Salespersons and stylists are not garment care specialists
By: Stu Bloom
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Salespersons and stylists should limit their advice to style and fit
RAVE FabriCARE is a garment care specialist.
We care for bespoke, made-to-measure, designer, high fashion, specialty and couture garments, household textiles and accessories. We have a national and international reputation for the quality of the product that we deliver through our local in-store service, local pickup and delivery service and nationwide clean by mail service.
It’s not unusual for clients who use our services to pass on “garment care advice” — courtesy of their salesperson or stylist.
Here are a few examples of that advice:
- Their XYZ Brand shirts should only be washed in cold water, hang dried and ironed.
- Their made-to-measure suits should only be spot cleaned and pressed, never dry cleaned.
- Their sweaters should be hand washed with ABC Brand detergent, flat dried and steamed.
Oh boy. Here we go again. Another salesperson or stylist masquerading as a garment care specialist.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I do understand their trepidation. But it’s probably based on their own experiences as well as the experiences of some of their other clients with value (discount), ordinary (middle market) or wannabe (illusion) dry cleaners.
This blanket, across the board reaction to value, ordinary or wannabe dry cleaners rarely applies to garment care specialists who are experts in their craft.
That having been said, I’m probably no different than my clients. My personal sense of style is rather limited. So I rely on a combination of ideas I glean from blogs such as DieWorkWear.com, PutThisOn.com and PermanentStyle.com.
In other words, I rely on experts whose sense of style and knowledge of fit is respected by aficionados of fine garments.
So when I’m told that the salesperson or stylist insisted that a particular garment should be cleaned in a particular manner in order to achieve the very best results and extend the life of the garment, my gut reaction is as follows:
- Has the salesperson or stylist ever visited a true quality cleaner?
- Has the salesperson or stylist ever had an in-depth conversation with a true quality cleaner?
- Has the salesperson or stylist ever spent time on the website of a true quality cleaner that offers an educational experience?
- Has the salesperson or stylist ever worked in true quality cleaner?
- What does the salesperson or stylist know about dry cleaning and wet cleaning processes?
- What does the salesperson or stylist know about water-, oil-, tannin- and protein-based stains and the treatment of such stains on different types of fabrics?
- What does the salesperson or stylist know about the finishing (aka “pressing”) of a garment?
In other words, what makes that salesperson or stylist an expert on fine garment care?
The answer is that there’s probably nothing in that salesperson’s or stylist’s background that qualifies that salesperson or stylist to render an opinion on any issue related to garment care.
Even worse, I suspect that their advice is based on something they might have heard somewhere from someone who heard something from someone else many years ago.
Salespersons and stylists should limit their advice to style and fit. For the most part, they are unqualified to render garment care advice. That is the domain of fabricare specialists who have decades of experience restoring fine garments to pristine condition. @ravefabricare
Garment care specialists should limit their advice to garment care
Bottom line: Salespersons or stylists — those who know very little about garment care — should advise clients about style and fit. And let the garment care specialists — those who know very little about style and fit — advise on the very best approach to restoring your fine garments to pristine condition.
Believe it or not, garment care specialists actually know what they’re doing. They’ve spent decades successfully restoring hundreds of thousands of bespoke, made-to-measure, designer, high fashion, specialty and couture garments to pristine condition.
At RAVE FabriCARE, we’ve being doing just that for over 30 years.
Photo credit: unsplash.com/Kristina Flour
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