Meet Stitch Fix, personal shopping at your doorstep
Stitch Fix is a new personal shopping service catching on among my network of friends.
Heard of it? It works a little like Birchbox.
For a monthly $20 fee, and after describing your style and budget in a detailed questionnaire, a Stitch Fix stylist shops for you and mails you a box filled with five items of clothing.
The monthly fee is a little like a $20 down payment. You can put it toward any item you want to purchase (so a $50 shirt, for example, becomes $30). And if you decide you want to keep everything, you get 25 percent off the total. (Plus, free shipping for the things you don't want.)
I was almost as excited to see what arrived in my friend Stephanie's first shipment as she was. When it came in, she was wearing a bold patterned dress. From the box she pulled not one, but two bold patterned dresses, as well as a red blouse printed with swans, a black-and-white striped skirt, and another busy sleeveless blouse. Each item cost less than $50 or $60, made by brands she had never heard of. Her stylist sent a card outlining a couple ways she could incorporate it into her wardrobe, and she could see herself in most of it.
"It's a trap! It's a trap!" you may be thinking. That's what I thought, too. When clothing that so perfectly fits your style is already all the way into your house, just seconds from hanging with your clothes, how on earth do you muster the willpower to promptly send it back?
For Stephanie, it was easier to return most of the items because not every piece was a perfect fit. She ended up buying just the swan blouse, which looks great on her.
I've heard more good reviews of Stitch Fix from two friends of mine with more classic styles, one of whom kept a lovely, soft sweater that tested her comfort zone with its shade of dark teal.
The service sounds awesome -- by all means, let's celebrate personal shopping for the masses. But it's not a great fit for me right now, mainly because I do a pretty great job of watching my expendable income fly into retailers' coffers all on my own. Maybe I'll try it after the holidays.
Would you do it?