I live in the town where one of the first Dutch Primark stores opened its doors. It was big news all over our country (I think it was about 4 years ago) and women from all over dragged their husbands to this supercheap and superhuge clothing store. Soon my town was full of those cardboardy paper bags of Primark, literally 80 percent of the women on the trainstation on a Saturday, would have one or two of those bags with them.
Then the news came out that one of the Primark factories in Bangladesh collapsed, which was very sad news. People suddenly were a bit worried about the conditions of the Primark employees, of the people that made those supercheap clothes possible in the first place. For a while I think there were less people going to Primark, but now were full on again. My town thankfully is a little bit less busy now, as there are about 10 new Primarks that opened in Holland ever since mine opened up and became such a success.
The thing with Primark is, there is a lot to hate about this store: it is cheap so it has a reputation of being of not good quality, the company might not treat their employees very well and the stores are usually very messy, because there is so much stuff in them that it cannot possibly stay very organised. I am also a person that is not too fond of Primark. Every time I see someone with a Primark bag on the train station, I feel like they are just the next victim.
However! I myself often walk on the trainstation with the exact same bags. I think I visit Primark at least once every season, and even though I usually go in thinking: I will just buy one pair of trousers for work, I always come out with a big bag having spent at least ninety euros. The reason for that is that Primark has got really good business clothes. I always need trousers with extra lenght and Primark has them for 6 euros. My business pants from Primark have been going strong for a few years now, which is very impressive considering the price.
The second reason why I always spend a lot more than I expect, is that they often have Disney clothing. Sometimes its Mickey Mouse, sometimes its Marvel, or recently Star Wars; the geek in me just loves these brands and therefor my brain always tricks me into buying new t-shirts even though I can only really wear them at home and on the weekends. Lastly, Primark is a great place for buying cute pyjamas. They have the most colorful, cute and soft pyjamas and they are so hard to resist.
What I also like about Primark, is that it is the perfect subject to talk about on birthdays. Just so you know, Dutch birthdays are usually very boring. People sit around in a little circle, talking to eachother even though they hardly ever see eachother. I am pretty okay with them, but the problem is my age. Everybody around me has kids, so they will talk about kids. And as I am not particularly interested in kids, it sometimes is hard for me to keep really engaged in stories about kids learning how to swim, baby’s getting their first teeth and so on. I usually will bring up Primark when I am around other women, because there is so much to talk about: has there already opened a Primark here? Have you ever been there, what do you think? It is a pretty good birthday subject!
Also, Primark is doing things that other Dutch companies struggle with. In Dutch downtowns many big shops are closing up because they have to file for bankrupty due to bad financial years and people buying more and more online. It is hard to get people to go into your store and spend a lot these days. Primark however, is one of the companies that is actually growing and being very popular.
So for now I think it will still be a love-hate relationship that we all have with Primark, but as long as they make awesome business wear that lasts for years, I will still gladly go through the messy stores to find it.