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Off-price chain Marshalls is airing a series of commercials making fun of fashion industry professionals—so far, buyers (above), and photographers (after the jump)—and while the humor is evident, and good for a chuckle, is mocking colleagues the best way to move discount merchandise?
"The commercials were slightly demeaning to the role of a merchant," said Stephanie Solomon, VP of fashion direction at Bloomingdale's. "I've never met a buyer who made a mistake based on not knowing a language, buyers are highly trained. The commercial promotes a misconception of what the job of a buyer is. For example, the idea that the job of a buyer is glamorous. The percentage of glamour is about 1 percent."
"There are a lot of checks and balances [to ensure] that mistakes aren't made," Ken Downing, SVP and fashion director of Neiman Marcus told WWD. "In this day and age, there isn’t anyone who is placing an order for 5,000 when she needs 500. I guess Amy doesn't work for a large enough organization where someone is overseeing her buy." Still, he says, "I have to say it's clever, It makes for fun television."