The Stores of the Past: Retail Farewells

America is slowly taking away all of the places I like to shop.  Pretty soon, there will be no store at which I can purchase my version of fashion.

Dissolved in 2015, Body Central was one of my favorites. It offered so much – cute costume jewelry, reasonably-priced dress pants, dresses for myriad different occasions, and some of my favorite cardigans, like, ever.

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Another one that closed up shop in 2015, at least in my local mall, was Wet Seal. Not that I shopped there a lot following high school, but I still find it disheartening when stores can’t stay afloat.

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With some stores still in existence, but no longer at my local mall, Charlotte Russe was another store that had inexpensive dress pants and an occasional nice find.  I didn’t shop there a lot, but it was nice to see the store front filled with fashions donned by generic 20-somethings.

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Deb Shops. Sometimes, I’d walk in the store, but would usually become distracted by the filthy carpet and dressing rooms and walk out without having made a purchase. I found that annoyingly over-enthused prom-goers usually congregated in or near the dressing rooms. This store was removed from the Florence, Kentucky mall as well.

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Vanity only opened in my mall in late 2016 and was promptly removed in early 2017. This was quite a disappointment to me, as I enjoyed their wares. It reminded me of Maurice’s, but sometimes less expensive. They carried lovely scarves, cheap, fleece-lined leggings, cute costume jewelry, and unique tops. One day, I saw a “going out of business” sign in front of the store & another note inside said they were selling all of the furniture & fixtures. So short-lived and sad.

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Aerie closed in the Florence, Kentucky mall and possibly other locations. This transpired in early 2017. I saw no warning that they were closing, but saw a dark and empty store one day while visiting the mall. They sometimes had great sales, excellent prices on swimwear, and deals such as panties 7/$27.50. Also, if you purchased something at American Eagle, there was typically a 20% off coupon on the bottom of your receipt that could be used at Aerie.

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Also once taking up space in the Florence, Kentucky mall, but no longer:

  • Pac Sun

Stores once located at the Dry Ridge, Kentucky Outlets, but long gone:

  • Dress Barn
  • Claire’s
  • Rue 21
  • Nike
  • Liz Claiborne
  • Factory Brand Shoes
  • Kitchen Collection

Other Florence, Kentucky stores no longer in business:

  • Family Christian Stores
  • HH Gregg
  • Circuit City
  • Radio Shack
  • K-Mart – now the location of Value City Furniture & Ashley Furniture

I find it frustrating, disappointing, and traumatizing when stores decide to close. The places we’ve frequented for years become our oases, in a sense. If only they had managed more efficiently, hired better people, had more loyal customers, and on and on.  The economy is so wacky and I will never understand why some people insist on ordering everything online as opposed to visiting a brick & mortar store to try things on in person. I am usually not satisfied when I order something from the internet and wind up having to take it to an actual store to exchange it anyway.

If I could pick only two of the above stores to resurrect, I’d go with Vanity & Body Central in a heartbeat!!

 

 

 

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