So, when do you have a BIIIG sale?
The frank answer: Never. Why is that?
Because we import all our products from Europe and cut down our margins to match european prices, so you won’t find them cheaper online. Typically this translates into an additional 30% cost for us (between shipping and import duties) that is not passed down to you. Think of it as buying everything 30% off even when it’s full price! We make this effort all year long, but by contrast we cannot afford to discount when big chains are on sale.
Because we do not follow the “fast fashion” schedule. When Zara gets deliveries every 2-3 weeks and discounts every 3 months, we order the collections one year ahead and make a down payment to the designer so they can buy the raw materials to produce our order. So why would we discount our long-awaited collections 3 months later?
Because our products are made-to-order for us. Most of the time we are the only retailer carrying a specific brand in North America, and we only order 1-2 pieces per style or size, so you will never run into someone else wearing your dress at a cocktail party! All our products are limited-edition or one of a kind, but our price tag is still much lower than Marc Jacobs or Isabel Marant, even when they are on sale! Instead of mass-producing and mass-discounting, we prefer to make sustainable fashion at a fair price, all year long.
Because some collections are permanent. Think about the designer in his/her little studio and the time it takes to come up with a new design, make a pattern or a mould, go through quality testing and production… So when you painstakingly create a good design, there is no point in throwing everything down the drain each season. A lot of our designs are renewed each season with subtle variations in fabric or details, so they never go on sale even on the designer’s website.
Finally, we think it is a sign of respect towards customers who support us all year long. Think of it this way: wouldn’t you be upset if you bought something full price only to find it 50% off three months later? What would be your chances of ever returning to this store? And would you ever buy something full price again if you knew you only had to wait a few weeks before it went on sale?
For a small business like ours selling limited quantities, making seasonal sales is a short-term view. As a majority of customers would wait for sale season to begin, our profits would shrink, leading to bankruptcy, and you would be left with big box retailers who trick you into thinking your are getting a deal when they are still making hefty profits (see video below).
So don’t wait for an hypothetical sale, buy something you love at a fair price all year long!