Thursday, July 15, 2010

An Open Letter to Kohl’s, or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love My Husband

Dear Kohls/JCPenney/Sears,

Hi there. My name is Faith. You don’t know me, it’s okay. But I know you. You are a giant nationwide chain store, carrying low-to-mid-priced clothing, as well as home goods, and, like, power tools. You also carry real jewelry, which mystifies me. You are often found in the suburbs. When people walk in, they experience the cool, plastic-tinged scent of hopeful mediocrity. It’s not unlike walking into a Dairy Queen, planning to eat dinner.

I take issue with you, but not because of your existence. Certainly our country needs you, because the very young, the very old, and the very trendy need clothing of short-lived quality.

My issue is that you’ve fooled my not-very-old husband into thinking your clothing is suitable, durable-- and even desirable-- for work, home, and church. Clothing that he will hang on to for a decade.

Your sales are what hook him. Every year, he prepares for your Day after Thanksgiving Sale, looking at newspaper flyers, tearing out coupons, and carefully making a list. Since this is the only day of the year he will shop for clothing for himself, you woo him with promises of ankle-length black $16 jeans with an elastic-inset-waistband that he will continue to wear once they’ve become a kind of blackish-bluish-grey. You know, after they’ve been washed a few times. Yes, you know.

My husband appreciates high quality in almost all things. He insists on purchasing furniture made of real wood, preferably handmade by the Amish. I recently returned a pair of tongs I had purchased to Crate & Barrel because they had plastic ends. To make a salad, he will buy delicious goat cheese and hydroponically-grown Living Lettuce. And he loves your high-end power tools.

But when it comes to clothes, do you know how often he wears his cashmere v-neck sweater my parents got him for Christmas? As often as I remind him of it. His Columbia Cascadian Summit II snow boots with Thermolite insulation I gave him for his birthday? Just when he shovels the driveway.

I guess it’s alright. Maybe it’s not your fault after all. Who else will sell the Dockers dress pants and Levi’s denim shirts that he loves? I mean, at least he’s not purchasing clothes from Wal-Mart. And his honest, humble character, chivalry, and rugged good looks more than compensate for any lack of fashion quality judgment.

But maybe, once in a while, you can stock some Thomas Pink, or at least Calvin Klein, if it’s not too much to ask?

I would really appreciate that.

Faith J.


  1. I love Kohls, Target and any other place you can get a good deal. I think you are going to find a lot of other people in the fashion blog world that can't afford expensive clothes or the thrill of the hunt for a bargain.

  2. Hi Lesa! Thanks for reading my blog. I'm not slamming Kohl's or anyone who shops there. I love Target too! Just a little bit of humor.


Please add to the conversation! I'd love to hear from you.