Great Moments In Consumer Journalism: Kmart’s Taint

We were poking around the internet, as we often do, searching for interesting tidbits to share with you, our loyal readers, when we came across this bit of text from an editorial:

    The Levi Strauss & Co. rejected Kmart’s bid to buy the entire output of two factories slated for closing because it didn’t want Kmart’s taint on its brand.

We don’t want Kmart’s taint on, well, anything. —MEGHANN MARCO

Big 3 are still fighting ‘uncool’ stigma [Detroit News]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Hoss says:

    Is that one of those cardboard hookers? She looks real

  2. How do you know she is in fact, a she?

  3. Maybe it is a dude with a mullet? You know guys with mullets used to wear belly shirts in the 80’s.

  4. Stepehn Colbert says:

    Can’t be cardboard, look closely at her hair, you’ll see fly-away’s, unless this was photo-shopped.

  5. Mr. Gunn says:

    The Kmart sign’s pointing at her taint.

  6. Keter says:

    Gawd, guys, all it takes is a smidgen of slut to make y’all miss the point?

    Kmart offered to buy the production from two plants, presumably here in the US, and Levis turned them down because they didn’t want to be associated with Kmart.

    Does this mean that if Levis had been selling to Kmart all along (sounds like Kmart figured they could deal with the volume), maybe those factories might have remained in the US and those jobs still available here?

    Which is worse, a taint of (perceived) tackiness, or a real taint of economic treason? The stink, I think, is all over Levis.

  7. AcilletaM says:

    Actually, it’s probably WalMart. Those two factories are closing because of the economics of Levi’s deal with WalMart. It was in the Pickle article link in the Sam’s Dream post.

  8. radiogrrl says:

    They don’t want K-Mart’s taint on their brand? That’s flippin’ ridiculous! I saw a table full of Levi’s jeans at DEALS in St. Louis when I was home for the holidays.

    DEALS used to be DEALS: Nothing Over A Dollar. K-Mart seems to be a step up from a former dollar store, but maybe that’s just me. I have nothing against K-Mart. If they were closer to where I live, I’d shop there.

  9. Jim Kosmicki says:

    My wife and I prefer shopping Kmart anymore. There are fewer people there, and the quality of the clothing is noticeably better than other discount stores. Target is even better, but the closest Target is 45 miles away. it’s one of our best little shopping secrets. and when we tell everyone that we got it at Kmart, they’re surprised. Previous management really did run this brand into the sewer as far as public perception.

  10. ChickenSangwich says:

    I also thought Kmart was on an upswing with the Sears deal. That is until I actually went to one. The Big Kmart in Glen Burnie, MD, reeked of the Kmart of old. Dingy floors, product strewn all over the place. I finally found what I was looking for, (plastic wastebasket) and lined up to pay. Half an hour later, two people had actually paid for their purchases. That’s right Monday night around 7:00 PM, only one register open, and movin glacially slow. At this rate I would be there another 45 minutes till I could pay. Many other employees wandered aimlessly around the store. When I asked if they could open another register, I was told “We only have one cashier on duty”. I must have missed the part where they need advanced training to operate a cash register. Well at least I didn’t get attacked by the door on the way out. Kmart will never get that 6 bucks from me now.

  11. LeopardSeal says:

    But apparently they have no issue with Wal-mart’s taint…

  12. spanky says:

    WTF? Levi’s tainted their own damned brand when they started making those nastyassed “Signature” jeans they sell through WalMart (and BigLots and Target). I naively bought two pairs of these at Target once, assuming they were–you know–functional, only to have one pair run like pantyhose within a couple of months. And even the regular non-“Signature” kind are crap. They’re thin and oddly textured, and they just feel flimsy.

    I used to only wear Levi’s because they were well-made and consistent. I could buy a given size in a given style and they would always fit exactly the way the last pair did. But no more. Now, they’re shoddily constructed, inconsistent, and almost not worth the bother. I still haven’t found a suitable replacement, but it’s worth noting that, after 25 years of brand loyalty, I’m looking for one.

    I’ve actually been going to K-Mart more often lately because on many counts, they’re an improvement over Target. One of said counts is the fact that K-Mart doesn’t carrying those crappyassed Levi’s. As far as I’m concerned, Levi’s would benefit from the association at this point.

    Wow. I didn’t know I was that mad about this until I started typing.

  13. Nancy Sin says:

    Upon returning some curtains at Kmart a few months back, I found a surprisingly good-looking purse. The cashier blurted out, “Wow, this is really cute! I can’t believe you found it HERE.”

    And Spanky (great name for a comment about jeans), some might disagree but Gap jeans are decently priced, fit well and last a while.

  14. NeonCat says:

    You can still get real Levi’s jeans, but not at Target, Wal-mart or wherever discount clothing is sold. Levi’s signature is just the kind of brand marketing that makes great companies go out of business, a cheap, shoddy appeal to the mass consumer.

    If you want to buy real, made-in-the-US-of-A jeans, I recommend Pointer Brand, made in Bristol, TN.

  15. bdgbill says:

    Every K-Mart I have been to in the last year or so has had the stink of death on it. Weird empty areas of the store, product unpriced or n the wrong place and very few customers.

    Going to Wal-Mart is no fun, but I usually find what I went there for plus a few other things. At K-Mart I invariably cannot find or they are out of the simple thing I stopped there for in the first place so I walk out with nothing. I have also abandoned merchandise in the checkout lane and walked out because of extremely slow or clueless cashiers.

    K-Mart died a few years ago. They need to disconnect the feeding tube.

  16. Last time I was at a Kmart, also a ghost town. It was converted to the new Sears brand. I was looking for a bathroom scale, and it took the assistant manager and I about 10 minutes to try and find it. They only had 2 types, and they were by the curtains [regular ones, not shower].

  17. spanky says:

    NeonCat: I’ve tried regular Levi’s too, and they’re not as crappy as Signature, but they’re still crappy. Maybe it’s just the women’s, but men’s jeans are out of the question because they squish my booty and make it look flat. The only reasonably durable women’s jeans I’ve been able to find so far are tall-waisted, tapered leg mom pants, which make your butt look like it’s about three feet tall.

    The world is run by pancake assed old white men.