Mighty Life List
Mar 23 2011

American Imperil

First, apologies about the title, but wow. Don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly still buying, but does anyone else feel like American Apparel is going off the rails?

Floral Double-Layered Full Length Skirt
“Has anyone seen my third grade class?”

Mad Andy T-Shirt
“My boobs are watching you.”

Butt T-Shirt
“It’s right here. In my left hand.”

Punctuation Tights
“Interrobang me?!”

47 Responses to “American Imperil”

  • kim Says:

    Are we joking? It’s one of those things where it’s so bad, that I’m not sure if you’re pulling my leg, or it really is true? My word! How awful! Go away bad 80s clothing, we don’t want you back again.

  • kim Says:

    Excuse my language, but I just followed your links and you’re not joking! For shame, American Apparel – that’s just fucking awful.

  • michelle Says:

    i swear i had those tights in pink when i was in the 5th grade … in 1985.

  • Noelle Says:

    I haven’t been buying for years. The stuff is over priced and not even slightly interesting. I physically cringe at the ugliness of their windows every time I walk by.

  • Julianna Says:

    “Interrobang me?!”

    Death by hilarious.

  • Erica Lucci Says:

    Not to mention the accusations against the American Apparel CEO for sexual harassment – http://chicagobreakingbusiness.com/2011/03/american-apparel-ceo-held-teen-as-sex-slave-says-lawsuit.html

  • Maureen Says:

    I was buying adult clothing in the 80’s. This stuff was considered bad even then.

  • Lisa K Says:

    Truly painful. I gave up American Apparel when I saw a monokini and a snap-crotch bodysuit in the window. The experience caused heinous flashbacks.

  • natasha Says:

    Maggie, I just snorted coffee out my nose. “Interrobang me” ha!

    but come on…doesn’t everyone want this suspender swimsuit?



  • Laurie Says:

    Add a prairie collar to the third-grade teacher’s t-shirt, and you’ve got yourself a sister wife.

  • Samantha Says:

    I don’t buy American Apparel. I have unfortunately met the CEO on more than one occasion and have known several people can work there and let’s just say most of the rumors and cases of sexual harassment I have heard about way before they made it to the public.

  • Sarah Says:

    I second those who have stopped buying American Apparel products because of the actions of the company’s CEO–he is not a man who deserves your dollars. Which is a shame, because the basic principle of having a company producing quality American-made, non-sweatshop-produced goods is an excellent one….if it’s not being run by a person who thinks that it’s fine to masturbate in front of a female reporter who’s trying to interview him about said company. (anyone else remember that Jane magazine article? ew.)

  • Ginny Says:

    I can’t get over the first outfit. Who would wear that? This isn’t 1992.

  • Crystal Says:

    I THIRD those who have stopped buying American Apparel products because of the actions of the company’s CEO–he is DEFINITELY not a man (boy? child? animal?) who deserves your dollars.

    AA may advertise that it’s non-sweatshop shop, but forcing girls / young women into precarious sex situations is completely disgusting.

  • Kris Says:

    Ugh. The “arms over my head, legs slightly spread, come fuck me expression” in every dress photo I glanced at just turned my stomach.

    Ick. I feel like I just walked out of a dirty, dimly lit porn shop with sticky floors.

  • Jennifer Says:

    I simply cannot get beyond the first image. Are those Mia loafers?

  • Beth Says:

    I don’t tend to think of myself as a prude, but aside from the clothes just being really really ugly, what is with all the nipples??? Are you f’ing kidding me? Aren’t these clothes targeted at teenage girls? I remember what a stir Abercrombie caused with their catalogs in the 90s and this is 10xs worse.

  • jessa Says:

    Laughing so hard I peed my pants!

  • kate Says:

    Poor quality (yet expensive), obnoxiously slutty images and a perv for a CEO? No thanks.

  • Holita Says:

    That is the fugliest skirt I’ve seen since 1989. I am pretty sure I had that skirt once. I looked just as awful in it then as it does on this model now.

    I’ve never bought or worn AA because it’s all ugly and seems to be geared towards teenagers and/or streetwalkers. I don’t dress all that conservatively but most of their stuff just looks trashy. Tight, shiny, short. Except this prairie skirt- which is what makes it such a shocker.

