Tuesday, April 21, 2015
I have been trying to find the words to really describe the Lilly for Target experience, but every time I try to write about it I don't know what to say.
First off, I'd like to apologize for my post last week on how to be successful for the sale. I wrote the post from my position as a successful veteran Lilly Pulitzer After Party shopper. I had done some brief analytical research before writing that post, such as talking to a Target manager and looking at social media mentions. Plus, Lilly Pulitzer is a bit of an acquired taste; at the time of my research, Target's Jason Wu and Altuzarra collections had more buzz.
Would the collection sell out fast? That much I expected. I did not count on Target having horrible tech services. After the Missoni debacle back in 2011 and constant Black Fridays, one might imagine that their web servers might be able to handle large amounts of traffic. Apparently one might be wrong.
Through the mobile links that started leaking short around 12:30 AM, I was able to snag a pair of the gold espadrille wedges. Finally, the collection went live shortly after 2:30 AM. I started adding the shift dresses that I wanted to my cart. I'd try to check out and....nothing. What? I tried to bring up my cart on the mobile site and the app but still couldn't get through the checkout. My heart was beating itself out of my chest and I was sweating like I'd just run through a Florida swamp. I was finally able to check out on the mobile site, but out of the five dresses that had been in my cart, only three made it to my order. Crap! I started pulling up all the plus size shifts and there was only one left in my size. Threw it into my cart and checked out immediately.
Wait...where are my confirmation emails? It had taken my first email probably close to 15-20 minutes to get sent. I tried to get into my Target account to see if they were there, but of course that wasn't happening. The authorizations were showing up on my card, though, so I figured and prayed they went through.
Around 4:30 AM I went back to poke through the collection to see what was left. I found a pair of the espadrille flats and checked out quickly. At $24, they were a dollar short of the free shipping threshold so I added a $5 e-gift card (shipping was $4.99).
The number one thing I wanted to get from this collection were the shift dresses. I got those plus two pair of shoes I was planning on buying for summer anyways. I thought I would be elated maybe even dancing around once my orders went through. I wasn't. I was shaky, sweaty, and my blood pressure was up a good ten points. I was a hot mess. I didn't even know which dresses I had managed to buy. I just knew they were in my size.
I had planned to hit my local Target store--which is an hour away--to see what was left of the home goods. I wasn't too disappointed, I was able to snatch the bottle opener and flask I wanted. I also had picked up a towel for some reason, I don't know why because I was trying to stick to my list to stay under budget. I was chatting with some women at the Lilly display in the store about our similar online shopping experiences mere hours beforehand when a woman cam sprinting up with her cart. She took her arm and started sweeping the merchandise from the display straight into her cart, much like you might your hand to sweep some crumbs off the kitchen counter. I reached out and snatched up the lone wine stopper set. I knew the woman was pissed at me so I turned and walked away.
The woman later passed me in front of the Lilly makeup display. "Bitch!" she hissed as she grabbed the remaining makeup bag.
I think my cashier was actually one of the manager, because he told me he had already received multiple calls about the wine stopper set.
This whole Lilly for Target experience has been weird and dare I say, an absolute sh!tshow.
It ticks me off that a few people were buying large amounts of the the store's inventory to sell on Ebay. While Target did limit purchases online, they didn't in stores. Next time they do a designer collection like this, they may want to consider limits. But that begs the question, how much is too much?
I also wonder how much inventory was actually ordered. According to one report I read, Target actually increased the amount of product for this collection as compared to past collection.
I sort of feel silly for participating in this mess. Yes, I'm loving my purchases so far and can't wait to get everything else in, but there's a part of me that's embarrassed at myself for getting so wrapped up.
I don't know how true it is, but I've been seeing reports that the plus size line sold out in under an hour. Hopefully designers will look at this as a sign that yes, plus size fashion is worth investing in. I've been watching some of the plus size shift prices on Ebay and someone actually paid $350 for a size 24 Girafeeey dress.
If you're wanting the nail polishes, don't worry--the colors are not exclusive. They're all from previous collections and you can find most of them at Ulta or online with little effort. The only thing that made those polishes "Lilly" is a little pink tag that you pull off. That's. It. The L'Oreal lip gloss is the same way, it's the same stuff already available with a clear palm print sticker on the lid.
I'm really sorry about this rambling. I feel like the past weekend was a dream. I've had so much to say about it but when I go to speak...I don' t know what to say.
Friday, April 17, 2015
I accidentily deleted the first half of this post and since I'm procrastinating while on deadline I'll post it next week. Oops.
Two op-eds today:
- Ivan Bart, President of IMG Models, writes "Are we at a point where everyone in this multi-billion dollar industry is embracing all shapes and sizes? Not yet. But we’re making progress."
