Ever looking inside a West Elm catalogue and just wanted to curl up on the masterfully made bed or read a book on stylish chaise? Soon you can, as the home furnishing company plans to launch a chain a boutique hotels instead of more bricks-and-mortar stores. [More]
Some of our readers experience a modern moral dilemma: they order an item online, and multiple duplicates of that item appear on their doorstep. The retailer makes no attempt to collect the extra items, and sometimes doesn’t want to bother with getting them back. Two of our readers have experienced this recently: one changed a TV order and received an extra by mistake, and the other ordered knife and received 99 extra. That is not a typo. [More]
Over the past several years, companies that employ hourly workers in New York have come under scrutiny for a variety of practices, including not providing reimbursement for uniforms to requiring some work be performed off the clock. Today, the state attorney general’s office began scrutinizing another practice by major retailers: the use of on-call scheduling. [More]
If a company slaps “Made In USA” on a product, it could get in trouble with the Federal Trade Commission when that product turns out to be made elsewhere. But the folks at West Elm didn’t see a problem in labeling products as “Made in Brooklyn” even when they were made elsewhere (unless China is part of Brooklyn) — at least not until the media noticed. [More]
Two weeks ago, two improvised explosive devices detonated near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three spectators and injuring hundreds more. The bombs were made from pressure cookers filled with gunpowder and shrapnel. Pressure cookers, which use an airtight seal to trap steam and cook food above the normal boiling point of water, aren’t popular cooking tools in American homes today, but they are commonly available. At Williams-Sonoma stores, for example. Except in the Boston area: Patch reports that stores around there have temporarily pulled pressure cookers from their shelves.
Knowing our readership, this information is much too important to hold for tomorrow’s Morning Deals. First: Williams-Sonoma has Star Wars kitchen accessories, ranging from Boba Fett cookie cutters to Stormtrooper silicone spatulas. More importantly: these items are on sale for as much as 66% off, making them significantly less overpriced than usual.
For anyone that ever wanted to make a pie but doesn’t want to share with others (or spend several days feasting on pie leftovers), there might be an answer — the Breville Pie Maker.
One would think that a luxury kitchen goods retailer like Williams-Sonoma would be absurdly friendly to couples preparing to set up a gift registry before their wedding. How difficult is it to discover the store’s policies for registry completion discounts, returns without a receipt, and other relevant things? Dan writes that at his local Williams-Sonoma, customers aren’t permitted access to that information until they sign up for their registry. Even though it’s on the store’s website. Huh?
- “Williams-Sonoma, which operates Pottery Barn and other chains, claims in a federal lawsuit filed last week that a quilted Christmas stocking sold at Target stores contains “every distinctive element of Pottery Barn Christmas stockings,” right down to the snowflakes and blue sky.
Williams-Sonoma isn’t the first to sue Target over copyright infringement. “Lucky Brand Dungarees, which sells $100-plus jeans worn by the likes of Salma Hayek and Sandra Bullock, filed a lawsuit in federal court in New York, accusing Target of copying its distinctive floral design jeans and its rear-pocket stitching.” It seems like Target is taking their knock-off aesthetic a bit too far. They’d better get back to partnering with designers and stay away from ripping them off, lest lawsuits drive up prices.—MEGHANN MARCO
The real shocker of this story is that the furniture store West Elm is just a division of Williams-Sonoma. Horror! It was one thing to be chased out of our old neighborhood by a hip, independent New York furniture boutique, but now we’re unsure how we feel about West Elm. Does it make us cooler or more lame to have been chased out of a neighborhood by a big chain or a small, burgeoning store? These are heady questions for a Monday morning.
The Catalog: Williams-Sonoma Holiday 2005. The catalog for cooks and those who once saw Alton Brown in a Nashville Arby’s.