    So I just clicked through out of curiosity and and I was also shocked to see they have Maternity wear! Curious- I clicked! Oh yes. That makes sense. A maternity BODY SUIT. Because what pregnant women want to wear is a body suit. Especially handy for peeing all over yourself when you’re making a mad dash to the toilet and trying to get it unhooked at the crotch. SMART!

  • Meegan Says:

    Oof, that first Laura Ingalls Wilder skirt rang a familiar bell. Not good, AA, not good.

  • Ami Says:

    Dude, are you in a competition with Bossy on getting the most boobs on the website?

  • The Dalai Mama Says:

    Now I want a shirt that says “Interrobang me”

    My guess for which one doesn’t belong is #1–oh wait we aren’t playing that game?

    Hilarious and these clothes make me feel entirely unhip and old–except for #1 which is just awful.

  • stephanie Says:

    i just looked at their site the other day for some basics – tanktops, t-shirts, etc. and was like “WTF?” did i time travel?

  • Eliza Says:

    I’ve always wanted to be interrobanged.

  • Tricia Says:

    “interrobang me” made me laughsnort.

  • April Says:

    It’s too early for April Fool’s! This stuff is gross!

  • gesikah Says:

    The first one is awfully….homeschoolery.

    (PS I can say that.)

  • Steph Says:


  • Maren Says:

    “Going” off the rails? I can’t remember the last time I saw anything I liked other than basic tee-shirts at AA.

  • Martha Says:

    I have never bought from AA because they don’t offer plus sizes and don’t have a shop anywhere near me. I’ve looked at the site before and wondered what all the fanfare was about. This stuff is hideous, and the first skirt totally feels out of place, although no less hideous.

  • Nessbow Says:

    I actually really like those punctuation tights. I would totally wear those.
    As for the rest…um, does anyone actually buy this crap?

  • Julie Says:

    Yuck! I also am not fond of their advertising. I’m no prude, but some of it is just outright degrading. Especially their “now open” ad from a few years ago.

  • (the other) Margaret Says:

    Don’t forget the matching “Floral Twist Scarf”!


  • 101 Things to Do Before You Die Says:

    I think I may be kicked off of the blogosphere for saying this but I don’t really like American Apparel anyway. What is the appeal? Really simple stuff for way too much? If I need a white t-shirt, I can find a perfectly good one at Target without paying $35.

    Sorry, you can kick me off the Internet now.

  • Hannah (Culture Connoisseur) Says:

    That first outfit has to be the frumpiest thing I’ve seen lately. There’s no excuse for this…and “in fashion” is no excuse.

  • Maria Says:

    This reminds me: I’ve been meaning to ask you about the circle scarf you praise so much! I have a tank top from AA made of the same “burned” fabric and it is possibly the most static-prone thing I own! You say your scarf comes in handy on planes and such. Well, I always get SUPER static-y on planes even without static-prone clothing… So I was wondering how you do it? Got any tricks?

    As for other AA stuff- the ads/pics just gross me out! The web shop needs a “are you 18 or over” thingy to enter!

  • JoAnn Says:

    I liked Laurie’s comment about adding a collar. I think I wore that with the collar as a bridesmaid in the ’80s. We are no longer friends.

  • Renee Says:

    Did they buy what was leftover from a thrift store closing?

  • misstraceynolan Says:

    That first one would have been perfect for me when I worked at Crabtree & Evelyn. In 1989.

  • Lynda Says:

    OMG! I do teach third grade and holy doodle, I would NOT be caught dead in that first outfit! HAHAHAHA! More like, “has anyone seen my fashion sense?!” ….I think the third graders trashed it. YIKES. I have not seen anything THAT fugly since I was in third grade! :D

  • Joanna Says:

    Thank you for using humor to address this truly despicable situation.

    But in all seriousness, I’m glad I decided not to work for the company last summer.

  • meg Says:

    Yeah, the acid wash and porn stache are kinda all you need to know: http://store.americanapparel.net/hartwick.html?cid=195

  • Dariela Says:

    OMG! This is horrible! Are there sales god with this??!! Crazy!

  • Carrie Says:

    Um, you know, some of us actually ARE 3rd grade teachers.

    (And, no, I don’t dress like that! LOL!)

  • Elizabeth Says:

    Yikes! It’s always important, especially for a brand like American Apparel who has made a name for itself as being kind of edgy, to have a few daring pieces, but something went wrong here.

  • Kate Says:

    is this stuff for real? shut up! get out!