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Uniqlo > Rugby > J.Crew > H&M > BR > A&F > Gap ...

TheDroog

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Inspired by the Target > Gap thread, I've decided to rank the mall stores from best to worst.

Uniqlo
Rugby
J.Crew
H&M
BR
A&F
Gap
Target
American Eagle
Old Navy
Express
Aeropostale
Club Monaco

Did I leave any major stores out? Is the order wrong? Discuss ...
 

TheDroog

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To get the ball rolling, here is my rationale ...

Uniqlo: Their price to quality ratio is hard to beat. Every time I visit the NYC flagship store, I end up walking out with a good-looking basic I wear all the time.

Rugby: This was tough. I feel Rugby could top this list. Their fit and quality is head & shoulders above anyone else here. But alas everything is way too expensive (even on sale).

J.Crew: This company is firing on all cylinders these days. Great looking clothes, but a tad expensive. Sales can be good. Quality is below the two companies listed above.

H&M: Quality is garbage but the prices are so low it evens out. They cut their clothes slimmer than anyone else, which is a big plus.

BR: Most of their clothes are boring, working stiff items that scream "I'm a consultant!" Basically it's J.Crew without style or vision.

A&F: Ah, a huge upset! Everyone hates A&F here, but their quality is undeniable. Shirts and sweaters are thick and will last forever. Muscle fit shirts are quite flattering too. Unfortunately their retail prices are too high, bro.

Gap: A poor man's Uniqlo. I feel their styles always lag behind their quality.

Target: Mediocre basics at unbeatable prices. For standards like workout gear and tube socks, this is your company. I feel Target could rate higher on this list, maybe between H&M and J.Crew but too often items feel cheap.

American Eagle: What is this company doing here, you ask? Don't they suck? No, actually, they don't suck. If you know what to get, this place is great for basics.

Old Navy: Shoddy quality, but the price is often right.

Express: Now we're hitting the dregs. I don't get this store. It charges BR prices for stuff you can only wear to your high school prom. It's too bad because they carry lots of slim fits.

Aeropostale: I'm probably not Aero's target audience because I'm not 14 years old, but everything in this store looks pretty lame. I suspect they employ 40% of all sweatshops in Asia.

Club Monaco: I really don't understand this place. Someone might have to explain it to me. Prices are outrageous and everything is "minimalist" crap.
 

chronoaug

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Really? Club Monaco last? I've been in the store a few times in boston. It's really not that bad. Some solid basics that have slightly more style than BR and express as far as mall stores go. The grey club collar shirts looked nice last year and wanted one. The women's stuff is solid at times as well. Buy shit on sales and it's ok. I mean, i wouldn't pay retail at these places anyways unless i really really needed something quick.


h&m
uniqlo
jcrew
monaco
zara
gap

i've never been in a rugby store and the other high school brands aren't really worth noting.
 

irbe

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I agree with Uniqlo being on top. Never seen Rugby before so can't comment. Yeah CM charges arm and a leg for their stuff, but when sale times comes around you can grab some good basics.
 

TheDroog

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Originally Posted by chronoaug
Really? Club Monaco last? I've been in the store a few times in boston. It's really not that bad. Some solid basics that have slightly more style than BR and express as far as mall stores go. The grey club collar shirts looked nice last year and wanted one. The women's stuff is solid at times as well. Buy shit on sales and it's ok. I mean, i wouldn't pay retail at these places anyways unless i really really needed something quick.

i've never been in a rugby store and the other high school brands aren't really worth noting.


I tried to take sales into account when I made my list ... what items are available, the reduced price, etc. Even so, Club Monaco brings up the rear here, at least for me. Their best items never justify their full retail price, and yet someone out there is buying them because they never hit the sale rack. They do have more style than BR, but they also charge 50% more. I bought a few pants and jeans from the CM sale rack back in college and they continually sit at the bottom of my drawer, never worn.
 

feynmix

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uniqlo is good, but their shirts and sweaters fit very boxy. Great value for chinos and socks, though.

Also, in terms of fit, Zara has a nice slim cut with decent quality. I would put Zara above H&M, BR and Express.
 

Robert

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I'm boring, so I worship BR. I also find that it generally fits me well.

While I like J. Crew, I find much of their stuff generally much like BR but way overpriced, and often sort of Ivy League campus looking--not all but much. I love J. Crew outerwear. And I have a few great J. Crew sweaters and cardigans.

Gap works occasionally. But quality and style is inconsistent.

Express, Old Navy, and Aerostall are generally pretty bad, but seriously, American Eagle should be dead last. Those stupid freaking eagle emblems all over the place. Good Lord.
 

closetmess

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Originally Posted by TheDroog
Inspired by the Target > Gap thread, I've decided to rank the mall stores from best to worst.

Uniqlo
Rugby
J.Crew
H&M
BR
A&F
Gap
Target
American Eagle
Old Navy
Express
Aeropostale
Club Monaco

Did I leave any major stores out? Is the order wrong? Discuss ...


I agree except I'd drop A&F down 2 and move CM up 3.
 

TheDroog

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Zara ... I didn't even know they sold men's clothes. I thought it was a European chain for women. It strikes me a a better-groomed version of H&M.
 

whacked

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^ That ranking only applies to the North American market, BTW. In Europe, Zara is the lowest of low when it comes to garment construction, even below H&M and prob on par with Topman. And we all know that in Japan, A&F is the shit.
 

EdenResident

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You guys are underrating AX. They have lots of understated, wearable pieces (sweaters, shirts and blazers) especially when they get into the 70% off range.
 

CarbonatedTsoda

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Club Monaco should be higher. I always see a couple things that are slick, and everything fits pretty slim. It is true though that I would never buy their stuff at retail given their ridiculously inflated prices, but then again I hardly ever purchase anything at retail at places like these (barring Uniqlo and H&M).

J. Crew
Uniqlo
H&M
Club Monaco
BR
Gap
 

Robert

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I agree. While there may be a difference in style between BR and J. Crew, I would say there's a huge difference in both style and quality between BR and the Gap et al. We're kind of mixing apples and oranges here.
 

Teger

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Here is why Rugby owns too:

- Their fabrics are identical to RRL for $75 less.
- Many of their new shirts (westerns) have MOP buttons. MOP buttons on a sub $100 shirt is a pretty killer deal
- The best fit
- Their 'university' cut chinos are the slimmest OTR chinos I have ever seen. Slimmer than J Crew, slimmer than uniqlo
 

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