Last week, as 2017 drew to a close, we sent out a survey asking you about your hopes and dreams for 2018 (personal, professional, and other) and we asked how your wardrobe could support you in achieving your goals. Then we opened the table up for questions, comments, feedback, and requests from you...and we were blown away by your thoughtful answers!
After taking a deep dive into the hundreds of responses we received, here are our 5 key takeaways, and a few things you can expect from us in the next year!
1. You Crave Comfort
Almost every single one of you told us that you want clothes that are COMFORTABLE and flattering...but you don't want to look TOO comfortable, and you certainly never want to look frumpy!
You told us you wanted clothes that are chic, polished, and sophisticated, that feel great and make you feel confident in your own skin.
You don't want clothes that are skin tight or require weird undergarments, but you do want to highlight your feminine form and feel amazing doing it. As one of you so eloquently put it, you want "clothes that don't appear to be stretchy, but are in-fact stretchy."
We say YES to all of this. We hear you and we'll keep this message in mind for all of our upcoming buying and design decisions!
2. You Need Work Clothes
You're a professional woman, a badass lady boss, an ambitious student, a brilliant creative, or a valued volunteer - and you want to dress the part. Most of you work in more "business casual" environments (you don't need starchy suits), and you want to show off your personality at your workplace (even if you work from home and skype with clients).
So many of you asked us for work-appropriate clothes like trousers, silky blouses, cardigans, blazers, and snappy dresses with longer hemlines. We'll be honest with you - we've avoided selling things like work-pants in the past, but with such a huge demand we know we need to tackle this challenge.
The good news is that we've already discovered a few new ethical workwear designers that offer the beautiful feminine styling we love, and we've got some great designs from our own label coming soon too. Stay tuned! It's coming!
3. Let's Talk About Prices
You had a LOT of opinions about prices, and they were kind of all over the map, so here goes.
First of all, 51% of you said that you'd like to "invest in higher quality clothing, even if it costs more per piece" as one of your top 5 style goals of 2018 and only 30% of you said you wanted to "score better deals" to save money.
That said, in the open response section of our survey we had a ton of comments requesting more affordable options, more frequent sales and discounts, and cheaper styles. Many of you noted that our prices have been creeping up over time, and that we've shifted our focus away from affordable organic basics.
So for 2018 we're re-calibrating our price-point a little bit. We're going to continue to offer some more high-end designers in the $100-$200 price point, but we'll focus on classic and supremely versatile investment-worthy pieces in that range.
We're also going to make sure we have a really wide selection of products in the under-$100 and under-$50 range. For those of you who have counted on us for ethical, sustainable, and AFFORDABLE clothes in the past, we want you to know that we've got your back, and we're not going to abandon you!
4. Size Matters
Our survey received so, so many comments related to sizing.
Some of you told us that you're 5'1" and size XS, and you're drowning in all of our big baggy clothes. Others of you told us that you wear a size 14, which is the size of the average American woman today, and you can't believe that some of the brands we carry don't even produce anything above a size 12!
A lot of you mentioned that we don't have size charts on every page, and we don't always list our model's height and size, and it's really hard to order online when you only get to preview the clothes on a tall, thin, young model who doesn't represent you.
We want to be more body-positive and size-inclusive this year, and we want to make it easier for you to order online with confidence. This isn't going to happen overnight, but here's what's in the works:
- We're going to share lots more images of our clothes on women of all sizes, body types, and ages - not just tall/thin/20-something models. We'll produce styled photoshoots featuring women who better represent the diversity of our customers. Want to volunteer to model some outfits for us? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll talk about setting up a photoshoot!
- We're updating our website with complete sizing information, including size charts for every designer we carry and notes on styles that don't run true-to-size. We'll get this done by the end of January!
- We're phasing out designers who don't produce size XL (with just a few exceptions of smaller labels that we love too much to let go). We're also actively seeking ethical brands that offer XXL, and we plan to produce more XXL styles in our own collection.
- We're gradually going to expand our selection of pants with inseam options. Please give us a little time to get this one done - it required a big investment in holding a lot more inventory, but we think it will be worth it!
5. Creating the Capsule
A lot of you mentioned that you have personal goals to create a "capsule wardrobe" full of items that mix and match to create endless looks from a limited number of items. We love the idea of building a more versatile wardrobe and using everything that you own in your closet!
We're planning to offer more styling guides for you this year, including capsule inspirations of 5-10 pieces that can mix and match well together. We'll also focus on offering more versatile styles that can really go the distance in your wardrobe.
6. Shoes, Homegoods, Children's, Men's, Bath & Body...
These are all categories of goods that we don't currently stock, and don't have any immediate plans to add in 2018 (sorry!). However, since so many of you want to see us curate ethical and sustainable options in these categories, we're going to do the next best thing and create shopping guides for you.
These guides will feature our favorite brands that meet our ethical AND aesthetic standards. We hope you'll find them useful! Our first guide, all about shoes, will launch by the end of January.