Sears pulls bondage wear from website

After dipping into the world of 'Fifty Shades of Grey,' it's yanking a vendor's line of leather collars and harnesses.

By Aimee Picchi Aug 13, 2013 10:57AM

Men's leather chest strap (© Sears)Think of Sears (SHLD) and chances are Craftsman tools and sturdy children's clothing will come to mind. "Fifty Shades of Grey," probably not so much. 


But the venerable retail chain had been offering bondage accessories on its website via a third-party vendor, including a "leather adjustable harness" ($34.39) and a "leather collar with O ring" ($19.99).


The items, though, are fast disappearing from Sears' Marketplace Website, the Daily Mail reports. 


"We perform routine content audits to remove items or product images that do not meet our Marketplace guidelines," a Sears spokesman told MSN Money.


The popularity of the "Fifty Shades of Grey" novels, which feature a couple who engage in bondage, has pushed author E.L. James to the head of Forbes' list of top-earning authors. James has made an estimated $95 million this year, topping longstanding writers such as James Patterson ($91 million) and Danielle Steel ($26 million).


That has prompted some retailers to try to ride the "Fifty Shades" phenomenon. Icing, a jewelry and accessories store owned by Claire's, started selling bondage-related items such as handcuff-themed bracelets and T-shirts with the phrase "Looking for Mr. Grey," a reference to the book's male protagonist.


Hotels, meanwhile, are offering "Fifty Shades" packages, while James has also created licensing agreements for "Fifty Shades" board games and lingerie.


As for Sears, it has pulled items from its Marketplace page before. A lingerie set with a pink mesh top was nixed in 2012 because the clothing violated Sears' policy against displaying nudity and transparent clothing, the Daily Mail noted. 


In the meantime, at least one critic had a bone to pick with Sears over the bondage items. The reason? The uncompetitive cost of the harness. Consumerist noted that the same item was available on Amazon (AMZNfor less


But given that the items are disappearing from Sears' site, it appears Amazon will have the market tied up.


Follow Aimee Picchi on Twitter at @aimeepicchi.


92Comments
Aug 13, 2013 11:10AM
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I just never associated Sears with bondage wear.
I guess I should give the catalog a look over!
Aug 13, 2013 12:46PM
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I remember when I worked for Sears in 1979 we had to pull the tags off hundreds of pairs of jeans because they pictured a topless woman from behind wearing the jeans. We were told they violated Sears' decency standards and might offend our customers.

 

How times have changed!!!

Aug 13, 2013 12:44PM
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Did not know "Craftsman" put out a bondage line.....

 

I imagine the lifetime replacement warranty is intact.

Aug 13, 2013 1:16PM
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Now I understand why my Craftsmen reciprocating saw came with so many attachments and a pair of leather chaps.
Aug 13, 2013 1:26PM
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I would buy this at Sears... at Costco you have to buy a 48-pack.
Aug 13, 2013 1:01PM
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Man, does Sears have a Tool for the job or what?

Aug 13, 2013 1:13PM
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What's next?!

 

"The Village People Tool and Drill Set presented by Harbor Freight"?

Aug 13, 2013 12:51PM
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Times have sure changed since the 50's when boys like me liked the Sears women's  undergarment photos in the catalogs. That and Fredericks of Hollywood ads (drawings) in some men's magazines were hot stuff.  Much hotter were the "sunshine and health" (nudist) mags sold under the counter in smelly cigar shops. 
Aug 13, 2013 12:51PM
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Apparently the company is RUN by tools.
Aug 13, 2013 12:57PM
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Who knew people were so into bondage? It looks like I am really behind the times!
Aug 13, 2013 12:16PM
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These women are turning me 50 shades of red! -
Aug 13, 2013 12:44PM
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They are moving it from SEARS to the  Kmart website to get more sales

Aug 13, 2013 12:58PM
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I don't think  Sears will go out of business because of this, but who ever is suppose to oversee what their site offers through other sites, is going to get the big boot. If they don't then Sears has no one to blame except upper management for losing sales. It has always been upper management that brought this chain to it's knees.
Aug 13, 2013 11:29AM
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"I just never associated Sears with bondage wear."

 

You should start associating them with street corner billboard people advertising Going Out of Business liquidations.

Aug 13, 2013 1:37PM
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Bondage wear and Craftsman power tools....sound like they know how to market.
Aug 13, 2013 2:02PM
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WTH is Sears thinking?  Bondage?  I guess it all goes down hill after they had the Kardouchian line-  "Come see the sluttier side of Sears", Hoes in Hose.....
Aug 13, 2013 12:40PM
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If you weren't looking for it, you won't find it.  But I'll be looking at Amazon in a whole new way that has nothing to do with my Kindle.
Aug 13, 2013 1:50PM
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Does that mean I won't be able to replace the lost key for the handcuffs. I'm beginning to hear sounds like it's not fun anymore.
Aug 13, 2013 1:55PM
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NEED TO PULL KARTRASHIAN'S LINE then I will shop at Sears
Aug 13, 2013 2:40PM
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Maybe this is the line that will save Sears.  Now they have something in the clothing line that will sell.  Add some sexy jocks, shorts, and Victoria Secret items and the new Sears will arise from stogy old line store.
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