Martha Stewart’s Macy’s Line Sucks

martha stewart macys sucksI was downtown yesterday and had to use the bathroom so I went to the old Marshall Fields store which is now Macy’s and used the bathroom. There are few places you can find a public bathroom downtown so I appreciated that when I was running to the train after having drinks with some friends at the Park Grill in Mellennium Park.

I entered the store and ran straight into a Martha Stewart section dedicated to displaying all her furniture, bedding, dishware, place settings, glassware and kitchen products together. I would find this same type of taking over the store setup in 4 other locations while walking around. And the biggest suprise was looking at this stuff thinking, it’s not that great, and it even kind of looks cheap and crappy really. I used to like Martha’s stuff when it was from the web store in her site. It was pretty ok stuff that was unique that you couldn’t find it anywhere else.  She singlehandedly brought Jadeite back into style while reviving countless other early 20th century styles and traditions that the new techno generation had forgotten about when their grandmothers passed away. And it worked, it reminded us of a classier time and a more elegant and self crafted way to live. You knew what was in the food you ate because you made it from scratch, you didn’t throw out furniture you refinished it, you didn’t have a boring green box lawn you planted some trees and a flower and vegetable garden.  It was what we all aspired to be.

martha stewart macys sucks

Then her company went big time and since about 2005 (when this whole let’s be Oprah on TV thing started) her ideas have fallen flat. The magazine is still ok, but no where it once was. The TV show is a talk show and not a hot to show anymore. The web site has had more new faces and looks than Madonna in the past 10 years and every one keeps getting more difficult to navigate and the information is organized in deceptive ways to get you to click on adsense and other ads, rather than find, read and stick to the site for content. K-mart’s stuff was ok,we accepted that it was cheap-o, because it was from K-mart, but I didn’t buy more than 1 or 2 things. (and not the paper like bath towels) Her furniture line has been called a success, but while I think some of it is nice, I think all of it is grossly overpriced. No one pays that much for furniture unless they are millionaires or really stupid and like debt. So the ideas in the magazines I fell in love with in 1994 have long since gone away as Martha went to jal, came back and had a bunch of uber aggressive sales people running the company and magazine while young 20 something cooks and crafters came up with all the ideas. That’s where the wheels fell off the truck. It’s not unified anymore under what “Martha” likes and wants anymore. It’s got too many people and too many goals to achieve that are counterproductive to one another. And, it is all in the name of the evil greedy need to increase REVENUE!! 

So then I heard about this Macy’s co-branded line online, I clicked to the Macy’s site and saw that the stuff looked ok-ish but not really matching or complementing the original Martha Stewart green jadeite plates and silverware I have at home.  I didn’t go any further then, because I don’t really ahve extra $ for buying more home stuff when I have more dishes and bedding than I alredy need at home and I didn’t see anything until I ran smack into it at Macy’s last night.

What I saw was some very nice displays but some very cheap chinese made stuff. The plates and dishware is thin and very breakable although it costs $8 dollars for a cereal bowl. My original Martha bowls I think cost 3 or 4 dollars each in the 2001-2002 days and they are thick heavy green glass. Why the markup on lower quality stuff? So it’s overpriced, nothing new huh? Some plates and bowls are somewhat pretty in white, but the patterned ones are just butt ugly. I don’t know what vintage pattern they used, but the colors and the gradient and the pattern should all be scrapped. I liked the ferns, but they are stupid expensive. Is this supposed to be fine china? I don’t think so…just every day dishes.

The Bedding was worse. I touched the duvet covers that had the 2004-ish coral patterns all over them in the signature beige, robins egg blue and green. They felt like copy paper. The towels were hard too, and had a very sparse loop pattern meaning they use less cheap thread in making the towels by spreading out the loops farther. Plus they weren’t even soft. There was no bounce or fluff at all. The sheets were papery too, and the shower curtain was cardboard. I am all for synthetic fabrics when they are soft to the touch, but who really wants to dry their face on cardboard? And at those prices???

The kitchen ware area was equally dissapointing. The melamie bowl sets looked ok, but were not in good color palletes and $30 dollars for something that cost about 2 dollars to produce? Are you kidding? They should be $12.00 and they would be flying off the shelves even in the bad colors.  The collapsable collanders are interesting but not that great. They feel cheap and that takes away from the innovation there. The pots and pans are just par for the course and the teapot was not any different than the chinese ones offered at target for $9.99 but it was $40 dollars. What gives? I am not spending that for the name on it.

Whant to save the sinking ship martha??? Here’s what you do:

1. Fire all these people aranging these short term liscensing deals with companies that put your name on their ultra cheap products made in China. They have ruined your brand and name. You need to reclaim it.

2. Fire all the people who designed your site for monetization and not for content. Hire some content people from the Chicago Tribune or New York Times, who are not influenced by the green devil and have a background in online content publishing, search engine optimization and social networking. (those moms like to network and share tips you know, but you’re not launching a whole networking site, so don’t get carried away)

3. Start recoiling your products into specific lines and quality levels that make sense. Entry level (Kmart) and exclusive posh stuff (your own high end stores in NY, LA and Chi Like a Tiffany’s of homekeeping). (Skip Macy’s)You shouldn’t be able to get your products everywhere, just one store for each level, and online through your site. Stop cobranding everything from fridges to cleaning products. They are dumb and only make your popularity shorter.

