Originally Posted by Crump's Brother
^i don't know who made that comment but it wasn't me
My bad -- I messed up the quotes.
Originally Posted by xxxamazexxx
That is why I want to know from somebody who has bought the towels. Just like you I can't be convinced to buy it, but I don't want to unfairly write it off just because I haven't experienced it. Even though I'm not wont to give it the benefit of the doubt either.
To clarify, I'm not interested in Everlane's pool towels because of lack of knowledge or experience of the product. It is because I have zero need or want for pool towels right now. I have a nice pool towel. I don't need another.
I'd be down for a robe, though.
As to why I don't find the towels and poplin shirts very fitting with Everlane's vision, here are the key words: affordable luxury. Everlane brings products that are considered 'luxury' closer to the consumers' buying ability and makes the transaction happen. Everlane's customers are the people who have never shelled out hundreds of dollars for a cashmere sweater, or have but done so grudgingly. Now everybody wins. People get to buy and Everlane gets to sell.
I don't think this is Everlane's vision. Look at the page title of everlane.com: "Modern Basics. Radical Transparency." That tells me more about what Everlane is trying to do than anything else. That their products come in comparatively luxurious fabrics like cashmere is, I think, an added bonus.
The prospects, however, are not the same when Everlane moves down the luxury scale. No matter how 'good' their poplin shirts are (and that's an entirely different story), I suspect everyone of us can already do better. I, for one, am not exactly jumping for joy because I now get to buy a poplin shirt at $55. People had always been able to buy decent poplin shirts around that price level before Everlane came along. In other words, the magic doesn't happen with this one.
It may sound baffling as to why at the same 2.2x markup the cashmere sweater is a good buy and the poplin shirt is not. It is because the two of them are not created equal. You need serious investing in the production of a cashmere sweater for it to be worthy of being a cashmere sweater. Not so much with a poplin shirt. I appreciate paying $120 for a cashmere sweater that costs $50 to make, because it's much better than paying $400 for the same sweater or paying $100 for a trashy one that costs $15 (and probably will melt on me the first time I wear it.)
I can't, however, make the same analogy with the poplin shirt. Would I buy a $40 poplin shirt at American Eagle that is objectively inferior with double stitching and plastic buttons? I gladly might. It's a poplin shirt. It won't melt or explode however cheaply it is made and sold.
You also said in an earlier post that you had a great experience with the oxford shirt. You can ALSO get an objectively inferior oxford shirt from other retailers. Would you not give Everlane the same benefit of the doubt for their other woven shirt that's made of different fabric?
If Everlane wanted to sell a shirt comparable in quality and provenance to one from AE, given their interest in transparency, they probably could for $10 or $15. But they target a higher price point and level.
Another thing that concerns me is that there is opportunity cost to everything. Somebody mentioned a certain 'Common Project-esque shoes' and I just wondered why poplin shirt instead of that?
If Everlane was indeed looking into such shoes -- and I'm not even sure of that without a quote or reference, as all we have is hearsay -- it may be that Everlane was able to establish the design of and manufacturing process for poplin shirts before they could do the same for shoes. There is that overhead.
In my opinion, there are better merits and commercial prospects to focusing on true 'affordable luxury' than churning out 'luxury affordables.'
And yet Everlane's core products are their t-shirts, which start at $15. If those aren't luxury affordables, I don't know what are.
I hope Everlane will keep bringing products that resonate well with customers. There are still selvage denims, Harris Tweed jackets, oxford balmorals, waxed cotton parkas - endless choices that don't have to be pool towels, poplin shirts, laptop sleeves or cashmere underwear.
It almost sounds as if you want Everlane to take on a more heritage-focused direction. I'm sure if they want to, they can, but there are many other brands that do this and do this well.