Thursday, April 13, 2006


Also known as, why I hate Motherhood Maternity and why you shouldn’t shop there…

(Sorry knitting friends! This one is not about knitting at all, but if this helps just one mommy to be out there it's worth it. Knitting content post coming tonight, I swear! And it's an exciting one!)

The return policy is terrible. No money back ever. Items can be exchanged but only in the first 10 days. Anything on sale or clearance = no return period for any reason at all. And sale means their in-store deals of 2 for $25, it doesn’t have to actually be marked sale at all.

This makes me not like them off the bat.

But two weeks ago I gave them the benefit of the doubt. (Plus where the heck else can I get maternity clothing? Not a lot of options, Gap maternity, Old Navy and Target, but it’s nice to try to find basic t-shirts or nicer dresses..). We spent $80+ there. I don’t like the lack of quality in most of their clothing but I picked some basics that appeared to be of decent quality.

I left wary but excited about my new clothing. And I was right to be wary. $40+ went to tshirts and tank tops that shrank so much when I washed them that they are unwearable. I had only washed the white t-shirt and the pink tank due to laundry loads, but it worked out so I could compare them to the other colors. Shrank a good 4” in length alone… Oh, the fabric also was knit up under tension and starched to stay in place, so now that it’s been washed the seams are skewed. This means that the side seams after washing twist and end up in the front and back of the garment. Nice features. Shirts that are now too small at all (and these were purchased with the intent that I’d grow into them, i.e. they were big on me). Of course as I got the 2 for $ deal they were ‘on sale’ so I can’t even return the ones that I haven’t washed or worn. Awesome.

I also bought a cami with a built in bra that shrank but is kinda wearable. For about a week anyway before it’s too small.

And lastly, I bought a cute black dress that I couldn’t wait to wear at my showers. Even after my washing issues with the other clothing I was still ok with this dress and figured that the $80+ for everything was worth it even with the issues as the dress was a good deal and was super cute. It’s polyester and rayon, and being polyester I figured that it couldn’t shrink in the washer therefore at least this one item that I purchased would be ok. I wore it to work yesterday. Realized last night that it crocked onto the pink cardi I wore over it and also onto my bra. For those who do not know industry terms, crocking is when dye rubs off onto other surfaces. The damage caused by this is almost always permanent. So not only is it poor quality, but it has now stained/wrecked two other items of clothing. (And if any knitters are actually reading this, I almost wore it with one of my shawls! Can you imagine if it had crocked onto one of my handknit/took me forever/this thing was so much work it's an heirloom shawls???)

I am irate. It’s hard enough to find clothing that fits us but then to have the clothing either shrink on me before I can even wear it or wreck other clothing…

I called Motherhood HQ to complain. The woman on the phone said she could only help with internet or phone orders. She wouldn’t transfer me to anyone else at HQ. She said that this was a ‘store issue’ therefore she transferred me to the district manager’s voicemail… Now I have worked for many large retail organizations. I don’t see what the district manager can do for me. District Manager’s jobs are to ensure that their stores look and perform well. Not to deal with quality issues of their garments. I am not expecting her to be able to assist me at all and even said in the message that I’m not sure how she can even assist me. Short of authorizing the store to let me return everything, which I’m not expecting to happen.

My helpful tip of the day. Don’t shop at Motherhood. Save your money. Spend it elsewhere.

To be fair, I will update when/if I do get an phone call from the District Manager.

(Knitting and pictures of knitting later tonight!!!)

EDIT - so the District Manager did call me back and left me a very nice message. I, of course, was in meetings this entire afternoon so I did not call until I got home. She told me that in a situation of product defects they are happy to accept returns, despite being longer than 10 days (my items were purchased 3/19) as product quality is very important to them. I'm returned almost all the items tomorrow after work. I am keeping the cami, and maybe the stupid dress. I do love it, and am washing it twice right now to try to get the excess dye out. I'll test for crocking once it's dry. If it still crocks, it too is going back. She did say that she would call the store so they would know that this is a special cicumstance and to accept my return with no issues. (Funny that she earlier said they are happy to accept product returns due to quality defects yet is calling the store to tell them to accept my return.... I'm not complaining, I'm just saying... if they happily accept product returns due to poor quality, then why would she have to call...). I guess we'll see how it goes tomorrow.


beth said...

That is bull$#!t! I remember a friend told me not to bother with Motherhood Maternity because their clothes shrunk, but I didn't think they'd shrink that much. Geez! Like all pregnant chicks want to show off their bellies. I hope you get your $$ back because maternity clothes are expensive! Cute 29 wk pics btw:)

Anonymous said...

Yikes! It's been awhile since I was pregnant, but I do recall how difficult it was to find decent/wearable/affordable maternity clothes. Please keep us posted on how the returns to MM end up going.

Jessica said...

Cori, I live someplace quite rural where it's impossible to find maternity clothes in my size. I had good luck with, because they only charge $5 shipping and you don't have to pay extra shipping on returns and exchanges. Granted, it's not as nice as going to a store to try on, but at least they recognize that you might have trouble figuring out your maternity size. (Oh, sure, I know you're supposed to wear your prepregnant size, but it doesn't always work out that way.)

I sure hope you have email notification turned on to tell you about the comments I've been leaving at these "ancient" posts. :)

Anonymous said...

Hmmm. I personally work in the 'hood of Motherhood. My 17 year old daughter loves to knit. As did my Mother in Law. I would love to knit, however I'm lefthanded. No one is willing to teach a left hander. Although, I will make you welcome in my Motherhood store sans knitting lesson to nurse, chat, keep me company whatever. May I start you a fitting room, Futuretrust college fund, etc.? Sincerely, Pam Proud Mama of 3. Your t.l.c. & fitting room are waiting for you anytime. P.S. My co-workers are also Moms. Just ask Rebecca