No, really, I do. And my husband is on board with it. Actually, he encourages it . It was sort of his idea in the first place. I’m a “hugger” by nature, so it wasn’t too far of a leap for me. Still, I’m not the touchy-feely type. Until recently, having men I don’t know touch me was something I was very much against. Back patting? Get lost! Shoulder or forearm rubbing? Ewwww. Just, ewwww.
It’s almost exactly three years since we attended our first cash-and-carry event at the Greenville, South Carolina, Holiday Fair. Our display was lovely. It really was. We’d spent days preparing at home, staging in the living room, marking off the floor with tape to get a “feel” for our booth. And when we got to the show, people thought we were selling the furniture that made up our boudoir-themed exhibit.
My husband, Bill, always my strongest supporter and the source of inspiration, great suggestions and endless jokes (both funny and painfully corny) realized people needed not only to see what we were selling, they needed to feel them. So he rearranged the layout and pushed Maggie (our headless mannequin) to the front edge of our area. We encouraged passerby to see and feel what TUCKTAILS were all about. And considering the small amount of inventory in our initial order, our sales were pretty good and we went home happy.
Last year, Bill and I, along with my sister, Lynda, and our dear friend Cindy, headed back to Greenville for the Christmas sale. We took a gamble and rented a double booth. We had racks and racks of product. All three of us ladies were encouraging shoppers to feel the TUCKTAILS on display – and we were even bending and squatting to show off the ones we were wearing. With a little tug at our sides, we encouraged browsing ladies to feel them. Sales were beyond our expectations. We went home thrilled.
Between last year and today, the beginning of September, as we prepare for another year of the holiday fair circuit (we’ve increased attendance to include more), the realization has settled in that we cannot only sell piece by piece; we need to expand into wholesale. We need boutiques, uniform shops and gift shops to carry our camis.
So this is why I’ve been letting men feel my underwear. Anyone I encounter with a possible link to a wholesale lead, and I’m whipping up the back of my shirt to show them my invention, encouraging them to rub it between their fingers, touting the utility of it, as well as how luxurious it feels. I’ve made a couple of very good connections this way.
So if you know someone, man or woman, who would be interested in opening a wholesale account, let me know. They’re all welcome to feel my underwear.