Friday, September 27, 2013

In praise of the Zara model

Image via - the Closet Clause
In a recent post from the Closet Clause, there was a complaint as to how the Zara products (specifically bags) were suspiciously close to international designer products. Please note that the whole principle, structure and raison d'etre of Zara revolves around copying high-end designs and making them affordable to the masses. The closet cause refers to their earliest "minimalist" designs which were nothing but knock offs from the minimalist period that major design houses where going through. 
Zara has a policy from design to hanger in 3 weeks, and they rotate their stock heavily (if you don't pinch it now, it will be forever gone!). In addition, Zara sales people are trained to get insights from customers - which is why models show up with slight variations throughout the season (extra zipper, one pocket there, etc...) and all these comments from customers get back to the mother house in Spain where designers and manufacturing units are all housed under the same dome so as to insure the efficiency of the operation. So, copying high end designs is not new to the Zara strategy, on the contrary, it has been a core element of it - unashamedly so. 
Fun fact, Zara was originally called Zorba, but because there was a pub in the same town by that name, they rearranged the letters to become Zara.

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