Sunday, August 22, 2010

Man Shops Globe


I am a fan of Anthropologie. As a retailer, I admire those who are adept at the art of retail just as I am taken by the artist, the musician, the writer. The consumer today is a fickle creature...big boxes have replaced the department stores...and dollar stores are the new Five & Dimes (and they were even sophisticated by comparison).

Anthropologie embodies the spirit of appealing to the customer in all venues but pushes retail into the 21st century. Monday, August 16, brought me to Anthro's headquarters at the Navy Yard in Philadelphia. Not having GPS, I relied on Google...never mind! But after a tour of downtown Philly and directions from some gracious city folks, we made it to the Navy Yard.I had signed up the beginning of August for this event... the chance to see Keith Johnson and Anna Sui discuss their buying trip to Syria. This was the first time Anthro had opened their space to the public, and they did a marvelous job...hope they do it again!


Now, for those who are not cable "full", Man Shops Globe is on the Sundance Channel and features Keith, a buyer for Anthro, as he travels around the world looking for merchandise. Ah, were he my picker!!! But, alas, I am forced to most of my own searching...and in my backyard not the globe...anyway, when we got there, already hyped from the "lost in Philly" experiences, I was about to be pushed into my 15 year old groupie mode as I was told at the check in desk that Wendy (one of the co-Presidents of Anthro) had arranged for me to meet Keith and have a picture taken with him! I had commented on Facebook that I was so excited about this event, and she followed up...trust me...this is the retail world I have talked about on earlier blogs...where you are not just a consumer, but you are a person with whom they have a connection, and even though they do not know you personally, they treat you as though they do. Here is one of the Co-Presidents...Wendy McDevitt...stopping so that I could take her picture...she is totally charming...an aura of life about her, true?
From the time we entered their building...and this Navy Yard is being repurposed wonderfully...that is a whole other story...we were greeted by Anthro associates...all charming...gracious...friendly.Here is the other Wendy, Wendy Wurtzburger...again out and about - everyone was so friendly and helpful.
Of course, my highlight was meeting Keith...thank goodness, I had had a Stella Artois beer (if you watch the show, you know they sponsor), or I would have been tongue-tied...not like moi at all! But he was gracious, friendly, funny...but wait...there is more...Anna Sui had traveled with him to Syria for shopping, and we were treated to a screening of that show as well as hearing from them. She is funny and also very friendly. They spoke of their travels through Syria...not like shopping at the local flea markets, but Anna did show a scarf that she had purchased and talked about how friendly people were (get rid of politics, and we become truly the civilization we should be!)

















In the huge lobby, items Keith's shopping were displayed. If you watch the show...and you should...you will recognize these items...


Mexican chair

paper birds from the Australian artist...
other paper items...





paper pot-belly stove!
not to mention a host of other treasures "man" found while shopping globe!















































Now, to make this all happen here are some of the wonderful people who also made the evening special...







This is David...the photographer...just so nice...note beer in one hand, camera in the other!
And the open bar was a real surprise...this is Eliezer...had to have him spell his name for me...cute, isn't he?

Other bartenders, 2 with "have to spell for me" names...from right to left...Lahel and Andrey...and then Fred...all charming as could be!

And the food was as classy as Anthro...I had to snap some pics...and, if you watch the show, you know that man eats as he shops the globe!













I should have gotten a picture of Julie who was key in having my photo op with Keith, but I did not...I did snap some pictures of some of the associates...Kristen and Jessica...and I thought I had the names for the charming greeters written down, but I could not track it...but they were all perfect hostesses...
Then there were the gift bags!
Since there were men there, my husband included, they had a unique bag for his and hers...his had a candle...Volcano...mine had Anna Sui perfume...both had journals and DVDs of Man Shops Globe...
I leave you with images from my evening......it is good to see the creative spirit alive and well...smiling faces...gracious beyond words...









My thanks to Anthropologie for a wonderful experience into a special retail world!

6 comments:

Marge of Emmas Nook and Granny said...

I am so envious!!! I can barely imagine such an event. You are fortunate to have gone. Thanks for sharing the whole experience!!

Relics said...

Susan
Susan
Susan

You are one super lucky lady...
What a wonderful evening. I think I would have DIED.

Deb
:)

THE SPICE CUPBOARD said...

I am so happy for your experience Susan - it really sounds right up your alley !! I have never visited an "Anthro" store and here I am less than an hours drive from the original - !!! Maybe one day....
You are such a great writer you make everything so inviting and exciting!! XOm Judy

Angie of Eisman Design said...

Oh fun. Sounds and looks like you had a great time! :-) What an experience to see a little behind the scenes of Antrho!

By the way, Your shipment of pillows and scarves will be shipped tomorrow! Yay. Hope you and your customers enjoy them.

Brenda @Just a Bed of Roses said...

Susan for you to say gracious beyond words is sayin alot about what lovely people this team of anthropology is.
What a UNIQUE experience you had, unforgettable really.
Glad your dh got to go with you.
Love all your pictures.
thanks for sharing with us!

The Attic Girls said...

What an experience! Thanks so much for sharing it with us. I visit Anthro at least twice a month for inspiration. My good friend is finishing up an order of cuffs for their online store his week. So excited for her!

-nancy