20 May 2011

Happy camper :)

FINALLY, after a day of e-mailing back and forth with corporate and after all the phone calls and e-mails, an acceptable and fair resolution has been reached.

"Hi Camille,
Again I am very sorry you have had such a negative experience. I have never heard of our factory mis-packing a shoebox, so please understand that this is not a normal experience for our online shoppers. If you prefer to order Black or Lemon in this same style we will make a one time exception and will offer you a discount off a future order so that you receive the same price. Unfortunately we are not able to offer you a partial refund off of the pair already in your possession.

Please let us know if we can be of further assistance.

Kind regards,
Lara

Alexander Wang Ecommerce Manager
386 BROADWAY 3RD FLOOR
NEW YORK, NY 10013
TELEPHONE 212 532 3103
ALEXANDER WANG"

"Lara,

Thanks again for your quick response and apology. Let me just make sure I understood correctly: I can send my pair back (hopefully at no cost to me), and get them in black for the same price? If this is so I would like to do that. At least in black I won't have to worry about any color variations. How soon can the black pair be shipped out? I just want this problem resolved so I can finally enjoy my shoes and put all of this behind me.

Camille"

"Hi Camille,
I know it says that but I have double checked our inventory and this
particular style did not update on the site. We do not have any Khaki
colored in size 37 in stock unfortunately. Please let me know if you
would prefer to proceed with a black or lemon colored shoe instead. The
lemon color is quite nice - very close to an eggshell or off-white
color. The black will go with everything and will be a great staple to
have.
Best,
Lara
- Hide quoted text -


-----Original Message-----

Lara,

I checked the site, and under the quantity and size section it says
"sizes not shown are sold out." I clicked on sizes and it says 37 in
khaki is available.

Camille
"

"Hi Camille,
I have cc'd our customer care on this email and they will be able to
assist you from here with returning the shoes you currently have and
processing an order with the discount for the black pair. Being as it is
5pm on Friday this will have to happen on Monday morning. I will make
sure someone follows up with you at that time.

Have a nice weekend,

Lara

-----Original Message-----

Hey Lara,

Ok that's fine. Just wanted to make sure.

I would like to proceed with black then. (Yes I agree that Lemon is
pretty but It doesn't have that sweet iridescent metal part.)

Camille
"

So there it is, I get to perform an exchange (perhaps for the first and only time in Alexander Wang Inc. history, considering how hard it was to settle this). Black was my second choice color but was not included in the sale event. I much prefer the shoe in khaki but will accept black as long as it is the same price. I was very pleasantly surprised that even she offered it, especially because it seems they're losing more money allowing me to exchange mine for a pair in black, rather than just giving me a 10% discount on the pair I already have. At least I can feel more at ease that the shoe will arrive its proper color. My relationship with AlexanderWang.com has ended on a good note. Thanks a million Lara, good to know there are at least a couple people working at that company willing to help (not repeatedly deny the claims of and stonewall) an unsatisfied customer :)

The Tempest in black:

Image via Alexander Wang.

Can't see the details of the shoe as well as you can in khaki, but the iridescent metal does stand out more. A couple advantages the black has over the khaki is that it can be paired with super bright colors better thanks to the metal detail, and that it requires almost zero effort to dress up. Tons of ideas running through my head, the more ways I think of to style them the more excited I get.

Comparing the khaki to black Tempest is sort of like comparing NYC to Chicago. Chicago's still urban, but a lot more approachable/relaxed. This shoe in black is very New York to me, which I suppose was the point of the design in relation to the color black. Each color of Tempest has a very different attitude going on, which I find cool. I'm just sorry I didn't like what was going on with the green pair.

Anyway.... thanks to all who supported me through this and listened to/put up with all my ramblings. I know it's weird to make such a big deal over a pair of shoes. I guess the biggest thing was the initial denial and repeated dismissals of my claim/the way I was treated by Chastity, as if a mistake on their part was just not possible. At that moment I knew I could not let this go. I was not going to let myself be pushed around when I knew I was right about the color being different from the site image. As I've said many times now, nothing against khaki green/spruce but it's not the color shoe I ordered. At least black was a second choice, vs. spruce which wasn't even on my radar when considering getting this style of shoe.

Hopefully their experience with me will inspire them to rethink some of their policies. I think when people pay this much for things (even on sale), they deserve to be heard and for their legitimate problems to be fixed. I'm sure part of it is to avoid people who wear stuff once and take it back, or people who have no idea how to take good care of clothes from ruining and returning things so easily. But that wasn't my issue at all; all I wanted was the item in a color I wanted and ordered, not have to settle for an item I wanted in a color I didn't. I also hope it helps them to put a little more consideration into the images they upload on their site if what they claim is true (that all khaki Tempests are green-looking), making sure they're displayed and listed correctly/accurately, and update inventory data regularly- all to avoid letting down their customers who were really excited to order something in a specific color and size.

I've been told I always have to have things MY way. Yes, that's true most times...and maybe that's not always a good quality- I can see how being picky and taking forever to decide can be really annoying for others, and unhealthy for oneself (in terms of stress caused by oneself over things normal people let go of easily)... but I think it's essential when it comes to fashion and shopping. Settling only makes you unhappy and serves to be a bigger waste of money in the long run. Think about all the stuff you have that you don't even use but don't have the heart to throw out- most of it is because you got it in a hurry, or settled. I used to do that all the time but now I wear things for myself, and if it's not the way I want I feel uncomfortable. I already have to settle in a lot of ways because I can't just go out and drop tons of money on stuff by top designers on a regular basis. I try to find the very best at the budget I have. So when I do get the chance to buy something really nice for myself, my control over things really tighten. I almost convinced myself that I could learn to like the green pair, only for that link to fall into my lap. I saw it as a sign not to let this one go till we reached an agreement I could be happy with. I'm just really happy it all worked out in the end, and hopefully I'll have my new shoes within the next week.

Update 5/21 5:06pm: Found these on Shopbop. The back looks similar to what I have, but  the front leather and suede are definitely a brown khaki. Sorry Alexander Wang, but I have determined that the khaki Tempest is stupid. I get slight variations in leather but there is no justifying one pair being so different from the next, and one would think that the photo on the official site would be the most accurate photo. And to be like "But the differences make each one unique" sounds like an excuse not to even attempt making a consistent product. I am even happier now that I'm being allowed to switch to a black pair.

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