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Gen X Clothing to dress former craft store site.

Byline: Retail Notebook By Edward Russo The Register-Guard

Craft World just last month went out of business at its space near Mohawk Boulevard and Olympic Street in Springfield, but it didn't take long for another retailer to snap up the store.

Gen X Clothing has signed a lease for the 13,000-square-foot space formerly occupied by Craft World in the Springfield Mall, near Winco Foods, says landlord McKay Investment Co.

Remodeling is under way for Los Angeles-based Gen X. The firm hopes to open in August, said Meehee Park, a Gen X merchandise buyer.

The 35-store chain sells mostly clothing aimed at female teen-agers, and males ages 12 to 30, Park said. Gen X also sells shoes, makeup, luggage and other items.

The firm's majority owner is Sei "Gary" Oh, a Korean immigrant, who started opening the stores five years ago.

In Oregon, Gen X has outlets in Portland, Hillsboro and Salem. Gen X also has stores in Washington, Idaho, Utah, New Mexico, Colorado, Missouri and Nebraska.

Gen X's electronic storefront needs a little work, or at least a new translation program. A page on the www.genxclothinginc.com Web site has a greeting from an unnamed chief executive that reads in part: "Netizens, hello. Welcome to Gen-X Clothing Inc.'s home page. For front, our Gen-X Clothing Inc. will become good company that engrave philosophy of customer administration that corporation's the future is started customer's love and belief deeply, and guarantee happiness of housewife and woman first."

In Springfield, Gen X will occupy the storefront next to discounter Factory 2-U, which sells clothing, shoes, household items and toys. The firm gets much of its inventory from other retailers that were unable to sell the goods - a category of product known in the trade as "overstock merchandise."

Factory 2-U store manager Tom Graves said that instead of seeing Gen X as a competitor, he prefers to think about the possible benefit of having a filled storefront next door.

"I'm hoping that it will help our business by attracting more shoppers" to the area, he said.

Meanwhile, Eugene-based Craft World is the process of shutting its three remaining hobby stores, one apiece in Eugene, Albany and North Bend. Craft World General Manager Dennis Phillips said the stores should be closed by next May.

Retail Notebook runs Thursdays. Edward Russo can be reached at 338-2359 or erusso@guardnet.com.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jul 10, 2003
Words:397
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