H&M And Forever 21 Aren't The Terrible Threat Everyone Thinks They Are

Forever 21 store Times Square

Photo: Flickr/Shandi-lee

When H&M and Forever 21 gained popularity a few years ago, it spelled gloom for mid-priced specialty stores like Gap and Urban Outfitters.Young, cost-conscious consumers could now get trendy stuff for way cheaper. If a sweater $15 at Forever 21, why pay $50 at Gap?

But fast fashion retailers are now hitting a wall because customers are actually expecting better quality, reports Sapna Masheshwari at Bloomberg.

“There’s a whole vast sector of the public that really has been burned out by fast fashion and the novelty and is just very exhausted,” David Wolfe, creative director of the Doneger Group, a New York-based trend forecaster, told Maheshwari. ‘There’s a great opportunity now for quality basics that are very, very well-priced.”

While the number of items people bought decreased last year, the amount they spent was more, showing a shift to a “quality over quantity” attitude.

That means that even Forever 21 and H&M are investing in higher-priced lines.

And it spells even more good news for Gap, which is in the middle of a big turnaround after improving its products and hiring a bunch of new people.

Another winner in the quality era is Uniqlo, the Japanese retailer quickly expanding in the U.S.

Read Maheshwari’s full article here.

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