As loyal Target customers, the launch of Jason Wu at Target had been highlighted on our calendars for months with us anxiously anticipating its arrival. Still on a high from the fabulous pieces from the Missoni for Target collection, we arrived on February 5th at 6:50am for the 8am store opening. Needless to say, we were not the only ones with this idea. With an hour and 10 minutes still remaining until the doors opened, there was already a line of 15 people – and not all women! Both men in front of and behind us were in line sans wives in hopes of scoring the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. While waiting in line, we overheard many women mapping out which pieces that they were going after first after studying look books online. At about 7:45am a Target security guard on a Segway addressed the crowd of 150+ eager Jason Wu fans with a message about safety. Like a grade school teacher, he asked us to walk not run and be nice mature adults. This little pep talk did little to curb fashionistas at the front of the line who did their best speed walk/run to women’s apparel when the doors finally opened.
Once the crowds were let in at increments of 100, it was as if the rule book had been thrown out the window. Within seconds the racks were clean with clothing strewn on the floor, leaving only the larger sizes as remnants of what took months of planning and collaborating to create. I was stealth enough to grab the three pieces that I had my heart set on and quickly made my way to the fitting rooms. To say that the pieces were a disappointment would be an understatement. The cute fluffy yellow shirt that I saw online looked more Big Bird than a chic top made by an “it” designer. The adorable stripped pale pink and navy dress that I couldn’t wait to see in person was so poorly constructed and matronly. I had a third piece that I didn’t even bother trying on since I was so disappointed in the quality and styling. When I left the dressing room, it seemed that everyone else had the same reaction as I did. The fitting room attendants had their hands full hanging up the rejects to send back to the floor. This made the entire experience even more frustrating – waking up at 6am on a Sunday when I could have come in by 9am and seen the entire collection since so little was actually being brought to the register. To make the bus trip to Target not a total waste, I picked up solid black and white tank tops and nail polish. Needless to say, I would have much rather picked up these basics at a more reasonable hour on Sunday.
After making the trek back home, I proceeded to call my Mom and girlfriends to tell them to stay in bed and wait for the next designer collaboration. We can only hope that the Shops at Target will deliver and stay true to the upscale stores that they are trying to emulate.