Ugly American Apparel

How can you hate American Apparel?

That’s what an acquaintance of ours asked recently. “It’s just t-shirts, t-shirts can’t suck, they’re just t-shirts,” he maintained.

Something about it being overpriced, bland, and enshrouded in hipster mystique and social activism really pisses our pants off.

So then we were pleased as punch-drunk love to get Holly’s anti-American Apparel letter, especially because it advocates slave labor and child abuse.

Read it, after the jump…

Holly wrote a letter to American Apparel and posted it to her personal journal:

Dear American Apparel,

I have purchased three shirts from you. They were quite expensive as t-shirts go, but I paid your outrageous prices because I am a virtual giantess and yours is one of the few companies that makes long shirts (or at least, was at the time because I bought these shirts a while ago).

I would like to let you know that while I think it is admirable that you pay your workers a decent wage and provide them with humanitarian working conditions, I will probably in the future buy shirts that are not only cheaper, but made by small slave children. You see, of the three shirts that I purchased only one is still intact. The first of them (not to mention the most expensive one) started coming apart at the bottom seam the very first time I wore it. Then I had the misfortune to wash it. That little hem around the bottom is now but a distant memory. The second shirt lasted approximately three wears (and washes)longer; although on this shirt it is the seam on the left sleeve that has now departed.

I think maybe you don’t need to buy a group of children to make a better quality product, but instead perhaps just make your current workforce fear for their lives a little. Possibly removing any ventillation to the work area and providing severe beating for poor performance will do the trick.

I understand you may disagree with these sentiments, but my other, cheaper, shirts that are in all likelihood put together by children who were sold by their parents for a couple of bowls of rice have all lasted much longer than yours.

Sincerely,
Holly

I thought that that would be the end of it, you know, one more consumer screwed by shoddy products.

To my great surprise I received a reply from a complete stranger:

Dear Holly.

You should forward your letter to our customer service people. Sounds like your shirts were from a bad batch… It’s unlikely that we will introduce draconian methods of quality control, but we might send you some new T-shirts.

Seriously.

Weronika Cwir
American Apparel

I visited Weronika’s journal to find this as her bio : I work for American Apparel and I created this account so that I can respond to livejournal entries about the company… What can I say, I am an American Apparel nerd. Hopefully this isn’t too good to be true. (I googled her name and she has several posts at the American Apparel site)

So I did as she said, with a brief explanation to the company that I don’t actually condone the abuse of small children. It occurs to me now that maybe I should have mentioned that I don’t want American Apparel to abuse their adult employees either, but what’s done is done. There are a few more details and pictures at my journal which is (an embarrassing) www.amazon-ww.livejournal.com.