I’ll admit that I’m tough when it comes to the quality control of my wardrobe items. I have lower quality expectations for budget priced stores like H&M, but expect more from mid-priced retailers like Anne Taylor and Banana Republic. And I expect superior quality from pricier better-end stores like BCBG, or prêt a porter collections. To me, that’s a reasonable expectation.

But no matter what the price I don’t expect to see visible deterioration after one or two wears. An item of clothing, a pair of shoes or an accessory has got to give you more value than that. Surely.

Well, here are some disappointing updates:

  • My new denim dress started tearing under the armhole after the second wear and the tears just got worse and worse. In the rag trade this type of quality problem is called “seam slippage”. It happens when the fabric starts tearing along the seams while the seams are still intact. I returned the dress, hoping it might be an isolated incident, but because Martin & Osa are going out of business they couldn’t give me a replacement. This was my favourite dress of the season and I’m irate.
  • The pretty knitted grey, drapy dress from Melrose Street started pilling by the second wash. I’ll still wear it a few more times to super casual occasions but I’m left frustrated with knits all over again. With Melrose Street you do have to take into account that the price points are really low. And the other knitted item I received from them is holding up well. Still, I’m frustrated.
  • Then there is the squeaky pair of Kate Spades. At least with this one I was able to nip the problem in the bud and return them immediately. As much as I love Kate’s shoes, I was disappointed to receive a pair with such an obvious quality control issue. I hope it is an isolated case.

Items aren’t meant to last forever and that’s fine by me because I don’t want to keep things forever. But I’d like to get through at least one season of wearing my new goodies before they fall apart or start looking shabby.

Have you experienced any frustrating quality problems lately?