Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Watch Out For Those Curves

Readers who access my blog through Facebook probably are already aware of my issue with the Levi’s marketing campaign for their Curve ID jeans and the lack of stock in their flagship store on Lexington Ave.

Thanks to a bit of goggling/ research by Thom I sent the following letter of complaint to Levi’s President & CEO John Anderson - cause really why not go directly to the top.

BTW – with some more goggling I found that others find this marketing campaign to be both sexist and racists, way to go Levis’! New Curve ID Jeans Proving To Be Controversial

It is about size in your Lexington Ave. store

Dear Mr. Anderson,

As a woman with a love of Levi’s and curves I was very excited about your new line of Curve Id jeans. Your marketing/ advertising campaign to promote women’s confidence and size acceptance is groundbreaking; seems that no matter what I read or where I go I am bombarded with your slogan, “It’s about Shape, Not Size”. Kudos to your creative team for this powerful message and for flooding my major metropolis with good body loving vibes. I especially LOVED the wide expanse of window displays at your Lexington Avenue Levis store in Manhattan that silently scream Levi’s self empowering message, beckoning to all woman with curves to enter this palace of denim and experience the freedom of true fit! Now imagine my surprise when I entered your store on Friday Feb. 18th with credit card in hand psyched to purchase a pair (or two or three) of size 16 CURVE ID jeans and was informed by a very non curvy sales girl that your store only carries up to a size 12… well maybe a 14 but she didn’t think they had any of those either. There appears to be a disconnect between your message and your practice, don’t you think?

I understand your right as a company to stock whatever you wish and I also understand that I can purchase your size 16 Curve ID Levi’s at a plethora of other retailers BUT my issue is with your window displays at your Manhattan flagship store, who are you marketing too? Obviously NOT curvy woman if you only carry up to a size 12. In addition you were quoted in an interview stating:

‘They (women) said there are three very uncomfortable buying experiences: underwear, swimwear and jeans because they have to expose themselves to what they consider unfair expectations on the perfect body size. We started with the premise that women should feel confident about who they are. And we are going to bring a shape proposition that will make them feel great and not just a size proposition. We are building on that and saying ‘ladies, feel good who you are; your shape is individual to you and we can fit your shape.’

Now how do you think a woman who is already marginalized by the fashion industry because of her size would feel when she, after following your marketing campaign, was turned away from your flagship store because it IS all about her size? I’ll tell you how she would feel, she would feel that Levi’s let her down and lured her into their store under false pretenses only to be chastised because of her fat ass.

I hope this letter finds its way into the correct hands so that your brilliant marketing message can be authentically realized in your retail stores by actually carrying the jeans for the women you are targeting. However if you cannot/ will not carry the entire line of your Curve ID jeans then I would suggest that you pull this message from the windows of the stores that only cater to smaller sizes and replace your feel good message of “It’s about Shape, Not Size” with “It’s ALL about size here, Do not enter if your waist is over 30”