Friday, March 23, 2012

...From 'Guaranteed to Last'

Reading My Review Copy



“Before any product or material wears the L.L. Bean label, it first must withstand a heap of abusive treatment in the laboratory and field.  Only the strong survive.”

- Jim Gorman, Guaranteed to Last - L.L. Bean's Century of Outfitting America, page 104



18 comments:

Joshua said...

The question is then, with loving respect, why do their plaid flannel shirts pill to complete rubbish after less than 10 washes.

Anonymous said...

Muffy - Nothing like dark comedy and irony to start a Friday morning! Very TDP!

Chris from New Hampshire said...

Seriously? Someone from L.L. Bean's PR team wanted YOU to review a book about L.L. Bean's history? Did they redact the pages with Chris McCormick and Signature? Did they tear out the last ten years - L.L. Bean's now famous lost decade - before sending?

C said...

Modern America has a lower bar than it once did for labeling something as 'abuse', and societal tolerance for abusive treatment has waned. (Not a bad thing, I'd say.) So... perhaps L.L.Bean wishes to extend its modern clothing these modern ethical courtesies? :P

fGs said...

Do you agree Ms. Muffy?

Suburban Princess said...

When they say abuse....do they mean they looked at it in a threatening manner?

Anonymous said...

@Suburban Princess - ROTFL!

Anonymous said...

I was going to mention this book awhile ago, but I see you already have it!

@Joshua - I have found that their flannel shirts are one of the few items which remain high-quality (and they have FINALLY brought the originals back for women... for awhile they only had really light-weight flannel (I call "fashion flannel") for women.

Paul Connors said...

I bought this book at the NEW L.L. Bean store in Paramus, NJ and while I enjoy it for its sense of pictorial history, I must say that to a certain extent, it is a very self-serving "pat on the back" by Bean insiders. It reads that way to me and I've been a Bean customer since my early teens in the mid 1960s. That said, some of their products like the Norwegian sweater were welcom returns, although the one I bought several years ago as a XXL because the XL was too small, in turn ended up to "blousy." In addition, the current version is overpriced at $129.00 and is more appropriately priced at the after Christmas prices of approx. $75.

Worthington said...

LL Bean continues to make me happy. My Grandparents pretty much only wear stuff from them at this point, except for special occasions clothing. No one has quality at the price point.

Great quote.

Anonymous said...

Muffy, can you suggest any classic alternative to women's polos for warm weather?

Anonymous said...

Ms. Muffy,
I love your blog and the everyday looks that represent your lifestyle. As far as I've been reading your marvelous blog, I do not recall any night time posts. Could you, please, do a post about your black tie looks? Also, wold be nice to know your go-to items for simple but smart look for dinner party or a wedding. Basically, anything that is a bit more dressy.
best regards from Europe,
Cecilia
P.S. excuse my English

Greenfield said...

Changing clothes around for the season today, in light of today's post I compared the fit of my lovely old LLB tweed jacket circa 1987, made in Scotland--and two new ones I now wish I hadn't bought on sale, circa 2008. There IS no comparison . . . fortunately, the Goodwill had their grand opening today--and the '87 is still in my closet.

Reggie Darling said...

They may be guaranteed to last, but they still ruined the blucher mocassin, as far as I'm concerned by cheapening them and cutting corners. But then I'm feeling grouchy this morning, I suppose.

binker said...

@Cecelia - Great question. I have often wondered the same thing. Evening formal wear can be more difficult for women than it is for men. I have seen Muffy at festive Christmas gatherings and at a Christmas Eve Service in NYC. I would love to know what she would wear to an engagement party at the 21 Club...or to a formal evening wedding reception at The Four Seasons in Boston. Thanks ahead of time, Muffy.

binker said...

p.s. I would love to see LL Bean make a strong comeback....and a broader resurgence of MADE IN AMERICA (or our Mother Country). However, MADE IN AMERICA costs too much money for the average consumer and I would hate to see an elitist situation where the rich could buy American made products...while the middle class is stuck with imported goods from China. There must be a happy medium....sort of like "less i more" ...and "quality is better than quantity". I admire companies like Starbucks that are bringing some jobs back to America (baby steps).

Anonymous said...

I am very happy to say that I ordered the shearling lined boots last year and they are great quality.
I ordered a Scotch Plaid Flannel Shirt for my boyfriend at Christmas, I could not believe how soft and well made the shirt was. We ended up ordering three more shirts, they have the wonderful authentic plaids, and we are both thrilled with the purchases.

Anonymous said...

I have a jaundiced eye towards L.L. Bean after finding they've discontinued their ladies' version of the classic field coat, suggesting as a replacement their more fashion-forward but less durable barn coat.

The goats and chickens do not care what my coat looks like:)

Muffy, sent an email to you re. alternatives. Hope you don't mind.