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What's happened to Hobbs

(24 Posts)
Starlet71 Tue 05-Feb-13 22:41:32

Ha! Have been waiting to vent my spleen about Hobbs..I got a beautiful (and expensive) wool coat for my birthday in November, after about 4 outings no fewer than 5 of the buttons had fallen off and the lining had torn. I phoned Hobbs customer services to ask them to pay for the repairs and they were totally uninterested. They said that no-one else had complained about the quality of that particular coat and started to suggest that perhaps I had worn it out (?!). Eventually suggested that I should take it back to John Lewis 'as they might give you some vouchers or something'. No apology or anything.
I've a had a couple of NW3 things in the sale but after this experience I will be giving them a swerve.

fridgepants Tue 05-Feb-13 12:24:22

I had a bird-print dress from NW3 that was £100 full price (I had a voucher from Red magazine). That is a heck of a lot of money for something that looks five years old after two washes. Put off buying anyting from them again.

HyvaPaiva Mon 04-Feb-13 09:09:44

OP, I used to feel the same way about Hobbs. I think the problem is that it was classic-with-a-twist some years ago but they never updated that twist so that now what seemed 'cool' and gorgeous just seems dull, dated, and uninspired. Jigsaw went the same way for me and also the quality is far poorer than in the early 2000s, sadly, so I've lost my two favourite stores! I'm feeling more Cos and Massimo Dutti these days.

Ruprekt Sun 03-Feb-13 23:16:32

The original owner and designer of Hobbs was the most vile person I have ever had the misfortune to meet!

Truly horrible.

DH had 'banned' me from shopping there but now they have been bought out I might have another look!!

SarkyPants Sun 03-Feb-13 23:10:30


Two of my favourite ever dresses are NW3 from last summer. But they are definitely not edgy. Just well cut staples (in fairly cheap fabric).

And all of my shoes bought in the last 2 years are sale purchases from Hobbs.

I'm curently coveting a blazer from there. But it is ludicrously overpriced.

So where are ex-Hobbs shoppers shopping now? I'm liking Oliver Bonas atm.

niminypiminy Sun 03-Feb-13 20:53:25

Just had a look at the web site -- it's all true. I used to really covet Hobbs things, and have a gorgeous coat that is now too small (sob!). But it's gone very samey.

I think what has happened to Hobbs is the recession. It's really hard for clothing retailers to make money at the moment, and they're all getting safer and safer. Especially as rising costs are squeezing their profit margins.

Popcornia Sun 03-Feb-13 20:16:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FellatioNels0n Sun 03-Feb-13 20:10:05

I agree with you. I used to love it but I struggle to find anything non-frumpy and staid in there now.

FantasticMax Sun 03-Feb-13 20:08:04

I buy a lot of Hobbs for work, in fact my whole "Going back to work from Mat Leave" wardrobe was Hobbs. I spent £89 on a blouse that turned out to be 100% polyester (I didn't check the website info properly, assumed it was silk for the price. Won't be making that mistake again!). I was fuming. It's a nice blouse, but honestly, almost £90 for polyester?!! And everything I bought ended up being heavily discounted in the sale a few months later. You live and learn I suppose!

MerylStrop Sun 03-Feb-13 18:50:48

I don't think that Hobbs has ever really been edgy....always classics with a twist, beautifully made...except it's lost the twist.

Fashion at the moment all seems to be vv conservative with this whole peg trousers/80s-90s stuff going on so perhaps it reflects that.

polyhymnia Sun 03-Feb-13 18:45:21

Agree with Remus that some of their scarves and bags are still covetable - am waiting for a 20% offer for some of those. Also a few of their shoes.

Used to like some of their jewellery but it's gone very itsy-bitsy, verging on twee - which might be a sort of homage to Alex Monroe, but isn't me at all.

Hypermutley Sun 03-Feb-13 18:32:10

thank heavens! i thought it was me that was being too fussy. still i insist if i check it enough times something will grow on for the last couple of years have walked in and out of the oxford street, covent garden and canary wharf stores......nothings grown on me yet. love their court shoes though. my last puchase was a NW3 suit 2 years or so ago which i love.

lurkingaround Sun 03-Feb-13 18:20:12

Agree with you all. Shame they sold out. I have a coat I bought 8 years ago (yes 8) from Hobbs, really good cut and fabric, unique, as twenty says. I love everything about it, even the buttons, and unbelievably, somehow or other it hasn't dated. Even now I get lots of love your coat compliments. Tho I always have a look, that was my last purchase from Hobbs.

I have seen shoes lately that I really liked. Couldn't justify the price.

twentythirteen Sun 03-Feb-13 17:11:09

Definitely agree! I bought a nice coat from there a couple of years ago, great fabric and unique design, that was the last item, I haven't seen anything since then!

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Sun 03-Feb-13 17:05:45

The wedding guest stuff is mostly hideous.

I do still like some of their bags, scarves, t-shirts and wish I could afford their boots!

Eliza22 Sun 03-Feb-13 17:01:13

I got a wool dress from them at Christmas. Bit of a panic buy for Xmas day wear. My son said "mum, I hope I'm not going to offend you but that dress is very very old fashioned" Not worn Xmas day. Not worn since.


babybarrister Sun 03-Feb-13 16:57:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BillStickersIsInnocent Sun 03-Feb-13 16:18:59

I agree. Used to love NW3 in particular for work dresses. Also have a beautiful coat from there.

Nothing appeals so far this year, but perhaps it'll improve when all the SS stuff gets in.

prelim29 Sun 03-Feb-13 15:27:43

I used to work for Hobbs back in the day when it was edgy and gorgeous and I can tell you what has happened........... Hobbs is no longer a small company owned and designed by the same family. They sold out and now Hobbs is just another High Street store. I never go there now

LifeofPo Sun 03-Feb-13 10:07:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PastaB Sun 03-Feb-13 10:02:24

Their work dresses are still really well cut and flattering IMO but I agree stuffy. That's all I buy in there now. Plain, nicely cut dress in black, navy and charcoal and I'm out of there. Used to love it and bought a lot in there.

I have some gorgeous mini skirts I bought in there years ago when I was thinner

Disclaimer: I have a very formal and dull job hence need for plain, smart dresses.

beeny Sun 03-Feb-13 08:38:13

Exactly what i was thinking

aftermay Sun 03-Feb-13 08:36:28

It is a bit stuffy, isn't it? I've been looking though their sales online in the past and I still can't bring myself to buy anything.

Snowkey Sun 03-Feb-13 08:29:49

I remember when I was a young trendy thing thinking when I'm older I would love to wear Hobbs clothes, they were grown up but cool, edgy even. I bought my first suit from Hobbs and wore it thread bare, I loved it so much.

Went into Hobbs yesterday and their main bit was very much wedding stuff mixed with a bit of Tory wife. Even the new supposedly edgy NW3 was dull.

Did they grow old with their customer base?

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