I know you. I like you. I trust you.
I was reading the February 1940 edition of Coronet magazine when I came across a profile of Mrs. Helen Gleich and her highly successful tie of the month club. Mrs. Gleich would ask new members for their three favourite colours and “the one he shuns” and would then hand-pick each member’s tie AND ensure that no duplicate tie patterns went to men in the same city.
This got me thinking about the Makeshift project here in Vancouver, where designer Natalie Purschwitz is making all of her own clothes for a year (something I would usually find gimmicky but I actually find quite interesting and thoughtful). To fund this venture she started the Super! Surprise! program where every two months she makes a limited edition “mystery wearable”. Subscribers can opt in at different price points: $20, $50 or $150 and they will be mailed their mystery accessory.
Then I got an email from J. Crew advertising their Men’s shirt of the month club.
Remember when you were a kid and you went to a store that had grab bags? The excitement? The Mystery? Too often shopping is deadly earnest or totally indifferent. I’m all for putting a bit of risk back into the process, and it must be such a confidence booster for the designer or retailer: “I know you, I like you, I trust you.”