A Fond Farewell to Farr West Lingerie
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A Fond Farewell to Farr West Lingerie

Disclosure: Farr West is a former client of The Lingerie Addict. This blog post contains affiliate links.

Editor's Note: Farr West has since been purchased and is open for business. You can find their website here.



farr west

Today's guest post is written by Annmarie. Annmarie has written for The Lingerie Addict before. She considers herself to be a lifelong lingerie enthusiast, which is probably nothing but a fancy way to say “addict."

Lingerie blogs often highlight new designs and trends. Unfortunately, this article is a tribute to a family lingerie brand here in the US that is now going out of business after 45 years... a brand that I came to love and trust for more than two decades. Farr West, known mostly for its classic daywear made of high quality, anti-cling, satin charmeuse, has decided to close its doors.

It all started in 1968 when Jack and Iris Farr moved back to California after working in the garment industry in New York. They started their own company, focusing on quality and continuing to offer undergarments that were beginning to go out of favor (such as full and half-slips), as well as other designs. Some ten years later, their two children joined the business and eventually took it over. Daughter Lindsey Roscoe became the chief designer, and son Chuck Farr oversaw the day-to-day operations and financial side of the business. Chuck’s daughter, Amanda, joined the team three years ago to help with marketing. At its peak, 32 employees worked for the company.

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Farr West products sold its products almost exclusively through department stores around the country, and they catered to an older clientele. I suspect this may have come to haunt the company later on as demographics, fashion trends, and ways of doing business evolved. Farr West always operated in the US, but after other companies moved production overseas, they struggled to keep up with the competition. It is also my impression that Farr West took too long to adopt e-commerce. Their website went up only few years ago (and was always a little hard to navigate or get a good image of the product), and it was only a year or so ago the company finally caught up with social media. I would also argue that more diverse seasonal styles and colors could have attracted new customers.

I first stumbled upon Farr West Lingerie in Nordstrom some 20 years ago, and as I went through my drawers recently, I realized I own at least ten of their designs that have been with me for years and are still going strong. Call me old-fashioned but I love beautiful, well done, silky slips. I think they are very versatile and can be worn as daywear, lounge, or even to bed. My favorite is the Farr West Vintage Bloom, which I own in two different colors and is now available at HerRoom for $45. Pettipants are another versatile Farr West creations, and HerRoom still has some of the Heirloom Rose lace pettipants available in limited sizing. Finally, half-slips have always been one of Farr West’s strengths and several of their styles in cotton and satin are still available at HerRoom.

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Though I felt that using plastic hardware for adjustable straps was somewhat inconsistent with Farr West's quest for quality, I understand it is often a struggle to find the right size and color metal pieces. However, I hope other lingerie manufacturers will take note that customers are willing to pay a little extra to ensure our undergarments will last for a long time without having to alter them once the plastic pieces break (as they often do).

Regardless of all that, though, I’m still extremely appreciative for what Farr West had to offer all these years! I truly hope other designers are taking note and will be able to pick up from where this great company has left off.


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Cora Harrington

Founder and Editor in Chief of The Lingerie Addict. Author of In Intimate Detail: How to Choose, Wear, and Love Lingerie. I believe lingerie is fashion too, and that everyone who wants it deserves gorgeous lingerie.

9 Comments on this post

  1. sherry says:

    Hi on Mar 12 2015 I ordered a emily essential camisole for $ 52.00 from farr west . I have not received it yet has anyone else had this same issue. I tried contacting Manuka Clarke and other by tel. and e-mail no response. Please help me if anyone has any information on this.

    Sherry

    • Cora says:

      Hi Sherry,

      I don’t have any information on what’s going on with Farr West, but I have published your comment in the hops they see. I did remove your personal contact information, however, as this is a public website (and sometimes people have bad intentions). I hope it gets worked out. It may be time to contact your bank for a reversal.

      Best,
      Cora

  2. Hello loyal Farr West Customers.
    We are still in business. I purchased the company in February after begging the family to keep it alive. We will still carry the beloved Lindsay Roscoe designs in Farr West’s signature anti-cling fabric. I look forward as the new owner and designer of Farr West to bringing you the classic timeless pieces you’ve always loved, and also the new lines we hope you enjoy.
    Please visit http://www.farrwest.com for more information.
    All my best,

    Manuka Clarke

  3. Richard says:

    I met Jack Farr back in the earl 70s when I bought silky slips for my wife, she and I loved them

  4. Karen Persson says:

    I’m so glad I stumbled upon your blog, Cora, as I discovered a month or two ago that Farr*West had been sold to a new owner and I was really disappointed as I used to work for them back in 1970-71. I assisted Iris Farr in the studio with sewing the samples, cutting fabrics, etc. It was so much fun. Back then I made illustrations for their catalogues. The last 10-12 years I made about 8 illustrations of lingerie for their promotional cards. The last one was in September of 2012. It was such a delight to work with the Farr family. Btw, Lindsey and I went to high school together and had art classes together.

    A great loss that they sold the business but I do understand their decision.

    Keep up the good work with your blog.

    Karen Persson

  5. Lynn B says:

    I can hardly believe that yet another of my favorite lingerie brands is gone. I have Farr West slips and pettipants older than my adult daughter that still look fantastic. Such excellent quality. This just makes me so sad.

  6. Mike says:

    I have to agree that it is a shame Farr West went bust! In my opinion it is the best lingerie around. I have purchased many slips for my wife, they are very sexy! No one else even comes close. So I felt compelled to buy up a large amount of their stock. Satin slips, full and half, and chemise. Also picked up camisoles, petty pants all at 50 percent off!

    • Cora says:

      Nice! Sounds like you really racked up. I picked up a few pieces as well. I supposed all my old Farr West slips and chemises are collector’s items now.

  7. Don says:

    Wow, very pretty stuff and I’m not familiar with them. This is not an easy business and 45 years is a very good run.

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