Product Review: iCollection 3/4 Satin Robe

Hello Everyone,

Saturdays at the store have been incredibly busy since the start of the new year, and frequently, our multitasking skills are stretched to the max with a customer in every fitting room and, on one occasion, a time-pressed customer trying on bras in the bathroom. While the extra business bodes well for the future of the shop, the downside is I must often work through a queue of fit and sizing questions while customers wait patiently. To add a personal touch to our service, we purchased 3/4 Length Satin Robes from iCollection in a radiant purple to hang in the fitting rooms for customers to use during an appointment.  Having never owned a satin robe, I purchased one for myself because they looked soft and comfortable.

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My harried morning routine consists of groggily hitting the snooze button three times—the magic number for me to roll out of bed with only moderate crankiness—and hopping into the shower. When I finish, I select my lingerie for the day and throw on a robe to wear while I eat breakfast, fix my hair, and apply my makeup. Until recently, I wore a faded blue, partially-bleached, towel-textured robe with fraying embroidered moons that I received as a high school graduation gift . . . back in 2002. While the softness and coziness of my worn out robe cannot be topped, I feel quite glamorous sashaying about my bathroom in this little satin number. The lovely purple color is energizing for the morning, and the luxurious feel of the fabric makes everyday seem special.

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iCollection_Robe_1

The 3/4 length is perfect for me, but iCollection also makes a full length variation too. Moreover, the kimono style sleeves never restrict the movement of my arms or shoulders when I style my hair or rummage through my closet. Even though I use my robe for more practical purposes, the satin sheen and rich color make for a sexy outer layer too. Imagine the robe draped open over your favorite bra and panty set or worn on top of a chemise or teddy. The minimalistic quality allows for significant potential, and the inexpensive price means you can purchase more than one color.

iCollection_Robe_2

Since I had an extra one, I purchased the L/XL, but in the future, I would buy a S/M for a tighter fit in the body. Speaking of size, I admire how iCollection strives to be a plus-size friendly brand offering many of their corsets, lounge wear, and lingerie up to a 6X. The robe is no different and is available up to a 3XL/4XL. Furthermore, both the 3/4 and full length robes are available in a variety of colors, including ivory, black, fuchsia, lavender, red, pink, teal, and white. Composed of a polyester blend, the robe boasts a high enough quality that the fabric does not stick to my skin or make me feel hot. Customers in the store have complimented the robe on how silky it feels, especially for synthetic fibers. Most real silk variations start at the $100 price mark and go up from there, so if you are anything like me and live with a bunch of fur babies, it may be better to invest in this cheaper alternative!

Erica

P.S. After a quick perusal of the other iCollection robes, I saw this one and was smitten. It’s not really practical for me, but it sure is gorgeous!

Robe

Product Review: iCollection 3/4 Satin Robe
Erica
Erica is a lover all things lingerie and is passionate about helping people find the bra which fits and flatters. Side passions include reading, writing, hiking, dairy-free food, walking her Jack Russell terrorists, and dying her hair everything from black to red.
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6 thoughts on “Product Review: iCollection 3/4 Satin Robe

    • Erica
      June 5, 2014 at 12:01 pm
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      They’re definitely quite similar! The use of sheer lace and embroidery with the satin sash manages to feel sexy but classy too. iCollection has a cheaper price tag though ($45), which is one of the reasons we like it for the store. As gorgeous as it can be, we’re not really in the market for the luxury lingerie. Otherwise, I would have some of those gorgeous Natori silk kimono robes throughout the store!! 😀

      Reply
      • June 5, 2014 at 2:35 pm
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        Hey! Thanks for replying. 🙂

        I guess I’m wondering if Sophisticated Pair has a policy on knock-offs. I mean, if you see a thing that looks very much like an item from a more expensive designer, is that a pro or a con for you? Do you try to actively bring in knock-offs or is it more of an incidental thing? And if it’s incidental, does it bother you at all when you find out?

        I know what designers think of knock-offs, so it’s really interesting to get a retailer perspective.

        Reply
        • Erica
          June 5, 2014 at 3:52 pm
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          Excellent question! During my first trip to Curves this year, I noticed how many designers borrow ideas from one another. In some cases, it’s as simple as drawing inspriation (the Spring 2014 Cleo Lily vs. the Claudette Dessous) while others were outright copies or knock-offs. Take the Panache Sports bra, for example. Nearly every vendor we visited couldn’t wait to unveil their “brand new sports bra,” which happened to look identical to the Panache—so much so in certain cases as to seem like plagiarism.

          To answer your question directly, my policy for Sophisticated Pair has and always will be to find products which meet my customers’ fit, quality, aesthetic, and budget demands. The majority of the items in our store are priced under $69, and the highest specialty items are usually around $100. This price point suits our working class customers, most of which do not have the $300 to spend on a luxury robe. If we were in Charlotte or the Chapel Hill region, then sure, a line like Sonata would be lovely to stock. As it is, something like iCollection suits our customers wanting sexy, fun, but inexpensive lingerie. Plus-size customers, in particular, are fans because they are often under-represented in department stores, adult lingerie shops, and even the luxury market, so a brand like iCollection which embraces these ladies will always win points with me as a retailer.

          Nevertheless, I do not actively seek knock-offs, and any instance is totally incidental. Even with the Panache sports bra, I did not opt to stock any of the knock-offs because the original fits and looks better, and for me, quality and fit are more important. With the robe in question, the majority of my customers could not even tell you who Sonata is (I know I couldn’t until you linked those fabulous robes), so to carry a Sonata knock-off only helps my business in so far as the design itself appeals to my customers. Usually, people are drawn to what they see visually in the store or the catalog and not so much what is an approximation or outright knock-off a more-expensive designer item. Not to mention, the people who love and buy luxury lingerie are never going to be happy with something from iCollection, so I don’t feel like the upscale designer loses sales from any luxury-minded consumers. There’s a special quality of detail to luxury items that can never be captured by mass-produced styles, but then again, the hefty price tags also reflect this quality too. I liken it to designer footwear and Steve Madden. The latter has become a successful brand through approximating the latest high dollar shoes in a fairly rapid turnaround. The people shopping for Steve Madden are not the same people shopping for Jimmy Choo.

          I totally understand a designer would feel cheated and perhaps even violated to see their luxury designs adorning a cheaper brand’s collection, but with so many people on tight budgets these days, I personally don’t see a reason to penalize consumers for not being able to afford the real thing. In fact, the idea of the lace dressing gown has been around for awhile, so Sonata most likely drew inspiration from other designers or vintage pieces too.

          http://www.thevintagelist.com/2012/02/new-items-now-available-from-slv.html

          https://www.etsy.com/listing/180689173/vintage-60s-black-lace-robe-long-floral

          http://1860-1960.com/xa6421p0.html

          Even in the luxury market, there seems to be some overlap:

          http://www.girlwithaseriousdream.com/product/bla-bla-bla-2

          The entire discussion really cements the incestuous nature of the lingerie market (or any market really).

          Reply
          • June 5, 2014 at 3:53 pm
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            Thanks for taking the time for such an insightful reply! I really appreciate it. 🙂

          • Erica
            June 5, 2014 at 4:03 pm
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            You’re welcome! I think it would be great to do some kind of collaboration post with retailers, consumers, and designers all tackling the different sides of the issue.

What are your thoughts?