Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Dear Costco,

As a loyal member of your lovely wholesale warehouse, I feel it is my responsibility to inform you of a gross error in your merchandising department. Your women's clothing buyer seems to have either delusions of grandeur or a cruel sense of humor. I purchased a simple v-neck top last week, which fit beautifully and was very comfortable. But when I went to throw it the wash today, I noticed that the tag, which was hidden deep in a side seam, said "hand wash only."

Perhaps you are unaware of the fact that women like me--women who buy their clothes at Costco because they don't have time to go to a department store--certainly do not have time to hand wash their clothes. This shirt is not made of silk or wool. It is not linen or rayon. It is a $14.95 100% cotton knit top. I am not asking for upscale shopping accommodations like dressing rooms or mirrors. But would it be possible for you to place flashing warning labels on any clothing items that are not machine washable? Or are you in cahoots with Woolite?

Honestly, I do not think you understand what hand washing requires of me. First, WHERE should I hand wash? I could hand wash in the bathroom, but then I would have to scrape the toothpaste off the side of the sink. I could hand wash in the kitchen sink, but then I would have to make sure all remnants from last night's dinner were gone. I'm lucky last night's dinner was even made! And then there is the whole "lay flat to dry" thing. By the time I get around to hand washing and air-drying that shirt it will be out of style. Seriously, with all of the technology available in the fashion world today--we have shoes that can become roller skates, stretchy jeans, and even machine washable silk--how is it possible that a "hand-wash only" cotton top is even created? You must have scoured the earth to find such a rare item!

Well, knowing that hand-washing wasn't going to happen, I bravely threw that top in the washer on the gentle cycle, and you know was FINE! It looks great, it didn't fade, it didn't shrink, and it didn't unravel. That shirt is TOTALLY machine-washable, which is great news for a bold soul like me, but it makes me wonder how many direction-following women out there are needlessly scrubbing the toothpaste from their bathroom sinks today so that they can hand wash their new Costco top in Woolite. What a cruel deception you are sponsoring! And you call yourselves "social-minded!"

There are many reasons why I appreciate the Costco fashion department, not the least of which is the ability to sneak clothing purchases in to my grocery budget. However, if you wish to cater to people in the "I have time to hand-wash" world you have completely blown your marketing strategy.

Sincerely devoted to buying machine washable clothes,
Jenn Williamson

1 comment:

  1. How I do love you friend. I love that you have toothpaste on the side of your sink, I love that you (like myself) buy your wardrobe from Costco - where else really, and mostly I love that you actually read the care label and then throw caution to the wind and machine wash- you make my heart happy!