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Friday, June 12, 2009

Casualties of the Recession: Old Navy Models and maybe My Brain

Written by Lee

Times are tough. A recession is looming or we're actually smack dab in the middle of one. Friends of mine have lost their jobs, some have lost their homes, others have lost a small fortune in real estate investments, and most all of us are being forced to make daily sacrifices in order to provide for our families.

So in tough times like this, I look for things that relax me, bring me some comfort, make me forget about all of that stress that hovers right outside my door in the real world.

But when I was finally sifting through last Sunday's paper like yesterday, I encountered this. And this was NOT what I would consider a comforting image. In fact, I'm not sure I've ever seen anything more terrifying:

I had to do a double take to realize that these were uh, mannequins and not really really bad Old Navy models.

After I took a moment to digest some of the truly whacked out images of mannequins in Old Navy garb, I thought, "Wow, the recession has even hit Old Navy catalogue models. They have resorted to using mannequins instead of paying for real people to model their clothes that uh, real people wear."

But as I stared at each model and spent a little too much analyzing each little set-up, like a mannequin standing in a summer scenario like by a lake and he was fishing, I was like "Huh. Are these life-size mannequins or are they really really tiny? And if they are tiny, how much would it cost to manufacture not only tiny mannequins but all of those teeny weeny Old Navy clothing replicas?"

I mean, that would surely cost a fortune, right? Like way more than just using real people to be their models and use the clothes that are already hanging in the stores?

I mean, this was totally irresponsible, right? Like we are in a recession. These mannequins don't need to feed their families like us real people do, right?

Or do they?

These mannequin mamas surely look happy. Maybe Old Navy was having trouble finding models who would smile like that because we all just have too much stressful stuff on our minds. But now Old Navy is making it worse because the models surely won't be smiling now because their jobs are being outsourced to mannequins

A vicious cycle has begun! Will the Old navy real life models ever be able to smile like this again? Their bank accounts are dwindling and Old Navy could have really helped out by just keeping them employed. The least Old Navy could have done is maybe employ the real people models to sew those eensy weensy clothes for their stiff replacements. At least the humans would have stayed employed!!

This leafing through the Sunday paper was not turning out very well for me.

But when I googled Old Navy mannequins to find some images for this post, I learned that this mannequin fiasco I had just encountered was not a product of the recession but was actually a kitschy ad campaign that IS costing millions!!!

I'm not sure what to make of what happened to my brain when looking at my Old Navy insert in the Sunday paper.

Maybe it's all this recession stress or maybe I just need more sleep.


If you need to forget the disturbing images you have just seen, check out a sweet little giveaway we have going on here at MWOB. All you have to do is comment for a chance to win a cool, quirky book by the talented Nava Atlas titled "Secret Recipes for the Modern-Day Wife."    

Giveaway ends Sunday, June 14th sometime in the general mid-day hours of blogging somewhere around the world.  Don't question it, just click here and check it out.

Happy Friday and yeah, it's officially SUMMER for us as of today!!! 

Hello lazy mornings....*yawn* and *smile*.....


  1. My theory is that all the live models who were thin enough to appear in the ads died from starvation.

    Stop the insanity!!

    I am totally digging that purple dress though...

  2. LMAO! I so got these models in an email ad this week. They are a bit creepy!

  3. i don't think you need more sleep, that totally freaks the ba-jeebus out of me.

    that is creepy. i thought for a minute that it must be a computer generated image 'cause the smile on that one chick is out of this world.

    am i the only person who is disgusted at what mundane stuff receives money compared to the causes and research needs that are desperate for cash?

    this is why i need to not watch tv, or read the newspaper, and live out in the woods like a hermit.


    p.s. but i still wouldn't eat berries and tree bark.

    p.p.s. i can't look away from that smile. it's almost mesmerizing. in a disturbing kind of way.

  4. Hilarious.

    I love how they use the same "supermodelquins" from ad to ad and just put them in different outfits - kinda like in real life I guess.

    I agree with you ... freaky. In fact I just may even have a nightmare about one of these gals. Very scary.

  5. Lee -have you not seen ANY of the freaky commercials featuring these models? They actually chat - "hey, your wife looks sexy in that new polka dot bikini (while flipping plastic burgers)" - "Dude, don't look at my wife (while carrying plastic condiments)" Permanent smiles accompany this exchange of course.

    At least they are employing a couple of voice over artists - unless they are Old Navy employees sitting around in the break room, because that's kinda how it sounds.

    It is disturbing the money they are pumping into this with so many folks outta work. I'd get out there and protest in front of our downtown Old Navy... if I wasn't as tired as you...

    I know, maybe they should employ real folks that actually wear their clothes - like me in my size 12s and my flabby arms poking out from their cutie tank tops. We could really use the money and the PR would do wonders for them??? What do you think?

  6. I'm with Em. I think they starved the real models to the point of death. Now they are trying to cover up their crime with these crazy mannequins.

  7. haha. I've seen the commercials on TV (the one armed push up, come on)...and thought to myself, self, how you could you turn that into a post?
    They really are disturbing. They have brought disturbing to a whole new level.

    great post as usual.

  8. Those commercials have been around for a while. I've alway thought it was a pretty genious marketing ploy. It goes with their whole "reccessionista" vibe of cute clothes at cheap prices.

  9. I truly HATE this marketing "ploy". The mannequins just creep me out - and mannequins in the stores usually don't - maybe its that freakish smile that's plastered on all of them - seriously - I'm quite sure they could use "real" models. Heck they only need 4 or 5. If they call them "background" models they only pay $85 for 10 hours of work!

  10. I'd rather see these creepy models wearing the cheap clothes than see cheap models wear creepy clothes!


  11. I SWEAR i responded to this earlier..

    Anyway, the TV commercials with these plastic posers are almost as creepy as the Burger King guy and HE'S uber creepy!

  12. When I was a kid I saw the Twilight Zone Episode, "After Hours" and I can still remember "Maaarsha...Maaarsha..." Mannequins still creep me out.

  13. maybe the supermodelquins' 401K plans took a dive, like ours has. Or maybe they spent too much of their money on that cruise they went on, where the one went overboard or whatever, and now they need work just as badly as the rest of us. for crying out loud, lee, can't you be more sympathetic to the supermodelquins' plight? after all, they have that little girliquinin the first shot to feed

  14. Old Navy is on the bubble and this might have been a sad attempt to revamp the label. They play on TV too only those are a smidge funnier.

  15. I agree with you ... freaky. In fact I just may even have a nightmare about one of these gals. Very scary.


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