Does anyone else get a little sad thinking about the stores we used to always visit in the mall that don’t exist anymore?

Maybe not, considering we can order anything and everything we want through huge online retailers like Amazon and have them delivered right to our door overnight. But back in the day, many fellow millennials couldn’t wait to get to the mall to spend the money we earned from our allowance or our part-time jobs.  

Remember These Stores That Used To Be In New York Malls?

Stores like The Sharper Image, Wet Seal, KB Toys, Gadzooks and Waldenbooks, along with countless others, have permanently closed their doors. Even though we can easily add anything they sold there to our online shopping carts today, it’s still a bit depressing. 

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As a (former, obviously) teen who used to adore going to the mall, I’m devastated whenever I see a store I used to frequent go to retail heaven. My first job was at my local mall– at Rotterdam Square in Schenectady, New York (which no longer exists) at an FYE (which does, but back then they used to sell CDs. Remember those?).

I used to love spending my lunch breaks at the mall bopping around to the other stores; catching up with my fellow retail-worker friends while gossiping about our latest high school drama, figuring out who should be the first to break the ice with the new boy working at Auntie Anne's, and making deals about using each other's employee discounts. 

Maybe it makes me old, but the recent news of the liquidation of The Body Shop and the closing of several Express stores hit me with a serious dose of nostalgia. And now, the closing of this popular retailer I spent lots of money in as a tween and teen is no exception.

rue 21 Closing All Of Their Stores In New York State

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The popular teen fashion and accessory retailer rue21 announced that they will be closing every single one of their U.S. stores (just under 550 of them), including the 10 remaining stores left in New York State. This comes after the brand filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy for the third time. 

In the mid 2010’s, there were over 1,000 rue21 stores, and it was hard to find a shopping mall or outlet center that didn’t have one. But that began to change in 2017, when they started closing hundreds of locations. Now, the rest will be completely empty within 4 to 6 weeks.

Sure, the clothes they sold fell apart in the wash pretty quickly, and sometimes their cheap jewelry gave us a rash– but we still loved that inexpensive fashion paradise, where you could buy a new shirt with a sassy saying, belt, and earrings for less than a $20 bill. 

R.I.P., rue21. Believe it or not, you’ll be missed. 

These Are The rue21 Locations That Will Be Closing Soon In New York State:

  • Albany (Crossgates Mall)
  • Bay Shore (South Shore Mall)
  • Buffalo (Galleria Mall)
  • Deer Park (Tanger Outlets)
  • Greece (Greece Ridge Mall)
  • Henrietta (Marketplace Mall)
  • Middletown (Galleria at Crystal Run)
  • Rome (Freedom Plaza)
  • Syracuse (Destiny USA)
  • Waterloo (Waterloo Premium Outlets)

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