It Was Already Cool

Urban Outfitters steals ideas for designs

Most Hockadaisies wear clothes from the popular chain store Urban Outfitters because it has chic, hip clothes for yuppies (young professionals) and teens. However, what many do not realize is that Urban Outfitters, although chic and hip, is often unoriginal and dishonest. Currently, Urban Outfitters is facing multiple lawsuits in which they have been accused of stealing ideas and designs from independent designers for apparel, jewelry, and knick-knacks.

Their plagiarism reached the public eye when Urban Outfitters stole jewelry designer Stevie Koerner’s necklace designs off her online store through Etsy—a website in which handmade/vintage items and art/craft supplies are created, sold and bought by users. Koerner has sold these necklaces, each shaped like a different state, since 2005.

However, Urban Outfitters copied them exactly and began selling them for their own profit. Since then, Koerner has sworn off Urban Outfitters and all other stores owned by that company (Free People and Anthropologie).

Senior Megan had a negative experience with Urban Outfitters when ordering this exact necklace. After ordering one online, Urban Outfitters sent her something completely different.

She laments, “I never got the right necklace after all that—shipping made it even more difficult—so I just returned it. I then got the Texas one but that was broken. I was able to get a refund but the whole situation was ridiculous.”

Urban Outfitters, with their history of fallibility and breaching of copyrighted designs, cannot even make up for their faults by providing quality clothes.

According to senior Hannah, it is “not surprising at all that they have dealt with copyright infringement lawsuits. Urban [Outfitters] tries to have the appearance of a small, locally owned business when really it’s just a chain. Everything about the store is pretty fake.”

On top of that, Hannah states that their clothing is “not worth the money.” “Zippers have broken, clasps have broken, clothes have shrunk, fabric is flimsy. Everything rips, tears, breaks,” Hannah said.

Despite this, Hannah still feels like she has no choice but to shop there. “It’s hard to find clothes like theirs anywhere else,” she explained.

Though most opinions of Urban Outfitters through Hockaday have been incredibly negative, one girl offers a different perspective.

Junior Evi has “never had any issues with the clothes” and believes that since “it lasts for a long time, it’s worth the extra cost.

“For me, it doesn’t break and I don’t have to go buy another one,” she said.

With her positive view of Urban Outfitters’ clothes, Evi is shocked to hear that they have dealt with many copyright infringement issues. Still, after hearing this, Evi states that “she doesn’t want to shop there as much anymore” because she “[realizes] that Urban isn’t as original as they appear to be.”

– Hunter