We all remember the smell and the thumping sound of Abercrombie & Fitch. The dark lightening that changed your shirt color once in natural light. Don’t forget the shirtless guys “A&F Models” at the front of every store to take a photo with. I have noticed recently that more and more women my age *cough* 30 *cough* have started shopping at Abercrombie & Fitch. Which to me seemed so strange because in my head it is was a tween store. It also confused me because I fit into Abercrombie until I hit puberty then my hips and bust no long fit into those sizes. So how are full grown women fitting into these clothes? I know fashion trends comeback around but I am starting to wonder do Fashion Brands/Stores comeback around as well?
The company was founded in 1892 by David T. Abercrombie. It was originally a sporting and excursion goods store that was known for expensive fishing equipment, tents, and shotguns that filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1977. Then was revived in 1978 as mail-order hunting wear and novelty shop. Then in 1988 the company name and operations were sold to The Limited which shifted the brand to young adults apparel and grew to become one of the largest stores in the Unite States during the 90s – early 2000s. During the early 2000s the company was involved in a lot of employment practice lawsuits regarding their “Look Policy”. In 2017 the company started to re-brand by getting rid of the Look Policy and has seemed to make positive changes for the future.
My Shopping Experience
I initially felt extremely awkward walking into the Abercrombie & Fitch. The store smelled of the perfume but not as bad as it was back in the day. The music was loud but not pounding. The lighting was still pretty dark but lucky since the store wasn’t inside a mall it had a good amount of natural light coming through the front which I could bring clothes over to check the color. Even though I expect judgement from the cashiers because when I was younger and was still “trying” to fit into Abercrombie & Fitch clothes I certainly got looks. The cashier was super nice and when I brought up how I was shocked how different it was from when I was a kid. She said, that the brand has started catering more to young business women and she honestly rarely sees teens in the store.
I was kind of shocked by the quality of the clothing. The clothing was still pricey but the price point weren’t horrible for some of the pieces. there were still some clothes with the name plastered across but not as many as it use to. I decided to try on a few different style pieces to see how I would fit. Now, with my thick thighs I immediately went to the bottom of the jean rack and pulled out the last largest sizes they had. The tops I shot for mediums and larges. I was SHOCK when I tried on the clothes and found that most of the x-larges and larges were actually too big for me.
- The Jeans: I wasn’t the largest size in the store and they weren’t all filled with holes or have Abercrombie plastered across them.
- The Shirts: I was a small to medium depending on the style.
- The Skirts: I was a medium to large mostly based on my comfort of shortness.
It seems their sizes must of been one of the things the company decided to re-brand on. There are some larges at Forever21 that I can barely get my calf over so I was extremely impressed to fit into their bottoms. They also had a wide range of jean styles which for me is my weakness.
I fully believe in wearing what you want. If you like it and you feel good in it then that is all that matters. I personally found this fascinating because of my generation being known for nostalgia and the trend of remakes and bringing back things from 90’s pop culture. I often will walk into Forever 21 and feel ashamed of my body because their sizing is so small. Abercrombie & Fitch sizing made me feel tiny. Maybe because of the fact that when I was little the sizing was much smaller but it was in an odd way a confidence boost to be able to fit into their clothes. I still feel a little odd about shopping there but I really enjoyed the clothing they had and might find myself stopping in again at some point. I did buy the jeans and the dress from my try on session. If you want to check out any of the items from my try on haul. You can find them on my 21 buttons page here.