After dropping her daughter off at an Upper East Side private school, my boss’ wife rushed from her Lexington Avenue apartment to our office where the tech guy set up a laptop for her to use. Sternly focused as if she had OD’d on Adderall, she sat down and slammed the keyboard while simultaneously leaning toward the computer screen. Frantically clicking the mouse, she grabbed the telephone – paging her husband, a man who owns a diamond import and distribution company – and hurriedly asked, “Is the site up yet?!”
Like thousands of other women (and scalpers), she was waiting for Missoni’s diffusion line to be available on Target.com . This proved to be fatal as the server crashed due to an overwhelming amount of traffic. Perhaps with diffusion lines, it’s a better idea to sell in-store exclusively, as a way to tell the consumer: “If you want it that badly, put your health at risk, not our reputability.”
The line sells such diverse products as rain boots, children’s clothing, and a bike – a product luxe fashion houses like Gucci and Chanel sell. I haven’t seen the products in person, but the whole vintage bike, chevron pattern, I think, would appeal to hipster, indie types. And of course wannabe label whores.
Fortune magazine recently featured a bird’s eye view of the discount retailer’s stock chart, shedding some light on why the Target name has become iconic in itself. It showed that although the designer collaboration with Missoni boosted sales, Target’s stock price still trails behind Walmart’s by close to $2. Walmart’s prices are, in my opinion, much better.
The Missoni for Target experience taught me that, while I knew Target was the go-to for lower-income tax brackets, the “rich” are just as prone to the hype. Go figure why she didn’t just buy a real Missoni sweater.