Prague Fashion

June 2, 2010

This is my first fashion blog in Prague (that rhymes haha). On a more serious note, putting aside my potential career as a rapper, I think that I have improved as an ethnographer here in Prague and have come up with some interesting insights. For this post, I will be discussing some observations between the higher end stores on Parizka street (Paris Street in Czech).

Differences between Prada, Burberry, and Lacoste

Prada: As soon as we walked in Prada, I noticed the music. The music had a slick, mellow, cool vibe to it. The young man was wearing a fitted tux, and the sales woman inside was also dressed in well-fitted, upscale attire. The staff in general did not seem very welcoming to us, and they did not do very much to ask about our interest in the products. Even when we pretended that we were considering buying one of the pairs of $500 sunglasses, we were not approached or spoken to. The salespeople were not conversing with one another either. Literally, all you could hear were the smooth trance beats of the music playing in the store. I noticed that when the people I was with and I would have a conversation, we all seemed to talk a bit softer, and quiet speaking is not common for our group. There weren’t any mannequins in the store. Every item was in its own section, and shelved and displayed on its own. There weren’t very many items on display that were in multiples, meaning if you wanted something you’d have to go ask for it and have the sales person get it from the storage room. By the shoe section there was a very posh-looking suede, lilac couch. In terms of the items themselves, a lot of them displayed very gaudy labels of the name “Prada” shown off. Perhaps this reflects Czech people and how they shop. Czechs don’t like to talk about their things. They would rather prefer to show them off in a way people can see than having them hear about it.

Burberry: Walking into Burberry was a pleasant experience. It is a very high end store, but the staff was very friendly. The music was more pop radio based, and gave more of a light, easy-going mood. As soon as the customer walks into the store, they are greeted by the staff at the fragrance counter. Customers were encouraged to stand there and try out the new fragrances without any negative vibes from the staff; when we did this in Prada the staff acted annoyed. The way that the staff was dressed was nice, but definitely not wearing tailored suits. The Walls were all white, and mannequins within the store were present and adorned in the Burberry clothing. Burberry’s signature pattern is prevalent in much of their apparel, but I think it is done in a more tasteful way and goes along with the brand.

Lacoste: Upon walking into Lacoste, it seemed pretty dead. I really had to stop and pay attention to the type of music playing in the store, and it was just some light, classic rock. The walls were painted solid white and solid lime green, which was completely on brand with Lacoste. The whole vibe of the clothing and what the one sales person was wearing was sporty. The sales girl was wearing a polo, and was not really engaging, maybe she just didn’t speak the language. Lacoste did not have a smell, nor did it have many things that stuck out to me as an ethnographer outside of visuals. Everything was folding. Leaving the store, I felt neither positive nor negative emotions about my experience there, mediocre emotions. The most liveliness came from the window displays that depicted young models jumping into the air.


“Above all, remember that the most important thing you can take anywhere is not a Gucci bag or French-cut jeans; it’s an open mind.” -Gail Rubin


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