Monthly Archives: February 2009

Are We Victims, or Perps?

I was called upon this morning when hearing a report on the controversy over the soda Mountain Dew (discussed on Good Morning America), to revisit the question of personal responsibility. You might remember that that controversy arose out of the dismal condition of Appalachan childrens’ teeth, arguably dismal as a result of over-consumption of the ‘dread’  Dew.

But I wonder, whose fault is that? Certainly, children cannot be held responsible for their food and drink choices or for knowing proper hygiene or nutrition practices. But can adults and parents? It’s a complex question to be sure, involving at the very least influences of nature and nuture, marketing and choice, greed and habit. It made me reflect on how this nation and individuals have become so unhealthily obese.

Shall we sue MacDonald’s for mac-sizing us? Does Taco Bell torture us into submission and super-sized sodas? And come to think of it, how is it that tobacco companies are held liable in some jurisdictions for ‘forcing’ us to shell out $5 per pack and upwards, making us suck, inhale, cough, sputter, cloud up our environment, poison others, and personally taste (try kissing an ashtray) and smell atrocious?

Perhaps over the years I’ve grown more unforgiving about traumas and outrageous trends as they periodically come to public attention, especially when we seem to always be looking for someone to blame. What does my mom say? When you point one finger forward, three others are pointing back at you.

The news today just seemed more of the same finger-pointing that in major part caused me to become fed up with my former profession, law. It was never a case of accident, or lack of ability to do some job, but was always “your fault” or “racism” or “sexism.” But that’s the subject of another blog.

What excites me about working with students who come to me for corset waist-trainng coaching is that they have taken a step in exercising personal responsibility. They’ve decided to do something about a poor body image, how they feel in their clothes, or their weight or shape. They invest time, energy, and money to pursue a time-limited, fashionable, fun, and unique way to become more healthy and stay that way:  exactly what should be one of out top ultimate quests throughout our lives.

I’m inspired by my student’s commitment when they follow through to the very end and even beyond, maintaining healthy new habits for many years thereafter. They survive the stress of job loss, litigation, divorce and other grave challenges,  facing ultimate boredom and discomfort to the max on some days — yet they keep that corset on and keep drinking their water and eating their healthy soup — steadfastly pursuing their goals, blaming neither themselves, me, or MacDonalds if they don’t quite succeed. But they still win!

These are the clients whom I respect and want to count among my friends because they’re not victims and they don’t think of themselves as such. They are the masters and mistresses of their fate, yet able to roll with the punches which they cannot possibly or completely control. They are to be admired.


Filed under General Waist Training Information, Hot Topics on Health

Now’s the Time to Buy Up, Not Down

Who isn’t challenged economically these days of grim reports on our shrinking economy? But do the retail pundits have it right? I think not.

My favorite online lingerie newsletter for the wholesale trade, McPete Sez, reports in their recent February e-newsletter that the US National Retail Federation says that consumers are shifting their purchasing priorities. But they didn’t get it right when they opine that “Shoppers will be trading down to discount and off-price retailers in order to stretch their purchasing power.” And God/Goddess forbid that they are actually recommending that insane solution to our present personal and business challenges!

Trading up is what is called for today, and exactly what makes sense for both individual corset purchasers, and corset businesses who care about doing the right thing for their clients.  Judging by a surprising increase in January ’09 gross retail sales of our high-end couture corsetry and corset ensembles at ROMANTASY Exquisite Corsetry, that’s exactly what the smartest among our clients are doing. We’re more than happy to report a over-30% increase in gross sales compared to January one year ago when our small custom corset business precipitously hit the skids (I could have told our erstwhile former President that we were in a recession then; wonder why it took him nine more months to tell the evident truth?). So I’m not depressed. I hope my colleagues in the high-end of the lingerie business are not either, and I certainly hope our potential clients are not either!

It’s time to stress quality, even if one needs to re-price some styles to reflect a more-realistic marketplace. And it’s time to think creatively. We introduced a cute single-layer, fully-custom, steel-boned cotton “Sleep Corset” mid-2008 but in fall lowered it’s price by $20:

while at the same time we introduced a brand-new two-layer version we call the “Sweet Things” beginner’s corset for only $25 more than the reduced price of the first style:

Those two custom corsets remain our best sellers and for obvious reasons. But our high-end $600-plus custom corsets are also still selling, when we educate customers prior to purchase to fully realize what they are getting for their investment. We help them make the hard choice to bear the pain now to get what they truly need and want, but feel that pain only once for the 10 to 20 years their quality corset will endure.

For sure, present challenges encourage any business to re-examine old marketing ideas, old ways of doing business, and the product quality and mix we purvey.  However, it can bring us back to our senses to find what is lasting in the tried-and-true, and what values we want to encourage in our customers, and in the way we do business, and it can help our clients make better choices.  We’ve lived long in a ‘buy it now- throw it away tomorrow’ society.  I don’t want to encourage more of the same, and do want to stick to a marketing approach and business model that focuses on “think first, and especially in a down market buy top quality carefully, then keep it for many years to come.”  It just makes more sense!

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Filed under Custom Corsets Suitable for Waist Training, General Waist Training Information, Quality Corsetry