Santa Barbara Politics, Media & Culture

Saturday, December 22, 2007

What Were They Thinking? Bah Humbug! from Tiffany & Co.

According to some artists I spoke to on the Art Walk at La Cumbre Plaza today -- Tiffany & Co., which has been at the mall for all but a month perhaps, is lobbying for the closure of the arts walk. It would seem they are a bit high brow for the local artisans.

While other retailers seem to enjoy the traffic created by the walk, especially in January and February when the mall is quiet, I guess Tiffany & Co. has a Teflon coating. Williams and Sonoma; and, Victoria's Secret don't seem to mind...

To be fair, the artists I spoke with may be extrapolating a bit...but is the new mall management taking it where we don't want it to go?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

So why didn't you talk to anybody from Tiffany's too?

12/22/2007 8:37 PM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

We were there today, and quite impressed with a couple of artists in the mall. Will be doing some substantial business with them. Excluding Tiffany's, we solved all of our Christmas dilemmas with brick/mortar and kiosk merchants in this one stop and never had to journey to Goleta.

12/22/2007 9:17 PM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

8:37 PM -- there wasn't an email readily apparent on their web site. More than one artist relayed this information to me but I think I made it clear in the post that this movement could be from management as well or maybe instead of. They, or Tiffany's, are welcome to respond at any time.

12/23/2007 4:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't the idea to get people to come, relax, and stay awhile so they wander into shops and buy things? I thought that was also the reason behind the concerts in the mall. If Tiffany's is so upscale that they are "offended" by no name local artists, then maybe they should move to Montecito where the ultra rich hang out so that their clients don't have to rub shoulders with ordinary people.

This is just another example of how SB has lost it's small town charm and character. The people who lament over losing SB's small town character have their heads buried in the sand. SB has been taken over by the folks from Beverly Hills and Rodeo DR. These people moved here "to get away from LA" but in the end brought LA with them. Just like the NP, SB is pretty well dead except for the pretty red tile roof facades.

12/23/2007 5:12 AM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

Well said. And extend it to the harbor, too.

12/23/2007 6:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, is Tiffany's innocent until proven guilty? Or is it screwed merely on the assertion of a couple of mall artists?

12/23/2007 7:44 AM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

There are certainly two sides to every story...and I would be happy to hear theres. But tell me who is more likely to have a voice?

12/23/2007 8:52 AM  
Anonymous sa1 said...

Bummer, Vigalente,
Kristen Amyx will be very disappointed to hear that. How will we ever be able to justify more affordable, high density housing and a Tarjzhay (Goleta's version of Tiffany) if shoppers won't commute to The Good Land?

...and I had Hot Cocoa and cookies waiting for ya.

12/23/2007 9:12 AM  
Blogger David Pritchett said...

After all, Sara de la Guerra draws a huge salary for this effort and has nothing else to do in RL, so should have spent a day chasing down an ambiguous comment from Tiffany's corporate headquarters.

12/23/2007 9:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love Tiffany's - BUT - would prefer they stayed in NYC where Tiffany really belongs. I shop online or telphone with them for baby gifts so do not need their presence ala Bev Hills as mentioned above comment.

As for the sidewalk merchants. My problem with them is much like the perfume peddlers in department stores. ATTACK! Hate that. Someone shoving their wares in my face makes me crazy, forces me to be almost rude to shake them off...

No happy medium!

(Sara, you should call Tiffany's Admin. in NYC where you should be able to get the scoop.)

12/23/2007 11:19 AM  
Anonymous Al Bonowitz said...

You would do well (as big-league journalists do) to indicate that an attempt was made to get the other side of the story.

While it's true that there's not a readily apparent e-mail address at, there is an e-mail form under "customer service." That probably wouldn't yield an immediate reply (especially on the weekend before Christmas), but it would be a start. There's also an 800 number listed with hours indicated.

In the interest of science: I called and, after waiting through the various choices, stayed on the line to speak with the next available representative, who would be recorded to improve customer service. She told me that media relations were handled through the New York store and gave me a 212 number. Total elapsed time: less than two minutes.

I didn't test the 212 number because this isn't my blog.

In any case, a sentence such as "A Tiffany representative wasn't immediately available to comment" should placate most cynics. There will always be a hater whom you can't satisfy ... but that's not the person you should be worrying about.

12/23/2007 12:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree about being panhandled by the kiosk merchants. I am an intelligent shopper and if I want to stop and look, I will. I will definitely not stop if I am harassed. Their aggressive tactics ruins my trip to the mall every time.

12/23/2007 1:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes. this and everything else is the fault of the news-press. who set the zaca fire? the news-press. who killed angel linares? the new-press. who raped eric frimpong's victim? the news-press. who spilled oil at the Greka plant? the news-press. who flew planes into the world trade center? the news-press. who gave sara de la guerra herpes? the news-press. who killed Robert F. Kennedy? the news-press. who told tom schultz he could talk blacker than james brown? the news-press. who sold craig smith that bad hairpiece? the news-press. who killed the blue whales? the news-press. global warming? the war in iraq? the sub-prime lending crisis? why, the news-press. who else?

12/25/2007 2:50 AM  
Blogger Sara De la Guerra said...

Before some bad rumor starts about me and sa1 or even my fling with Richard Gere back in the day -- I didn't do it and I don't have it!

Let's get back to the discussion before Tom Schultz and Craig Smith send me emails -- not to mention our friends at DLG.

Sarcasm can be a misunderstood beast -- as we know here at BlogaBarbara.

12/25/2007 5:31 AM  
Anonymous Live Oak said...

Hi, I'm an artist at La Cumbre. I had not heard Shelly, our organizer, tell anyone Tiffany's was kicking us out. I think there was miscommunication between mall management and Shelly, because initially the mall did not say why they were not letting us show next year. Now, as of Sunday, the word has come down that the mall may be interested in having us back after construction is completed. That gives us hope!

Shelly told us a couple weeks ago, I forget when, that the mall wasn't having us back next year, and there was much speculation among the artists about why. Shelly didn't start these rumors. The best conclusion I heard had nothing to do with Tiffany's, but the mall management. It was speculated mall management didn't want us back because they were trying to LA-ify their image by putting in new stores LIKE Tiffany's, Ruth's Chris, Coach, etc, and that our little art show was not slick enough. That was the conclusion I and other artists came to, and I hadn't heard anyone blame Tiffany's directly. I regret any miscommunication by any artists who told anyone Tiffany's kicked us out, because they certainly did not. Sunday was the first any of us artists had heard about next year's construction, and many of us are clinging to the hope that we may possibly return. I hope the public will support us.

12/25/2007 8:03 AM  
Anonymous curious said...

do we want local art at la cumbre? (not referring to kiosks) local artists and kiosks are to separate entities. i'm sure the malls management would be interested for we are the $ behind the mall, right?

12/25/2007 3:49 PM  

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