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Thread: Retailers and their customer service - good and bad.

  1. #41

    Default Maxfield Los Angeles Harassment

    Hey, so I wanted to share my experience shopping at Maxfield on Melrose in Los Angeles this past Saturday (copy-pasted from my Yelp review):

    Any time you're at Maxfield, a floor salesperson will follow your every motion around the store. A young lady was shadowing me so I decided to ask her questions about the clothes as I was looking around:
    "Do they use beeswax on this leather to make it stiff and shiny like this?"
    "Does this jacket smell this way because it's made of hemp?"
    "Which of these brands of boot makers do you prefer?"
    "Do you think people are willing to pay a premium because these clothes are like pieces of modern art?"
    "How did you end up working at Maxfield?"

    The saleswoman who was helping me kind of answered my questions, but it didn't seem like she was used to answering questions.

    As I was walking around I said hello to one of their (many) security guards. He seemed surprised, so I asked him if anyone had said hello to him in the store before? He said I was literally the second person since he'd begun working there. Perhaps I'm too friendly to be their normal clientele. Maxfield is not a 'hello' kind of place.

    I was sitting on an ottoman looking at a large book by one of their designers when a middle-aged woman approached me. Looming over me, arms crossed, she began questioning why I was in the store,
    "I understand you have some questions. [Saleslady] said you've been asking some unusual questions."
    So I asked her what the designer had done to make the leather on a certain jacket look and feel the way it did.
    She said, "It's horse leather." Annoyed, angry.
    By her curt answers, she made it immediately clear that she had a problem with me.
    She said, "Your questions are extremely unusual. We don't look kindly on people from the industry posing as shoppers to gather industry information."

    I was really embarrassed - how could I prove that I'm not a spy? I could say I'm not a spy... but that's exactly what a spy would say... I was extremely uncomfortable to be subjected to this kind of scrutiny and paranoia.
    I tried talking to this woman, hoping she'd believe me, but after a few minutes of inquisition it was clear she wasn't going to leave me alone. She was still angry and I was shaking in my boots. I was sweating because she came at me unexpectedly, fixed me in an unwavering stare, began questioning me and wouldn't let me go.

    After talking to her for about five minutes she had made it clear I was no longer wanted there. I was mortified and shaken as I left the shop. One of the most bizarre and embarrassing experiences of my life.

    After leaving, I called their store and left a message for their general manager. I have not received a reply from the manager.

    I cannot recommend to anyone interested in looking at clothing or asking questions about clothing to shop at Maxfield. You are unwelcome there and you will be harassed.

  2. #42

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    sounds like it was more due to your social awkwardness than anything, those are certainly a very odd set of questions. almost sounds like it could have been a survey of some sort!

  3. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by twistedSADISTIC View Post
    sounds like it was more due to your social awkwardness than anything, those are certainly a very odd set of questions. almost sounds like it could have been a survey of some sort!
    I'd hardly call my questions that unusual and there are few situations where I'm socially awkward. I was pretty comfortable, everything seemed fine until I was put on the spot by the woman who accused me of being an industry spy. She was angry and curt with me and I'd say yes, that made things awkward and embarrassing.

    It's difficult to not be awkward when you're relaxed, shopping, talking, having a good time and then suddenly you are angrily accused of something and told your behavior is problematic. That kind of situation is entirely inappropriate and unacceptable for any respectable retailer.

  4. #44

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    ^did you at least tell her to put the stick out of her ass?

  5. #45

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    Can't say that I'm surprised.. I've been to the store maybe 4-5 times, and never have I found an employee that would seem like they know anything about the goods they sell, but have encountered ones that walk 3ft behind you and throw around the wrong designer names. A couple of SA's have been decently nice, others total dicks. I suppose they don't need anyone enthusiastic in the store when they get their money from celebs and douchebags in lamborghinis.
    "AVANT GUARDE HIGHEST FASHION. NOW NOW this is it people, these are the brands no one fucking knows and people are like WTF. they do everything by hand in their freaking secret basement and shit."

    STYLEZEITGEIST MAGAZINE | BLOG

  6. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garley View Post
    I'd hardly call my questions that unusual and there are few situations where I'm socially awkward. I was pretty comfortable, everything seemed fine until I was put on the spot by the woman who accused me of being an industry spy. She was angry and curt with me and I'd say yes, that made things awkward and embarrassing.

    It's difficult to not be awkward when you're relaxed, shopping, talking, having a good time and then suddenly you are angrily accused of something and told your behavior is problematic. That kind of situation is entirely inappropriate and unacceptable for any respectable retailer.
    from what you described, it seemed like you were asking questions to just break the silence as they seemed a bit random =P. maybe they had a bad experience with a "spy" in the past or something? anyway yeah, like lowrey said unfortunately these bigger stores can afford to be like that due to what their main customer base is like.

    obviously i'm not saying all the big ones are like that though. here in the uk, whenever i go to DSM or LN-CC they have the friendliest staff i've ever met, in any store ever.

