Designer Collaborations: Are You Over Them?

Posted On Tuesday, July 10th, 2012
Filed Under: Deals & Steals, Designer on a Dime

target and neiman marcus holiday collection

Versace for H&M. Missoni for Target. Alberta Ferretti for Macy’s. Christian Siriano for Payless. These are just a few of the collaborations between affordable retailers and top name designers. And it’s a trend that’s not ending anytime soon.

It was just announced that Target is teaming up with Neiman Marcus and 24 designers {including Marc Jacobs, Oscar de la Renta and Diane von Furstenberg} for a holiday collection.

I’m all for the designer collabos, they can be a great way to get a taste of your favorite designer without seriously going over budget. But…

I’m kinda over them. There I said it!

They always sell out right away and people even get in to physical altercations to get their hands on the goods. And I really don’t understand the pricing {last year I did a post on whether designer collaborations are too expensive}. The Kardashian Kollection for Sears had blazers for $99 and I’ve seen Christian Siriano for Payless shoes upwards of $70. There’s no way I’m paying that much for items at Payless or Sears, regardless of whose name is on the label.

And not to bring everything back to thrift shopping, but one of the reasons I thrift is because it provides original style. I remember when the Jimmy Choo for H&M collection debuted in late 2009. I saw at least four women wearing the same Choo stilettos at a holiday party. The shoes were cute but who wants to be a fashion clone?

That’s just my two cents. I really want to know how what you guys think.

Are you tired of or looking forward to the designer collaborations? Do you think they do the designer’s work justice or are they watered down versions of the originals? Are they overly price? Is the hoopla worth it? What’s been your fave designer collab so far? 

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12 thoughts on “Designer Collaborations: Are You Over Them?

  1. I agree with you! First, the Kardashian Kollection was GARBAGE…cheap and overpriced! NO WAY! I love thrifting for the same reasons you do…and I cannot imagine dropping $70 at Payless either!

  2. I did like the Versace for H&M collection and though the leather trench coat was “expensive” for H&M, and was worth it. But some of the lines cost waaaay too much, but that’s if they don’t sell out in a few minutes

  3. Overall way too expensive, but I do admit that I look forward to them. Not dropping that kind of money at Sears or Payless, though.

  4. I was never too thrilled or excited about the collections in the first place, like you said they were still overpriced but I guess affordable compared to the actual collection.

  5. I think it’s an interesting concept. It holds opportunity for many but some of them are just ALL wrong. I think the Kardashians and Sears are not a good match. Now if they had teamed up with target, I think that may have been a better collaboration. But yes, the prices should be a bit more realistic.

  6. I understand the prices being higher than normal items at the stores only because usually the designer collabs are higher quality materials and more design details than normal. The Siriano shoes for example being $70, if his normal shoes are a few hundred and Payless crappy shoes are $20, then $70 makes sense to me if it’s a really good shoe because it’s better than regular Payless shoes, but it’s still way cheap compared to his normal line. So I get higher prices. That said, I do definitely appreciate when you can also get another designer collab item for way cheaper. Like Jason Wu for Target, some of those were a complete steal.

  7. I agree that at times the designer collabs can be a bit pricey, but sometimes they’re very affordable. When they first started getting populat I thought it was a great idea. Still do. Regarding the “fashion clone” dilemmah, I don’t mind if someone has on the same shoes as me… My look itself is always original and sometimes it’s interesting to see how different people can style the same item 🙂


  8. The designer collaboration concept is getting a little old, but I don’t want it to go away.  Does anyone remember the Mizrahi line at Target?  That was collaboration in it’s infancy.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.  I’m always willing to look, but I remind myself not to get carried away.  In the end, it still comes down to:  Is this a good deal?  I liked the Missoni/Target and Wu/Target collaborations.  Not everything was great, but the few nuggets were worth it.  I have a pair of Lela Rose shoes from Payless that make men on the street stop and compliment me.  I think I got them on sale, but they would have been worth the full price – they’re that nice!  Compared to the designer’s regular prices, they were a steal.

    Btw, I love your site.  I’ve been thrifting since junior high school – nearly 25 years.  I miss the good ol’ days sometimes . . .

  9. I don’t really care about designer collaborations. _Especially_ not at the prices that you mentioned. I’ve never bought a piece at any big box store.

    I did see a liberty of london for target shirt at my local thrift store. But the previous owner had taken a pair of scissors to the bottom of it–so I passed.

  10. Well I have no problem with designer collections as long as it looks good at a reasonable price. When you think about it just by having a celebrity wear anything brings light to that particular designer. Christian Siriano had these green shoes at Payless which were beautiful but expensive. I could not justify getting a pair of shoes with nothing to wear with them so I did not get them. I do like the Kardashian Kollection dresses because they are form fitting and shows off my figure without the dress being too short. But I do wait for the dresses to go on sale before I buy them. I do that with everything but if you wait the dresses do eventually go on sale (as with a lot of clothing). Sometimes if you go on ebay you can buy things at a discount price too. As for people wanting to be original there is no such thing because anything brought out of a store is mass produced unless you get a sewing machine and do it yourself.

  11. I agree with you.  I think the designers are doing this to attract a broader audience and so they go to mass retailers like target and H&M. It’s all in marketing I guess, but it get old fast.

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