Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Curse you, M&S! CURSE YOU AND YOUR LACK OF SPARE BUTTONS!

Dilemma. I treated myself to a new winter coat from Marks & Spencer's. You all know how much I love that shop, and so I spent £85 on a coat (I hadn't had a new winter coat for 2 years, and my old one is now too big for me thanks to my weight loss).



I love this coat - the cut is lovely, the fabric is lovely, the fit is lovely, it flows in a dramatic fashion when I run across the road pretending that I'm Sherlock Holmes (sadly, yes...), the lining is a beautiful buttery soft satin, the Peter Pan collar and double-breasted front gives it a slightly Regency feel.... BUT!!!! The buttons keep falling off.

It's got 8 buttons down the front, and it's double-breasted (so 4 are functional and 4 are decoration). Two of the functionals have fallen off (1 has got lost, the other I have somewhere safe until I get round to sewing it back on), and yesterday a 3rd button fell off (a decorative one). The spares packet inside the coat was ripped apart so I can't replace the missing buttons myself. I am now into week 3 of having a cold, and to be quite honest, having a coat I can't properly fasten (the internal button isn't too bad but still) while commuting on foot 6 miles a day while having a cold is really, really shit.

I contacted M&S by email on 25th September to ask for spare buttons and was told they would have to contact their "technologists" who aren't in the country - presumably this means M&S doesn't have any spare buttons in the UK. Really. I didn't hear back, got upset, and last week phoned them, so they said they'd chase it up. When the third button fell off yesterday, steam was about to erupt from my ears, so I rang them again this morning. "We're chased the technologists and we'll let you know if there's any spares."

Now... this is my dilemma. I love this coat, apart from the buttons. I don't like any of their other winter coats half as much. At one point they told me I could have a refund if I went to my local M&S and they didn't have my size in stock anymore. But I don't want a refund, I just want three poxy bloody coat buttons! If they don't have the buttons, what am I going to do? Do you think I could buy eight replacement buttons from somewhere else and send them the bill?

And do you know what else I think? I think that as I've been royally inconvenienced by the crappy buttons, freezing my arse off because I can't fasten my coat, and having to chase them to sort this out, if the spares do by some miracle materialise, I want some kind of financial recompense for the trouble I've been put to. I do not expect to spend £85 on a coat, only to be dicked about. I bought my coat from M&S, not poxy Primark! It pisses me off because I've run a clothes shop myself since 2007, and every time anyone's had a quality issue with a product, I've sorted it out as fast as I can. I think it's a pretty poor show by M&S to rely on overseas manufacturers to the point where they can't sort you out with a fucking spare button.

Yes, I said "fuck". I'm annoyed.

PS: Have just realised that "poxy" makes me sound like an 18th century gent. That's no bad thing. *flips wig* *plays cards naked with a courtesan*

7 comments:

  1. I can't say I have had this exact situation, but I can relate on the fact that button work these days is shoddy at best. They run these things through a machine that just tacks it in place, then leave loose threads everywhere and hope for the best. Recently when I've bought things with buttons (especially coats and pants) the first thing I do is check the way the buttons have been sewn on. Half the time, I cut them off and put them back on myself. I can't decide if this is good or bad. When I did it to my husband's pants, the fabric tore before the button threads. The thing is, I shouldn't have to do this if I buy from a decent shop - none of us should. It makes me mad because you think it's a simple button, but then you go to the store to buy more and it's more than a cup of coffee for each card of buttons. I complained about the quality of button attachment to a friend once and she said "Just go buy more buttons." Obviously she doesn't sew often. I go through my mom's stash of buttons partly because that's how you find nice retro buttons, but even more so because I don't like the way it doubles the cost of making a garment just by buying buttons. Yes, at first glance it seems like no big thing, but it all builds up, doesn't it, into a bigger frustration? We can't afford new clothes/coats or a huge stash of buttons when we are watching out pennies just to buy a decent coat in the first place. It's not right and we deserve better quality.

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    1. Spot on! I spent £85 on a coat, and I don't expect the buttons to fall off. And when they've fallen off, I have the job of sewing them back on again? Really??? How much did I spend on this coat again? Oh, yeah... £85...

      It's so infuriating and unnecessary. It wastes everyone's time! Arrgghh!

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  2. Ask them for generous refund and get 8 buttons from somewhere else?

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    1. Certainly tempting....! I don't know if they'd refund me without me giving them back the coat, though. I do think they should sort me out somehow because... it's M&S. They invented Lochmuir, ffs.

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  3. I think at £85 the damn buttons ought to be sewn on properly! I rarely buy new clothes but always have to make sure I tighten all buttons before I wear whatever it is. Absolutely ridiculous. They are not properly fixed at all.
    Compare and contrast with Past Times, a long while ago my late mother bought me an Art Deco repro watch from them. I admit I wore it all the time when really I ought not to have as it was a cocktail watch rather than every day. Anyhoo, it had a velvet strap and eventually this came to bits. I tried to find another like it everywhere to no avail, I wrote to the company asking if it would be possible to buy another strap from them or if they might know where I could buy something similar....they sent me a brand new strap. Now this was years after the watch had originally been bought from them, I didn't expect any freebies, just some advice etc. I was hugely impressed.

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  4. I'm having the same problem - why don't M&S have spares? It's so annoying. My buttons are bright pink covered so they are hardly easily replaceable. Grrr

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  5. Whistles. Their buttons on coats never fall off. I always buy a Whistles coat in their sales, good quality, warm, well made and bloody excellent button attachment.

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