10 August, 2011

chez-sucre-chez for urban outfitters

yes. yes, chez-sucre-chez for urban outfitters; this started so long ago that i forgot to be checking in on it and i almost missed it!

over a year ago, i was contacted about having chez-sucre-chez designs licensed to be produced by urban outfitters. we worked out the details and in the end, i created three designs for them and advised on how to have them produced.
the original idea was to have them stitched, much like mine are, but honestly, i was really nervous about that idea for two reasons - one, i was nervous about what the quality would be like and two, i wasn't sure how i felt about having pieces LIKE mine but not mine done in a large production run and offered at such a smaller cost than what i charge. in the end, i recommended that they have them screenprinted on fabric to have the same look as the stitched pieces, but at both a lower production cost and a lower and more attractive cost to the consumer. this would also make them a different product than what i offer, so that they weren't in any way "competing."
so that all happened, the contracts were signed, the designs handed over, i received a check for my licensing fees, and then months and months and months went by and i didn't hear anything! really, i had begun to think that they maybe were over the idea and ended up just scrapping it...
and then yesterday, i got an email from my contact on the project and i found out that they've been "in the shops" for several weeks now! of course i screamed a little and jumped up and down and was ready to grab my keys and hop in the car to drive to the closest UO. instead, i looked them up on the website and found them. and then i started making calls to the nearest stores to see if they had them... which, disappointingly, they didn't. (sad face)
one of the fellows that i talked to sounded like he knew what he was talking about - and said that most of the stores no longer receive the wall art and many of the other homegoods -- that they're mostly just sold online anymore. of course i had to see for myself; i'm pretty stubborn. so i dragged b down to the main store on walnut street in philly and lo and behold, they guy on the phone really did seem to know what he was talking about... they weren't there, and it definitely looks as though the shops are indeed cutting back on the housewares department; there weren't many to be found, just a teeny little section in knicknacks.
so -- have any of YOU seen them? my friend laura says that she saw them in the 14th st & 6th ave store. i'm going there this weekend, so i'll be sure to check. otherwise, you can find them on line. and, they're on sale! (of course i don't want to see that --- i would have liked to have had them sold out the first day rather than to go on sale... but this makes it good for you, right?)
if any of you have ever wanted a chez-sucre-chez "owl love you always" piece, but at a fraction of the cost, here's your chance! of course it's not QUITE the same... but still...
all in all - my experience of working with UO was a good one. i know they get a lot of %$@& for ripping off young designers and for a bad reputation in their business dealings with people like me, but i have nothing but good things to say about how this project went (except that i would have liked to have seen the project in person!). i thought the compensation to be fair and they even notified me to let me know that they'd run more of the product than originally intended, and had me invoice for that extra amount.
exciting stuff, huh?! my fingers are crossed that i'll see some of the pieces in the nyc shop.. otherwise, i'll probably order a set! it's so hard to tell from the photos what they're really like! i do like the looks of the hoops they used, and the way they did the tag on the back (they had me send them images of how i mark/tag my work). if any of you happen to be near one of the shops, stop in and check for me!
here is a link to them on the UO site.
(phew! this was a long post!)


Elise of Argyle Whale said...

Congratulations! I think it was brilliant of you to suggest screenprints of your designs.

chezkimberly said...

thanks, elise!

woolies said...

Wow, Congratulations! (and i'm from philly so I always get a silly thrill when I see it mentioned - we moved away 7 years ago, but I digress) How cool!

chezkimberly said...

thank you, sara! it was exciting!