Abercrombie & Wills? Jack & Fitch?

Stuart & Tom naked showering but still selling clothing[/caption]

Okay pop quiz. Is the above picture from;

a) Abercrombie & Fitch
b) Jack & Fitch
c) Jack Wills
d) Abercrombie & Wills

I wear A&F almost exclusively. Most people who know me already know this. Whilst I was in Brighton at the weekend I stumbled into a store that looked like A&F, smelt like A&F yet wasn’t A&F.
Jack Wills has an almost identical visual identity to the large US based store. It’s even a very similar font style. The store has a very similar feel, white painted wood and rich carpeting. The website has a similar feel. Even the obligatory lifestyle section filled with beautiful semi naked models. In fact I’m failing to see what item of clothing Stuart and Tom are selling in the picture above ;o)

Anyway since the Abercrombie store is yet to open in Bond Street and it’s always nice to diversify ones wardrobe every now and then I’ve ordered myself a catalogue in case I see an item or two I’d like to purchase.

ANF gets tough

So it looks like Abercrombie & Fitch are getting tough on counterfeiters. Well according to this report anyway.
One reason for Abercrombie’s move was to reduce the number of poor-quality copies being sold overseas so consumers won’t get a negative impression before the real thing arrives.

Well in which case they could do worse than look at eBay which consistently has ‘Brand New’ A&F clothes in bags! Only problem is of course Abercrombie clothes don’t come packaged in bags. There are so many counterfeit items on eBay I’m suprised they can still allow it without being forced into some sort of legal requirement to guarantee authenticity before selling.
You only need to look at the number of items allegedly from UK but shipping from Hong Kong. If eBay really was against counterfeit goods they would prevent this practise immediately. But of course they make money on every transaction be it listing, transaction or payment. It’s hardly in their interest to prevent it now is it…

San Francisco

I arrived at SFO and met up with Mr P at the gate. We were both a bit concerned how easy it was to wander around into the allegedly secure gate side of the internal flight area.
He had to wait as I was a bit late – makes a change though! Then we managed to find out how to get downtown and arrived at the wrong hostel. Luckily the one we were booked into was only 6 blocks away. Unluckily it meant a walk down Ellis Street in Tenderloin. I think I saw more homeless people in ten minutes than I have in London in ten years. Seriously there is a big homeless population in San Fran.
It was cold and foggy when we arrived and stayed like that for the rest of the day. Not that either of us saw much of it. We ensconced ourselves in our room and stayed there until the next morning.
Thursday morning was again cold and foggy. We managed to venture out though and wandered along Ellis until we hit the shops in and around Union Square. We had brunch first at Cheesecake Factory. American portions are such a bad move on the first day you eat properly. I mean even the side salads were huge.
We wandered around the shops, The Levi Flagship store with it’s wierd top floor. Oh and of course we took in the Abercrombie & Fitch store on Market St [which had no stock at all].
I also succumbed and saw Spiderman. We were wandering around the Metreon as it was too foggy to go to the Golden Gate Bridge, and it has a cinema in the complex so we saw the matinee.
Friday was Dave’s 28th birthday and so we celebrated in the evening with champagne and a fantastic meal at the stylish Ozumo. Dave is convinced he needs to write down the recipe with mint and lemon or something. He kept muttering for the rest of the holiday about it 🙂
In the morning though we had gone over to Stonestown Galleria on an Abercrombie mission – the one in Market St was pants. The one in Stonestown was not much better. In between seasons and nothing in either Dave’s size or mine.
The meal we had was nice though at the Olive Garden.
Saturday we decided we really should do some sightseeing even if the weather was no better. Luckily for us though it was much better. The views of the bridge and the bay are awesome. [Pictures to follow] It was not super hot but enough for both Dave and I to burn [although we think it may have been a combination of sun and wind]. The afternoon was spent on a pleasant walking tour along from Ghiradelli Square through Fisherman’s Wharf to the Embarcadero. We also took in Lombard Street you know as we were doing the tourist bit.
That evening we had sushi at the Metreon and then watched Minority Report.
Sunday of course was SF Pride which was really nice. There were big gaps though which was a bit wierd – not quite so well planned as Sydney!
It also appeared as if any Tom, Dick and Harry could have a float. Politicians galore and local store advertisments too all very erm… boring really. The only decent float sadly was the Smirnoff promotion. [Pics to follow]
The party was brilliant. London should just do the same. Instead of shipping everyone off to some park miles away. Block off a few roads in soho and have a party there!
After all of that excitement we decided to go back to the sightseeing on Monday. Alcatraz! Unfortunately the next available trips were Wednesday 🙁 So we went for the rip off the tourists Angel Island and Alcatraz departing Tuesday instead. Now I know it is a rip off as we went to Alcatraz like just the Alcatraz tour but we had to go to Angel Island first and pay more – so how does that work?
Anyways that kind of threw our plans for the day out so we went on a cable car back to Union Square and Market Street after wandering around the wharf area.
That evening we went back to the Castro for dinner and drinks abd I have to say I was a little disappointed in the range of bars. The only one we liked was Badlands 🙂 [just like DC eh!]
We didn’t stay out too late though as we had to be up early for the Alcatraz tour in the morning.
As it hapens Angel Island was really nice so it worked out okay. The weather had turned though and it was back to cold and foggy. Luckily we had seen the bridge on Saturday already as it was not visible. Alcatraz was very scary but not as fearful as we anticipated. It’s famous for it’s inmates more than being a nasty prison really. After the trip we wandered back via Macondry Lane [where they filmed Tales of the City. Also we took in Alamo Square and St Mary’s Cathedral and then back to our room for the last night in SF.
There’s plenty more I’ve missed like that damn game, the Bingham Cup [the Kings Cross Steelers were playing and all the teams where in the parade [pics], but when Mr P gets back from his next two weeks of holiday in Portland and Vancouver though he can fill you in. I’ll need to edit the photo’s and then upload them too.
All in all though I had a really nice time, fabulous company great city.
So now I am off to bed again – melatonin here I come 🙂