L.L. Bean: Always in Style

By Laura Kuhn

Growing up in Nashville, the rare snow day evoked pure glee. My memories of the days when the tiny flakes finally fluttered down every four-or-so years are hazy images: ice-sledding down the street, hastily built snow goons in the mean neighbor’s yard and my mom’s red L.L. Bean duck boots.

Fast forward 15 years and I was ready to get a pair of my own. So, of course when I went to visit my college friend in Maine last winter break, I insisted we hit up the L.L. Bean megastore. It was everything I dreamed it would be.

When I read in this past issue of Business Week that L.L. Bean is expanding its online business I could not have been happier. I will now be able to support a deserving company more easily than ever

The article perfectly pinpoints L.L. Bean’s charm with its emphasis on the “folksy sales staff.” As I wavered between the fur lined and the classic lace-ups, the employees were quick to offer their advice and swap snowy day anecdotes. I’m glad to hear reports that even in the move online, L.L. Bean will still be providing these pleasant people with solid wages, healthcare benefits and pensions.

Perhaps the author is right that L.L. Bean is a relic of a simpler time and sells only items that could have been found decades ago. But I’m a firm believer that some things never go out of style. For example, snow. And kindness. And duck boots.

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