  7. #47

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    i called maxfield asking about a piece
    got redirected a bunch of times and then was told "oh, we have lots of that designer. no, i haven't seen the piece you're describing. we already got all of our shipments so i don't think we'll have it"

    two or three months later a homie says "bruv that thing you're looking for is at maxfield"

    GET IT TOGETHER MAXFIELD

  8. #48

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    yes they suck
    dying and coming back gives you considerable perspective

  9. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by twistedSADISTIC View Post
    from what you described, it seemed like you were asking questions to just break the silence as they seemed a bit random =P. maybe they had a bad experience with a "spy" in the past or something? anyway yeah, like lowrey said unfortunately these bigger stores can afford to be like that due to what their main customer base is like.

    obviously i'm not saying all the big ones are like that though. here in the uk, whenever i go to DSM or LN-CC they have the friendliest staff i've ever met, in any store ever.
    Eh, I was genuinely curious. I mean, I'm reading SZ because I'm genuinely curious and want to learn and be exposed to different things. I felt like my questions were genuine and appropriate. It was pretty offensive to be told my questions were "unusual" and essentially, inappropriate.

    As a customer, I don't feel that I should have to be exposed to paranoia and scrutiny because Maxfield is worried about spies. I mean, really... what kind of threat are fashion spies posing to their business? In companies where that kind of paranoia exists business suffers and so do the employees and customers.

  10. #50

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    I won't comment on Maxfield, but shopping at Maxfield Bleu is a nicer experience - very relaxed and the people are cool. Anyway, the "spy" story reminds me of a few years back when I was shopping at a different, now-defunct boutique in the LA area:

    SA: "It's Hoon-ya Watanabe"
    Me: "Junya?"
    SA: "He was with the Tokyo Sex Pistols"
    Me: "I think maybe that's Jun Takahashi of Undercover"
    SA: "Are you a design student, coming here to steal ideas!?!"

    minutes later, after i tried on a jacket

    Me: "I'll think about it"
    SA: "Why think?"
    Me: "I don't always like to buy on impulse"
    SA: "Do you know what 'impulse' means? It means to drive straight. And i've never met anyone who doesn't know how to drive straight."

    I never returned.

  11. #51

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    ^^ That second one must have been pretty painful to hear. How can you expect a customer to believe that bullshit?

    Garley, some of those questions sound a bit weird to me so I can understand why an SA might be a bit thrown off by it. Still, I'd say they handled it completely inappropriately. I don't really understand why a boutique would be concerned about "industry spies," though evidently they seem to be. Why would this bother them so much if it's simply a design student, other than wasting their time?

  12. #52
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    Go to H.Lorenzo instead.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

    StyleZeitgeist Magazine

  13. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Faust View Post
    Go to H.Lorenzo instead.
    H Lorenzo has definitely been a way better experience for me. The guys there have always been very, very nice and willing to answer my "unusual" questions about the clothes :)

  14. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eternal View Post
    I'm not saying you're all wrong, but maybe it used to be better. At least it's still the place to go if you want certain designers after all.
    They have an arrangement with Rick Owens to be the only retailer in the LA area of his main line. I don't appreciate companies who rely on cornering the market to get their business. You can always buy online.

  15. #55

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    what the hell would an "industry spy" do with that information? ahhh... hemp... it's all coming together now... oh yes *rubs hands*
    Suede is too Gucci.

  16. #56

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    I've only been in Maxfields twice and they were nice to me. I bought some stuff mind you.

    Maxbleu was incredible, old Carpe and Harnden at knock down prices. I was so excited I don't think I would have noticed if the sales people had been dressed up KKK and been as friendly as rocks.

    The Malibu lot are very helpful over the phone and I haven't spent a penny there. I've heard Tommy's nice.

  17. #57

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    Quote Originally Posted by the breaks View Post
    what the hell would an "industry spy" do with that information? ahhh... hemp... it's all coming together now... oh yes *rubs hands*


    Garley - I don't find your questions unusual. It's unbelievable to me that shop assistants don't know anything about what they're selling and also find it frustrating when I've been in stores and have asked about fabric content and get dumbfounded looks.

    My first job was working for a high end boutique and we were trained and encouraged to provide this info when customers were shown different garments.

  18. #58

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    mmm i would like to note that sartorialoft is incredibly helpful even if they are no longer an affiliate. david shipped over a pair of derbies from HK site to LA just so I could check them out to see if I wanted them.

  19. #59

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    Has someone ever dealt with For Tomorrow (http://www.f-t.com.au)? Bought some silent shirts almost 8 weeks ago, since no other store had my items in stock nomore.

    Emailed them after 3 weeks of no package showing up, only getting a reply after the 4th message i'd sent them.

    After a month of ordering I finally get my package. They sent me a totally different shirt. Wasn't even my size.
    I emailed them about it, but had to send them 3 messages again before getting a reply.

    I'm 8 weeks in now and still waiting on my replacement. I already sent them the shirt back at my own cost, but they haven't even refunded me the shipping costs I had to pay for the return.

    Shit's rediculous. Worst store ever.

  20. #60
    Senior Member Raw's Avatar
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    I've dealt with them a few times and they have been very fast with communication and very good service. I bought a Devoa washi tee and it arrived within days but the colour was off compared to the store pics as it's kinda hard to capture that tone of slate/green with the washi composition, ended up being more of a brown green than I expected.

    I was able to exchange it for a dark grey cotton jersey tee but didn't like the cut and fit compared to the washi tee as it's a different cut and was able to return it for a refund. Everything was handled fast and smoothly. Luckily Fascinate ended up getting the washi tee in black a few days later so I bought that straight away.

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