I have a love-hate relationship with Lane Bryant…
…except for the love part. Maybe more of a “kinda sorta like a few items sometimes-frustration most of the time” relationship.
I went shopping a few days ago. LB is pretty much the only brick and mortar store at which I shop for clothing; it’s the only plus size store in the area (that I can get to by bus, anyway, since I don’t have a car and I normally shop alone*) apart from Catherine’s. While a lot of their stuff is just plain ugly, I like their camis and some of their lingerie and Right Fit jeans, so I decided to give it a shot. When I saw this dress, even though it’s a bit out of my price range, I came this close to buying it. I was having an internal struggle trying to decide between it and this one while looking at some tops and shorts when I noticed that two of the saleswomen were watching me like hawks. I thought it was a little weird that the older of the two came up to me with a big phony-looking smile, asking me if I was “finding everything okay” (a phrase I hear there approximately every 5 minutes when there are more than 3 shoppers in the store) almost immediately after the younger one welcomed me and asked if I needed help finding something, etc. I told both of them I was just looking (which was true), and it kind of looked like the younger one (probably in her 20s) was looking to the older woman (older than me and the other saleswoman, she looks like she’s in her 50s) for some kind of consultation before the latter approached me.
I honestly don’t think I look like a shoplifter, and I feel like I’ve spent enough time and money at Lane Bryant for them to know that I don’t steal their shit–two of the same salespeople are there at least 90% of the time I’ve been there, and because their clothes are a tad overpriced for a college student’s budget, I’d think they’d realize by now that I’ve been a loyal customer for the past 2.5+ years.
This has happened to me before; maybe I do look like a shoplifter (but seriously, do I?). I was actually accused of shoplifting a tube of Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer, valued at a whopping $5.00, from the bookstore at my university even though I purchased an item of greater value. The person working there apparently reported to the university police that I “looked nervous,” and I had been walking around holding the damn thing with the intention to buy it but decided not to and put it away before continuing my perusal of the gift section. I only GOT nervous after I noticed that she was staring at me suspiciously; I had a feeling she would confront me in the store about it, and during my freshman year of college I tended to avoid confrontation, because I get nervous when confronted even if I didn’t do anything. No one said anything to my face while I was in the store, and I bought a makeup bag or something without any further complications. The next day, one of the university police called me while I was at the mall with my roommate and kept trying to get me to confess. I met with the chief of university police a few days later to complain about the treatment I received and it got sorted out, but it was an unnecessary, stressful experience.
I walked out of LB without buying anything (and my checking account will probably thank me later), but I still need cute sundresses for the forthcoming warm weather. Oh well; the mail carrier is a lot nicer and a lot less rude than the cashiers I’ve encountered at my local Lane Bryant.
FYI, retail employees: I am not a shoplifter.
*I need more fat friends/shopping buddies. And more places to shop where I can actually try on clothing.
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