Who Would Buy This Thing? is a series that spotlights particularly egregious commercial objects and tries to imagine who might indeed pay money to own them.
Autumn has tentatively arrived in parts of the country, bringing with it the ever-raging pumpkin spice wars and the lower temperatures necessary for my favorite sartorial season: sweater weather. In fall, sweaters can assume their rightful place as a way of life, rather than a ramshackle guard against the frigid climes of corporate offices. As we look forward to what meteorologists are forecasting as an extremely cold and snowy winter, at least we can be comforted in the warm embrace of oversized sweaters galore. Unless, of course, you’re one of the many who choose to partake in the cropped sweater trend, a shortened waist-length take on the traditional whole sweater that Refinery29 is calling the “best sweater length.”
While “best” is a bit strong, cropped sweaters are fine and good and admittedly more refined than the fit I usually go for, which could aptly be described as vaguely structured blanket with sleeves. Still, purveyors of cropped sweaters should abide by the same rule as peddlers of crop tops: Because their product constitutes half of something, the price should follow suit. Once cropped-anything goes into regular item price, we start entering into the absurd territory that fashion is unfortunately so well-known for. Which brings me to the latest crime against both common decency and wallets everywhere: A $1,250 hand-knit cropped cardigan that for some reason also has a turtleneck on top.
If that didn’t sound appealing enough, Shopbop, the website currently purveying this item, describes the colors of the wool/cashmere blend sweater as carrot and leaf green. This does, indeed, accurately capture the unnatural baby food–esque color of the cardigan. The cropped profile also includes snaps instead of buttons to continue the geriatric/pediatric vibe—which makes sense given that the inspiration for the brand is credited to the designer’s “grandmother, and to all women like her—confident in their own eccentricities, cultured, and audacious.” The chunky, fluorescent ribbed knit is truly reminiscent of a texture normally only seen under the Christmas tree with a note from grandma. Come to think of it, consider skipping the exorbitant markup on this one, and ask your nan to knit one for you instead. There’s still plenty of time before the holidays.
Who would buy this thing? A self-proclaimed “old soul” channeling the color palette of Daphne from Scooby-Doo.