, which cost a little extra, like if you want them to send photos of the items for verification, combine a bunch of different shipments into a single box, etc.

EDIT: As far as returns, apparently F2Me offers free returns in case you need to send it back. That seems exceptionally generous to me, and I don't have personal experience with doing that with any proxy I've used, so ymmv
 
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Wim

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Same here! We're actually going to St. Malo for the summer holidays and it instantly upped my happy anticipation when I saw where the lookbook was shot.
Walking the ramparts of St. Malo in the morning before the crowds is great. Enjoy! And if you go to Cancalle, at the other end of the waterfront from where some of the pictures in the lookbook were taken, you can enjoy a lovely diner at the aptly named Au bout du quai. For no-fuss seafood shack vibes, stop at the Le Ferme des Nielles in Saint-Mélloir-les-Ondes on the way back.
 

woO

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The next artist chore?
1713085289232.jpeg
 

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