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Critical Shopping

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Out two days early, this week's Critical Shopper column has Mike Albo going to a store he can actually afford (for a change), the Gap flagship on Fifth Avenue. There, he sees evidence of new creative director Patrick Robinson's hand. "Walking into the giant store, I could see the revamping effort. The space was brightly lighted, cool music was playing, huge photos of Hugh Dancy and the sexily scarred hockey star Sean Avery were on the walls, and the mannequins wore hip outfits in layered combinations I wanted to wear — especially one tweed jacket, sleeves pushed up. Mixed in with those updated items were some gross familiars from yesteryear: baseball hats with the word GAP sewn on the front ($16.50) and khaki cargo pants with lumpythigh pockets ($44.50). One look at those items and I wanted to breathe into a paper bag." [NYT]