Monday, May 24, 2010

Let's talk about knock offs

We spent the weekend at the beach and while there, did a little furniture shopping with Marc's mother. The first store we visited has a lot of transitional and modern pieces. As I was making my way through the store, I came upon this:



I immediately felt along the back of the seat to see if it had the marks of a Kartell Ghost Chair. It was smooth. I picked it up and it was considerably lighter than the clear ghost chair I got from La Difference last summer.

Now, we've all seen the knock off ghost chairs sold online through Overstock and others. They usually sell the chairs in pairs...two knock offs for the price of one authentic chair. This store was selling one for $200 on sale and $375 regularly. The authentic chairs go for about $400. Maybe the "sale" is a perpetual one?

How do you feel about knock offs? What's more, how do you feel about knock offs with prices that rival those of the originals?
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9 comments:

  1. If the price is close, say within 30% of the original, buy the name.

    I'm all for knock-offs if they're well done AND a bargain.

    My Faux-Go was $488, about 1/10th the price of a real Togo 3-seater. It's nowhere close to being as squishy, but it's in an area of the house that doesn't see much traffic.

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  2. I agree...if the "sale" price of the faux ghost chair is perpetual, I can understand that. If they are seriously trying to sell it for $25 less than the real thing, I think they're crazy.

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  3. i love a knock off, but only if it is a knock off price, except a handbag-can't do that.

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  4. Knock offs are inevitable, and some of them are really good.
    But what is the difference between a counterfeit and a knock off or an homage?
    I work at a store where we are exclusive dealers of Kartell, and yet a few doors away way cheaper Kartell knock offs are sold, and of course every smart shopper knows about them on the internet.
    When we try to talk to Kartell about it, like maybe dropping their prices so our customers will buy genuine Kartell (or upping our wholesale cost split - they take a bigger split then others), or going after the fakes, they really don't care.
    The entire Kartell line is not being knocked off - yet, so we just stop carrying the pieces like the Ghost Chair that is being sold at half the price.
    If you are on a budget, knock offs are fabulous.
    And who doesn't decorate using high and low elements?
    xo xo

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  5. I was actually going to mention knock off handbags, but figured I'd keep it simple. :)

    I didn't realize there were more stores selling the faux ghost chairs...I thought this one was a fluke and they were primarily sold online.

    Thanks for the inside scoop on Kartell pricing, Vamp. VERY interesting!

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  6. I'm with the others - knock offs are fine with me, but the price needs to be right!

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  7. I love cheap just like anyone else. If the cost of the knock off is a fraction of the price then Im all for it. But at $175 its still kind of pricey and the $350 price tag for the real thing is attainable. So in this case Im all for the original b/c I think its the kind of thing that will be a classic.

    That said, if I could find them for $50, then I'd be on board.

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  8. stealing intellectual property is never cool. but when there's a huge savings involved, the knock off always seems very tempting...

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  9. I have a knock-off Nelson Marshmallow sofa that I bought for 25% of the cost at DWR. There's no way we would have spent money on the real thing, but I really wanted one, so we shopped around until we found the knock-off. We call it the Marshmallow sofa but never say that it's a Nelson.

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