4. Make your products as good as the vintage stuff you find and love and the exclusive stuff you personally buy in Europe or here in the US. Make it in the USA if possibe, but if you insist on getting it on a slow boat to China, get it made of only high high end materials and in classic styles.

5. Take back the magazine yourself, and have someone else host the TV show, just make occasional appearances. After all this time you have gone from looking awkward and halting on camera to kind of ok, but wouldn’t it be more popular if Jennifer Garner hosted your show? Then get back to the idea generation, organization and management of your company. Bring back those things you discover and craft and not your staff. Please work with them and not against them though, because they’re tallented. Only put the things in your magazine that you want to jump up in your chair and tell everyone about. Stop trying to pass mediocre or crap off as amazing. Give us amazing like you used to. (the only thing that hasn’t slipped is the amazing photography that changed the way magazines were photographed for back 10 years ago)

6. And don’t be afraid of saying no to money. Money isn’t what life is about, neither is global domination. It is far better to have your company last decades because it is so dependable, high quality and consistent rather than make a billion in 5 years and then crash out of business and loose it all. Run your business with the old time traditions that you cherish. Yearly traditions with cosumers, your staff and your products. Plus you have more money than you will ever need, and those other people at your company do too. Please lay off these six figure boss management people who know nothing about home keeping and are just about maximizing profts. You don’t owe them anything. They are exposing your brand to the world as a cheap replicatable brand right now because these people have talked you into offering cheap crap with your name on it. Take control and take your company back soon or people won’t know who you are in 5 years or buy anything with your name on it.

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22 thoughts on “Martha Stewart’s Macy’s Line Sucks

  1. Pingback: Martha Macy’s Christmas Tree (Marshall Fields Walnut Room)

  2. You are right. I just looked at the kitchen collection on Macy’s website and it looks cheap and not any different from what you can find at Target or elsewhere for much less money. No wonder some of the stuff (i.e., dutch oven) is already half-priced. And there’s hardly anything to be found in Martha’s signature green (not to mention NO jadeite items!!). I was expecting at least a green dutch oven and cake stand. White dinnerware does nothing for me. I agree that the magazine has deteriorated, also. You are right — they are selling the NAME, but the quality that we had come to expect from Martha is not there. What a disappointment. Martha can do better.

  3. I love Martha, but it sickens me to hear her talk about the importance of the environment and green living, yet manufactures ALL of her stuff in China!! Even her high end furniture which is boasted as being “crafted” in North Carolina, is cut and manufactured in China. I know, I unfortunately own some of it and found out after it was delivered. She could be the renaissance to the American Furniture industry, yet has a direct hand in destroying it. It makes me very, very sad.

  4. Just wait until you see the Christmas trees…They are OVER PRICED big time! Over a THOUSAND DOLLARS for one of them…They look like 200 dollar trees to me..I am NOT paying for a name..Especially when it is Martha

  5. Just to change up the conversation a little, I have actually bought and used several pieces from Martha Stewart’s new kitchen products and I LOVE THEM! I thought they hold up great, look nice and are reasonably priced. Not to mention if you actually shop for the same products at Target, Bed, Bath & Beyond, etc. they’re about the same price, especially if you’re comparing similar quality products. Look I’ll be the first to say negative things about Martha, but I really like these particular products and loved that there was a selection of everything that I might need in one place, rather than running from store to store.

  6. Pingback: What groceries people buy… « The Protagonist

  7. Macys sucks for lots of reasons.

    Their collection department in India
    FACS Caller ID # FACS 727-556-7300
    has been calling my spare line for months.

    I have no account with Macys and the number I’m getting the calls at is a new one from a Cable Company

    Great company, they buy all their crap from the third world and now hire third world folks to harass the innocent.

    Lets return the favor-

    Monday-Saturday 9am-9pm EST/PST and Sunday 11am-8pm EST/PST.
    U.S. and Canadian customers call:
    1 (866)593-2543

    Naturally when you call the above number you get a machine.

    Don’t just hang up, do this-
    First they ask for an account number, just say “I don’t know”
    It will then prompt you to enter your SS#- Type in 9 0’s
    Then a prompt will tell you to say “transfer” to get to a real voice.

    Explain to this person what is going on and be sure to give thee offending number.

    If we all do this whenever we have a chance we might get some help.

  8. I couldn’t agree more. I loved Martha pre-Alderson. She moved from her roots, literally. Selling off Turkey Hill to the highest bidder and moving to that obnoxious farm in Bedford, sad. It’s obvious she does nothing anymore. She used to talk from experience, now its “my staff”. Anybody can do what she does if they have a full staff. I liked it when she did it herself and knew what she was talking about from experience. I can’t take her new show. She says “um” every three words. She needs an edited show, not live t.v.