- Susan Koger, co-founder and creative director of ModCloth, writes "Size 16 and above is our fastest growing category and, in 2014, sales in size 16 and above doubled year on year. We have found that styles in a full range of sizes sell around 20 percent more units and customers who buy sizes 16 and above place 20 percent more orders than the average consumer."
-Lane Bryant's "I'm No Angel" advertising jab at the "unobtainable beauty standards" of Victoria's Secret has lots of people talking.
-T.J. Maxx now carries plus size clothes on their website. Like the stores, the selection is hit or miss, but there are some great deals on NYDJ items, this dress that I once featured on Lilly-A-Likes, and this stunning champagne colored gown that would be a great wedding dress for under $300.
-One of my absolute favorite things to do is visit Washington D.C. during Cherry Blossom season. Yes, I am that tourist taking pictures and blocking your way as you try to get to work (sorry!). This dress has a beautiful cherry blossom print that reminds me of those walks around the Tidal Basin.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Ladies, it is almost time to pull out our wallets and surge upon Target stores
much like the French stormed the Bastille prison.
UPDATED: Click Here to find out what items are going to be online only via Racked!
UPDATED: Click Here to find out what items are going to be online only via Racked!
I have an acquaintance that's a team leader at Target so I've been chatting with her about tips and tricks to get what you want from this collection. Some of the tips have already been mentioned but they're always a good reminder:
- Some of the stores already have their Lilly merchandise out on the floor. She says her store doesn't but she knows of others in her region that do.
- Those who do have their goods out already have seen brisk sales but haven't sold out of anything just yet.
- She does expect sell outs of certain merchandise, such as the hammocks, beach chairs, umbrellas, "and the dresses that have all the lace and ribbons on them," meaning the traditional Lilly shift.
- She recommends checking the Target website for what you want before running into the store. She says there's a surprising amount of stuff that is going to be online only, in addition to the plus sizes (off the top of her head, she mentioned shoes and jewelry).
- Target will only allow you to buy five of a certain item online. There will be no limit in the store.
- There won't be a central "point" in the store for all of the Lilly things. For example, shoes will be in the shoe department.
- There is a special return policy on the Lilly collection: 14 days.
- The collection goes online early in the wee hours of April 19th. They weren't told a specific time, just between 12 AM-2 AM Central time. I work overnights on the news desk Friday and Saturday so I'll already be up. I will be keeping an eye on when the sale starts and I will tweet it when it does, so go ahead and follow me!
I have a few things I want to mention as well:
- If at all possible, go to Target to try on a few things to get a sense of their sizing. Target hasn't said what the size range for the collection is, but they do carry up to a 4X. From what I've seen from their collections with Calypso St. Barth and The Weber, it only went up to a 3X.
- If you can't make it to a store, take your measurements and follow the Target sizing charts online. If in doubt, go up a size. It's easy to have a dress taken in, you can't let it out.
- Some of the sizes are of the 1X/2X variety and others are numerical.
- Like the Lily Pulitzer sale, check out early and often to have the best chance to get what you truly want. I've narrowed it down to a handful of things that I absolutely want and some "nice but not necessary" things.
- You can "save" items in the look book but I'm not sure if it that really does anything.
Monday, April 13, 2015
Gottex Swimsuit: I've had a rather turbulent start to my new job since I started in January. When it came time to look at taking a vacation, I decided I wanted nothing more than to just sit on a beach somewhere with a pink drink and a crappy book to read. I've been looking at suits at different places but this suit in shades of blue caught my attention. It also comes with the prettiest caftan coverup. I have a black Delta Burke suit (somewhere) but since I'm heading to Florida I think something bright is in order.
Slightly distressed jeans: My little sister has these jeans and they look fantastic. There is some light distressing on them, and for some reason I like it. They're billed as a bootcut but on my little sister they're halfway between a bootcut and a flare.
Reader request tote bag: I received an email from a reader who was looking for a work tote that was similar to the Longchamp Le Pliage but sturdier and under $200. This is the super popular Michael Kors Jet Set tote, but with a cute pocket on the front. Its made out of Saffiano leather, which is more water resistant than regular leather as well as scratch-resistant. It comes in several colors, too. I would take off the giant logo tag, though.
Gingham skirt: This skirt would be a great addition to a work wardrobe. It adds a nice touch of whimsy while being professional.
Camel straight leg jeans: I've been looking at getting these for summer because I want something that I can wear in place of white jeans. I love white jeans as much as the next woman, but I'm tired of being terrified to get something on them.
I've had the Naeem Khan dresses on the left pinned onto my Outfit Inspirations board on Pinterest since last year. I just adore the color and the Chinoiserie-inspired print. I figured I'd never find anything remotely like these so I'd just gaze and sigh. While researching today's post, I came across the above dress at Nordstrom and my jaw dropped. Made of crêpe de Chine, the skirt drapes beautifully. The print and the colors are also just beautiful. I'm thinking this dress is probably going to go down to Florida with me come June.