Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Quality control. Did you ever wish there was some? When I was younger, corporations took great pride in producing a product that lasted a lifetime...or the rough equivalent.

Now you're lucky if your purchase lasts long enough to make it home. When we first married, we bought a washer and dryer. We finally replaced them (after two long distance moves and four kids) twenty two years later. The next washer and dryer lasted six years. Same company. No moves. Not as many kids.

Now some things have a long use period or not based on how you take care of them. I understand that. But take the case of clothing. I don't buy anything that can't be washed and dried. Cold water wash. Minimal laundry soap. I have T-shirts I bought twenty years ago for work that I'm still wearing. And jeans. Skirts. Swimsuits. Classy clothing. All made by the same company--White Stag--sold by Wal-Mart.

White Stag is a Wal-Mart owned company. And they suddenly decided to no long produce "large" sizes by White Stag. Instead they now sell Just My Size label for large sizes. Shoddy workmanship. Crappy fabrics. And ugly clothes. Ugly clothes that emphasize rather than camouflage the worst points for a big woman. The T-shirts are what I call muu-muu shirts. Com'on. You know what I'm talking about. And unless you treat them like they're silk...they don't make the quality grade, either.

So what's the option?

Well, every season I bought two or three new shirts just because of the different colors. So I have enough shirts to last me until I die probably. All colors. And rather than spend any more money on T-shirts that fall apart, fade, and look bad, I'll just wear what I have.

Wal-Mart lost my money.

What about you? Do you have something in particular you used to buy that you don't anymore because of quality changes? Tell me about it.



  1. Nothing that stands out, it's just about everything nowadays. I agree about the washer and dryer. The first set I had I bought used and had it for almost 15 years. The second set six or seven. It's a shame how things aren't made to last any longer.

  2. I find it interesting that this company has decided not to do larger sizes. Have they not grasped that people are getting bigger? That they could make money from this? Or are they trying to fit a corporate mould that dictates to be size-ist?

    Like you, I make things last by treating them properly. We work hard for our money - no point throwing it away on carelessness.

  3. There is nothing made to last anymore. This throw away mentality has gone a bit too far in my estimation.

  4. This is why I buy most of my furniture and clothes on ebay these days -- I like older, well-made stuff and it's usually a better investment than new and cheap.

    (Also, that cat pic is beyond awesome).

  5. May I add refrigerators to the list? The 'state of the art' stainless one we put in our kitchen eight years ago has had to have multiple service calls, while the thirty year old one in our basement chugs along problem free!

  6. Thank you, ladies! Can you tell I'm frustrated? Nothing is cheap and when you're investing a lot of $$$ you really want to get value for your money. Really. I appreciate you stopping by!

  7. I find I shop thrift shops more and more for exactly that reason. I'd rather have an old wooden desk that has a few scratches but won't fall apart than a new one made from glued cardboard that won't last a year.

  8. Cute picture. I've never found Wal-mart stuff that shoddy. I still have some plain t-shirts that I got from there years ago that I wear regularly. On the other hand, there was the lamp that broke a few weeks after I bought it. I guess you need to look more on a case by case basis, and make sure that they know that quality means your continued business.

    I'm starting up a 'Critiquing Crusaders' program, where participants in the Second Crusade can find other writers to exchange critiques with or form critiquing circles. If you're interested, come by The Kelworth Files to check it out!

  9. Well its not so much what I don't buy anymore, but I wear a pair of shorts that my son owned when he was in middle-school.....many years ago:)