Retail Confessions: Gucci, Part II
"These guys were cheating so much on their wives or girlfriends... I think they would probably splurge on the mistresses more, honestly."
Happening in the Back Row chat this week: paid subscribers are weighing in on Vogue’s new September supermodels cover. You can join the conversation on desktop or the Substack app, which I highly recommend. I plan to start more threads there going forward because sometimes we just need to talk to each other about these things. The Substack app makes keeping up with the chat easy.
Back Row’s previous “Retail Confessions” column featured a former employee of Gucci’s Soho store in New York City. Ahead, hear from a former Gucci employee who worked in Scottsdale, Arizona, where the clientele included professional athletes who lived there during spring training. The store also catered to wealthy people who earned their fortunes in tech, real estate, and finance, and often shopped wearing leggings and sandals.
This employee worked in the store for around five years following the Great Recession, when Frida Giannini was designing for the brand. Certain details have been anonymized to protect the source’s identity.
What kind of training did you have?
There was no training whatsoever. It's very much like, you're in the lion's den and you better know what you're doing. And if you don't know what you're doing, you'll probably get written up for not hitting your sales. I think the only training we ever got was when we would have new fragrance come out. The Proctor and Gamble people would come out, they'd talk about the base notes and the mid notes and the high notes.
And what kind of clientele frequented the Gucci store?
We helped a ton of athletes. We get the Super Bowl here a lot, spring training for baseball is here. A lot of things that happened in that store revolved around baseball players cheating and hooking up with people. One well-known player hit on a girl I worked with. He was like, “I'm not leaving here until I get your number.” And she's like, “Thank you, but no.” We actually had to have security come up to him and say, “Hey, she's saying no, you have to go.”
And he's like, “Well, I'm not leaving here until I get it.” So he threw this big stink. Later that weekend, he ended up coming into the store with his partner and his kid. We didn't know he had a kid. He’s looking at the sales associate that he had hit on, like, Please don't say anything. Just a terrified look on his face.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to Back Row to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.