  9. Mike, her show is edited, believe it or not. I attended a taping last October, and when it aired, there were several things that weren’t included. Like Sherri Shepherd from the View talking about the time she went to jail for writing bad checks or something. I guess Martha doesn’t like being reminded of jail. I agree with you about the ums, though. You’d think someone who’s been on TV as long as Martha would have gotten over that habit.

  10. I used to admire Martha. I’m over her. And I’m sick of listening to her ( like so many other Hollyweirds ) talk politics on her show. She constantly says what we HAVE TO do concerning politics. Power’s gone to her head and quality is down the drain.

  11. Valley Eagles: Christopher Johnson 179-455, Tanner Humphrey 172-455, Tanner Burns 95-228, Abby Carr 73-198, Nathen Carr 128-327, Lauren Crowther 65-166, Stephen Devore 80-227, Cody Haight 78-202, Curtis Hoffner 82-215, Kassie Hollabaugh

  12. What’s up with all the spelling mistakes? “Whant” or “ahve” I can understand, but “Mellennium Park”? Not too mention, lower-casing a person’s name is just rude…..

  13. Yes Martha’s products totally suck… Her furniture is cheaply made, and won’t hold up to daily use. Her linens are poor quality.
    Macy’s hitched their wagon to a dead horse. Both Macy’s and Martha, are using a once good name to ripoff people… Should not have expected much from an ex con, and a socialist Dept Store.

  14. False Claims – Credit Dunning for not our account
    MCCS – Macy’s Credit and Customer Service
    Macy’s & Bloomingdales [credit accounts factored to Citicard] – They fail to take appropriate actions in verifying credit card application data so that you can have them call you claiming that you owe them – Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s – money on a card which may be in $1000s but it is not your card – just your phone number for an account that was opened in a totally different state from your number/home – They are terrible – absolute failure to verify data! ABYSMAL –
    Call from New Delhi Indian Call Center
    (727) 556-7300
    Mccs – MACYS India New Delhi Joe Berg re wrong acct
    Associate 295257 HCL Technologies 800-545-1256×56700
    MCCS POB 8118 Mason OH 45040
    EXECUTIVE OFFICE: Follow-up Lisa Durbin 513-398-5221 x32634
    MCCS POB 8220 Mason OH 45040
    CALL HERE TO COMPLAIN!

    I have received numerous calls over the past months all calling to dun my wife on large outstanding amounts on either her Macy’s or Bloomingdale’s cards. Yet, the address of record for the cards MCCS is calling about is in Rhode Island and our telephone number clearly is not. We have wasted nearly hours with Indian and Filipino call center employees attempting to explain that we are not who they want. Every time they have claimed they will remove our number from their data base but we keep getting calls.

  15. I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER MARTHA PRODUCT AGAIN.
    I PURCHASED A SET OF SHEETS FROM MACY’S AND I WASHED THEM ONCE, YES ONCE, AND THE PATTERN FADED AND THEY STARTED SHREDDING.
    GOOD MONEY DOWN THE DRAIN.
    HER PRODUCTS ARE EXPENSIVE AND THEY SUCK.

  16. I came across this when I googled “Martha Stewart Magazine sucks.” I am not a Martha hater. I used to like her show back in the day. She’s an ex-con, but she did her time, unlike most white collar criminals at her level. But as you accurately describe, everything related to Martha now sucks.

    So why did I google “Martha Stewart Magazine sucks?” Because I was on LNT’s website (looking for elusive high-quality towels), and they are offering a free year subscription to her mag. I thought to myself, “I wouldn’t want that magazine, even if it was free.” I already had a free subscription from another promotion, and it straight up sucks. I wondered if anyone else thought the same thing, because I just can’t understand how such a crappy magazine stays afloat while many good ones end up folding. I guess Americans are just slaves to marketing and branding. That’s sad, because we all suffer the consequences in the form of cheap, poor-quality products.

  17. I purchased five towels and a wok at Macy’s, all Martha Stewart products. The towels came apart the first time I washed them and are not absorbent at all. The handle of the wok just came right off as I was using it the first time, almost causing me to spill on the hot food inside to spill on me. Horrible products and line. Will never purchase again.

  18. I bought Martha Stewart carpet from Home Depot to the tune of 5K and it started to unravel two weeks after it was installed. File a complaint and NO ONE, not even Home Depot would take responsibility. I bought Martha Stewart sheets from Macy’s and the fitted sheet keeps slipping off even though they were bought for “extra deep” mattresses. I bought Martha Stewart ramekins and the handles fell off two months after purchase. Martha Stewart freakin’ sucks and I will NEVER NEVER EVER buy another Martha Stewart product and believe me, I’m spreading the word!

  19. OK, so I know this is an old article but my frikking MS Teakettle just broke at the welds when I was picking it up full of boiling water. Luckily it only was about 1 inch from the top of the stove, but it could have resulted in SERIOUS harm to myself. It was purchased as a gift for me from Macys in Jan 2011, so it was not very old. Martha, where are you? Not doing quality control or caring much about the quality of your products, such a shame!

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