Posted September 11, 2009on:
A few weeks ago, I discovered Hipstery, a European company that sells mystery tees. Companies such as Teefury, Shirt.Woot, and Uneetee offer mystery tees from time to time, but no other company that I know of only sells mystery tees from a variety of sources. I had the pleasure of speaking to Budge Becher of Hipstery, and here is the interview to help you get to know Hipstery better!
1. When did your special team give birth to Hipstery and where did the name come from?
It was a long summer. The year was 1959. A golden age of innocence. The Hipstery team was young and impressionable. All that changed when a neighbour, Old Swampy, informed us in his backgarden was a buried Pirates treasure chest. We dug, and we dug until our fingers bled, it was the summer of ’59. What did we find? I’ll tell you what we found, oh I’ll tell you. But are you ready for the answer? Hum, are you? That’s the question, oh no wait, the question is “what did we find?”
Nothing but a few old pipes, broken porcelain, some human remains. That’s it. While we’re not the quickest to spot tomfoolery, it became clear to us that our gullibility was being used to get free garden labour for Old Swampy. What followed was a regrettable incident involving Old Swampy’s house burning down and us hastily enrolling in the French foreign legion. The rest is history, err I mean hipstery.
2. Where do you get the shirts for Hipstery?
Oh, from everywhere, we must have trillions of them (laughs). We’ve been in the t-shirt business a long time (over 10 years combined) so we can pick them up and negotiate with the most awesomest shirt shops in the internets and we’re happy to add more. So if you own a T-Shirt label, just let us know. Since our platform is all about serendipity, we are not competition, but an additional promotional opportunity for your artistic genius.
3. Since the shirts in the Hipstery vault are no longer sold by their original vendors, how do you know what tees to invest in for future sales?
Well again, there are our years of experience. Also, more and more stores use limited quantities as an activation tool for customers. Look at the trend for one shirt one day (Teefury, RIPT, etc) or no/rare reprint limited editions (laFraise and many smaller sites — just take a browse around the different Big Cartel stores). And we have the guts to buy some really strange shirts and keep them hidden until the T-Shirt community recognizes their ingenuity.
4. There are currently six questions in your t-shirt selection survey. Do you plan on coming up with more questions to gauge more specific personal preferences? For example, what if many customers have a strong hatred of skull tees?
Actually we don’t have any skull tees. Our service is well, bored of skulls and stars and hearts on T-Shirts. But besides that: Yes, we have a never-ending refinement of our survey in the upcoming weeks and a lot more of questions. While we believe in our system, we learned a lot in the last week and try to balance guiding us and entertaining our patrons.
5. Stores such as Threadless and Design By Humans have had sales in the past where tees were as low as $5. What do you have to say in response to customers who are wary of paying €16 for a mystery tee that they could have purchased for much less at the original store?
This is an important question, so if you don’t mind I’d like to bore you to tears with an answer that justifies the question.
We’re not aiming to buy only shirts on sale, but the best shirts at the best time. So it’s all in the mix. Every shirt in our assortment is hand selected and loved and appreciated by us, we don’t think in terms of this shirt is worth $5, this one $15, this one $50. We think “does this shirt make us want to rip our eyes out in disgust because it’s so impressive that everything we see after it bores us to tears?”
You are right – people who are absolutely into T-Shirt Design will probably find great deals and cheaper occasions to go t-shirt shopping now and then. That’s fine – we are about more than that. As a unique service our goal is to give our customers an added service: less hassle with hunting for the right store, prints and colors, no more “too many options” and digging for the right shirt, just to figure out it’s sold out when you are about to order, less pressure when the next sale is up, no customs fees, no paying more for shipping and for the item, no 3 week delivery times (you won’t know some of these problems as you not experienced the frustration of shipping from the US to Europe where we are based).
At the Hipstery every shirt is always 16 EUR, and all you need to know about the person you order is the size and a little about the taste. We are about much more than the shirt, which our customers will know because they’ve seen the full experience. Ordering is just a small part of the adventure.
6. What are five words that best describe Hipstery?
Suspense, Apprehense, Tense, Dense, Cauliflower.
7. If you would like to include anything else, please feel free to do so!
Thanks very much for taking an interest in our fashion experience. The Hipstery salutes you.
Now that you’re more familiar with Hipstery, head on over to the store to see what it’s all about. You can never be sure what tee(s) you’ll receive, so take a chance and have some fun! Oh, and keep an eye out for a hot new contest sponsored by Hipstery next week!